17 August 2018
As many agents know, a proven real estate marketing strategy is to target a geographic farm, work that area with a good geographic farming system, and then reap the benefits of increasingly more leads and listings, year after year.
The principle behind this strategy is easy to understand. The more that homeowners in an area come to know, like and trust you, the more likely they are to think of you when they’re ready to move. You’re top-of-mind. In fact, if you use the right real estate marketing system, you can become the only agent they consider calling.
But there’s another type of “farm” that many agents don’t pay nearly enough attention to…
Like a traditional geographic farm, your past clients are a community of homeowners with something important in common. They’ve all worked with you. And, hopefully, they’ve had a positive experience with your services.
The problem is, many real estate agents fall into the trap of taking their past clients for granted. They just assume that the occasional phone call or holiday card each year is enough to stay top-of-mind. They think, “I sold their home for 10% above asking. They gave me a testimonial for my website. Of course they’re going to recommend me to their friends and neighbours.”
But the reality is, life goes on. Your past clients get busy with other things. Before long you become merely the agent who sold their home a couple of years ago. Some of your previous clients may even eventually lose your contact information or forget your name!
That’s unfortunate because, like a great geographic farm, past clients can become a goldmine of new business. The average homeowner is in a position to recommend a real estate agent two or three times a year. Over five years, that’s 10 to 15 potential referrals. And because those are referrals, the likelihood of those becoming new clients for you is substantially higher than any other type of lead.
In fact, according to research by the National Association of Realtors, 39% of sellers found their agent through a referral from friends or family. If you don’t keep in touch with your past clients as diligently as you do your geographic farm, you risk not getting many of those leads.
So, how do you stay in touch with past clients so they remember you, become loyal to you, and recommend you to others?
The answer is the same as how to establish yourself in a traditional geographic farm. You use a good real estate marketing system, ideally one that features a monthly done-for-you direct mail newsletter.
Treat your past clients like your best geographic farm. Work it, and you’ll generate more referrals and repeat business.