Making Real Estate Contacts
Anyone who has been working in the real estate consultancy business for a long time would be familiar with the phrase, “Sphere of Influence”. Though it is a term that is originally borrowed from the political world, it is now a concept that is used frequently in the world or professional realtors. In the world of real estate, your sphere refers to your capacity for influence and the connections that exist with the people that you know.
Your personal sphere will include your family, friends, work colleagues, team members, neighbours, the parents of your kid’s friends, former colleagues, former classmates. In short your sphere of influence includes everyone you know by name. For an average person, this includes a total of 200 people. Generally this is a list that one keeps building throughout one’s life. The people who you know already are more likely to give you a chance to do business than someone you have met only recently. The business of real estate is relationship-based and most top brokers are aware of the value of having a large circle. Generally the best way of establishing a professional relationship is is to know someone on a more intimate level. Most of us desire to work and interact with people whom we know, like and trust. The more one can be that for another person, the better position one can be in to grow a business.
Influencing the Real Estate Market
For us, between 65 % to 80 % of our income comes from our sphere of influence. So we always make it a point to maximise and optimize this resource. The key though is to nurture and grow your connections authentically because less authentic ways to nurture one’s sphere of influence can result in less effective results. A lot of people try to ‘automate’ this process by attempting to push themselves into the minds of their acquaintances by hitting the ‘send’ button. We believe that marketing tools like newsletters and emailers can definitely keep your recall value high but senselessly using email , particularly mass emailers and sms blasters is probably the worst way to connect with one’s sphere of influence. There is a formula that we follow:
Know, Like and Trust + Top-of-Mind = Sphere Sweet Spot
Know Like & Trust
Obviously everyone wants to do business with people they know. But it is important to know that these connections require nurturing in ways that resonates with each individual. Thinking of all your contacts as numbers can mean bombarding everyone with one-size-fits-all messages. Of course one might get an occasional hit from an approach such as this. If one is not making any sort of meaningful connections within one’s network, then it is possible that one is being perceived as annoying. And that is coming close to being distrusted and disliked.
The people in our sphere are just like us and well (surprise), they like to be treated as human beings! Our agents like to take create meaningful relationships with their clients.
Top Of Mind
The other important requirement for success in the real estate profession is to be on top-of-mind to those within your sphere. You don’t have to be that person who can be counted upon to make the most amazing salad or entrees or the one who makes great presentations – rather you have got to be that person who is the best possible real estate agent possible. Research has proven that most people have a limited capacity in their minds to remember brand information. When it comes to remembering the names of individuals for a particular service, most people will barely remember not more than two or three names. Do a simple test: Ask anyone who has recently purchased or sold property to name five real estate agents. Trust me they will not be able to give you more than 5! This means that there is very little space on the mental hard drive for people to hold remember your name and professional endeavours if are not going to keep reminding them of it! One never knows when someone in one’s own sphere needs the information about that great real estate agent. Generally most people tend to shift every seven to ten years. The chances are very high that if one is in touch with someone for ten years, they might need your service at some point.
Growing the Sphere
Considering the large amount of business that comes from our sphere, it is important to continue to grow the list. Some people move away and some drop off the contact list. From a business point of view, this is a normal occurrence because we make it a point to constantly make up for the ones that are lost. As a premier real estate consultancy we always make it a point to tailor our communication approach with people at different levels. The people whom we bring into our sphere over time through our outreach efforts may have begun in a place where we have very little connection but the goal is to bring them closer over a period of time.
Our objective as a real estate consultancy is to have multiple approaches for our clients because there is no single one-size-fits-all solution to a home buyer’s needs. We like to try out different strategies in order to be able to arrive at an approach that works for our clients. Our goal is to educate, inspire and provide a wide array of tools that our clients can use to successfully buy the properties that he / she has been looking for.