Chances are, you want more referrals. Who doesn’t? After all, they tend to have a high lead-to-new-client ratio. So, increasing your real estate referrals by just 10% can give your income a big boost.
Although referrals can come from many sources — business contacts, word-of-mouth, your geographic farm — arguably the best source is your past clients. After all, they know your great service first-hand. As homeowners, they’re also in a position to recommend a real estate agent two to three times a year, on average.
How do you get more of your past clients to recommend you? Here are some tips:
- Do a great job Obviously, clients will be reluctant to recommend you if they’re not happy with your services so explore how you can “up your game” in this area. Look for ways to provide the kind of outstanding service that gets appreciated and remembered.
- Follow-up after the sale Here is great article that covers the when and how to request real estate referrals from past clients. What is important is that you get a sense of what their experience was like working with you. Often, the best approach is to simply ask, “On a scale of one to five, how happy were you with my services?”
- Send a high-value direct mail newsletters regularly Many homeowners have trouble recalling their agent’s name three years after the sale. Real estate direct mail not only ensures that doesn’t happen, it’s also one of the best ways to build loyalty with your past clients — so they think of you, and only you, when someone asks them, “Do you know a good real estate agent?”
- Call/visit at least twice a year A call or visit twice a year builds the relationship with your client. Ideally, you want them to think of you as their real estate agent, in the same way they see “Jane” as their accountant and Dr. Mike as their dentist.
- Continually remind clients you welcome referrals Regularly, across all your communications, remind past clients that referrals are welcomed. In real estate marketing, as in other industries, it’s well-known that just by making people aware that you welcome referrals increases your referrals.
- Send a big thanks after getting a referral Getting one referral from a past client is great. Getting two, three or more is even better. The way you keep them coming is by thanking the client soon after they recommend you. Do this via a phone call, greeting card, bouquet of flowers — or all three!
- Occasionally, ask for a referral The chances of you getting a referral doubles if you ask for them. That doesn’t mean you need to be a pest. Don’t make real estate referrals the topic of every conversation with a client! Instead, pick the right moment and then ask confidently. Keep in mind that, as referrals expert and author Joanne Black points out, “…people wantto put good people together. (At least 98 percent of us do.)”
Bottom line? Your past clients are a goldmine of potential referrals. But like a goldmine, you need to take action to get more of those referrals out of the ground! These tips will help.