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In real estate school, they teach you how to get your real estate license. They don’t teach you how to do real estate. That, my friend, you will have to learn in the field and through great teachers, coaches, and mentors in the industry. I was an agent like you, just starting in 2007 (yes, as the real estate market crashed), and I did a lot of floundering out there. My husband and I started in real estate at the same time, so it was the blind leading the blind. Luckily for you, people have gone before you to blaze a trail. I’ve taken the liberty of writing down a list of things I wish I had known when starting in real estate. Enjoy! I hope this helps you in your ventures. This list is in no particular order. I added them as they came up in my mind’s dialog.
1.) Start day one with a database. – Yes, moment one. You need a system for storing and communicating with contacts. Your first system does not need to be high-tech, but it does need to be something you will use. When my husband and I first started, I actually used a card file box (index cards) for him because he’s more “old school” than high-tech. It worked brilliantly. For listings, he kept a 3-ring binder sorted by dates. He created a contact “file page” for each client and moved them around the binder so that he knew when to follow up.This works well for storing and for calling but not as well for emails and such. The type of system you choose will depend on you and your needs.Some agents use multiple CRM’s (Customer Relationship Managers). One example is keeping your contacts in a simple Excel spreadsheet. Use the Excel sheet while using email software such as BombBomb.com.
This software allows you to send time set, action plan video emails. The best database is the one you will use. Many databases come with a free trial, so I’d suggest you play with a few to decide what works for you. I use Facebook as one of my CRM’s. It’s great for seeing what is happening in people’s lives. It gives me suggestions on how to communicate based on their post, and I can take it offline and send them a card, make a call, or schedule a meet-up. Some high functioning CRM’s (databases) now integrate with social media.I believe this is the trend moving into the next era of CRM’s.Every person you meet should be added to your database. You will want to know exactly how you plan to communicate with each “group” and how often. Then, you will need to hold yourself accountable for contacting them. You could simply add them to your CRM and set a timer in your phone calendar so you know when to contact them, if not already using a CRM that allows you to schedule reminders. As you get busier in your new real estate career, you will find it more challenging to do things like this.
Having the discipline to communicate with your database will be the difference between you launching a high-profit business out of the gate, rather than staying the struggling rookie.Have a basic system for rating your contacts and clients. We like to see who our top referring contacts and top clients for income are at a glance. Our system is simple. Each time someone does a real estate transaction with us, our earned commission gets added to their score. Let’s say we close a $200,000 home with them earning a $6000 commission. They would now have a score of 6000. The next year they send us a referral and we earn another $6000, their score now becomes 12,000 (the new buyer or seller they referred gets the same score of 6000). This continues as long as they refer or do business. Then, we group our contacts by a score range so we always know which of our contacts are Platinum and VIP. We believe that Platinum and VIP contacts should be rewarded extra throughout the year. The more you communicate with your database, the better your business will be
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