Better Than Business Cards: The Best Way to Form Real Estate Connections
Over the years investing, I’ve easily changed my business cards over half a dozen times. Sometimes I like to put my face on the cards, sometimes I like to make the headline really bold, sometimes I like to put a little teaser message on the back, and sometimes I don’t even like to use business cards at all.
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In the past decade, I’ve been very conscious of realizing what actions lead to me be remembered by fellow investors, as well as real estate agents, buyers, sellers, park owners, brokers, repo men, friends, acquaintances, etc. Sometimes business cards are the best technology we have for this, and other times they can be a disservice to your real estate investing business.
If you are not attending local real estate investment clubs or Meetup groups, you absolutely should be. There are many niches in real estate, and it is important other investors know who you are, know what you do, and what deals to pass along your way if needed. For these reasons, it is important to go a step beyond exchanging business cards while meeting with other active local real estate investors.
Many times we use our business cards as a crutch when socializing with other real estate investors. We throw our cards into a fishbowl hoping to win a prize, we collect as many business cards at the end of the night as we can, and we aim to give away X number of our own business cards per night to feel accomplished.
Whenever interacting with other real estate investors or real estate agents, it should be your goal to find out how you can help every person you talk to. Please keep in mind that everyone on this planet is thinking about themselves most of the time.
If you can relate to every person you talk to and figure out how you can help them, you have gotten the conversation off to a good start. The conversation will quickly and naturally turn to you, with your conversation partner asking you, “By the way, what types of properties are you investing in?” This is the perfect time to explain your niche and passion in real estate.
At this point of the conversation, everyone has identified who can help who. Keep in mind that if you are looking exclusively for mobile home deals, then you will be able to pass along most other non-mobile home leads to other investors, perhaps splitting the profit or collecting a fee. Ask to exchange numbers and create a new contact in your phone for this person.
Make sure to label this person as the go-to investor in his/her niche. Example: Susan The Multi Family Investor 555-555-5555. Likewise, make sure you are listed as the investor for your niche. Example: John The Mobile Home Guy 333-333-3333. The reason for this is simple: Many times an investor will remember meeting you and will remember your specialty; however, they will not typically remember your name right away.
Passing your number out is only half the job. Twenty-four to 48 hours after you have first met this other investor or real estate agent, make sure to text message them or call them to thank them for talking with you and befriending you the night you met. Explain in your text message or phone call that if they ever have any homes that fit your niche, they should always send them over to you. You will be happy to partner up or send them over a bird-dog fee accordingly.
Next time you attend your local real estate investment club, forget about bringing your cards. Instead, aim to network with other investors and pass along your information via text as outlined above.
Business cards still have their use, of course. While in business situations interacting with sellers, lenders, buyers, mobile home park managers, etc., it is best to exchange cards as a means of introduction. With that said, it is almost always wise to follow up and contact everyone you meet 24 to 48 hours after you meet them. It is important to jog their memory and to stay in the front of their minds as a local expert in your niche specialty.
This business is so great! Over the years I have been astounded at the amount of positive feedback and lead referrals I get from other investors, brokers, dealers, and other civilians concerning mobile homes for sale.
In addition to getting help from others, it is important that you start to help other investors and the people that call from your advertising. Other real estate investors need your help, and we need theirs. We are all spending money on advertising and marketing, and if your phone rings, you should aim to make money. Just because you don’t specialize in a specific area of real estate does not mean that you cannot refer the lead to a friend and make a profit for doing little to no extra work.
How do you form relationships within the real estate industry?
Leave a comment and let me know!