Building relationships with clients is crucial for long-term business success because it can also generate positive word-of-mouth referrals. But how do you make new contacts realize you are an agent they can rely on indefinitely? Fortunately, our evolving industry has adapted to meet this need with marketing efforts via tech and tools that convert leads into lifetime clients.
Here are some game-changing tactics that top-performing PLACE Partners use to build strong connections and close the loyalty gap.
1. Make dials a priority
Five days a week, high-performing real estate agents pick up the phone and call people in their database. For example, Dallas agent Amanda Benoit of The Davis Team averages 600 calls a month (an average of 30 calls per workday). She’s found that using automated communication and drip marketing makes those conversations even more valuable.
Starting the conversation
When speaking with potential clients, the goal of scheduling an appointment doesn’t always fit the conversation, as not everyone is ready to move. But it’s never a bad time to initiate a personal connection by discussing the local real estate market and industry trends.
When a contact says, “I’m never moving,” Benoit leverages this script:
“Even if you aren’t thinking about selling or buying, it’s good to have an idea of your neighborhood’s current market activity. I can send you a quick report. What’s a good email address to send that to?”
Once your new contact’s details are in your database, launch an automated drip campaign that periodically sends them a market report specific to their area. Then, leverage your CRM’s analytics and reporting tools to witness how contacts engage with the report. Use those data-driven insights to tailor your follow-up calls or set up automated listing alerts for the contact’s area. If you notice a contact isn’t engaging with your market report emails, you have an even better reason to call because you can fill them in on industry insights and what’s happening in the neighborhood and set the tone for a long-term relationship.
Rolling with objections
No matter how skilled or long you’ve been in the real estate business, objections will happen. However proactive, confident agents like Benoit use objections as an opportunity to develop a relationship with clients by addressing their concerns thoughtfully. Whether it’s interest rates or market misconceptions, your insights as a real estate professional shed light on the reality of the real estate market. Making that extra effort helps you continue building relationships with clients.
Respond to any objection with one quick script:
“Thanks for letting me know. Do you mind telling me a little about why you feel that way?”
2. Focus on lead gen
Prioritizing all the moving pieces in real estate CRM gets overwhelming quickly. Real estate agent Aaron Bean of Ben Kinney Team Bellingham likes to stay productive in all areas of business while still accomplishing one of his most productive lead generation activities — website lead follow-ups.
Call leads immediately
No one walks into a retail store without any desire to shop. It’s the same for leads browsing your website. The key is to discover what stage of the buying or selling process prospective clients are on so you can better help them on their journey.
Whether a website viewer is someone you’ve worked with before or an unfamiliar name whose information we captured from a contact form, you should call that person immediately. This gives you a competitive edge in building client relationships. If that’s not possible, do so within five minutes. After the five-minute mark, conversion rates drastically drop.
Conversion Monster rounded up some helpful facts:
- 78% of buyers choose to work with the first respondent
- Responding to leads within 5 minutes yields a 900% increase in contact rate
- 30 minutes after submitting an inquiry, buyers are 100 times less likely to be available to take a call
- On average, website visitors spend less than five and a half minutes on the site.
- Contacting leads within 5 minutes positions you as a real estate resource. After that, you are an interruption.
In addition, here are some stats to keep in mind from the National Association of REALTORS®:
- 51% of buyers found the home they purchased on the internet
- 29% of buyers found the home they purchased with a real estate agent
- 41% of recent home buyers began their home buying process by searching online for properties for sale
- 71% of buyers interviewed only one real estate agent during their home search
- 81% of recent sellers contacted only one agent before finding the right agent they worked with to sell their home
After calling prospective real estate clients and talking through introductions, ask thoughtful questions like:
What does your desired future look like?
What are some of your short-term or long-term goals?
Were you browsing our site for fun or looking for something?
If your dream house appeared on the market this week, what would it look like?
When you first start building relationships with clients, the key is not to overcomplicate the conversation. Let them do the majority of the talking. Listen carefully to what they say. Take notes, writing down any information that helps you develop meaningful connections and better understand their goals. Afterward, add those notes to their profile in your real estate CRM.
Set touch points
Once you understand a contact’s motivation, whether they’re a potential buyer or a seller, ask them to meet with you. If their timeline is less than a year, reach out weekly. Offer to show them a listing they recently viewed or ask for an appointment in another way. Some will naturally reject the meeting. Continue to reach out with more value each time. Eventually, those real estate clients will be eager to meet.
It’s not uncommon for cold leads to go dark for months. While it’s tempting to give up, you never know when that person might pick up the phone – even after 40 calls. Stay on course and keep reaching out. In time, you will have a productive conversation because that person will know first-hand how determined and committed you are to earning their business.
3. Always add value
Have something valuable to offer leads every month, like recent market statistics or a downloadable PDF with tips for homebuyers or sellers. The more value you can add to their lives, the more you’ll solidify your position as the neighborhood expert and real estate industry pro. Remember, every real estate client is on a journey. Not everyone is ready to buy or sell today. When they are ready, it’s the professional who consistently connects with them that will be their go-to agent.
Explore how PLACE provides the tools for success
PLACE technology and training are specially designed to complement each other and help partnering agents build fast, strong relationships with real estate clients. Watch our partners discuss their success with PLACE here. To inquire about a partnership with PLACE, fill out this form to tell us about your business.