Will your past clients use you again?

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with Marte Cliff Copywriting

Will your clients use you again? According to NAR 83% of buyers said they’d use their Agent again. How many actually did? Only 9%!

So why the big discrepancy?

I can think of a few reasons, mostly stemming from the fact that some time will usually pass between the purchase of a home and the purchase of the next home. That's assuming you're selling to homeowners rather than investors, of course.

Here's my short list:

  • The agent is no longer in the business. They've retired or gone on to do something else.
  • The agent is a buyers' agent only and the buyers are purchasing in some other area.  
  • The agent hasn't stayed in contact with those buyers…

So – the buyers don't know if the agent is still in the business, don't remember his or her name, or can't find them because the agent has left the agency and the old agency isn't telling where they went. (Yep, that one happened to me.)

Meanwhile, a friend, relative, or neighbor has referred them to some other agent – or some other agent has been actively pursuing their business. So rather than make a full scale effort to find their "old" agent, they go ahead and choose a new one.

Isn't that a shame?

I don't know what percentage of people fall into the first and second categories, but since 74% of buyers would use the same agent but didn't, even its half, that still leaves 37% of past buyers who would have used the same agent if only the agent had taken time to write or call a few times each year.

 

Are YOU staying in touch with past clients? 

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Ambassador
2,227,997
MichelleCherie Carr Crowe Just Call...408-252-8900
Get Results Team...Just Call (408) 252-8900! . DRE #00901962 . Licensed to Sell since 1985 . Altas Realty - San Jose, CA
Family Helping Families Buy & Sell Homes 40+ Years

Marte, I can tell you it is primarily either the agent hasn't stayed in touch or the agent is no longer in business.

Nov 07, 2013 03:32 PM #1
Rainmaker
1,609,874
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Michelle - I think you're right. Even if an agent is "buyers only" they could help that client (and themselves) by providing a good referral. 

Nov 07, 2013 03:37 PM #2
Rainmaker
2,742,077
Debbie Gartner
The Flooring Girl - White Plains, NY
The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers

We've been trying to do a better job of this over the past 2 yrs, and it seems to be working.

BTW, I'm amazed at how many people can't remember their agent's name.  I have met w/ many 3 months later who can't remember and many who are in the process and stumble for a few minutes to come up w/ the name.

Nov 07, 2013 05:25 PM #3
Rainmaker
3,330,235
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Real Estate Agents - Luxury - Divorce

With times increasing between purchases this is  the trend which only makes sense ...there may also be a correlation to the time an agent stays in the business or has been in the business and is no longer.

Nov 07, 2013 05:49 PM #4
Rainmaker
5,361,880
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team

Good morning, Marte.... out of sight, out of mind.... we are in a business that requires our names and faces to be visible at all times and in a variety of sources....

Nov 07, 2013 06:39 PM #5
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Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

NAR stats are based on agents completing their surveys. 

I doubt that they weight the results correctly.  I've rarely seen any of these stats that related to my markets.

Nov 07, 2013 08:05 PM #6
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Doug Rogers
Bayou Properties - Alexandria, LA
Your Alexandria Louisiana Agent

In my experience, people focus on the product not the person. I buy cars every 4-5 years, can I remember the name of each car sales person? Nope. Why not? Because I have other things that demand my attention.

Your insight is spot on. Stay in contact with your past clients. I have started calling my either past client list once every 90 days. Has been a good source for referrals!

Nov 07, 2013 10:14 PM #7
Rainmaker
1,609,874
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Debbie - It does seem strange, since agents spend so much time with clients - especially buyers. 

Sally & David - Yes, it could be several years. If there's been no reason to think of that agent in the meantime, why would you remember? 

Barbara - Exactly. Out of sight, out of mind. 

Lenn - There's always that. 

Doug - That's true. But that car salesman could make you remember him or her. My neighbor gets a birthday card and 2 or 3 other cards each year from the man who sold him his last vehicle. He swears that although he lives in Idaho, when he gets ready to buy again he'll go back to Montana to buy from that sales person. 

Nov 08, 2013 01:09 AM #8
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Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

Staying in touch with past clients is critical for repeat business and referrals.  So many people come and go in this business that we do need to constantly remind folks that we are still here and still ready, willing and able to help them with their real estate needs.

Nov 08, 2013 03:38 AM #9
Rainmaker
1,609,874
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Chris Ann - Yes, if those clients don't hear from you, they might assume that you've left the business. 

Nov 08, 2013 05:37 AM #10
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