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Contact Management for Real Estate Agents: 3 Essential Elements to Success

August 20 2014

essentialelements IXACT1A lot of REALTORS® aren't aware of important best practices when it comes to real estate contact management. Agents who excel in effective contact management forge strong relationships with their sphere and get the vast majority of their business from past clients in the form of repeat business and referrals. In this blog post we'll outline three keys to success when it comes to contact management for real estate agents and actionable insights you can start applying to your business right away.

1. Create a multi-channel keep in touch plan

You can't overestimate the value of a good, multi-channel keep in touch strategy. According to The Referral & Repeat Marketing BookThe Referral & Repeat Marketing Book, the three components to a successful referral and repeat marketing program are the right people, the right message, and the right frequency. When you create your keep in touch plan, you need to take these three components into consideration. Also remember that you should be in contact with the homeowners in your community at least 17 times per year. You can do this through phone calls, community events, direct mail, and email, as well as many other methods.

Implement a multi-channel approach by first segmenting your contacts into different groups, such as A-List, B-List, and C-List. Your A-List is your current and past clients, hot prospects, and those who have the potential to bring you the most referrals and repeat business. Your B-List is all the rest of the prospects in your database, and your C-List would be everyone else.

Communication channels like direct mail can be a bit more costly than other channels, while email, for instance, can be very inexpensive and isn't particularly time consuming. So you'll want to decide on the methods you're going to use to communicate with each group and the frequency, based on their value to you and cost/time considerations.

Here's an example:

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2. Leverage the power of your real estate contact management system

Good contact management for real estate agents is something that often has to be learned – it doesn't come natural to all Realtors®. But with a great real estate contact management system, it's easy to put important best practices into action.

According to real estate trainer Richard Robbins of Richard Robbins International, you can expect a 15% return from your database. This means that for every 100 people that you market to with your contact management software, you'll get 15 new transactions. So if you take advantage of the system's powerful features to help you stay in touch--such as a monthly e-Newsletter, drip marketing campaigns, and Just Listed and Just Sold e-Flyers--your business will grow exponentially.

Real estate contact management software is really the foundation to building referrals and repeat business. It helps you manage your keep-in-touch strategy, get automatic prompts and reminders, automate some of your important keep-in-touch communications, nurture your leads until they become clients, use listing and closing Activity Planslisting and closing Activity Plans to stay organized, and more.

Richard Robbins also says that 80% of people who don't have an agent will get one through a referral. In order to maximize your referrals business, you need to stay in touch properly and effectively, and continue to build relationships with your clients, long after the initial transaction is over. A real estate contact management system is key to this.

3. Set up automatic prompts and reminders

Let's face it – we're busy! And most us don't have the memory of an elephant. That's why we need to use automatic prompts to help us put effective contact management for real estate agents into action. If you don't have an assistant, start using a CRM (discussed in point two of this blog post) and it will act as your personal assistant, reminding you what needs to be done and when. You can get email reminders to make a quarterly check-in call, send a client a progress report, attend that important meeting, or start planning your next client appreciation event.

The built-in task list, calendar, and Activity Plans in your real estate contact management software work together seamlessly to help you make sure nothing falls through the cracks and that you're running your business in an efficient and organized manner.

Take, for instance, Monica, a RE/MAX agent in Toronto. She runs a very successful business but doesn't have a whole lot of help. Monica uses her IXACT Contact CRM to keep her on track. Her CRM is her saving grace. She often remarks that she doesn't know how she managed without it!

We hope these tips or "keys to success" will help you take your business to the next level. Effective contact management and the real estate profession will be forever intertwined. The most successful agents are those that master contact management to propel strong, lifelong relationships with everyone in their sphere of influence.

Which "key" do you think will be most helpful to you? Please leave a comment below!

To view the original article, vist the IXACT Contact blogIXACT Contact blog.