The Three R’s for Success in Real Estate

Building Success in Real Estate

Being a REALTOR® is a tough job. You work long hours, face huge market swings and are constantly competing for clients. So how can agents rise above and have long-term success? It’s about the 3 R’s: Reputation, Repeat Clients & Referrals.



As a REALTOR®, your reputation is the backbone of your business. It’s dependent on your sales history, how you approach potential clients, how you foster relationships with current clients and the interactions with your professional network – like mortgage brokers, lawyers, appraisers and home service pros. Think of every business dealing as a chance to grow your reputation. Make sure you’re also monitoring your reputation on sites like Zillow, Yelp, Trulia & RankMyAgent – positive reviews are great for generating word of mouth!


Repeat Business

Securing repeat clients is big business for any real estate agent. While the average REALTOR® has 21% of their business from repeat clients – those in business 16+ years average 41% of business from repeat clients. And that’s not small numbers when you realize that securing a new client can cost 7X more than retaining a past client. Whenever you spend time prospecting, make sure that you’re also allocating time to stay connected with past clients. Doing a quick check-in call, sending a market update report, having a client appreciation event or offering home maintenance tips are all simple ways to stay top of mind.



For the average REALTOR® – referrals account for 21% of their business. Driving referral leads means you can minimize prospecting time, decrease advertising costs and generate a steady stream of highly qualified leads. To drive referrals make sure you’re providing client value even after you close – like sharing your list of trusted service providers or having an affinity program to past clients by offering discounts from your favorite local businesses.

Affinity Programs – A Secret Weapon for Client Referrals

The Secret to Client Referrals

Any real estate agent or broker will agree that the best form of lead generation is referrals from past clients. These prospects are not only highly qualified leads, but they also already know and understand your expertise and what niche market you serve.


Unfortunately, there’s just one problem. While most past clients say they’re willing to make a referral, few actually follow through – which leaves real estate agents in a difficult spot. How do stay relevant with past clients so they send referrals your way?


One of the ways we’re seeing agents and offices have huge success driving referrals from past clients is by having an affinity program. Realtors can negotiate rewards, deals or specials from local businesses to offer their clients – which creates new client value and keeps agents top of mind after closing – all helping to drive referrals.


Think about it. As a real estate agent, you’re a an expert in everything real estate. You know all the best moving companies, painters, landscapers & home decorators that can help your clients with their new home. These service providers love when you send clients their way, and your clients really appreciate your trusted advice. So, these are perfect businesses for negotiating deals for your affinity program with.


But you’re also a local expert. You know the best restaurants, boutiques, tourist attractions… even daycares and children’s activities. When clients move to a new area, it’s these local businesses that make them love their neighborhood and feel at home. So these types of businesses are also great candidates for your affinity program.


At the end of the day, providing more client value and staying top of mind after you close are how you’ll drive referrals from past clients and grow your business. Does your office offer a client Affinity Program?

How to Ask for Referrals

The Best Way to Ask for ReferralsAs a real estate agent, our success is driven by our ability to create the most value for clients in their buying or selling journey. We spend countless hours ensuring that our clients are happy – and when we’ve done our job we pat ourselves on the back and wait for the referrals to flow in.


But despite the thank yous – unsolicited referrals don’t just happen. While it’s been found that the vast majority of clients are willing to make a referral, less than 30% will actually follow through.


So how do we ask for referrals without feeling pushy? Here’s our top 3 ways.


1.Use a Client Survey

Does your office send satisfaction surveys to past clients? If so, this is a great opportunity to ask for referrals from happy clients. Include a question at the end of your survey for clients to provide the name & contact info for anyone they know looking to buy or sell – it’s a simple way to ask for a referral when your client is already reflecting on the service you provide.

2. Ask During a Follow Up Call

Follow up calls to clients after they buy or sell is a great way of showing you’re truly interested in helping them, and not just collecting your commission. After checking in with how they’re doing, be specific when you ask. Outline the type of client you like working with and be genuine with why you’re asking for the referral. For example, you could say

“I’m really glad we were able to work together to find your new home. I always enjoy helping first-time buyers explore their real estate options, and I was wondering if you know anyone in a similar position looking to buy their first home?”

3. Be a Resource

Whenever you ask for a referral, you should always be providing value at the same time. Being a resource to clients after you close is a perfect way to ask for  a referral and stay top of mind. Share with clients a list of recommended home service providers to help them with their home, offer negotiated discounts from local businesses, or share updates on local events in their new community.


