Real estate is all about building and maintaining client relationships. The closing table shouldn’t be the last time you interact with your clients but should instead be the start of a long-term connection. Cultivating relationships with clients beyond closing shows you care – not just about making a sale, but also about them and their families.
But let’s face it: client relationships are also a smart marketing strategy. When you take the time to check in, you’re building trust and comradery that will pay off in the long run through referrals and repeat business.
Read on for some innovative ways to stay connected with past clients without becoming overbearing.
Invest in customer relationship management (CRM) software.
If you want to keep track of your clients, it’s time to embrace customer relationship management (CRM) software. CRM solutions allow you to track everything about your contacts in one location. We prefer Nimble CRM software: it seamlessly integrates your social media accounts, email contacts, phone contacts, and more into one easy-to-use platform. Keep track of clients’ birthdays, anniversaries, contact information, addresses, and more in one location.
Send a thank-you gift after closing.
It’s a small gesture that can mean a lot to your clients. Depending on the value of your clients’ home, real estate agents can make thousands in commission. Spend a few dollars investing back into your clients.
Get in the habit of sending a thank-you gift to show your clients that you appreciate their business. It doesn’t need to be elaborate or expensive. Here are some ideas:
- A yard flag or other household gift from the client’s favorite sports team.
- Small patio items, indoor or outdoor fountains, or other household décor.
- Gifts cards to a local restaurant, movie theater, or home improvement store.
- Personalized gifts like pillows, blankets, photo frames, or other meaningful items.
Personal gifts are always best, so try to find something that is unique to the family rather than mass produced.
Send birthday, anniversary, and holiday cards.
Everyone likes to feel special. Now that you have your CRM software, you can keep track of important dates: birthdays, anniversaries, and graduations. By acknowledging these important dates in your clients’ lives, you’re showing that you care about them and their families. This small gesture goes a long way towards keeping your name in the forefront of their minds.
Create monthly or quarterly newsletters with meaningful content.
How can you connect with clients, give them something useful, and not become a nuisance? Send them informative, insightful content. Sure, you can send age-old mailers or make cold calls, but clients are more likely to interact with what you’ve written when the information is useful.
No one wants to be bombarded with blanket emails, so send them sparingly. Make the newsletter easy to read and incorporate news your clients will take the time to read.
Consider some of the following topics:
- Home improvement tips, particularly improvements that will increase a home’s value.
- Upcoming local events for families, couples, and singles.
- News and information about the housing market: forecasts for interest rates and home prices, for example.
- Anecdotal stories about home ownership or the buying/selling process. You might even consider interviewing a client that has a fun story and ask for future submissions in your newsletter.
- News stories from the local area, especially if they pertain to homeownership.
- Personal narrative stories about your life and your business. Take this opportunity to help your clients get to know you better.
Host a party for past and present clients.
Everyone loves a free party. Consider spending some money to throw a big bash. Invite everyone on your contacts list – and encourage them to bring friends. Give some incentives, like drawings for prizes, free goodies, or matching donations for a local charity.
Not sure what to celebrate? Here are a few suggestions:
- Christmas parties with free photos with Santa.
- Summer kickoff, complete with a bounce house and free barbecue.
- Halloween parties with treats for the kids. Offer prizes for the best costumes.
- Celebrate the anniversary of your business and encourage attendees to bring donations for a local nonprofit as a gift.
- Back-to-school bash, complete with free family photos or portraits of your kids or pets.
See? You can celebrate just about anything. During the event, you can connect with past clients on a more personal level in a relaxed atmosphere, deepening your relationship and building trust. And when you encourage clients to bring family and friends, you’re getting your name out to even more people.
Real estate is a business of connection. Take the time to cultivate your client relationships. You’ll be glad you did.
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