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Approach Your Referral Sources

Reblogger Kathy Byrnes
Real Estate Broker/Owner with RE/MAX at the Lake

Great Information. I am reblogging this article because I think it is so important for us as agents to build relationships with fellow realtors we could count on across the cournty. I get a great deal of business from the California area. I am looking to build REALTOR relationships with agents in your area. Do you have any further suggestions.


Original content by Rico Rivera

By Dirk Zeller

Marketing for referrals with mailers, calendars, recipe cards and other outreach and appreciation efforts is nowhere near as effective as prospecting for referrals by making personal calls and requests. Once you can personally convince prospects that you're among the best in the field, referrals will follow.

When cultivating referral sources, realize that most people who send referrals your way do so for a variety of reasons, but above all, they recommend you for the following two reasons:


  • Friendships and trust. People like to help people they like and believe in. Take time to get to know those in the platinum and gold levels of your database and to let them get to know you. Share the vision you hold for your business. The result will be a vested interest in your success and the desire to help you achieve your goal.

  • People want to be champions. Each time you deliver superb service you create clients who are willing to champion your business. What's more, based on your exemplary performance, you create clients who know firsthand that by recommending you they'll become champions in the minds of their friends and family members.

It's never too early to begin building referral relationships. You can start during the first meeting or phone call with any prospect, using a script such as this:


    “Fred, I build my business primarily based on referrals from clients. The benefit to you is that my focus will always be to give you the best service possible. The reason for this is I want to earn the honor to talk with you in the future about who you know that would benefit from my service. The only way I deserve to have that conversation is based on the job I do for you. I know that if you are delighted with my service, you will want to help me - and your friends will get the best service.”

When approaching referral sources, keep a couple of important rules in mind:


  • Rule #1: Respect the referral process. When you're asking for referrals, you're entering the hallowed territory of another person's treasured relationships.

    Don't ask for referrals by simply adding a throwaway line onto the end of another conversation by saying, basically, “Oh, by the way” before you ask for a business referral.

    A quality referral request should take at least five minutes; ten may even be better.

    My friend Bill Cates, the “Referral Coach” and author of the book Ultimate Referrals, advises that you advance your referral request with the statement, “I have an important question to ask you.” This forces a pause, builds anticipation, and sets the tone for a meaningful conversation.


  • Rule #2: Ask for help. If you're soliciting referrals you are, in fact, asking for help. “I need your help” or “I value your help” are powerful keys for opening the referral floodgate.
  • Rule #3: Ask permission. In particular, ask permission to explore your client's contact database - by learning of and gaining access to associates you might be able to serve. When asking for permission, use a script like this one:

    “I'm delighted that I've been able to serve you. I was wondering about others you might know in your life that would also benefit from my service. Could we explore for a few moments who else we might be able to serve?”


  • Rule #4: Get specific. Sharpen the focus of your request by leading clients into areas or niches where they have day-to-day relationships. Ask them about potential referrals to family members, people in their church, and prospects through school affiliations. If they are members of associations or groups, pull out the member roster and spend a few minutes talking about the names on the list.

Dirk Zeller is a sought out speaker, celebrated author and CEO of Real Estate Champions. His company trains more than 350,000 Agents worldwide each year through live events, online training, self-study programs, and newsletters. The Real Estate community has embraced and praised his six best-selling books; Your First Year in Real Estate, Success as a Real Estate Agent for Dummies®, The Champion Real Estate Agent, The Champion Real Estate Team, Telephone Sales for Dummies®, Successful Time Management for Dummies®, and over 300 articles in print. To learn more regarding this article, please visit http://www.realestatechampions.com

Rico Rivera

The Home Warranty King
Old Republic Home Protection
916-254-8448 cell

Christopher Pataki
RE/MAX Associates - Hockessin, DE
Hockessin Delaware Real Estate

All great points.  Now if would just use them at the correct time........................chris

Nov 24, 2010 10:28 AM
Henry Pailles
Chula Vista Realtor,Short sale,Eastlake Real estate,Realtor - Chula Vista, CA
San Diego Real Estate, San Diego Realtor, Chula Vista Real Estate

great blog

Nov 24, 2010 10:32 AM
Judith Parker
ProStead Realty - Charlotte, NC
CRS, GRI, CMRS, Charlotte, NC

Hi Kathy,  nothing beats picking up that 1000# phone.  Thanks for the post.  Happy Thanksgiving!

Nov 24, 2010 10:32 AM
Indera Coggins
Re/Max 100 - Dunkirk, MD

This is a great post. I always keep in touch by email and text mail which my clients love!


Have a wonderful Thanksgiving everyone!

Nov 24, 2010 10:38 AM