When it comes to referrals, always remember that a referral is the ultimate compliment from your clients. Provide clients with great service, provide value after you close, and then watch the referrals come your way!

With ClientLinkt by QuickLinkt real estate agents & offices can share their list of trusted home service providers and local businesses with clients via their own custom-branded mobile app – helping them to increase client value, stay top of mind & drive referrals. 

How to Evaluate Real Estate Technology

the best tech products

Today, as real estate agents we have an almost unlimited number of technology tools at our disposal. With products ranging from social media management to accounting software to e-signatures, it can be a complicated process to figure out what actually helps grow your business. But how do you evaluate new products and decide if the investment is worth it???


Unless you’re especially tech savvy – or want to spend days reading through product reviews – deciding on new technology can be a daunting process. Turning to your colleagues, broker or local association for advice is always a good idea, but how can you decide what’s actually the best option for you?  You only need to ask one question:

How will this create a better buying or selling experience for my Clients?

The fact is, as a real estate agent our job is about creating client value. We’re in the service industry, and therefore our decisions need to be based on what’s best for our clients and not which solutions have the most bells and whistles. At the end of the day, if a product doesn’t help our clients – it’s not worth the investment.


When evaluating tech, there’s 2 categories that products fit into: Client-Facing Products that our clients interact with and Internal-Facing Products that help us increase productivity so we can better serve our clients.


Client-Facing Products are solutions that our clients see. These tools help with buying or selling, and include virtual tour software, automated listing updates or live chat on your website. When evaluating these solutions, you should assess the technology based on how they help your clients in their real estate experience.


Internal-Facing Products increase productivity, allowing you to spend more time building relationships. These solutions include CRMs, accounting software or marketing automation tools. While your clients may not see these products, you should evaluate them based on the time you’ll save and how you can allocate this time to clients. If you can’t quantify your increase in productivity, then investing in these solutions isn’t worth it.


At the end of the day, any tech solution should help leverage our current strengths. We should be able to articulate how the product helps us build relationships, and not just provide a laundry list of features. As a real estate agent, what products do you find the most beneficial?


ClientLinkt by QuickLinkt enables real estate agents & offices to share their list of trusted service providers and local businesses with clients via their own custom-branded Smartphone App, allowing agents to add new client value while growing their brand. Learn more at

REALTORS® – How Do You Add Client Value?

what to do when you feel stuck

People do business with people they know, like and trust.


In real estate, this phrase couldn’t be more true. Clients don’t choose a real estate agent based on the letters after your name or the awards on your desk – and they definitely won’t be referring their friends or family because of them either.


The truth is that real estate is about relationships. Our ability to connect with clients on a personal level and build meaningful, value-added relationships is how we grow our business and separate ourselves from the competition. In fact when the National Association of REALTORS® performs their survey of home buyer & seller trends, the most important characteristics when choosing an agent are if the agent is honest & trustworthy, whereas the agent’s brand and designations rank low on the list. So while those designations are great for building new skills, they won’t necessarily grow your client list.


So just why are relationships so important? Buying or selling a home is not only a huge financial commitment, but it also coincides with major life events- like getting married, deciding to have children or becoming empty nesters. Therefore, as a real estate agent we can’t just focus on the sale but instead how we can advance our relationships. As Brian Buffini contends, “Delivering a premium experience… means nurturing, building and preserving your relationship with your client.”


If we think about how real estate has changed over the past 20 years, it’s no wonder that relationships are becoming more and more central to the success of any agent. With the rise of technology – especially searching for properties and neighborhood information online – an agent can no longer simply supply listings to their clients. If our only service is providing info on homes for sale or posting a property online, we become a commodity.


Instead, if we emphasize building relationships we ensure we aren’t forgettable. This means a paradigm shift from being a real estate salesperson to being a real estate consultant. Salespeople complete transactions. Consultants educate clients about the buying & selling process, connect clients with a team of professionals ( like mortgage brokers, lawyers and home service providers), and stay connected with clients after closing. While this paradigm shift means spending more time with each client, it also means your business can grow exponentially. Each client becomes your ally, brand advocate & marketing team – they come to you with real estate questions, they remain loyal when they buy or sell in the future, and they refer you to their friends, family & colleagues. How do you build value-add relationships with your clients? 


With ClientLinkt by QuickLinkt, real estate agents can increase client value by sharing their team of trusted home service providers & local businesses via their own custom-branded mobile app. This allows agents to provide more client value, stay connected post-close and strengthen their client relationships. Learn more about ClientLinkt here or contact  for more details.


