First things first... I'm an old married woman as of Saturday! Yay!
Second things next... hoping today's blog puts me over the 300,000 points mark...
And now onto today's message...
After my first contact management teleseminar show on January 6th, I got a bunch of emails from attendees telling me they appreciated my passion for contact management, but simply couldn't afford it right now. Many asked if I knew of a system that was free or very low cost since, they reiterated, they couldn't afford an additional $35/month.
Okay, I totally 100% understand that times are tough. That budgets are tight. That every dollar coming into the household (or not, as the case may be) must be accounted for and spent wisely. Oh, how I get that and frankly, I'm proud of my listeners that they aren't just jumping on a bandwagon to spend spend spend just ‘cause I told them they should buy something!
First, you should never purchase a system, tool or program that will not cover its cost, either in hard dollars or by saving you time (with which you can go out and earn some hard dollars). I will never recommend that you purchase anything for your business that won't, at the very least, pay for itself (assuming you use it), with the goal, of course, being that it pays for itself many times over.
So, rest assured that when I recommend that every real estate agent purchase a good contact management system, I do so with the expectation that they will make money from their investment.
Second (brace yourself, this might sting a little), you are in business for yourself. You are self-employed. You made the leap of faith into selling real estate knowing (hopefully) that you would no longer be protected by that regular-salaried, benefits-included, vacations-paid J O B you left. Selling real estate professionally is not a hobby. It's not (hopefully) a side gig that you do because you have a little spare time. It's your career; it's your profession. And it's up to YOU and YOU only to invest in the tools you need to be successful. And if you're at the point where $35/month breaks the budget, it might be time to re-evaluate whether or not you're doing the right thing by you and your family by being self-employed at this time.
Oh, sure we all have tight months - myself included - where we truly don't know where the money's gonna come from to pay for our Rainmaker blog or send out that month's marketing postcard or, shoot, feed the dogs. But that shouldn't be your reality month-to-month-to-month. If it is, it may be time for a little soul-searching. But that's a topic for a different day.
Back to contact management, is that $35/month you'll pay for contact management the magic bullet? No, not at all. ‘Specially if you don't use it! Do you HAVE to have Contact Management to survive as a real estate agent? Again, no, not at all. But in this gal's opinion, having good contact management in place can change your professional life and should be on your list of investments to make in yourself and your business, preferably sooner than later.
Next time, I'll expand on what I mean by contact management paying for itself...
THE CONTACT MANAGEMENT WITH SOUL SERIES
Part I - The Unanswered Questions
Part II - The Two Things a Contact Manager Should Do Very Well
Part III - Creating Reasonable Expectations for Your Contact Manager
Part IV - "But I Can't Afford a Contact Management System!"
Part V - Contact Management Pays for Itself - if you use it!
Part VI - Which System do I Recommend?
THE CONTACT MANAGEMENT WITH SOUL SERIES
p.s. On January 27th, there will be a live webinar in the SWS Virtual Studio on the topic of using a contact manager to, well, make money! Unlike previous such programs, this will be a show-n-tell demo (that is - there will be visuals associated with the show) where I'll demonstrate various ways you can use a contact management system to get in touch and stay in touch with your sphere of influence. Details and registration here: www.sellwithsoul.com/cms2. I'll be using Ixact Contact for the demo, but the principles will likely apply to any contact management system you already use or are considering.