The 90-Day Database: Build Relationships, Generate Leads

Education & Training with Keller Williams Realty

How many times have you heard, “I’ll call you on Monday,” and it never happens? Gene Arant of Lake Travis, Texas, implemented a system that ensures you’ll hear from him Monday. It’s called the 90-day database, and it has grown his GCI from $435,000 to $830,000 in one year.

Gene ArantInspired by Gary Keller’s video “Gary and the Box,” Arant decided to kick his lead generation into high gear by implementing an integrated contact management system in 2011. His goals: grow his database to 1,000 prospective clients in one year, spend three hours a day on the phone lead generating, and speak to everyone in his system at least once every 90 days.

To accomplish this, Arant returned to the basics he learned from The Millionaire Real Estate Agent. His strategy: Use a simple 8 x 8 for new clients—eight touches in eight weeks, including a final call on Day 49—followed by a 33 Touch program—thirty-three touches annually, including predetermined mass mailings, four calls, personal thank you notes, and more.

His system relies on both an electronic and a physical database. The technology side is responsible for keeping all contacts in one place and sending scheduled mass mailings. The physical—index cards—are used to systematically keep tabs on where Arant stands with individual contacts and provide a go-to lead generation call stack on his desk every morning.


The black box: A box made up of thirty-one cubbies to represent the days of the month. Day 49 calls—the last touch of the 8 x 8 Arant uses—as well as unreached or follow-up contacts are placed here for lead generation calls. After two to three days, unanswered follow-up calls transition to text messages for an additional two to three days. If these touches are not answered, the contact is placed in a prearranged month (the white filing cabinet) for continued 33 Touch mailings and follow-ups.

The white filing cabinet: A filing system containing twelve folders to represent the months of the year. Contacts with specific move schedules or long-term goals, and those not reached in initial calls or texts are filed here according to follow-up month. Each month the cards are moved to the black box according to call dates.

Arant’s desk: Daily calls are compiled from the black box and placed here. These can range from birthday calls to new client calls to Day 49 calls.


Arant sees value in the system’s innate usability: Following the black box cards is a foolproof way to lead generate, follow up in a timely manner, and manage/grow your database. Time and habits are key factors at play in Arant’s model that allow him to touch every person in his database 25 to 35 times a year, and speak to each person four times annually.


  • 8:00 a.m.—Birthday calls
  • 9:00 a.m.—Black box calls


  • Write a $200 check to KW Cares if he is one minute late to black box call time
  • Jot notes on index cards for every call, which are later entered electronically.
  • End every call with “Do you know anyone I should know?”
  • Follow up each call with a thank-you note—preprinted (to increase speed and efficiency) with handwritten personalized name and PS that echoes the call.

“It’s simple, but it’s not easy,” Arant says. “It definitely starts with your mindset, but if you get there, it’s a chain reaction. I’m having the best year ever because I have made it a habit.” The challenge: Look around your office and take note of some of the habits living there (good and bad). Now, envision one perfect workday. What are the habits or systems at play to make everything run smoothly, and how do you implement these?

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Cynthia Grimes
Keller Williams Legacy West - Westminster, MD
"With You Every Step Home!"

After I speak to every client I add a new reminder to contact them again.  It is a daily task and it works!

Feb 28, 2012 11:54 PM #1
Marti Steele Kilby, CRS
Steele Group Realty - La Mesa, CA
Broker/Owner, San Diego, CA

Sounds great...but my head is spinning!

Feb 29, 2012 12:08 AM #2
Bob Caldwell
Fitzgerald Financial, a Division of Monarch Bank - Annapolis, MD
VA Mortgage Specialist and Military Relocation Services
I try to leave note of any clients I've worked with or wish to work with, along with their contact information. Thanks for posting this!
Apr 14, 2012 05:33 PM #3
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Jay Papasan

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