- Utilize a Business Plan
Having an effective business plan is extremely important in the career of real estate. Too often I speak with Realtors enter real estate and have no plan or understanding of the industry itself. This, more often than not, results in an agent that is not successful. A business plan allows you to have precise goals set which will allow for a clear vision and path for your business. Having a business plan will also allow you to focus on the things that matter in your career while you are working to achieve your goals.
- Practice Effective Time Management
Stellar time management skills are critical in the overall success of any real estate agent. As a Realtor you are an independent contractor who must be disciplined in using your time wisely. The practice of time blocking is a great way to improve the return on your time spent on a task as it allows you to focus on the income producing activities that truly matter. These skills will also allow you to track how many hours you are actually spending on real estate related activities each week. We all know that the real estate industry can be hectic and unpredictable; it is unbelievably easy to become distracted and not see returns on your time spent. Time blocking and prioritizing your activities will make it easier for you to manage tasks and take positive steps toward your goals.
- Stay organized
Staying organized seems simplistic, but can often be an overlooked strategy for Realtors to put into action. Keeping yourself organized can play a critical role in making sure your tasks are completed in a timely manner and with purpose. Organization also allows for an improved follow-up experience with clients. Often times, deals can be lost because an agent fails to stay organized and misses the opportunity to rectify an issue or go the extra mile to close the deal.
- Reinvest back into your business
A common mistake most Realtors make is not investing back into their business. A good rule of thumb is to reinvest 10-20% of your income back into your business to encourage growth. This will help you build brand equity in your market as well as achieve a steady, sustainable flow of clients. Remember: if your business is not growing, it is likely dying!
- Build a referral resource
Having a referral network is often neglected by agents in their quest towards success. Surrounding yourself with a full team of real estate professionals will greatly help your business. Supplying your clients with recommended vendors you have established relationships with can develop trust and enhance your client’s experience with you. This will result in giving you better online reviews as well as potential referrals. Having this symbiotic relationship with vendors is a will also generate referrals for you from them. Something as simple as networking with each party within your transactions (i.e. attorneys, loan officers, home inspectors, insurance agents, title companies, movers, contractors, etc.) can potentially have a large positive impact on your business.
- Don’t be a secret agent
Being a secret agent may have worked out for James Bond, however it won’t work out for your real estate career. One of the biggest mistakes new agents make is being afraid of talking about real estate with people. Each interaction you have with a person is a potential client. Even little things as simple as wearing a Realtor name badge or real estate logo wear can spark conversations and generate business for you.
- Work your sphere
As time has passed and technology has evolved in our industry, a key factor for business growth remains: your sphere of influence is still the best way to grow your business. It has never been easier to keep in touch with your sphere of influence thanks to the evolution of social media, e-mail, text and video messaging. Don’t hesitate to have conversations about real estate with your sphere, or ask them for referrals. Anyone you have contact with in your daily interactions should be someone you consider a part of your sphere as well as a potential source for business.
- Stay in touch with past clients
Past clients can often be the best referral sources for your real estate business. Following up with former clients will make them feel appreciated and retain the trust you built with them. Doing this will also make them think of you as more of a friend than a Realtor. Real estate clients are most likely to refer someone they feel is a friend. Keeping in touch with your past clients will ultimately help your business become more consistent and create the opportunity for you to achieve repeat clients as well.
- Build an online presence
Building an online presence is crucial in today’s real estate industry. Almost every aspect of the modern real estate transaction begins online. The client starts their home search online, loan process online, neighborhood research, etc. With a strong online presence, you can make your mark on clients and build an expert image for your brand. Easy ways to achieve an online presence are through online reviews from past clients, setting up and maintaining your social media platforms and creating compelling video and blog posts. Research shows that the first thing millennials do when receiving a referral is Google the Realtors name. How many potential referrals are you missing out on that did not even contact you because you had no online presence?