The Most Valuable Asset For a Realtor in London Ontario Part 2
What kind of database should you consider using?
There are public databases and specialized databases for our industry. Either one will work for you – but you want one that will track the information you wish and be EASY for you to understand. Over the years, I have looked at and tried six different systems!
Our team pays for and supplies a CRM as an online database program, plus calendar, transaction management, e-mail, drip-e-mails, for real estate (a $250.00 monthly value). This is great because you can access your database from different locations, anyplace in the world. You never have to worry about the loss of your data as it is backed up instantly.
The “secret” is knowing what kind of information you want to track beforehand.
What kind of information will you want to track?
You can create your database any way you want – there’s no right or wrong way to do it, as long as you know what you want to track upfront. Knowing what you want to follow upfront will help you create a simple database that will work for years.
There are 5 “Levels” of information you want to track…
You don’t need to track every single piece of information in your CRM – just the items you’ll need. For some, you’ll only want their name, address, phone and email address. For others, like your clients or “Top 20%,” you’ll want to track much more.
Here are the 5 “Levels” of information you want to track:
LEVEL 1: BASIC INFORMATION.
Basic information is essentially the most common item about someone. It includes the fields: First name, last name, Address, City, Province, Postal Code, Phone, Office Phone, Fax, and Email.
However, it also includes other fields of information you’ll want to track – probably at the top of your database record. These fields include
- A “Category” field. This field is significant because it refers to what “type” of contact you’ll have. For example, you may choose Supplier (printer, home inspection, etc.) or Real Estate Agent in your network (yes, you should have other close agents in your list.) For example, if you want to send a letter about a new listing only to other REALTORS® on your list, you’ll want to be able to query just those folks, right? That’s why you have a “category” field.
- A “Quality” field. Here you’ll enter the actual quality of your contact. This field is also critical and should go at the top of your record. For example, you will assign our 5 Star systems (see our Lead Coordination & Data Base Management Chapter 3).
LEVEL 2: PERSONAL INFORMATION.
Gathering personal information is used to help build the depth of the relationship. It will give you information for children’s names, send birthday and anniversary cards, send something very personal to them when they send you a referral or let them know that you remember details about your relationship with them – such as when talking on the phone or writing.
The information you want to track here includes:
- spouse name
- children names
- pet names
- wedding anniversary
- interests (such as hobbies)
Why do you want such personal information? Because people “light-up” to unique gestures – such as birthday cards, anniversary cards, gifts that are aligned with their particular interests (such as golf or fishing, etc.). And if you want to stand out as an agent, you’ll treat people as unique. And your database makes it incredibly easy.
LEVEL 3: HOME INFORMATION.
You’re in the real estate business, so it’s essential to know about the home your members own. This is especially true with past clients. Track only the most critical information – otherwise, you’ll get overwhelmed.
The fields you want to track here include:
- Buyer/Seller field (indicate whether a client was a buyer or seller)
- Area (subdivision, etc.)
- Price, Date (of purchase or sale)
- Remarks field that includes narrative about their home preferences, etc.
LEVEL 4: REFERRAL INFORMATION.
Would you like to know who sent you a referral and “who” that referral was?
Of course, you do. Sending you a referral places them in your highest “category” (and A-level person), and they should be treated special. Why? Because behaviour that gets rewarded gets repeated.
The simple information you want to track is:
- Referral Name
- Referral Date
This way, you can query your database for any referral information you need.
LEVEL 5: NARRATIVE INFORMATION
You can type in this open-ended field to track comments or information relating to conversations and other details on clients and prospects.
This way, for example, when you need to call a client, you can pull up their record and remind yourself of the details of your previous conversation. Again, most industry databases and contact managers will allow you to track this information.
How do you maintain and refine your System?
If you’re like most agents, your natural inclination will be to “dump” as many people into your database as possible – maybe thousands. And unless you truly have a personal relationship with these folks, you’ll likely be making a big, costly mistake.
The success of your marketing is related to TWO essential elements: SIZE and QUALITY.
You may have thousands of people on your database yet get worse results than agents with just 200 or 300. Why? Because they have a deeper relationship with those 200 or 300 – their list is higher QUALITY.
The good news is, with regular, personal contact, the quality of your list increases automatically.
Managing your list is not just a one-time exercise – it’s a WAY OF DOING BUSINESS. Take a look at any truly successful business, and you’ll find they track their clients very, very closely.
Managing your CRM will require you to do three simple things:
- First, you’ll need to ADD names to your database continually. You need to adopt the mentality of building Size and Quality.
- Second, you’ll want to UPDATE the information in your database continually.
- Third, you’ll want to PURGE people and information from your database continually.
The BOTTOM LINE: If you START this process… and develop a list of names and addresses of your clients, friends, acquaintances, suppliers, and those you meet or work with on a day to day basis – you will be light-years ahead of your competition and well on your way to creating a hyper-responsive market of people in your business.
The “secret” is to get started.
Did you finish reading this and say to yourself, “oh…this is going to be too much work”…? If you said those words to yourself…I want to know you just made a decision that will cost you in two ways.
- MILLIONS of Dollars in Lost Commissions
The great Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu once said, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” If you’re willing to take that “one step” right now, you’ll find out it’s incredibly EASY and FAST to get yourself started on a life of abundance and freedom.
Seriously, think about this: If you think it’s just going to be too much work, then I’m sure your competitors will be thrilled with your decision – all the more business for them.
Ask any top agent, coach, or expert who knows their stuff in real estate, and they’ll tell you relationship marketing to get referrals is THE SECRET to long-term success in this business.
So please don’t write off your success before you even get started. This is the foundation of everything you’ll do in your business from this point forward.
Need Help? Give me a call at 519-435-1600; I can give you a few ideas.