I’d be willing to bet a pretty dollar that you know someone who knows someone who is in the process of trying to sell their home and buy a new one. But I’d also be willing to bet that you’re not so likely to ever cross paths with this person, because you’re not asking for referrals from the people you know often enough. Asking for referrals can sometimes be uncomfortable for newer agents, but it can and will become less scary over time…trust me! Keep reading for my recommendations of things to not do when asking for real estate referrals (and keep an eye on my blog for a future post on things to do when asking for referrals!).
This is my first tip for a good reason…promise me that whatever you do, you will not post relentlessly on your social media accounts asking for referrals. This method will burn relationships that you’ve worked hard to build, and you may lose followers or clients in the process. This will lead to a negative ROI!
When it comes to determining what’s spam and what isn’t, trust your gut on this one. You know a spammy post when you see it. If you’re having a hard time being objective with your own content, send it to a friend or a family member to review and have them give you their honest opinion as to whether it seems spammy or authentic. In general, make sure your posts are targeted and personalized. Use clients’ names and add personal touches about experiences you had together. As a rule of thumb, send your referral requests to individuals, not large groups at once.
Don’t Make it Painful
I’ll let you in on a little secret all mamas know–the best way to get someone to do something is to make it super easy for them. I use this rule with my kids, and the same applies to asking for referrals. Keep your communication short and direct so they do not need to read an entire novel to understand what you want them to do. Share the EXACT steps they need to follow in order to provide you with a referral. Give them all of the information upfront to make sure they don’t need to reply asking you for additional clarity or instructions. If you don’t give them clear directions on how to refer you, you will not get a referral.
Don’t Be a Stranger
It’s okay to look deep into your contact list for potential referrers, but don’t make your first contact with someone an ask for a referral if too much time has passed since your last contact. Instead, re-engage with that person to kickstart a general conversation before you ask. This is a great example as to why you should always be checking in with old clients from time to time. Continue to nurture your relationships even after the “deal is done”.
Don’t Underestimate Your Value
This can be a tricky one for newer agents. Building confidence and skills takes time, but you gotta fake it ‘til ya make it. Don’t sell yourself short — remember that you are SO GOOD that your clients’ networks need to know about you…they’re doing others a service by recommending you! Be confident in your ask and avoid indirect language like “if it’s not too much of a bother…” or “I don’t want to trouble you but…”.
Don’t Apply Too Much Pressure
When asking for a referral, always give an out as a way to avoid putting too much pressure on the ask. Let your clients know (without directly saying so) that you won’t make the relationship uncomfortable if they don’t end up referring you. Communicate that a response to your request is not necessary, and that you look forward to keeping in touch regardless.
Asking for referrals is an art; it takes practice, strategy, and guidance (that’s what I’m here for!). Remember that while it may be awkward at first, it gets easier with time and is absolutely necessary to moving your career forward. I will be publishing more posts on referrals in the future, so check back for more tips on this topic, or join my Facebook group to stay in the loop. If you want more real estate tips, check out my main blog page.