3 Ways to Work Real Estate Client Referrals

Renae Virata | July 5, 2017 | Best Practices, Marketing

3 Ways to Work Real Estate Client ReferralsWord of mouth and client referrals are no doubt still one of the top and longer-lasting sources for leads for real estate agents. According to a 2016 survey from Nielsen of more than 2,000 consumers, more than 80 percent relied on the recommendation of family and friends to make big decisions. Referral marketing is here to stay. But how can you, as a real estate agent, drive more client referrals?

Ask, Ask, Ask

If you don’t ask, then you don’t get! It’s an adage any business owner should follow. But when is the best time to ask and where should you make it? Sometimes the best way is the direct way. Here are a few times to ask for referrals.

After Closing

After you have helped a client close on their home or sell their listing, sent them a closing gift and buttoned up all loose ends, write them a referral letter. You can start by thanking them for their business and hoping that they are either enjoying their new home or their next move. Then follow immediately with your offer to help their family and friends in the same way. Finally, ask for the referral! Ask directly whom you should contact and include business cards with your letter or card.

During the Listing Interview

This may seem like an odd time to ask for a referral, but it’s actually the perfect time to plant the seed. After you’ve provided your value proposition, let the seller know that you are going to do your best as you have for all of your listing clients, including the benefits of working with you. Then give them your goals in working with them and how, if they are happy, you’d love for them to refer you to family and friend.

During the Sales Process

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It doesn’t hurt to give another mention in the middle of the fray. You might actually remind them to refer you to family and friends if you did a particularly good job of negotiating, for example, or helped your client over a road bump that moved the process forward.

Send a Referral Email

Referral emails are a great way to remind clients long after you’ve worked with them that you are available to help their family and friends, too. Keep the message super simple and the ask direct. You can also include a form in the email itself to make it easier for people to input referral contact information.

Open Houses

You have people coming in and out of your open houses. Don’t let them leave without leaving their referrals! Many visitors to open houses are “just looking.” So even if they aren’t interested in the listing, you can gain something from their visit by getting more shoe-in sellers and buyers.

Have a referral card out and a fishbowl or basket to collect the cards. Be sure that you have someone helping you ask for them if you are answering questions or walking people around the property.

Following any referral, don’t forget to send a thank you with a little gift. If you are sending a card you can send something as simple as a physical gift card or, for a thank you email, a virtual gift card. Either way, let your referrers know how grateful you are for helping you with your business!

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Renae Virata