Remaining in touch is the best way to generate referrals and repeat business. You don't need lame excuses to remain in touch with old clients. Here are 5 things I've done in recent months for people I've done business with:
- Help them grieve their taxes. Unless you sell in an area where prices are rising, the taxes on homes you've sold in recent years may be reduced. I just emailed 4 recent sales to someone who bought a house with me in 2006 and it looks like his assessed value should go down by $50,000.
- Market updates. People are curious about how much a new listing as asking or what a nearby home sold for. Better that they ask me than another licensee.
- Make them hip to your blog. Past clients may wonder what your thoughts are about the stimulus bill, where the market is going, or just how you are doing in this economy. Tell them. Clients are a built in readership, and they select themselves- no emails for them to delete and they visit when convenient.
- Service directory. Most of my clients use the lawyer, lender and home inspector I refer. I also have a filing cabinet filled with plumbers, carpenters, electricians, landscapers, chimney sweeps, heating & cooling firms, oil companies, and other sources that homeowners need. I may not be the good housekeeping seal of approval, but whoever I refer will make me look good for doing so.
- Network them too! I count among my past clients physicians, restaurateurs, free lance artists, contractors, insurance brokers, roofers, teachers and dozens of other professionals. If someone needs E & O insurance, a tutor, artwork or a new driveway and they ask me if I know someone, why wouldn't I give business to the people who gave business to me?
Many of us market ourselves by saying we want to be our client's only agent, or their REALTOR for life. These things are an easy way to make that so.