How do veteran agents generate more referrals?

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Any real estate professional can tell you: the business is often all about who you know. So for those who are new to the field, the question typically becomes how they can make the right impression to get clients to refer others. Fortunately, a few tips and tricks recommended by long-time agents can typically help those just starting out, build the bedrock of their future success.

In general, agents who do best with clients – whether they’re buying or selling – share a small handful of common traits, according to Inman. They’re likable, approachable, genuine, and flexible. Not surprisingly, those traits tend to resonate with their clients because they foster an atmosphere of trust throughout the real estate sales process, which can often be a trying time for consumers simply because many haven’t bought or sold a home before.

Be in the client’s corner
While most agents are going to have a number of clients at any given time, the ability to make people feel like they’re get special attention – and their needs are being attended to at every turn – is vital. That means being available to answer calls and texts at just about any time, but also having the ability to meet with clients in-person if they need it. Veteran agents know the best ways to reassure clients about how things are going with the occasional face-to-face meeting really adds a personal touch that even attentive work to answer all calls or emails won’t.

Of course, not all clients are the same, and having the capability to know when to lean into that kind of hands-on service and when it’s not particularly necessary, in any given situation, is also vital. Being as open and honest about how the sales process is going is great, and so too, is staying in contact even after a sale is completed. After all, if the name of the game is getting referrals for future business, working to stay front-of-mind is crucial.

What about costs?
Of course, veteran agents often find fertile ground for referrals through more traditional means, such as programs that thank past clients for getting them in touch with someone who completes a sale, according to Ixact Contact. In addition, agents who are able to understand the unique preferences  of their clients, and their  ability to use what they learned about their clients during the sales process ultimately guides their choice in choosing the best targeted thank-you gifts to surprise and delight them, and leave a lasting impression as a result.

At this time, though, it might be wise to think a little more outside the box with those “thank-you’s.”  Perhaps consider hosting small “block parties” in your office parking lot at the end of the spring or summer shopping seasons, which can help connect not only with clients, but the community at large.

Agents who want to stand out from the crowd and get more referrals can typically do so just by putting in a little extra effort to show their clients just how important they are. And for newer agents in particular, that kind of effort can really set the standard for the rest of their careers.

Brought to you by HMS Home Warranty.  HMS is an industry leader with over 30 years of creating success for clients and providing peace of mind for customers.  To learn more click www.hmsnational.com.

Crafting an updated sales strategy for 2017

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With the new year finally here, real estate professionals may be wise to take the quieter winter months to assess their plans for when the spring buying season starts to heat up. With this in mind, considering the ways the 2017 real estate market will differ from the one seen in recent years is vital, and any steps taken to better handle those changes will likely result in a number of benefits for agents, buyers, and sellers alike.

Plan for the 2017 market
The first thing to remember is that in many ways, the national housing market is now back to pre-recession norms, but many buyers and sellers may still be lingering in recovery mode, according to analysis of 2017 market from PricewaterhouseCoopers. This is particularly true when it comes to housing affordability, because the twin factors of mortgage rates and home prices are on the rise.

Get it down on paper
Those who tend to experience the most success over the course of a year are those who put in the most preparation, often before it even begins, according to business strategist Gord Collins. The fact is that most of the year follows somewhat predictable patterns in local markets, and as a result, carefully crafting a business plan isn’t hard to do. Making sure to carefully record the steps that seem most prudent can be a good guide for the rest of the year because whenever questions arise about what needs to be done – whether it’s revamping a website or boosting social media presence – an annual business plan is something an agent can always return to.

Figuring out your budget
A big part of any successful attempt to set a sales strategy at this time of year is figuring out how to properly budget for the year. Sitting down and devoting a few hours to such an effort will likely pay off over the course of 2017, but there are a few basic things to keep in mind when doing so, according to Agent Edu. The first and most important is to look at local trends and determine the best way in which each ad dollar can be spent, based on anecdotal and more tangible data from a number of sources. After that, it’s important to determine how much is going to be spent on advertising for the whole year, and how each month’s budget plays into that.

