You’ve spent years building a loyal clientele of luxury real estate buyers and sellers, but are you nurturing them? With technology making it easier than ever to attract new leads, strengthening the relationships with existing clients is the best thing you can do to simplify your business and tap into a high-quality source of referrals.
Here are five ways to do just that:
1. Nurture clients with at least one monthly email.
While hand-written letters are always a nice touch, email is the easiest way to nurture clients both consistently and automatically. That means there’s no way to forget, get too busy or overthink it.
Plus, even if your past clients don’t need your services at the time they see your email, simply seeing your name pop up in their inbox may remind them to refer a friend.
Keep in mind that nurturing clients doesn’t just mean sending out emails featuring listings and open houses, but rather ones with helpful content about the real estate market or lifestyle updates. This is a great way to remind clients of your expertise and value so that when you do send links to new listings or make a pitch, they’ll be more likely to respond (or open the email in the first place).
2. Send the occasional gift.
Of course, along with sending regular emails, your clients will appreciate the occasional small gift to remember their birthdays, anniversaries or show you’re thinking of them during the holidays.
In one of our most recent Estate of Mind podcast episodes, The Institute for Luxury Home Marketing member Jim Walberg shared that his approach to gift-giving is based on creating opportunities for his clients to share their experience with him.
For example, instead of simply sending flowers to clients’ homes, he sends flowers to their workplace so their colleagues ask about the flowers. This leads to his client telling their colleagues about the amazing experience they had with him. Naturally, some of those colleagues then ask for his information the next time they need a luxury real estate professional.
3. Plan a quarterly catch-up call
Unlike emails, nurturing clients with phone calls requires a little more effort, but gives you an opportunity to catch up in real time.
Plus, a casual quarterly phone call is a great way to identify potential referrals when they come up in conversation.
For example, if your client mentions a young family member or friend who’s having a new baby, or maybe an older family member or friend who wants to downsize, it could be the perfect time to ask for a referral.
As a bonus, some clients may take the initiative to tell you about an interesting property they’ve seen or something that’s come up in their life, which gives you an opening to offer your help.
At the same time, it’s important to make these phone calls without the intention of booking an appointment or pitching your services. You want clients to feel like you’re someone they can trust, so it’s best to show a genuine interest in what your client has been up to since you last spoke.
4. Be on the lookout for opportunities just for them.
Outside of regular emails and quarterly phone calls, most clients will appreciate you coming to them with opportunities like new investments, recommending a trusted vendor you know they’ve been on the hunt for or even a local event that might catch their interest—like an exclusive wine tasting or an antique pop-up shop.
Taking the time out of your day to send a text, make a call or send an email when those opportunities pop up takes just a few minutes, but makes a lasting impression.
5. Stay active on social media.
Another easy way to stay top of mind? Social media.
The idea isn’t to post for the sake of posting, but to post for the sake of keeping your market expertise visible. Just like with emails, you’ll want to share a variety of valuable content rather than simply sharing listings or pitching your services—and don’t be afraid to work your own personal story and personality into your posts, either.
While you don’t want to “overshare” or come off as unprofessional, you do want to share enough of yourself to help you stand out from the crowd and make it easy for clients to connect with, relate to and respect you.
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Diane Hartley is president of The Institute for Luxury Home Marketing, an independent authority in training and designation for real estate agents working in the luxury residential market. Hartley brings her passion for luxury marketing and more than 20 years of experience growing and leading businesses to her role as president of The Institute. For more information, please visit www.luxuryhomemarketing.com.