It’s rare to ever hear a real estate agent proclaim that they did not want to see their business grow. More often, you will hear them talk about setting higher and higher goals each year. There are many “lead” sources that can help you do that but few are as powerful as referrals. It’s no surprise then that the vast majority of all high-producing agents generate the bulk of their business through referrals. Here, I will share with you 6 ways to grow your sphere of influence and ultimately your business through referrals. After all, the bigger your sphere, the more referrals you will get.
1: Friends, family, and acquaintances
When an agent is starting their business, their family members, friends, distant relatives, neighbors, and even co-workers are their go-to source for referrals. It’s easy to start here because they are the people in your immediate sphere of influence. The best way to reach this group is through family and work gatherings, social media posts, holiday parties, social events, etc. You may find that your church or your PTA becomes your greatest source of referrals.
2: Day to day encounters
It never ceases to amaze me where new referral opportunities pop up so it’s important to always be ready and open to these day to day encounters. Where your name tag, keep business cards in your wallet or purse, and always wear a smile. You may meet your next client while shopping or running errands, on vacation, or even at your child’s school while you’re waiting to pick them up. I encourage you to say hello and get to know the people around your and build new relationships. Come up with ideas now about how you can bring up your real estate expertise in advance but I’d also advise you not to oversell yourself or else you may find yourself turning people off. Make it a goal to hand out 3 business cards every day and then build up from there.
3: Professional relationships
Tapping into professional relationships such as those with your dentist, dog groomer, accountant, attorney, doctor, or even your local grocer are all people who could refer you to their customers and people they know. You will find that this is a special category because they are the experts and command a higher level of trust. More importantly, they tend to know when their clients are thinking about moving.
4: Service contacts
Have you ever thought about your dry cleaner or nail salon as a referral source? They can be a great source, but let’s not stop there. How about your hair salon, tailor, favorite coffee shop, local restaurants, storage facilities, moving truck rental stores, alarm companies, and so on. The list is virtually endless. These local businesses that you visit also have a good feel for what’s going on in and around the community. Take the time to nurture these relationships, send referrals their way, and ask them for referrals as well.
5: Associations and groups
People like working with people who they like and share their interests. Referral opportunities can be found in your church, favorite charity, sports league, book club, health club, parent teacher association, and the list goes on. Connect with these individuals on a personal level and bring them into your sphere. You can generate even more awareness of what you sponsoring key events, writing an article for their newsletter, etc.
6: Corporate relocation
There are a lot of opportunities in this category because a lot of agents are either intimidated or assume this category is already covered by large corporate agreements. You’d be surprised how few companies have relocation agreements in place. Think about retailers, schools, first responders, military bases, as well as small and mid-sized companies. Come up with ideas on how to make it easier for their new hires or current employees to move. If they have an employee moving out of the area, help them by referring their employee to a top agent in that new area… and of course, collect that referral fee.
I hope that this list will help you grow your business through referrals. As your business grows, I hope you will consider allowing us to take the stress out of the transaction by handling your transaction workflow so you can focus on nurturing your clients, and your referral network.
Written by Gosia Shierlaw, Managing Member.
Gosia Shierlaw is the voice and anchor of On Target Transactions. Her first responsibility is to protect your business and keep you on schedule. As a real estate agent and experienced transaction coordinator she understands the necessity of leverage in your business.