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                      iSucceed Press Release
The Future Is Found In The Past
THE FUTURE IS FOUND IN THE PAST

Aliso Viejo, CA January 10, 2009 Past client business is without a doubt the foundation of tomorrow’s successful real estate practice.  This is certainly true for one of our mentors at iSucceed, Galand Haas of Eugene, OR who lives by the motto that keeping repeat customers is far cheaper than wooing new ones.  Galand's past client follow-up system is one of the most impressive in the industry, as evidenced by the fact that 75% of his business comes from referrals.

 

Here are a few tips from an interview we did with Galand discussing his system.

 

First Things First: Invest in a Database Management System

 

In laying the groundwork for a past client follow-up system, you first need to purchase a database management program and enter all your past clients into that program. Next, you should completely automate your system for past client follow-up.

 

All the programs come with database management tools, action plans and automated e-mail functions. Once you have set up an expired system, a former-client system or a FSBO system you just automate it with your calendar and letters go out automatically. The software for the automation is really useful for enabling you to make consistent contact. If you're trying to do any of these things manually, it's probably not going to happen.

 

He initiates his former client system on the day the transaction closes with his database management program that automatically sends out letters to past clients on a monthly basis. So Letter No. 1 goes out the day of closing and puts the client into an active system. 

 

Starting a Database

 

If you're a new agent and you don't have a past client database the best thing to do is to take your sphere of influence - a friend, relative, whoever - and put them in that database and start marketing to them. As you start selling properties and developing past clients, add them to that list. Along the way don’t be too shy to adopt other Realtor's clients as nine out of 10 Realtors do not follow-up with their past clients.

 

Solidify the Relationship Built During the Transaction

 

Maintaining a relationship with past clients is crucial. You already have developed a good relationship with them during the transaction and now you want to maintain a long term relationship with them.  In so doing you will earn their trust, which brings about referral business from their friends and relatives.  Galand keeps his conversation going with his clients by communicating with them no less than 3 times a month.

 

Cost

 

The cost of a past-client follow-up system is relatively low.  Newspaper, newsletter and letter mailings are the most expensive parts.  He allocates about 10% of his overall budget to past-client follow-up. This is the most effective marketing that any agent can use, especially when you incorporate electronic media with social networking and blogging.

 

Cycling Through the Database

 

Although he has over 2,500 names in his database, Galand still makes a point of calling everyone in the database at least twice a year.  The only way he can accomplish that is to set aside 30 minutes every day just to make those calls.  In 75% of the cases you are going to be leaving voice mail so just a simple message letting them know that you’re thinking about them reminds them that you are still around – and always remember to ask for the referral.

 

Increasing Your Referral Rate

 

Galand noted that his referral rate increases significantly every year.   Part of it is better marketing but also as the client base grows by the sheer numbers – you just get more referrals. The longer you market, keeping your name in front of them all the time, your name is going to be fresh in their minds when or if they think of selling or buying.  And one way to ensure you get lots of referrals is to reward the client.  Every time someone refers business he sends a gift. Too many times when someone does something, Realtors overlook the importance of saying, "Thanks for helping me out." And don’t forget to mention their name as somebody who referred business to you in you monthly newsletters.   

 

The Impact of the Internet

 

The Internet has enabled Galand’s e-mail newsletter to grow by leaps and bounds.   He has the same newsletter on his main Website so that anybody can go to our site and see it.   In addition, his database management software sends periodic e-mail messages to all past clients with a timely or important piece of information.  It’s another way of bringing down the cost of maintaining contact.

 

If you would like to be able to listen to over 200 top producers that are part of the iSucceed faculty and learn their strategies, tips and tools you can learn more by visiting http://www.isucceed.com to learn all the details.

 

 

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