I published a series of posts in the fall about the “HOW” of practicing effective contact management and what good real estate marketing is all about. I’d like to pick that up again, and go a little deeper now into communication strategy. Let’s take a look at some real world examples of what we refer to as keep in touch events. A keep in touch event can be anything from:
- a quick phone call to say Hi
- a preferred client update mailer on a monthly basis to your “A List” or “Group 1” contacts
- an email to a prospect asking how his daughter’s dance recital went
- a letter inviting your client and his wife to a client appreciation dinner
- or a card wishing a client a happy birthday, happy anniversary, or happy new year.
Some keep in touch events may require some planning to execute such as a client appreciation party. For these events, it’s important that you define the key things you need to do, and then schedule those tasks into your calendar and tasks list. For this reason, it’s important that your contact management system has a tightly integrated calendar and task functionality.
You also need the ability to select just those contacts you want to invite to a given keep in touch event. This can be very simple if it’s just a single person or if it’s everyone in your real estate CRM system, but can require more thought if you really want to invite a specific sub-set of your database; for example, all clients who sent you referrals over the past 12 months, or everyone in your university alumni association who you haven’t spoken to in over six months.
It’s important that your contact management system allows you to plan and manage these types of events – including searching and selecting the appropriate contacts – quickly and easily.
Of course, you also want to keep a record of all your keep in touch events so that you can run a report at any time to see a summary of all your interactions with a client over time.
Best of all, with a good contact management system that lets you create recurring events or assign pre-defined Activity Plans, once you’ve set up your keep in touch plan, you’re done. You don’t have to create them again from month to month or year to year – they just recur automatically.
In addition to your keep in touch plan, you also need a system to track the business you are doing and have done with your clients. After all, you’re in business to help clients buy and sell properties, so another important part of contact management is managing and tracking existing property listings and purchases.
The goal of contact management is to help you get more referrals, more clients, and more repeat business, so it’s important that you keep a record of all transactions that you have worked with a client on, including the sources of all your new business, and most especially referrals.
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In my next post, we’ll look at an amazing way to get your clients to CALL YOU between transactions, so it doesn’t always have to be you reaching out to them.