Exceeding Your Sales Goals

How to Ask (2)

I recently read a pretty frightening statistic that ⅔ of all salespeople miss their quotas. It got me thinking about how reps can improve their performance – and naturally – it got me thinking about referrals.With referred clients being 4X more likely to close, salespeople can drastically improve their performance by focusing on a sell-by-referral strategy.


The reality is that we drop the ball when it comes to referrals. In fact, despite over 80% of past clients being willing to make a referral only 29% actually follow through. So what happens? We simply hope that referrals will come our way, instead of actively asking for referrals. As salespeople we often don’t ask for referrals because:

  1. We fear rejection
  2. We don’t have process in place
  3. We focus on chasing cold leads instead of following up with past clients.


So, how should we ask for referrals? A successful strategy should address these three issues.


We’ve all referred friends & family to our favorite restaurant, pediatrician or gym – so we shouldn’t think clients are uncomfortable sending referrals our way. Be confident in the service you provide, be specific when asking for referrals & make sure to follow up with quickly.


ClientLinkt Feature Spotlight – Custom Branding

ClientLinkt AppLast week, we gave our blog visitors a sneak peek at our new product – ClientLinkt – a solution for real estate agents to share their list of trusted service providers & drive referrals via a custom-branded mobile app. We’ve had a lot of great feedback from real estate pros across North America as we demo the technology, so we’ve decided to share more details on what everyone is so excited about. Today’s feature spotlight – Custom Branding!


Any agent knows the importance of building their brand – your personal brand keeps you top of mind with past clients & provides a steady stream of new clients by being recognized in your community. That’s why we decided that ClientLinkt apps should be exclusively branded for each real estate agent or office – so each app is a complete extension of the agent’s brand.


When an agent or office signs up for their ClientLinkt app, we contact them directly to discuss branding options. These include the app colors, name, logo & description in the app store. After discussing branding options, we build the app exclusively for the agent or office. Agents are definitely loving that we’ll guide them through the process, and ensure that their app looks professional and is consistent with their other marketing pieces.


One of the huge benefits of Custom Branding is that clients will search for the agent or office’s name in the app store, and can easily find their agent’s app. Better still, agents aren’t asking clients to download a third-party system that they have no control of. You can see here how an office app appears in the app store for iOS and Android.


The custom app icon & name also serves as a constant touch point between the agent and their client. Every time a client opens their phone, they’ll see the app icon and agent’s brand is reinforced. We’re finding agents will typically use their headshot as their icon and offices will select their logo.



With Custom Branding, ClientLinkt apps help agents & offices reinforce their brand with current, future & past clients. If you’d like to learn more about ClientLinkt, be sure to visit or contact


Client Retention – Where’s the Gap?

building client loyalty

There’s no worse feeling than realizing your client found a new real estate agent. You helped them buy their first home – in the best neighborhood & under budget. You even sent an awesome closing gift. Now 3 years later, they’ve listed with a different agent. You’ve been dumped.


While we’d like to hope that our clients will remain loyal, data shows that the real estate industry has a problem with client retention. Despite the fact that nearly 90% of home buyers and sellers say that they like their agent and would use them again, only 10% do. We work so hard to help our clients buy or sell, but we drop the ball post close.


So why is it so difficult to retain clients? It turns out that most agents lack a strategy for staying in touch & top of mind with past clients. In a recent study, it was found that 15% of agents participate in no form of post-close marketing. And of those who do – it mainly consists of haphazard activities such as bumping into clients in the grocery store or sending a few random check-in emails. So with no strategy to stay connected with past clients and provide value after the sale, it’s no wonder agents have difficulty with client retention.


Now, think about the efforts you go through to find new leads. You’ll update our website, hire photographers to take awesome listing photos, buy ads on Zillow or, blog, use lead capture on our website, plan open houses,  advertise on billboards… the list goes on. The fact is, there tends to be huge discrepancy between the effort we use to attract new clients and the effort to retain past clients. What if we diverted even 5% of our prospecting time to post-close marketing? Would it increase repeat business? Lead to  more referrals? Decrease client acquisition costs?


The research says yes. According to the White House Center for Consumer Affairs, it’s 6-7 times more expensive to acquire a new client than it is to keep a current one. What strategies do you use to stay connected with past clients?


How to Provide Client Value After You Close

couple in  front of one-family house in modern residential area

For any real estate agent, success depends on the ability to drive referrals and repeat business. The average agent receives 21% of their business from repeat clients, but agents in business 16+ years average 40% of their business from repeat clients and an additional 21% from referrals. However, since the average buyer stays in their home for 13 years, increasing repeat business and referrals from past clients isn’t easy. Agents need to provide real value long after they close. So just how do you deliver client value post close? Here’s our 6 tips for staying relevant and building client relationships.


