Sunday, June 16, 2024

get more referrals

    Your primary job is over when you all shake hands at the closing table. Sure, you need to update your buyer’s or seller’s info in your CRM so you can keep in touch, but, at closing, you drive away feeling good about a job well done.

    Your client, on the other hand, has the crummiest task of all looming in the near future: moving.

    We know many agents who feel their job doesn’t end at closing. Sure, some of them offer the use of a moving truck. But there are other, less expensive, and just as impressive ways to show your client’s real customer service.

    Let’s dive into some of the less-pricey services that agents have passed on to us that not only will help make you unforgettable but also get you more referrals.

    Offer to take on the small stuff

    If you have an assistant, this one is for you. Offer a concierge service that includes ensuring the utilities at the old home are turned off and turned on at the new home.

    Other services you can offer include:

    • Pet licensing and updating of the address on the microchip.
    • Canceling services, such as pool cleaning and maintenance, landscaping, housekeeping, pest control, etc.
    • Having cable or satellite service transferred to the new home.
    Give them peace of mind

    Offer to change the locks on the new home and install a smart lock. 

    This is a task that movers often neglect, and you’re installing your closing gift simultaneously.  It’s a two-fer.

    Consider a Ring (or other brand) video doorbell camera if it’s in your budget.


    The Real Estate Times Series is shown above. To see more, Click Here.

    Get-acquainted-with-the-neighborhood list

    Here is another job for an assistant. Have him or her research your client’s new neighborhood for points of interest and everyday services. 

    Do some sleuthing on Yelp.com to find the best-rated:

    • Parks
    • Restaurants
    • Drycleaner
    • Hairstylist
    • Handyman or handywoman
    • Landscaper
    • Pool Service
    • Doctor
    • Dentist
    • Veterinarian 

    Then, make a list with the company’s website URL, phone number, and address.

    Boxes, boxes, boxes

    It’s the one thing most people don’t seem to have enough of when they’re moving. If you have the money, consider purchasing moving boxes emblazoned with your branding.

    Let clients know before closing that they won’t need to haunt the local grocery store for boxes because you have some for them.

    The essentials basket

    Create a basket with any combination of the following,

    • Grubhub, or Uber Eats gift card (so they don’t have to drag out the pots and pans to make dinner)
    • Trash bags
    • Toilet paper – you’ll need it eventually, better to grab it sooner than later
    • Paper towels
    • Light bulbs 
    • Cleaning products, sponges, and a scrub brush
    • Bottled water
    • Snacks
    • Anything else you can think of that they may need upon arrival in the new home
    Hire some help

    It’s typically that first day in the home, with no furniture present, that new homeowners find something wrong. Whether it’s something aesthetic or non-functional, they want it fixed.

    Offer an hour or two of handyman or woman service to your clients so they can get fixed, eventually driving them nuts.

    Or, consider offering a professional cleaning the day before your clients move in. The home should be broom swept so there shouldn’t be too much cleaning left.

    Customer service after the sale is the most impressive of all. Find a way to help your clients move, and they’ll remember you.


    PLUS: When you have time…below are some marketing tools to help support your success.

    1. Put Your Real Estate Business a Step Above with Your Own Branded Magazine

    Homes & Life Magazine is a customizable magazine with rich, full-color content and a sharp, professional aesthetic. It includes compelling, direct, response-driven articles written by real estate industry experts and engaging lifestyle content. Send out Homes & Life Magazine in Just Minutes – No Minimums Required. Or we’ll ship it to you. Homes & Life Magazine is the ultimate “Coffee Table Lingerer”! …and it costs less than sending a greeting card!Click Here

    2. The Free 6-Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan

    The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 6-Month Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do and when. Four key market segments include niche Markets, geographic farming, sphere of influence, and past clients. – Click Here

    3. The Free Interactive 6-Month Real Estate Business Review

    The Free Interactive 6-Month Real Estate Business Review allows you to enter your business goals for the remainder of the year and get a breakdown of how many prospects, listings, closings, and so on are needed to reach your goals.   – Click Here

    4. The Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

    This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Become-A-Listing-Legend-3D-Book-White-274x300.jpg

    Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here


      It’s been years, but I still remember my landlord — a real estate agent — calling me and asking if I knew anyone who wanted to buy or sell a home. At the time, I didn’t. 

      More than that, I truly wanted to help him and felt bad I couldn’t. I genuinely liked the man, and, believe me, the next day, I kept my ears open for real estate chatter.

      Step one toward getting new referrals is to be a nice person people want to help. Step two? Ask for referrals. 

      Ask everyone. Your sphere of influence then connects to their sphere, and each person you contact broadens your possible referral base exponentially.

      But that just covers the basics. There is so much more that agents can do to get more referrals.

      The Bedrock: Relationship Marketing

      According to author Mari Smith, relationship marketing emphasizes customer satisfaction and retention with an eye toward building profitable long-term relationships. 

      It differs from other forms of marketing by focusing more on the client relationship. Its key principle is client retention.

