How to protect and leverage your real estate database

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Your database is under attack, and you have to decide what you’re going to do about it. Companies are spending millions of dollars to attract your past clients and then charge you a fee to get them back as referrals

Savvy businesspeople know that taking action serves them much better than complaining about these injustices. To win, take these steps right now to protect your database and generate more listings in the future.

1. Call the people in your phone’s address book

The people you’ve saved to your phone are your friends, family members, past clients, people in your sphere, and people to whom you refer business. Initiate conversations with these people who already know, like, and trust you.

Don’t talk about real estate. Instead, be prepared to answer any questions they might have since they likely know that you’re an agent. If they are in a real estate decision-making mindset, they will bring it up to you. 

A lot of agents are afraid to make these calls because they do not know what to say. Use the FORD script (Family, Occupation, Recreation, Dreams: ask how their family is doing, talk about work or things they are doing for fun).  It has to be a real conversation.  The number one question people ask is, “How’s the market?” so be prepared to give that answer. 

When you open your address book, scroll to the bottom and begin with Z, because everyone starts at the top of the list, and the people at the end of the alphabet don’t often hear from you.

2. Text the people in your database or CRM

If you don’t already have a database, begin there, because it’s the key to growing your business. If you have a CRM, look at your long-term leads, your qualified leads, the prospects who have never called you back, and past clients who have been in their homes for a while. 

Send a simple text message to these people: Hey Nick. The spring market is already here. Question: have you given any thought to selling in 2022?  

We’ve had the busiest market in history in recent months, and this message gives you a perfect chance to engage with some of your watch leads and other people who are hesitating to sell. The end of the year is also a great time to reach out to people because many people will set goals for the new year to get their homes on the market. 

Invest some sweat equity to connect with the people in your database, especially during a time of year when other people are taking time off. The winter months are critical for filling your pipeline, especially in 2022 as seasonality is returning to the marketplace.   

3. Call the people in your database or CRM

You’ve heard this advice from many people, but many Realtors don’t make the time for it. The result is that they watch as past clients list their homes with other Realtors because they haven’t spoken to them in years.

Schedule these relationship calls in your planner, and use these calls to build connections with the people in your database. 

Talk to a minimum of five people you know a day: 

  • Call your clients on their birthday
  • Reach out to connections who don’t know you’re a Realtor and with whom you would like to do business
  • Call your client on the anniversary of their move

During these phone calls, have conversations that are not about real estate. The point of these calls is to stay top-of-mind so that when these people decide to make a real estate move, you’re the agent they’ll call first.

Think about the lack of human connection people have had over the past 20 months or so. Human connection is going to win in 2022.

4. Send two weekly emails to your database

Send one message each week that is real-estate-centric and one that is community-centric. 

The real estate video can be rather aggressive, in the form of a 3-5 minute video that provides information to the people in your database without asking for anything. Provide information about the real estate process:

  • What happens when you miss your inspection deadline?
  • What is the mortgage commitment date?
  • Generally speaking, answer the question, “Do you know…” and come from a place of help.
  • Send video emails through a platform like Mailchimp or Constant Contact. 
  • Address the current state of the market once a month. Give stats about what happened through that month, and explain the year-over-year changes and what that means for people looking to buy or sell a home. Give your opinion here. 

The community email is even easier because it’s simply a text email, and even if you’ve never done any copywriting, it’s fairly easy to learn if you research it on the Internet. 

  • On Thursday, send a list of the top things to do in your area for the upcoming weekend. 

Tuesdays and Thursdays are the best days to send emails, so schedule these in your activities to stay connected to the people in your database. The relationship you build with your clients will insulate you against the companies who are looking to capture those prospects.

When they are ready to begin a real estate transaction, those you have stayed in touch with will turn to you because you built a relationship with them. The local agent will win if that agent is doing the right things to stay relevant.

Your database is one of the most important tools in your business, and you should protect it by staying engaged with the people you’ve added to it. Be aggressive in your efforts to stay connected, and use phone calls, texts and emails to stay connected to your prospects. 

Those relationships will help people know, like and trust you, and they’ll ultimately allow you to generate more listings for your business.

Tom Toole is the founder and team leader at Tom Toole Sales Group. Connect with him on Facebook or LinkedIn

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