Finally, it’s important to get down to the nitty-gritty of ad streams. Some agents might find it useful to put money into search engine or social media ads, while others could get a greater benefit from real-world signage. This depends heavily on demographics in their area, how established they may already be in their markets, and a number of other factors. And as always, these efforts should typically be undertaken in addition to the time they’re devoting to the free marketing social media platforms provide.

There are many ways to give your 2017 sales and marketing strategy a boost – with a clear focus on one or two new tactics, you may find yourself tracking a new course of success in the coming year.

Brought to you by HMS Home Warranty.  HMS is an industry leader with over 30 years of creating success for clients and providing peace of mind for customers.  To learn more click www.hmsnational.com.

September 2016 Marketing & Tech Stat

This month’s Marketing & Tech Stat focuses on key characteristics of homes purchased over the past year.  This is great content to share with your current buyers and anyone who is thinking about purchasing a home in the future.

Market&TechStat-Sept2016

 

Click the links below to access the corresponding items:

PDF Version: If you have issues viewing the flyer, save it to your computer first.  This can be printed and then mailed with your business card.

JPG Version – You could use this graphic by saving it to your phone and uploading directly to instagram and other social media sites.

Click here to easily share this as a blog article on your social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, etc.). You’ll be redirected to AskHomesale.com where you can simply scroll to the bottom of the article and select the social network you want to share it to.

You can also access the ecard template on the Market REsource by selecting ecards and searching for “Market and Tech Stat – September 2016.”

Conquer Email Marketing

Email is one of the most effective marketing tools around, returning about $40 on every $1 you spend. As Realtors, you can use email to reach your entire database instantly and by provide them with valuable real estate information. Sustaining a good relationship with consistent communication is a must in today’s marketing world.

Build Your Database:

Offer email signup sheets at open housesEmail Marketing 2To encourage more email subscribers, ask prospective buyers to provide their emails so you can send them new listings that match their search criteria.

Stay in contact with recent buyers to get referrals— “It’s all about making it personal, making it magic, and making the experience unforgettable so that two or ten years down the road they’ll remember to call you,” says real estate pro Cheryl Hanna with Keyes Co. in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., and also a frequent blogger about customer service issues for Service Untitled.

Use LinkedIn— Once you connect with past clients on LinkedIn, you’re able to view their email address directly on their profile. Check out our LinkedIn for Realtors training video to learn more.

Promote email through your social media websites— Use social media contests and promotions, with relevant prizes, to collect email addresses. When you ask for a person’s email for the entry procedure, be sure to include a section that allows them to choose to opt-in or not to your email list.

Targeting With Email Newsletters and Reliable Content:

Send your clients valuable information about their local area or topics that interest them. Good topics that can be sent out:

-Changes in homeowners association regulations and fees
-Local area events, fundraisers, and news updates
-Local school district statistics and events
-Homeowner tips and advice
-Updates on the local real estate market

If you’re sending things like new listing alerts, open houses, tips for buyers, advice for sellers, make sure you segment your list of clients. By grouping them appropriately, you’ll be sending them information that is valuable to them so it’ll keep their interest.

Photos are good, but Videos are better:

It is important for you to promote yourself and your listings through video marketing. You can share the unique videos that have been created for each of their listings through email. They then can decide if they want to take the time to see the listing in person. We continue to provide with tools that will be beneficial to your marketing efforts. Overall, videos contain more stuff: movement, conversation, facial expressions, and emotions. Videos allow you to portray a truer reality.

Homesale Tools are Available:

Homesale’s innovative and aggressive advertising and marketing activities will help you attract qualified buyers to your client’s property.