Help Your Clients with Moving Day

You’ve closed the deal and popped the champagne! But while your work is done, your clients still face the stress of moving day. Help them out by connecting them with a great moving company, provide a moving day checklist, stop by on moving day to lend a hand or order takeout so they aren’t scrambling without a kitchen.


Share Your List of Trusted Service Providers

Finding trusted home professionals can be a challenge, especially for first-time buyers or people new to the area. Share your vendor network with clients to save them the hassle and help them find the professionals they need. Better still, make your list always accessible so clients can easily access it long after they move.


Alert Clients of Mortgage Rate Changes

While mortgage rates will be top of mind during the application process, after purchasing a home clients may not realize if rates have changed or if their fixed rate period is coming to an end. By alerting clients of mortgage rate changes, you can put more money in their pockets.


Send Market Updates

Keeping a pulse on the local market helps clients see the value of their home investment. Sending market updates – including price changes, recent neighborhood sales and market demand – keeps real estate top of mind, shows your expertise and can encourage clients to buy or sell again. It’s a definite must for providing value after you close.


Help Your Clients Out at Tax Time

Owning a home has significant tax benefits. At tax time, send clients info on tax deductions and credits for homeowners. You’ll help clients save money and reinforce the value of an investment in real estate.


Host Neighborhood Events

Whether you decide to host a client appreciation event, holiday party or fundraiser for a charitable organization – inviting clients to neighborhood events is a great way to grow your relationship. The face time is invaluable for staying top of mind. Plus, throwing a fundraiser shows that you’re involved in the community.


At the end of the day, providing real value goes beyond simple fridge magnets and holiday cards – it’s about increasing homeowner value and building lasting relationships with clients. How do you engage in post-close marketing?


How to Jump Start Your Real Estate Career

Business team

Every year, thousands of eager new real estate agents enter the industry. But despite the lure of creating your own hours, selling million dollar listings and being your own boss – becoming a real estate agent is hard work. With the typical salary for first-year agents under $15,000, just surviving can be a struggle. So whether you’re coaching new agents, re-entering the industry or starting your career – here’s our advice for getting started as a real estate agent.


Find a Mentor or Coach

It’s important to start your career on the right foot. Find out what formal training/coaching options are available through your brokerage and associations, and take advantage of everything that’s available in your price range. More importantly, find a mentor that’s experienced in your local market. There’s nothing more valuable than seeing an experienced agent in action, plus they can help you learn the peculiarities of your local market. Make sure to look for a mentor that matches your learning style, and whose career you’d like to emulate. Offer to help them with open houses or marketing efforts – this can be a great way to learn from the best and get your your feet wet.


Learn Your Market

Study your local market to the point of exhaustion. Understand the key selling points and downsides of different areas – including neighborhood profiles, demographics, school info, taxes, public services and even average commute times. Learn market data on prices, average days on the market, number of homes for sale and pricing trends. Your local association will have historic market reports  that will be invaluable.


Expand Your Professional Network

As a real estate agent, you’ll work with lawyers, appraisers, mortgage brokers, home stagers – the list goes on! See if your office has recommended providers, and start making contacts. Relationships with these professionals will help your clients through the buying or selling process – and get you to the closing table faster! Better yet, mortgage brokers, landscapers, painters and other home service professionals can be a great lead source. Curate a list of home service professionals that you can share with clients – it’s a great way to add value and differentiate yourself.


Get Your Marketing in Place

Building your brand and actively marketing yourself will always be part of your career as a real estate agent. When you start out, decide what your unique value is – how will you differentiate yourself from other agents? Get your headshots, design your slogan, handcraft a killer bio and get your logo in place. Then set up your website, lead capture system, blog, client newsletters and social media pages – and learn how to use them!


Start Building Your Client Base … Yesterday!

Building a client base can be the most difficult task for any new agent, but it’s definitely one of the key determinants of your success. First, let your friends, family, past colleagues, community connections, etc know that you’ve made a career change. Explain why you’re passionate about real estate, and ask if you can send them updates on market trends in their area. Get involved in your community, attend networking events, support local businesses, distribute your print advertising and get your name out there. Allocate time every day to building your client base and reaching out to your contacts – real estate agents in business 16+ years get over 60% of their business from repeat clients and referrals!


What advice do you wish you had when you started out? As a new agent, what’s the best advice you’ve received?