Jason O'Neil | January 13, 2023
Remember when we talked about throwing your business plan in the garbage and swapping it for a communications plan?
Here it is.
We’re going to make you a real estate communications plan you can rely on throughout the year to engage with your clients, expand your network, and grow your real estate reputation over the course of the coming 12 months.
Remember, this communications plan is meant to serve your clients first, so think long and hard about what questions you’ve been asked repeatedly and what client problems present themselves the most so you can tailor this plan to your specific needs.
Now that you’re on board, let’s walk through how to create your real estate communications plan for 2023.
Grab your notebook, pen, and phone because once you write this down you’re going to take a picture, print it, and put it in your office where you can see it regularly.
This is an annual communications plan meaning it will reflect the overarching plans for the entire year. That can feel daunting to some so I prefer to break it up into the traditional four quarters and address each month per quarter starting in January.
With each month in mind, seek out two engagement opportunities where you can touch base with clients, provide value, and remind them you’re there to help. These engagements are meant to open the communication lines between you and clients, so don’t clog it with questions like, “do you know anyone looking to buy?”
These engagement opportunities are meant to be simple, straightforward, and value-driven.
Here’s what that might look like in the first quarter of 2023:
These spheres are the different levels of clients that you have and will have different forms of communication shared with them. Each sphere has a specific type of client in it, and as such, requires different types of communication throughout the year.
Here’s what those spheres look like…
Sphere 1 - The Inner Circle
This sphere consists of the top 20 people you’re closest with in your market and network. These people are part of your inner circle of real estate gangsters as I like to say.
They are the people who make up a bulk of your primary income whether they’re clients themselves or someone who connects you to them. They know, like, and trust you and are the gatekeepers to opportunities.
When you look at year-to-year numbers, these folks account for roughly 60% of your annual business and are often the catalyst for other deals that occur in your ecosystem. Consider them the playmakers in your Rolodex.
Sphere 2 - The Followers
These are the clients you worked with over the last year or folks who have contacted you in the last 90-180 days. These might be people who’ve sent you an email, dropped you an Instagram DM, or even followed you on LinkedIn, but the important part is that they’ve shown interest in some way.
Some of the people in this sphere might be considered hot leads that you want to work with over the next year, if that is the case, make sure you identify those select few who you think have the highest potential to buy or sell and keep them in close proximity to your communications.
Bear in mind that this sphere is not going to always be eager to buy, rather many of them are in the process of exploring opportunities. They want to start hunting but maybe aren’t quite ready to pull the trigger.
With these people, it’s a matter of staying in front of them, even if it’s a simple mailer that gets dropped in their mailbox every month, or an email recapping the quarterly sales in their local market.
This group is a melting pot of folks who could one day find themselves in Sphere 1 if you continue to develop a deeper relationship with them.
Sphere 3 - Past Clients
This last sphere is very simple: anyone who you’ve worked with in the past. I know we just talked about anyone you worked with over the last year, but this is the group outside that number.
These people know and trust you as you’ve worked with them in the past, but it may have been a while since you spoke to them. Maybe you changed markets or maybe you got caught up in the chaos of selling since the global pandemic, but it’s time to touch base and remind them you’re around.
You don’t need to engage as often with these folks. Remember most people live in a home for 7 years so the chances they are always looking to buy are slim, but you never know when someone’s life changes and they’re going to need your help.
What does communication with each sphere look like?
Now that you’ve got your spheres it’s important to tailor your communication efforts to each of them accordingly.
I can’t speak for your clientele better than you can, but I strongly recommend identifying 4 touchpoints a year where you can connect with Sphere 1 clients in a way that feels deeper and more personal than an email or postage.
To give some context as to what this would look like here’s an example of how I would engage all three spheres in the month of January based on what I shared above:
Here are a few important things to keep in mind as you build out this communications plan.
Lead with value.
Each month should have something valuable (industry reports, local insights, helpful tips) and something light and entertaining (i.e. creative mailers, national holiday reminders, etc). This ensures that clients aren’t overwhelmed with information nor are they drowned in marketing materials.
It’s easy to stick to this communications plan for the first couple of weeks, but many fall off the bandwagon after Q1. The results of this planning will yield themselves to the most consistent, so stick to your plan from day one to day 365.
I can’t say it enough, be useful! The clients who stick around and share your name for 20 years are the ones who know you are reliable. Be the person they can lean on throughout the year and remind them of that each time you engage with them through this communications plan.
There you have it, the simple real estate communications plan that will lead you to the promised land this year. Take an afternoon to script out each month’s engagement and stick to it! I promise if you stay consistent your clients will come clamoring for more.
If you find yourself with questions about this real estate communications plan or just want to chat game, I’m only an email away and always eager to talk.
Until next time…
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