By Greg Viti
In my opinion there is no better way to give and get business than a solid referral from a past client, friend or fellow Realtor. Over the years I have had an opportunity to enjoy many of these prized clients.
There is no better compliment than a motivated buyer or seller being referred to you. How you handle the referral can either assure you are going to get many more, or that it will be your last. Simple follow-up is so important yet often this step gets forgotten. This game is a lot like putting together a blind date. You plant the seed, give the number and have to sit back and wait.
With real estate referrals – rather than sit back and wait, once you know who you want to refer – it is important to put in writing what was discussed after the initial call. Who, what, when and why! I feel if you receive the referral it is imperative that you communicate with the referring broker a few times. First to thank them, second to let them know how your first meeting went. If there are stumbling blocks the referring agent can often help out. In either case it is rather frustrating to me when I refer out a hot buyer or seller and then I have to keep calling or emailing to find out how it is going. It is sad but this happens often.
Empathy is important in this arena, put yourself in the referring agent/ clients shoes. They are excited to help grow your business. You owe them the common courtesy of communication. What an exciting prospect, someone calls you with a motivated client, just what we are all looking for! How to handle this situation in such a way that this agent/client will tell everyone how you went over the top to communicate and make the referring client happy. Then paying out the referral fee in a timely accurate manner is of utmost importance. I have been blessed with well over one hundred closed referrals in my career. I built a nice reputation of communication, hard work, market knowledge, people skills and most important trust worthiness to pay the fee. I suggest you take this path.
Fellow Realtors are not all competitors. I am here to help your paradigm shift to marketing towards agents outside your marketplace to build a referral relationship. The best way to get referrals is to give referrals. Take some time to attend conferences and company meetings to get your cards passed out and obtain some of the best clients ever- referred clients! With past clients keeping in touch and asking if they know of anyone thinking or buying or selling in the near future can work wonders. Sending out various marketing pieces to remind past clients and Realtors about you is a good idea. Giving the referred client your full attention will assure another referral is coming your way in the near future. Happy referring!