Spring is just around the corner, and with it, the peak homebuying season. Whether you’re a seasoned professional or fairly new to the housing industry, it’s important to prepare yourself for the uptick in activity that’s ahead. Just as professional athletes attend routine practices before the start of a new season, the same principle applies for any business person who is impacted by seasonality. Set yourself up for success this spring by starting on the following activities now:
Master your market: Savvy real estate professionals make it a point to stay up-to-date on the latest industry news, trends, and projections year-round, but now is the time to up the ante. Subscribe to top industry publications, and take an hour or so every day to read about how the market is performing across the country. Also, educate yourself about your local area so you’re equipped to answer when your clients have questions. Attend town and school board meetings or connect with local government officials to learn about businesses that are opening or closing, changes happening in the school district, or new eyesores being built in town. Bottom line: Make it your business to know everything you can about your local market.
Revisit your business plan: As French author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry once said, “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” If you want to turn your goals into realities, you need a roadmap to help you get there. Now that the new year hype has calmed down, revisit your business plan to make sure you’re still on track. Reassess your plan to adjust sales goals, your marketing strategy, or your professional development initiatives, then make sure you’re following through by checking your progress against it regularly. You could even try a monthly business plan, which will break things up into more obtainable goals and force you to check in at the end of each month.
Advertise now: Leverage your local-market research and attract potential buyers with multichannel, targeted, value-added messaging. For example, create a blog post on your website with news about community changes, new business openings, hot neighborhoods this year, etc., then share the post in a sponsored Facebook ad using specific audience targeting. When people click to read more, it will drive traffic back to your website, where you can set up Calls to Action (CTAs) and signup forms to capture leads. Then, follow up on those leads with automated email campaigns and a phone call.
Reach out to past clients: Your former clients are an invaluable resource to help you generate new and repeat business. Set aside time to reach out personally and check in on their current situations. Perhaps they’ve got friends or family members who are ready to buy or are thinking of making some changes themselves. Even if nothing comes of the conversation immediately, you’ve planted the seed for future business. It’s also a great opportunity to ask for reviews, which are key to establishing a good reputation.
Tip: Be sure you’re nurturing client relationships with value-added email and social media marketing year-round. Clients will be more responsive to someone they hear from regularly rather than an out-of-the-blue cold call.
Connect with business partners: Another invaluable resource are those business partners who play a separate but vital role in the customer journey. Checking in with them periodically not only helps you increase referrals but also gives you a chance to get on the same page and identify ways to improve communication, processes, etc. Whether you and I have an ongoing relationship or are just beginning to work together, I’d love to speak with you about how we can strengthen our partnership to deliver an outstanding experience for our customers.