Real Estate Networking is a great way to drum up some new business and close more deals. As it is said in the world of business, “Your net worth is directly tied to your network”.
The more people you know, the more people that know you, and the more that your brand and business motto are understood by your business affiliates, the more your business will thrive.
If you don’t already have a thriving business full of referrals and incoming leads, then Real Estate Networking is a great method for you to understand.
In this article, I am going to give some tips and cover how to get started with building your pipeline and ways to establish strong relationships that last for years to come.
7 Keys to Grow Your Business Exponentially Through Real Estate Networking:
- People will do business with other people whom they like and trust
Think about the last time you bought a car at a dealership, the last time you purchased insurance, the last house you bought, or the last time you bought anything through a salesperson. Now, think of the times when you didn’t buy something because you couldn’t stand the salesperson. People will buy what you are selling if you are likable, trustable, and provide your customers with good value. If you establish relationships and grow your network, referrals will be almost as valuable as personal relationships.
- Hang out in your favorite places
As a general rule of thumb, people like people with whom they have a lot of common interest. If you like to golf, read, exercise, garden, speak, serve or any other activity you enjoy, you can network with people who you naturally enjoy spending time with. Make sure everyone in your group, class, team, or association knows EXACTLY what you do and make it a point to hand them a brochure, take them out to lunch, or otherwise discuss your venture (after you have built rapport with them).
- Join networking groups
The quickest way to get in touch with other business professionals in your area with whom you can publicize your business in an accepting environment is the Chamber of Commerce in your area. Most all cities, towns, villages, and counties have COC groups going on every week or every month. They meet for breakfast, lunch, dinner, happy hour, etc. They allow for each member to share their business motto at each meeting and designate time for socializing. This method may take some time because it may take you a while to get to know the other business owners but the good news is that there are a lot of concentrated business owners in one spot and the fruits that will come later can be tremendous. Since most networking groups do not have an abundance of apartment building owners, you will probably be best focusing your efforts on raising capital; everyone is looking for a better return on their money.
- Become an expert at asking questions
Most people you network with will get frustrated with you if you pitch your business and expect them to hand you leads. That is not how it works. The best way to get their leads is to gain their trust and prove to them that you will provide their leads with value. The best way to do this is to ask them good questions. If you are focused on you, they will lose interest in you. If you place your attention and focus on them and their business, they will quickly form a liking to you.
Here are a few good questions to get you on the right track:
-How did you get started in your business?
-What separates you from your competition?
-What kind of trends do you see coming in your industry?
- Give to receive
People love when other people send them stuff in the mail, hand them a gift, or send them a referral. If you set time aside for each person that you meet who you think will be a good referral partner, they will see you as someone who cares. Don’t get over the top with this, but perhaps, just send them a hand-written note after your first contact. Then, set a task for yourself to contact them again within the next few weeks. This time, you could offer to meet them for lunch or send them a referral. The best way to get referrals from an influential person is to first give them a referral. The law of reciprocity will take over.
- Virtual Networking
This may be the quickest way to get some relationships started. If you google “your type of business” and “blog”, you can start to meet other business owners who are in your field. For example, type in “Chicago Real Estate Investing Blog” in google and go down the list of the search results and start to see what other business owners in your industry that have a different niche are doing and see what you can do to serve them. You may want to type in similar keywords and instead of blog, type in “forum” to find groups of people in your industry.
You may have heard the saying “The fortune is in the follow-up”. You can go to endless seminars, networking groups, forums, and interest groups and if you do not follow-up with the people you meet, 99% of your efforts will have gone to waste. Most business owners are not serious enough about their business to do this step and if you can be in the 1% club, you will get a ton of business. It does not have to be anything fancy, but when you call them back, talk to them like you would a friend, strike up a conversation, and generally find what would make a good referral for them. Then, they will most likely ask you questions about your business and you will be off to a nice, profitable, give-and-take referral partnership.
These methods apply in almost any business. When you are in real estate, networking is an important component of a thriving business. Real Estate is a people business and networking is a people prospecting activity. If nothing else, this will help you brush up your speaking and connecting skills. Then, when you are in front of your customers/sellers/buyers, you will be more professional.