The Coronavirus crisis is creating plenty of panic worldwide, and industries in all sectors are worried about what the near future may have in store for us. In our last blog post and video, we discussed why now is a great time to be real estate agents; however, as more and more people become socially distanced, does this mean real estate agents have to stall their productivity?
Absolutely not. In this post, we will provide a guide that will allow you to pivot and shift your productivity practices, and still generate business during these trying times.
Although the circumstances are different when compared to our most recent housing scare in 2006 to 2008, there is still a ton of value to be had by shifting and pivoting our strategies. During the housing crisis leading into the Great Recession, there were several real estate agents and teams that were able to succeed at a high level.
And, with the proper planning and execution, real estate agents and teams can succeed during this crisis as well.
Must Continue Lead Generation
There are several factors involved that may make it tougher to generate listing leads and buyers leads. From a listing perspective, would-be home sellers may not want anyone in their house for the time being, and buyers may be fearful of entering anyone’s home.
Regardless of the fear, there is no reason you can’t continue to focus on lead generation, instead of exclusively focusing on existing clients.
To be clear, Lead Generation is not the same as Lead Conversion. As we just mentioned at the beginning of this section, most people may not want to list or buy a home; however, by generating new leads, we set ourselves up for success once the crisis is over, which could be anywhere from 2-5 months, according to the experts.
If you wait until the end of the crisis to begin the lead generation process, it can take a long time to build that momentum, and can seriously hurt your real estate business. While now can be a good time to take online courses or earn online education credits, don’t stop your lead generation activites. Lead generation is a must!
In our last video, we touched on the low supply levels of real estate (the lowest in US history), and how the record low interest rates will create a spike in buyer demand.
Although it may take a few months before people will want to take action, right now is when we must build a pipeline of buyers and listings, so when we get the green light that everything is okay, we have plenty of interested clients ready to take action.
How Do We Continue to Make Contacts?
Luckily, technology, social media, and texting/e-mail makes it easy for us to engage with our Sphere of Influence and reach out to prospective clients.
Check out our Sphere of Influence (SOI) Online Course for more details, as this information will come in hand during these times. In fact, if you use the code SOI2020 at checkout, we’ll give you 30% off the course.
At the core of the Sphere of Influence is the idea of adding value through meaningful engagement with those who trust us.
If you haven’t created a Sphere of Influence, or focused any time on making contact with them, now is the absolute best time to do so!
To get started, it is important to know how we want to engage, and it begins with the following concept:
Be of Service and Help People!
Here are the four channels we can utilize for both lead generation and adding value to our SOI.
By aligning our lead generation methods with helping those in our community, we can both help people and generate real estate leads. How do we help? It can be as simple as letting people know about school closings, latest information regarding the Coronavirus, updates from the CDC, activities families can do at home with their kids, etc.
Making a tangible contribution to the well-being of your local community can go a long way in both helping and that you care about more than just making a sale. Real estate teams all over the United States are partnering with local charities, gathering supplies for those in need, and involving their Sphere of Influence by offering them the chance to contribute as well. These touch points are what help separate a mediocre real estate agent/team from a remarkable one.
Be a Calming Voice
The news can be a terrifying medium for people, and it is our job as real estate professionals to help keep both current and future clients calm during uncertain times. Seasoned real estate agents should already have these skills, as the homebuying and home selling process can be incredibly stressful even under normal circumstances.
By demonstrating a calm demeanor, and reminding everyone that everything will be okay, you further establish yourself as a trusted source of information.
This ties into Helping People, and every time we reach out to our SOI, we want to make sure that every contact we make via social media is one that provides value. Whether it’s a national story, or something that only affects people within your local community, your goal is to convey information that helps people.
Now is not the time to be partisan based on political views or on policies that may be implemented. Therefore, everything you communicate should not be geared towards one political or ideological philosophy.
The reasoning behind this is simple; if you choose sides, you are alienating half of your potential prospects. Additionally, political discussions often become passionate and heated, which is a detriment to our goal of being informative and being a calming voice. It is much more effective to stay neutral and positive, which leads us to…
Be a Beacon of Positivity
There is much more value to be had (from both a business and personal standpoint), by being a source of positivity. Reminding folks in your SOI that we are strong, we will get through these trying times, and we will prosper is far more endearing than going in the opposite direction.
Add all of these attributes together, and you will maximize your opportunity to help those who need it in your SOI, and the fact that you were willing to spread happiness and helpfulness can provide unreal results for your real estate business.
Use This Letter With Your SOI
We’ve created this email/letter template that you can use with your Sphere of Influence to provide the information they need about buying or selling a home during the corona virus outbreak.
Adjust Your Practices
As we generate leads, it’s important to adjust your contact practices in the short-term, so you can still keep your SOI informed without forcing them into unwanted meetups or make them feel pressured to buy/sell immediately.
Here are some great solutions to help:
Set them Up on Listing E-Alerts
E-Alerts provide plenty of great information for both buyers and sellers. For sellers, listing updates provide information about homes that are currently for sale within their neighborhood, the interiors and exteriors of nearby listed homes, recent sales, and make it easy for you to consistently check in to see if they have any questions.
From a buyer’s standpoint, e-alerts allow them to stay up-to-date with the latest listings in their area, see how homes are being priced, and scour for other homes based on their needs.
Our SOI Online Course also features an entire section dedicated to social media. Interacting with your followers and Sphere of Influence should be a daily practice, and can go a long way to letting them know you’re paying attention to them.
Every day, for at least 15 minutes, scroll through your social media feed and like/comment on any of your SOI’s posts. This may not seem like much, but it really demonstrates that you care about what interests them or what they’re up to.
Use Technology to Increase Productivity
Let’s say a client (or clients) is interested in seeing a home, but they either can’t or don’t want to leave their home. How could you help them with this dilemma?
Facetime (and Google Hangouts for non-Apple users) makes it easy to connect video via smartphone, and you can conduct viewings for clients while they watch and observe from the comfort of home! This can also be utilized for those who want to see the inside of a home you have listed.
Also, if you need to interact with clients, learning how to use video conferencing software such as Zoom will make it easier for them to communicate with you without the fear of the Coronavirus affecting your conversation.
As an alternative to digital interfaces for home visits, you can also host short open houses for interested buyers, as long as the local/state government doesn’t place any lockdown rules in effect in your area. This is especially true if there are homes which are near median price point in a nice area, and the value is too good for prospective buyers to pass up.
These are just a few ways real estate professionals can pivot and both help the areas in which they live, as well as create a pipeline that will generate plenty of business once the Coronavirus scare is officially behind us
Connect With Us!
We want to do our part in helping our clients and our client’s clients through these tumultuous times. Join our Facebook group: Real Estate Agent Round Table for the latest news.