      The good news for the real estate agent is that relationship marketing is less expensive in the long run than other forms of marketing.

      “Acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing customer,” according to Taylor Landis at OutboundEngine.com.


      The Get More Referrals Series is shown to the left. To see more, Click Here.


      Who’s in your Database?

      If your database is populated with only former clients, you’re missing out on a huge chunk of business. 

      You should have every single person you know in your CRM – from your hairdresser to your aunt Martha. If they’re breathing, they should be in there.

      Here’s why this is important: the relationship marketing approach also focuses on the customization of your marketing efforts.

      In his book “Purple Cow: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable,” marketing whiz Seth Godin agrees and insists that you should “differentiate your customers … Find the group that’s most likely to influence other customers,” suggests Godin.

      It starts with asking the right question: “Who do you know who is looking to buy or sell a home?”


      When you have time…below are some marketing tools to help support your success.

      1. Put Your Real Estate Business a Step Above with Your Own Branded Magazin

      Homes & Life Magazine is a customizable magazine with rich, full-color content and a sharp, professional aesthetic. It includes compelling, direct, response-driven articles written by real estate industry experts and engaging lifestyle content. Send out Homes & Life Magazine in Just Minutes – No Minimums Required. Or we’ll ship it to you. Homes & Life Magazine is the ultimate “Coffee Table Lingerer”! …and it costs less than sending a greeting card!Click Here

      2. The Free 6-Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Planner

      The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 6-Month Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do and when. Four key market segments include niche Markets, geographic farming, sphere of influence, and past clients. – Click Here

      3. The Free Online Real Estate Business Plan

      The Real Estate Business Plan allows you to enter your business goals for the year and get a breakdown of how many prospects, listings, closings, and so on are needed to reach your financial goals.   – Click Here

      4. The Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

      This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Become-A-Listing-Legend-3D-Book-White-274x300.jpg

      Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here


        The average American says “thank you” 2000 times a year, according to a 2016 study from Merci Chocolates. Sadly, “… more than half of the time, we don’t actually mean it,” according to an unnamed writer at the NY Daily News online.

        More often than not, we imagine that busy real estate folks may just forget. Whatever the reason, it’s never too late to go back to a client or prospect and thank them for their time.

        Put some effort into it

        Yes, dashing off an email is a quick and easy way to get it done, but it’s not very personal and it may not even be read by the recipient.

        Make the recipient feel appreciated by putting some effort into expressing your gratitude. Pop by their office or home or, better yet, mail a thank-you card or a postcard.

        Yes, by mail. With stamps. Addressed by hand to the recipient. Ah, now we are talking!

        The Get More Referrals Series is shown above. To learn more, Click Here.

        The benefits of direct mail in real estate marketing

        A good real estate email will have an “open rate” of 21.7%, according to the folks at CampaignMonitor.com.

        Why does this matter? “Tracking open rates will give you a better understanding of how often people look forward to your emails …,” they conclude.

        That sounds like an okay number until it’s compared to the 42.2% of Americans who open and read or scan the direct mail they receive.

        Not only is direct mail more personal, it has less competition for the recipients’ attention. Best of all, it shows that you value the relationship so much you are willing to spend money to maintain it. Email doesn’t do that. Email is lazy. Email is impersonal.

        When to thank your clients

        This may sound like one of those “duh” kinds of questions, but whenever someone does something for you, it’s a good idea to show your appreciation.

        And we aren’t talking just about the big stuff; even the everyday, small kindness should be responded to. Here are a few examples:

        • You showed homes to buyers. Thank them for their time and for choosing you to be their agent.
        • A former client referred you to a buyer or seller. This one is huge and deserves a huge “thank you!”
        • You gave a listing presentation. Say thanks for giving you a chance to represent them in the sale of their home. Even if you aren’t chosen as the listing agent, this is a classy response to being given at least the opportunity.
        • Every attendee at a client appreciation event, a charitable event, or a seminar you host needs to understand how grateful you are that they showed up.
        • Every client should understand your appreciation when a deal closes.

        There are myriad opportunities to show prospects, leads, clients, and former clients how much you appreciate them. Direct mail just happens to be one of the best ways to do it.


        PLUS: When you have time…below are some marketing tools to help support your success.

        1. Put Your Real Estate Business a Step Above with Your Own Branded Magazine

        Homes & Life Magazine is a customizable magazine with rich, full-color content and a sharp, professional aesthetic. It includes compelling, direct response-driven articles written by real estate industry experts and engaging lifestyle content. Send out Homes & Life Magazine in Just Minutes – No Minimums Required. Or we’ll ship it to you. Homes & Life Magazine is the ultimate “Coffee Table Lingerer”! …and it costs less than sending a greeting card!Click Here

        2. The Free 6-Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan

        The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 6-Month Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do and when. Four key market segments include niche Markets, geographic farming, sphere of influence, and past clients. – Click Here

        3. The Free Interactive 6-Month Real Estate Business Review

        The Free Interactive 6-Month Real Estate Business Review allows you to enter your business goals for the remainder of the year and get a breakdown of how many prospects, listings, closing, and so on are needed to reach your goals.   – Click Here

        4. The Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

        This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Become-A-Listing-Legend-3D-Book-White-274x300.jpg

        Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here


          A Real Estate Referral List!

