The end of the year is a great time to evaluate where an agent was most successful at generating business. It’s also a great time to identify missed opportunities and create more efficient strategies for generating business in the new year. Not surprisingly, a substantial percentage of business transacted by successful agents comes from their sphere of influence. After all, the people that comprise your Sphere of Influence, which includes your Past Clients and Advocates, are the people that already like and trust you. This group is more than willing to help you grow your business because they have a comfort level and identify with you.
What may be surprising, is how poorly a relationship with your Sphere of Influence is usually managed. It’s not uncommon for agents to waste a great deal of energy chasing new prospects, only to miss exploiting the opportunity to generate business far more efficiently by maintaining existing relationships. As an absolute minimum, every agent should make every effort to be in front of their contacts at least every couple of weeks. We call this the Annual 24-Touch Communication Campaign. If you’re not communicating with the people that already like and trust you at least 24 times per year via phone calls, mailings or e-mails, you’re missing the best opportunities you may have in any given year.
The first step towards maintaining a 24-Touch Default Program is to place all of your contacts into a CRM (Client Relationship Management) Program, such as Top Producer, or even Outlook. Having your contacts in a database will make communicating with everyone that much easier, via e-mail or Direct Mail. Keep in mind that you should be sending separate messages to each of the following groups:
- Prospective Buyers
- Prospective Sellers including Existing Listings and Listing Prospects
- Sphere of Influence, including Past Clients, Advocates and Business contacts
- Farm Area Residents
- Special groups, such as member of a specific networking group, or out of state prospects
The best way to organize your contacts in Outlook or your CRM is to categorize every contact using the groups described above. This may seem like a daunting task, but it’s actually easy if you print out the list of everyone you know and then place them in one of the categories above. By doing this you will ensure the right message is going to the right group of people. This can be tremendously beneficial if you consider the results that you can get if you’re send a great message to 500 people versus just five!
If you haven’t set up your communication campaign as of yet, and you’re still getting great referrals, imagine how much you could be making if you did stay in touch with everyone. Don’t wait for your contacts to call you, proactively stay in touch with them, and watch your business grow exponentially!