50 Ways to Riches in Real Estate
#4 - Relatives
Relatives, we all have them, we all love them, maybe we love some more than others. They feel the same way about you. Your family is, well, your family. They are the first to support you and the first to tell you when you're screwing up. This is good. Mostly.
Your family is also an incredible resource, think of them as the original crowdfunding system. They have friends, their friends have friends. Everybody likes to say "Hey! I know someone you can call for real estate." If they mean it. There's where this gets good, your family always means it.
When you get a job at a local grocery or at the local butcher, your family wants to support you, so they tell their friends to go to that butcher or to buy from that store. We all know that family loves to talk about family. It's their favorite topic. When they're at the store and the women in line is picking up a real estate magazine and glancing through it, can't you just see your Grandma saying something like; "My grandson is a real estate agent. He's the best! He's got the cutest smile too." or when your Mom is out with her friends and one of them says that they are thinking about selling; "Oh! My Eddie, The Realtor will take good care of you! I'll give him your number, he'll call right away!" I mean really, what better recommendation can you get than your Mom?
First, you have to brand yourself to your family. If your family nickname is "That guy with the stickers all over his car" work to change it to "Eddie The Realtor". Remind them, constantly, that you are a real estate agent and you count on them to tell everybody they know that. Be a pain about it, they're family, they have to take it. The point is that they remember when it comes time to pass that along to someone they know or just met that might be looking to buy some real estate. Things like Introducing yourself to them as "Eddie the realtor" every time you see them, put your business cards in their cars at family gatherings, put business cards in their Christmas stockings, put them in their mail holder when they start yelling at you, you're doing it right.
Next, work on them with incentives for referrals, maybe offer to take a month off putting business cards in their car for every referral they send your way. Maybe work out a family rate for "bird dog" fees paid to family members that send you a referral.
Third, when you send greeting cards to your family for birthdays, holidays, wedding anniversaries, etc, put a business card in it, or customize it to include your real estate information on the cover; "Merry Christmas from your favorite real estate agent and brother."
Fourth, when your family does contact you or send you a referral, do a good job with it. All fun and games aside, the primary reason anyone will refer you, especially more than once, is if you do a good job. This goes double for your family. You sure don't want to make them look bad because you couldn't do the job in a professional and mutually beneficial manner. So family referrals carry an extra weight, one that your name, in real estate as well as your families, depends on.
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