          Nearly half of homebuyers surveyed (49%) by the NAR said that the third most important benefit that a real estate agent can provide is “. . .a better list of service providers,” such as a home inspector and other services. (NAR 2022 Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends)

          While homebuyers consider this a benefit, the industry understands it as “value-added.”

          Who would’ve thought that something as simple as a list of vendors could be a treasured service? 

          No, it’s not a new service, but it’s become an in-demand one and a way for agents to set themselves apart while offering value to your services.

          It beats a closing gift

          A real estate vendor referral service is the gift that keeps on giving. If set up properly, it brings your brand before their eyes multiple times into the future. It can also benefit you by giving you “touch” opportunities down the line.


          Content Card Series is shown above. To see more, click Here.


          How to put together a real estate vendor referral service list

          Whether you call them vendors or affiliates, the people on your list should be many and varied. Oh, and highly vetted, which we’ll discuss later.

          Let’s take a look at some of the vendors you might want to include on your list:

          • Accountant
          • Appliance repair/installation
          • Carpet cleaner
          • Countertop Company
          • Electrician
          • Flooring installer
          • Garage door installer/repair tech
          • General contractor
          • Handyman
          • Handyman/woman 
          • Home inspector
          • Home warranty company
          • House cleaner
          • Insurance agent
          • Interior designer
          • Landscaper
          • Lenders/mortgage broker
          • Moving accessories
          • Moving company
          • Painter
          • Pest inspector
          • Pet pooper scooper
          • Plumber/HVAC technician
          • Pool Service
          • Popcorn ceiling removal
          • Professional home organizer
          • Property Manager
          • Real estate attorney
          • Roofer
          • Septic Company
          • Stager
          • Tile contractor
          • Title company
          • Trash hauling 
          • Well inspector
          • Window washer

          Luxury agents might want to include:

          • Architect
          • Audio/visual services
          • Engineer
          • Home security systems technician
          • Home watch/Housesitting services 
          • Landscape architect
          • Trust attorney
          Vendor list research

          If you’re just starting a real estate vendor referral service, you’ll need to do some research in your quest to figure out who to include. Start at yelp.com, read reviews, and jot down the names of those you want to interview.

          Join your neighborhood at NextDoor.com. One of the main topics of conversation on the platform is “Who do you recommend for [insert the service].”

          In fact, if you enter any service into the search bar at the top of the page, you’ll find every conversation having to do with it. 

          Finally, ask for recommendations for your real estate vendor referral service from colleagues, family members, and friends.

          Once you’ve compiled a list of names, move on to the Better Business Bureau to check for complaints. 

          Then, ensure that the vendors you’ll interview are licensed and bonded by consulting the appropriate state licensing board’s website.

          This step is very important. “… the Realtor is not responsible for the work of a properly licensed contractor, or pest inspector for that matter. When a Realtor calls a licensed professional, they are doing so only in their capacity as a representative of their client,” according to Tim Jones at DailyRepublic.com.

          Still, consider putting a disclaimer, in writing, on your website.

          Now, you’re ready to interview each candidate. Don’t forget to ask for references. Get the references’ phone numbers and contact each one.

          There’s more to the compilation of this list than meets the eye. Avoiding RESPA violations is tricky, and we’ll cover that in Part II, so be sure to check back soon.


          PLUS: When you have time…below are some marketing tools to help support your success.

          1. Put Your Real Estate Business a Step Above with Your Own Branded Magazine

          Homes & Life Magazine is a customizable magazine with rich, full-color content and a sharp, professional aesthetic. It includes compelling, direct response-driven articles written by real estate industry experts combined with engaging lifestyle content. Send out Homes & Life Magazine in Just Minutes – No Minimums Required. Or we’ll ship it to you.

          Homes & Life Magazine is the ultimate “Coffee Table Lingerer”! …and it costs less than sending a greeting card!Click Here


          2. The Free 12-Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan

          The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 12-Month-Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do and when. Four key market segments include niche Markets, geographic farming, sphere of influence, and past clients. – Click Here

          3. The BusinessBase, SOI building system

          The most effective thing you can do to build a real estate business is to become more visible, more likable, and remembered more often. The BusinessBASE™ not only checks all of these boxes but is also a business-building machine. In two easy steps, you can begin to build a robust sphere of influence that will provide you a lifetime of repeat business and referrals. – Click Here

          4. The Free Interactive Real Estate Business Plan

          The Free Interactive Real Estate Business Plan allows you to enter your business goals for this year and get a breakdown of how many prospects, listings, closing, and so on are needed to reach your goals.  – Click Here

          5. The Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

          This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Become-A-Listing-Legend-3D-Book-White-274x300.jpg

          Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here

          6. The Take a Listing Today Podcast

          Watch the ProspectsPLUS!, Take a Listing Today Podcast for actionable content to help you get more listings. – Click Here