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5 tips to upgrade your real estate networking game

5 strategies that help real estate professionals build relationships

Success in the real estate industry hinges not just on what you know, but who you know. The foundation of this sector is built on trust and relationships. So, networking is about more than just transactions — it’s a crucial practice for building connections that nurture growth and unveil new possibilities. For real estate professionals, turning networking into a regular practice is key to long-term success.

To cement these lasting relationships, you need to adopt an approach that is both effective and proactive. It’s about crafting a strategy that not only ensures you remain at the forefront of people’s minds but also prevents your connections from growing cold. This involves leveraging your existing network to forge new links and identifying individuals with whom you’re likely to form a meaningful connection. Here’s how to create a sustainable routine:

Create daily habits

Author and Business Growth Expert Mo Bunnell emphasizes the importance of systematic approaches in networking. He believes that success in networking hinges on consistency and structured strategies, rather than impulsive, sporadic efforts. Mo’s methodologies highlight practical strategies like actively seeking referrals, attending forums and webinars, and creating targeted and crafting email lists to strengthen networking.

Bunnell advises professionals to create a system for themselves in which they regularly and effortlessly reach out to their contacts. He also recommends keeping a log of the conversations, in particular which issues seem to mean the most to individual contacts. According to Bunnell, “Sporadic doesn’t work, sprints are OK, but systems are where it’s at​​​​.”

Cultivate genuine relationships

Another crucial aspect of networking in real estate lies in forging genuine connections. As you establish and nurture contacts, you should identify the people with whom you share interests and perspectives, likes and dislikes. Forging genuine relationships lays a foundation of trust and mutual respect, which are essential for long-term success and collaboration.

Robin Dunbar, the renowned evolutionary psychologist, underscores the importance of genuine relationships in business networking. He has identified seven pillars of friendship that you can use to gauge how likely you are to build meaningful relationships with the people you meet. Elements such as humor, language, interests, music taste, and more act as winds guiding your sails to discovering the “right” people to work with.

Leverage your existing network

Now, it’s time to maximize the benefit of your existing network. This is particularly crucial in real estate, where personal recommendations hold substantial weight. The National Association of Realtors found that 68% of people who found their home through a real estate agent discovered that agent through referrals from their family or friends.

Doug Lester, renowned career strategist, suggests a strategy that focuses on leveraging your existing client base to create more connections. This involves not just maintaining relationships with past clients but also actively seeking referrals. In real estate, it all comes down to one simple question. Asking a satisfied client, “who else do you think I should speak with?” can open avenues to potential buyers, sellers, or even partnerships. This strategy taps into the existing trust and rapport that you’ve built with your clients, using it as a springboard to expand your network.

Follow up – The Golden Rule

When it comes to nurturing new relationships, the importance of diligent follow-up cannot be overstated. Following up promptly after an initial interaction signals genuine interest and commitment, which are key to building trust and rapport. A timely follow-up keeps the conversation going, ensuring your connections stay engaged and aware of your presence. It creates a lasting impression that makes you memorable, significantly increasing the chances that your contacts will think of you when opportunities arise.

Research shows that companies that contact prospective clients within an hour of an interaction are nearly seven times as likely to identify qualified prospects compared to those that contacted the customer even an hour later. What’s more, immediate follow-ups make it 60 times as likely to qualify leads as companies that waited 24 hours or longer. Similarly, with your personal and professional relationships, following up after an initial interaction keeps your relationships warm and relevant, and they will be more likely to continue investing time in the relationship.

Find the right tools

Selecting the appropriate tools for networking is essential. Simple spreadsheets are a great starting point, allowing for the organization of contact details, interests, and interaction notes, facilitating easier follow-ups. For a more detailed approach, personal contact relationship management (CRM) tools provide extensive tracking capabilities, including interaction logs and reminders, to keep your network actively engaged.

You can also adapt project management apps like Trello, Asana, and Notion to manage contacts, with functionalities for scheduling and noting interactions. Note-taking apps such as Evernote and OneNote are useful for creating individualized notes for each contact, which you can then tag for quick retrieval. Additionally, email marketing tools like Mailchimp and Constant Contact can serve beyond their traditional scope by managing individual contacts and gauging engagement levels, offering insights into the most receptive members of your network.

These diverse tools cater to the varied needs of real estate professionals, streamlining the process of networking and ensuring that each connection is nurtured and valued, ultimately supporting the growth and success of your real estate endeavors.

Yiannis Gavrielides is the CEO at Covve, empowering professionals to grow and nurture their contact networks.

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