  • Homesalecenter.com: Our customer center (inside homesalecenter.com) has drip email campaigns for prospective buyers and rent-tenants.
  • Online Seller Advantage: As an additional feature when an open house is scheduled, an email notification is automatically sent to all customers who saved your home in their online portfolio. These are exclusive benefits that only we offer.
  • Prea Center Ecards: This tool allows you to import your database to PREA Center, split them into groups for target marketing, and send them ecards. There are a variety of templates to choose from.

The value of email marketing lies entirely in your list of customer emails. Keep in mind that 93 percent of consumers check their email and view at least one permission-based email daily.

 

Don’t Forget to WOW Them

The average consumer does not buy a house on a weekly, monthly, or even annual basis so creating a memorable experience is a MUST!!

Not all transactions are created equal, but there are specific needs that most homebuyers share. As a real estate professional it is more important than ever for you to impart your wisdom, expertise, and compassion while you guide clients through the process. Buying a home can be stressful, make a lasting impression that your clients will always remember!

  • Your unique qualities not only define who you are, but they encompass all that your business represents. Make a list of your top personality traits then choose the best three and incorporate them into your various marketing channels. Clients and prospects will get to know you better and what sets you apart from others.
  • Under promise and over deliver – EVERY TIME. The best way to WOW is to exceed your clients’ expectations all the time. Be realistic with everything you deliver and when they can expect it. Then go the extra mile to make your “delivery” impressive and on time, or better yet….early! This is the simplest way to secure your reputation and leaves very little room for any misunderstandings.
  • Keep them in the loop. Stay ahead of their questions, learn to anticipate what your clients will want to know and fire out an email or phone call before they reach out to you for answers. If they do beat you to the punch, be sure you are accessible. Make your responses in a timely manner and if you find you don’t have a quick response, at least acknowledge that you will get one to them as soon as possible! Make your clients feel valuable. See our blog on keeping your sellers updated.
  • Do you love what you do? Clients can sense whether you are enthusiastic about the business or simply putting in time. If you exude excitement, clients will be eager to make a connection and embrace your energy.
  • Remember the “other holidays”, anyone can send a Thanksgiving or Christmas card. Making the effort to remember your client’s own special “holidays” will impress. Imagine the feeling they will get upon receiving a personalized birthday card or anniversary card from you.
  • Ask for feedback; a simple phone call or follow-up email to gauge their satisfaction, will let them know you are 100% committed to making memorable client experiences. They will feel respected and will know you are not going to settle for less than the very best for them.
  • Reward their loyalty. You may choose to give gift cards to clients who send you referrals, or throw in a free product or service here and there; unsolicited gifts will make it hard for clients to go anywhere else.

Impressions of excellence, commitment, and quality will create life-long clients. You’ve got what it takes to “WOW” your clients every day; it’s time to get to it!

Are you ready to buy? | Tips to help you save money

RPR recently unleashed version 1.13 with some nifty enhancements

Realtors Property Resource

  1. Manage your reports: our entirely new reports generation page makes it easier for you to choose the report elements you want to include and to see the progress of your report. The payoff is a more highly customized report for your clients. You’ll also now find school facts and reviews for many properties in the Property Report. 
  2. Search on the map: searching for properties using our maps no longer requires the Silverlight plug-in, and there are new indicators to overlay on the map. Try the Year Built layer to see the age of the housing stock in an area. The improved map layers give you more insight into a neighborhood of interest.
  3. Control your search results: You have new options to control the search results for an area, both in the list view and the map view. We wanted to make it simpler for users to search by geography and see all search results, or to search based on the area shown on a map. You’ll also notice that our homepage has turned a neutral gray, but once you sign in, you’ll see the familiar blue homepage. This change reflects that we’ve released a beta commercial resource. All RPR users will arrive at the gray homepage and then move to the blue (residential) or a red (commercial) environment. Our commercial beta users will be testing out the new service over the next few months, and we’ll tell you more about it soon.

Read more details about everything in the v1.13 release in our Release Notes in the Knowledge Base.