Calling past clients can be uncomfortable and awkward. This is especially true if it has been awhile since you have talked to them. But staying in touch with past clients is critical to your success as an agent. You can’t rely only on your print and digital marketing to stay in touch with them either. You have to reach out and call them from time-to-time.
But what do you say? How do you get past that initial awkward feeling when you first get them on the phone? Try these six ideas to get over the weirdness that happens when you call your past clients.
1. No Sales
The first thing you should get clear in your mind is that this phone call is not a sales phone call. Yes you may ask for referrals at the end or your past client may offer you one. But this should not be the basis for your phone call. If you think of it as only a sales call you can’t work on making it a relationship building phone call.
If your past client feels that your call is only a sales call they will get irritated. No one likes to besold to and especially under the guise of just checking in. Plus if you make it all about the sales you run the risk of your client not answering your calls in the future.
2. Ask Real Estate Questions
When you are talking to your past clients ask them real estate questions. Ask them things they wish they would have known before they bought or sold their house. Ask them their five favorite things they love about their new house. Ask them things that surprised them when they bought or sold their house.
These questions help drive the conversation. But they can provide good information for you to use in the future. You can use this information when working with new clients or for your opt-in report for your landing page. You can use this information for new marketing campaigns. Think of this as market research and take a genuine interest in your clients’ answers.
3. Ask Personal Questions
Before you call your past clients take time to remember what it was like when you worked with them. Think about the personal information you came to know about them. If you are friends on social media this will be even easier. Then jot down a list of 3-5 questions that you can ask thatare related to those personal items. This will show your clients that you are still interested in them and their lives. This is great for relationship building!
I think this tactic works even better if you haven’t done a good job of staying in touch with your clients. It shows them that you do remember them as more than just a sale. It shows that you did care about them and still do. It is a great way to reconnect with past clients and build the relationship.
4. Talk About You
It can feel awkward if you are only shooting questions at your clients. They might feel like a firing squad! I think it is perfectly okay to talk about yourself too. Just don’t overdo it! Let your clients know what is going on in your personal life. Share funny stories about events or your kids. Talk about fun trips you have taken recently. Be real, be yourself and be personal.
I also think it is okay to talk about your real estate business here too. Talk about your wins and your challenges. Friends talk about their work and what is going on. This is how you should look at these calls to your past clients. You are calling your friends to catch up. Part of catching up includes talking about your work.
5. Share Tips
Another idea that can spark conversation is to offer real estate tips. Think about your clients and types of tips you can offer them. Maybe you are calling a client that bought their first home with you. You could give them tips on maintenance tips they need to do every spring. Or if they havePMI find out if their equity has gone up and they qualify to have it dropped.
Do you have investment property clients that have renters in their homes? Educate them on the current rent price that the market is bearing. By doing these things you are seen as a resource. Your clients will then look forward to answering your calls!
6. How Can I Help?
Finally but most important of all the ideas, ask your clients how you can help them. Is there a question they have that never got answered during their transaction? Or is there a question that came up shortly after they moved. Ask them if there are any questions you can answer about real estate topics that are in the news. Or ask them if they need a referral to a contractor, appraiser or someone else in your sphere. Just ask them point blank if there is anything you can do to help them. This is how you stay their trusted real estate resource.
How do you stay on track and call past clients? First you make it a priority. You realize how important it is to stay connected to these people. They are the lifeblood of your business! They are your future business and your referrals. Most importantly you have a great relationship. You don’t want to lose that!
The best way to make sure you are calling them on a regular basis is to schedule it into your calendar. Take time to call your past clients at least once a quarter. Check in, see how they are doing and follow the ideas I have listed. For example, schedule every Wednesday night to call two past clients. Make it a scheduled meeting that you cannot miss. Make sure it is a high priority item that will get done no matter what. This is how you make calling your past clients something that should happen to something that actually does happen. This is how you stay in touch with them and this is how you build a successful real estate career.
What do you do when you call your past clients? Is it weird when you first get them on the phone or does it feel completely normal? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below. Thanks for commenting!