5 TIPS TO STAY PRODUCTIVE THIS WINTER
As a real estate agent in Chicago it can be challenging to be productive in the slower winter months. Chicago’s winters can be bitter cold which makes it hard to stay motivated with anything, let alone having to constantly drive your business. Winter months don’t have to be dreaded as a real estate agent. These months can be a time of value allowing you time to work on yourself as a business owner, and prepare your business for the next year. During the peak of the real estate market, from Spring to Fall, you may find you do not have time to focus on the finer details because you are busy with your active clients. This is why it is important to embrace the winter months. Slower periods allow you to work on areas of your business that might get overlooked. Just like any other business owner it is very important to stay positive and motivated to keep momentum going all year round. Remember during the slower months, take the time to stop and reflect on what you are doing well, where your opportunities are, and how you can improve in the future.
1. REFLECT PAST GOALS & SET NEW GOALS
It is important to always take time to evaluate your business so you can take your goals to a higher level every year. Even if you are didn’t meet last year’s goals it does not mean you are wasting your time by setting new goals, and a plan of action to reach them. Goals are meant be set high so we stay motivated to achieve them. Always plan your goals because without a plan you are less likely to stay focused throughout the year. Your goals should push you to take your career to the next level year after year.
2. RECONNECT WITH YOUR SPHERE
Real estate’s slower months come during the winter holidays, which provides a great opportunity to reconnect with past clients. Take the opportunity to mail out holiday cards, or eve just reach out to wish past or future clients a happy holiday season from their favorite real estate agent. This is a great way to simply let them know you are thinking about them during the holidays. Remember it is always important to stay at the top of your sphere of influence’s mind. This way when they think real estate, they think of you. These people are the most important key to your success. Take this downtime as an opportunity to touch base and stay at the top of their minds when it comes to real estate.
3. FOCUS ON A MARKETING PLAN FOR YOUR BUSINESS
This is a perfect time of year to set a plan & budget for your marketing next year! You should be able to look at what you have budgeted for marketing the previous year to see what is working and what is not. Consider where you spent your money this year, whether it be social media business page paid ads, mailed postcards, or paying companies to market your business for you. No matter how much have contributed to this aspect of your business you ultimately need to find out what works best for you and is the most profitable. Marketing can be tricky because it is a part of being a business owner that takes time and consistency to be able to prove its ultimate worth. Spend the time to decide what has worked and what has not. You can then reallocate the money spent on areas that did not work to other options.
4. UPDATE AND BUILD YOUR SYSTEMS
Real estate agents today have so many digital system platforms that are used to conduct a successful business. Over the course of a year you may not have time to update these when you become busier with your business. The biggest systems that come to mind are agent profiles (realtor.com/zillow/trulia/social media business pages) and CRM systems. These types of systems can be overwhelming to keep updated with current reviews and updated database information, but when time is set aside to do so it makes it easier in the long run. You can also use your extra time to demo new products or attend webinars. There are countless programs that can help simplify your listings, website, email, and social media accounts to create more leads for the next year.
5. OPPORTUNITY TO ENGAGE MORE WITH LEADS
Although your business might generally decline in the winter months, it does not mean you will not have any business during this time. Remember that the clients you have during the winter are usually more serious considering the timing. Even the seller’s market is generally less saturated making it more ideal to sell a home faster. Use the extra time you have to go the extra mile with any serious prospects. Remember, in general buyer lead quality always corresponds with your quality of service.