As Christmas morning nears and the new year is but a week away, most of us have shut down our business operations for 2012. We’ve got family and friends in town and there isn’t much happening in our business.
That could be just the way the business cycle worked or, if we really look, it might be a factor of us slowing down our business development efforts around Thanksgiving and now we’re justifying that “business won’t really pick up until the spring.” We might even be starting to sound like those Sellers who want to wait to get their house on the market in March instead of now (while rates are at historic lows and inventory is as low as it’s been in years).
Of course there are plenty of people who will be working with clients up to the drop of the ball in Times Square, either listing homes or showing houses and writing offers for those motivated clients we know are out there in every city and town around the globe. It’s been said that Buyers who are looking over the holidays are the most motivated of all.
Has Your Mailbox Been Full?
It seems that this year we have received fewer holiday cards than years past. I don’t know how many we have received but it just seems that fewer people across our sphere have decided to send out a Christmas card to say hello and let us know that they were thinking of us. Come to think of it, we sent out cards but it might have been to a smaller number of people than we have in past years.
I know our world is different these days. We’re all busier (or so we like to think) and we all feel like perhaps we’re more connected than ever before – between Twitter and Facebook and other social webs and all the neighborhood and community activities we may participate in – but in fact, we might be even further apart than ever.
Think of how attached to our own personal screens we are. We stare at our smart phones, iPads, laptops and plasma TVs even while our loved ones are a single step or couch cushion away. (Mea culpa here – trust me, I am not pointing fingers at anyone specifically. I’m probably pointing squarely at myself).
It sometimes seems that making eye contact is equivalent to taking a cold shower on a chilly winter morning because it shocks us back into our own skin when we realize how close we are yet how far away we feel.
What do people mean by sending you a dozen Christmas cards during the festive season, and not deigning to send you three lines by way of letter during the rest of the year. – J. Ashby-Sterry
Do “Write” in 2013
As you start to turn your attention to the new year, think about how you will make an impact on those you encounter. Building your business starts by creating a memorable experience for all those you work with. It will be a key to your success that before, during and after that opportunity to serve that you stay in touch with the people who entrust you with their real estate needs.
Not only will keeping in touch with these people help keep you and your real estate services at the “top of mind” position that is so key, it will put you in the front of the line when it comes to referral opportunities. In today’s technology driven world, it’s just as critical to have great “word of mouse” as it is “word of mouth.”
Make it part of your plan to touch your sphere of influence a minimum of 12 times a year (monthly mailers, e-newsletters, postcards or hand written notes etc.) and contact them 4 more times each year (phone calls, personal visits or connecting in the community). This will not only increase you chances for earning business and referrals throughout the year, it will also ensure that you’re someone they’re thinking of around the holidays instead of someone they are reminded about around the holidays.
Taking the time each day to make someone in your world feel special by delivering a personal message or thought is a great way to stand out from the competition. Especially in a world full of sameness and vanilla experiences. Just like Santa Claus will do tomorrow, seek opportunities in 2013 to deliver some wonderful “presence” to your clients and potential customers.
Hand write a note. Send a personal email. Make a phone call and chat with someone. Stop by and see someone face-to-face.
The more you let them know you’re thinking about them, the more they will think of you.
Photo Credit: Derek Gavey via Creative Commons
Photo Credit: Starshaped via Creative Commons