There is no denying sales and inquiry have slowed as a result of the coronavirus and the following restrictions. As agents you have two choices:
- You can hibernate, take the time off, watch your business shrink further and dwell on how unfair it all is, or
- You can use this instalment in my COVID Recovery Series: Five Activities To Focus On to help build a multi-layered prospecting and marketing system that will keep you top of mind for those people who either need to sell now due to the unfortunate economic situation or who are going to be very serious about selling in the near future when this blows over.
At the end of the day real estate stops for nothing and nobody. People will need/want to buy and sell and you don’t want them to pass you by and go elsewhere. You’ve got to make sure that you continue to market and that what you do is effective.
Here are some things you can do, from the very hot and high-return investment activities to those that are more passive.
- Face-to-face contact is without doubt the number one best prospecting activity. It’s very powerful, and people can’t avoid you. It lets you ask people if they’re planning to do anything in the future. If the answer is No you can use rapport building techniques to start building a relationship and get them on your database! For example ask if they wouldn’t mind getting an update on their property. If the answer is Yes, then you follow up with appraisals etc.Social distancing has made this difficult, but it is still possible. Everyone who comes through a private appointment is a potential contact so prospect – if they’re looking at buying it’s very likely they will need to sell. In WA you can now have up to 10 people through at a home opens so that expands the number of people you can meet.When this all settles down there will never be a better time to get up close and personal with your contacts. This means banging on very door of every person you’ve done business with, or know, and saying “Hey, now that it’s all blown over I just wanted to come and see how you’re doing and see whether you’ve come through this unscathed and if I can be of any service and support, or help for you in any way shape or form – I’d be happy to do that”.When you’ve done that, get out and bang on the doors of your focus marketing area. Get door knocking and use this time to put together a door knocking script so you know what to say and are comfortable with it.Networking is another great way to get face-to-face with prospects and while that isn’t possible now, start planning an event you can hold, or looking for events you will be able to attend, once restrictions lift.Also, as soon as the normal home opens reappear, do mass invitations to your whole area to get a lot of people coming to you who are thinking of selling. Even better give them a reason to come.
- Voice-to-voice contact is the second most powerful prospecting and marketing activity you can do. If you can’t get face-to-face with someone you might at least be able to get voice-to-voice. Calling every single one of your contacts and past buyers, sellers and appraisals is ideal, but can be quite a long job, especially if you have a large database. Make it a little easier with something called ghost voice mail. This technology allows you to do voice-to-voice mail promotions and say “Hi, I was thinking about you and just wanted to let you know that if you need anything, I’m here for you and offer my support, and if you’re looking for anything regarding real-estate or even if you’re just looking for a sounding board, feel free to give me a call. I look forward to hearing from you”.Every single one of your contacts can get that message: the phone rings once and then it goes through to voice mail. That’s a very powerful way make contact without individually calling everyone. That said, make sure you give your very best clients and contacts a personal call.
- Implement nurturing-based marketing activities for your database and focus marketing area, such as letterbox drops, electronic direct mail and direct mail/hard snail mail.You should always have something going out to your area via the letterbox every month, at least once, maybe twice if you can afford it. That can be anything from solds to invitations, marketing campaigns, like Easter, Christmas, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day etc.Electronic direct mail can be all of the above but also possibly a newsletter or blog or an appraisal drive email.Direct mail is the same as electronic direct mail, such as a newsletter or appraisal drive, but when it comes to direct mail I recommend sending it out with some type of gift if you can afford it. If you want to get noticed, 97% of envelopes that are either a different colour or chunky or lumpy get opened, that way you can cut through to the client very, very quickly.
- Maintain your social media presence. It’s a great way to keep constantly reminding people you exist. As well as regular posts, you can look into doing marketing campaigns, competitions or e-appraisals or similar. A number of agents who use our program ran successful Easter colouring competitions and Mother’s Day is coming up! I’ve spoken about updating and using social media more here. (link to Five things social media blog)
- Update everything. Go through your marketing material, resume, personal-branded website, videos. Seek testimonials. Add recent awards and sales. Make sure everything portrays you as the agent of choice. Yes, you want to be ready to hit the ground running when restrictions lift, but remember that people will still be seeking you out now so make sure everything is up to date and current.
Finally, put all of these activities into a marketing calendar. Implement the ones you can do now and plan for those that you will do post-pandemic. My upcoming seminar has more information on multi-layered prospecting and marketing systems, including some of the activities mentioned here and others you can implement to boost your business.