Anyone in sales needs to have a database. Whether that’s a list of friends, family, potential, or past clients, your database will be essential to growing your business and maintaining relationships with the people you work with.
While most people consider a database to be a mailing list or a phone-book of sorts, I consider my database to be more than just a place to find an address or email. To me, a database is a list of relationships. In a world of cold calling, farming, mass mailing, and direct mail to create business, relationships will be a superior form of communication for your referrals.
How do you create your contact list?
I want you to think of everyone you already know and the ones that like you already. Get out your cell phone and look at your contact list. Who do you talk to often? Who are your family, friends, your sphere of influence, acquaintances -- people you met at a friend’s birthday party or a Fourth of July BBQ, friends of friends.
Don’t be hesitant to reach out to those acquaintances, start to build relationships with them!
Some of your best business will come from your past clients! All of your past clients NEED to go into your contact list. And if you are a brand new agent, focus on your other contacts to start building up your client list. Your contact list should also include the parents of your children’s friends (I’m sure you know where they live), the people you go to church with or volunteer with, your neighbors, business acquaintances (business owners, partners, attorneys, financial advisors, property managers, lenders, title -- all of the people you do business with now). Try to avoid over-qualifying people from your contact list. They may know other real estate agents or have a strong knowledge of the Real Estate Industry and Market, but keep them on your contact list!
Start with at least 100 people. You likely know at least 100 people or more that would fit into your contact list, but the goal is to have at least 100. If you don’t have that many or are struggling to think of people to add, you should be focusing on meeting more people and accepting more invitations for opportunity! Think of your contact list as a holiday card list or a wedding invitation list. Remember, your goal is to add people that know and like you.
My suggestion when you’re starting out is to use an Excel spreadsheet or a Google Sheet, whichever you prefer. Create columns titled Name, Phone Number, Address, Notes, and Groups to classify your contacts as teachers, business partners, police officers, veterans, etc. This organization will be helpful when you choose to import this list to a database to a client relation management system.