Surprise Your Clients!
by Patti Brotherton
Building client loyalty has been the key to a long and successful career in real estate. We all know it. Some agents do this very well-are in constant contact with past and current clients and see a good consistency in their business. They lose a few transactions each year, but don't really worry because they have so much going and are comfortable with their results. But, why not have it all? Let me give you some ways to surprise your clients.
One of the biggest mistakes agents do is not keeping in touch enough with their clients. If they hear from you 18 times a year-you will be receiving more referrals than you ever imagined. I know, most of you are saying, "gee, if I started doing that after they haven't heard from me in five years, what would they think?" They would like that you are finally on the ball! It's never too late!
Why is it that we neglect to give back to the very people who have given us the most rewards? You should be spending your marketing money wisely; and it is very wise to give a gift to the people who helped you be successful. Every client that lives in your marketing area should receive a gift from you every year. Pick a month of the year that you want to do this (preferably not at Christmas time because they get so much at that time of year and you want to stand out). How about St. Patrick's Day? Order live shamrocks from a wholesale nursery and dress them up with pretty green foil paper, put a sticker on them that says "Happy St. Patrick's Day, your name, office, and telephone number." Get some help and deliver them to their doorstep. What a fun surprise! When was the last time you received a live shamrock plant?
How about 4th of July? Have a local bakery bake you small apple pies for all your clients. Put them in a Ziplock plastic bag, put a white sticker with red print on the outside that says "what's more American than apple pie? Enjoy. Happy 4th of July!"
How about the middle of August? Buy barbeque aprons for each family, roll them up and tie with a ribbon, fasten your card or a note that says, "Hope you're having a good summer. I'm thinking of you."
Let your imagination go. Surprise your clients!
By the way, if you are already giving them something every Christmas (live poinsettia, beautiful calendar, etc.), don't stop. You are way ahead of your competition. But, think about doing something during the year as well. You want them to have as many surprises as you can.
I love sending cards for different holidays that people rarely receive cards for-St. Patrick's Day, Easter, May Day, Arbor Day, Ground Hog Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, Halloween, and Thanksgiving. Surprise your clients by having a card made up and sending it to them. They will be thrilled and it's so easy.
Why not send them a market analysis on their home every five years. The cover note can say, "Surprise.look what your home is worth now!" There isn't a person around who doesn't want to know the value or their home. And, this just might motivate some to action. What a surprise to have your Realtor thinking of you and providing you with information unsolicited.
Pick 10 couples a year to give tickets for live theater if they have it in your area or concert tickets, etc. Make a casual call and tell them that you were thinking of them and wanted to give them the tickets. They will be surprised and pleased. Call two weeks before the performance. Most will be able to attend some won't, but you will still get mileage out of it with the offer. This little surprise has big rewards. And, is so easy to do. Mail them the tickets after you are sure they can attend with a nice note.
Lunch or dinner
Take two people to lunch or dinner once a month. Talk about the real estate market and how great it is. Let them know how much you enjoyed working with them and hope that you can help their friends and family in the near future. Don't take the same people all the time. Take people that you haven't seen for awhile so that you can catch up. They will be pleasantly surprised.
You get the idea. When you treat your past and current clients this way you will reap huge rewards and have a lot of fun doing it. Best of all, these small surprises makes everyone happy!
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