It is an established and known fact that any commercial real estate agent seeking to thrive and grow in today’s property market must have a good database software package to help them track activities and opportunities. In saying that, the database management process cannot and should not be delegated to others within an office. It is something that sets the foundations, and provides the momentum to a successful career in the industry; it is so important that it cannot be delegated to administrative staff.
A top agent will be close to the information contained in their database. They will understand how the software works, how to drive opportunities from it, and how to grow the contact list through selective prospecting and the management of a sales pipeline.
Here are some tips to help you with establishing and growing your commercial real estate contact system and database process:
- New people – On a daily basis connect with new people locally. Within your location they will be targeted owners, business proprietors, property investors, developers, or other industry professionals. You need to add more new people to your list every day because some clients and prospects that you already know will fall out of the list; that will be due to a change in priorities or property ownership requirements. Regular contact will help you identify the changes to priorities for some of those clients.
- Email integration – Make sure that your database program integrates directly with your e-mail system. Individual conversations via e-mail will need to be checked and tracked through the database.
- Task management – As your database grows there will be plenty of things to action and revisit as part of a task management process. Telephone calls, meetings, and conversations should all be documented within the software program so that you can follow up on the opportunities identified in each.
- Repeat contact – Build your contact process with both clients and prospects. Connect with every person in your database at least once every 90 days; shorten the time frames when you know the person is becoming property interested or property active.
- Tracking property needs – Some people will have particular needs when it comes to location, property type, property size, or investment criteria. The customer relationship management program that you are using should be suitably flexible to track property needs across office, industrial, and retail investment types.
- Marketing material dispatch – When you get a direct property enquiry coming to you from the campaign you will need to qualify the enquiry and then send out marketing material effectively and directly as soon as possible. The database program you’re using should be closely integrated to the marketing process for every listing, brochures, listings, and approved client campaigns. It should be easy for you to send out a number of listing brochures directly from the database program that you are using; those brochures should be designed in a standard format and created in PDF. There should also be a trigger or follow-up mechanism within the database to allow you to reconnect with people after brochures are sent out.
- Campaign progress – Every property campaign should be monitored through the contact software program. In that way, every telephone enquiry, inspection, and conversation relating to a property listing can be tracked; that then makes it a lot easier for you to report to any client regards their listing when it comes to the marketing campaign, inspection outcome, or negotiation status.
There are other things that you can add to this process that will help you as a commercial real estate agent. Choose the database management program that you can afford and the one that can give you the greatest flexibility when it comes to building new relationships and tracking opportunities within the property market. Commit to managing the database yourself so that the information compiled and collated as part of that process is up to date and relevant to your business activities.