In real estate, a prospect list never rests. If you’re on your toes, that list is a live thing, evolving and shifting almost daily to reflect what’s going on in your work. Keeping your prospect list up to date will help you avoid missed opportunity, and the secret is organization.
Taking the time to get your list organized will allow you to prioritize your contacts, schedule calls and communication, and eliminate dead ends and time wasters. Follow these steps to get your prospects organized, lean, and productive.
Step #1: Identify Priorities
Before you even look at your list, consider your ideal client. What would their characteristics be? Who is looking for what you’re selling? Where are they? What are some of their habits and activities? Contacts that fit this profile should be among your priorities, so identify them.
Priority prospects will be decision-makers in their firm. Strive to secure direct contact information for these gatekeepers, if possible. If their location, size, and current activities line up with your goals and interests, these prospects should be on your mind.
Step #2: Divide and Conquer
A good strategy for handling your list efficiently is to break it up. One method is to create just 2 categories: warm and cold.
The warm (or primary) list is composed of your “ideal” prospects –people you already know about and may already have a relationship with. These can be past customers, referrals, and partners in previous projects.
The cold list will be made up of people who are likely to be interested in what you have to offer, but with whom you have yet to make contact. They may be potential clients whose situation is evolving and will soon create a need for professional services. A cold (or secondary) list can be generated in various ways, including closely monitoring social media. Another approach is provided by online services like ProspectNow, which compiles millions of contacts for property owners and CRE tenants.
Step #3: Subdivide
To go further, create categories within these lists to identify these contact types:
Contacts: This will include ALL of your contacts, and can be further broken down by the function or nature of your relationship with that person. You might have categories like these: Other brokers, Construction, vendors, personal, etc.
Prospects: This category is for those contacts with whom you could potentially do business: buyers, first-time buyers, multi-family, industrial, sellers, etc.
Clients: These contacts are people that you’ve worked for. Your goal should be moving people here from the Prospects list above. A good practice is to categorize them by the year in which they used your services.
Referral Partners: These are the people on whom you can rely for a glowing review. They generally “graduate” from the Client category, and can give new contacts a realistic picture of your services and performance.
Step #4: Repeat!
Remember that a healthy prospect list is not static. Setting aside some time to regularly update and overhaul your list will make it dramatically more effective and save you buckets of time in the long run.