create more repeat and referral business in 2014!

What can you do to create more repeat and referral business in 2014?

Source: Inman

Peter Knight, managing director of the U.K.’s Property Academy, had some great answers at the National Association of Realtors’ convention in San Francisco.

Knight’s session highlighted a major theme that was present throughout a number of last year’s sessions at NAR: “people, not property.” Knight’s “people first” approach. The typical real estate sales funnel begins with leads that filter down into appointments. Appointments filter into signed business, which ultimately become closed deals. Knight asked a thought-provoking question: “What if you could keep those past clients in your current funnel?” Each of your past clients knows approximately 250 people. If you have 100 past clients, you could potentially have upwards of 25,000 people from which to draw as potential future clients.

You should continue to generate new business through prospecting, but make prospecting your past client list your highest priority.
The truth of the matter is that realtors do a poor job in this area. Previous studies have shown that the typical agent loses 20 percent of his current database each year by failing to stay in contact with his past clients. In other words, 59 percent of the industry’s past sellers ultimately list their home with a different agent even though they would have hired the agent who represented them on their previous sale.

” NAR’s 2013 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers confirms that the industry is continuing to fall short in the area of retaining past clients:

“Forty-two percent (42%) of buyers found their agent through a referral from a friend or family member, and 12 percent used an agent they had used before to buy or sell a home.”

In terms of sellers: “Among recent sellers who used an agent, 84 percent reported they would definitely (65 percent) or probably (19 percent) use that agent again or recommend to others.”

“Thirty-nine percent (39%) of sellers who used a real estate agent found their agents through a referral by friends or family, and 25 percent used the agent they worked with previously to buy or sell a home.”

In other words, 59 percent of the industry’s past sellers ultimately list their home with a different agent even though they would have hired the agent who represented them on their previous sale.

While there can be numerous explanations as to why this is the case, the most likely one is that the agent failed to stay in regular contact with the client.

Knight made the following recommendations about how you can avoid having this happen to you in your business:

1. Use your database to stay in touch as mentioned above, focus on both ends of your sales funnel: first by prospecting for new business, as well as focusing on client retention and generating referrals from them. The most important tool in this process is your database. If you’re still relying on your email program and address book to prospect your database, make 2014 the year that you upgrade to Top Producer, Salesforce, Wise Agent, New Panda or one of the other real estate databases that allow you to create lists.

2. Personally contact your clients… spend 45 minutes each day calling your past clients.

So what to do now as a member of Coldwell Banker – Campbell Realtors?  There are steps you can complete this week which will create more business for you in 2014:
Step One:  If you are not already a member of Coldwell Banker – Campbell Realtors, join immediately.

Step Two:  Decide that you are willing to spend zero dollars the first month to have a Full Color Two Sided 11” X 17” newsletter mailed out to your “Top 200”.

Step Three: Decide which lender you want to partner with for your “Top 200” newsletter…  if you do not have a lending partner, we have one for you.  With the cost of the desk top publishing being paid by Coldwell Banker – Campbell Realtors and Co-Marketing Space available on the newsletter piece, the total cost (for you) to reach your Top 200 is as little as $60 per month…  That is 30 cents each including: Printing, Postage, Addressing, and Delivery to the Post Office.

Step Four:  Make a list of your “Top 200” people that are your friends, relatives, past clients, past co-workers, etc.  If you are short of 200 people, keep in mind that you do not have to be “best friends” with people on your “Top 200” list… as long as they are people that “know who you are” they qualify and are much better prospects than just geographic farming.

Step Five:  Tell the marketing manager that you want to participate in the “Top 200” mailer and send your excel file with the names and addresses of your people.

Step Six:  Smile!  Because next month, the following month, and forever… you do nothing except pay $60 each month and update your mailing list as you desire.  The newsletter reaches your Top 200 people, and you simply follow up with a phone call, email, or hand written note each month!

Staying in touch with 200 people who “know who you are” will yield far more transactions than geographic farming 1,000s of homes.  Industry studies show you are 40 times more likely to do business with someone you know by sending them a marketing piece as compared to sending to a “cold farm”.



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