One of the breakout sessions I attended at Keller Williams Family Reunion 2017 was “Client Events as Your Lead Generation Source.” It was a panel discussion led by Tosha Corrigan. The panelists were Seth and Alyce Dailey, Marie Hoffman, Kimber Lovett-Menkiti, and David Hoffman.
There were several books suggested around the subject of serving your clients at a high level:
- Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us by Seth Godin
- The Experience Economy by B. Joseph Pine II and James H. Gilmore
- Blue Ocean Strategy, Expanded Edition: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant by W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne
This post is my notes from this session.
Client Event Ideas
- clothing swap
- summer movie night
- seminars – tax, gardening, school options, anything educational
- shred event in your geographic farm; bring a taco truck; for everyone who puts your pre-made sign in their yard for the event, you donate an additional $25 to the charity that the event sponsors; donations to local schools are popular and well-supported by the community
- photos with Santa
- housewarming party to duplicate clients you love; host them on Saturday afternoon 2-4; have it catered; you show up for a short time; ask your buyers “Who do you know that I should know?” and have them introduce you.
- if you have a big employer in town, and you have one as a past client, ask him where he hangs out with co-workers after work; host a party/event there (could be a happy hour) and have him invite his co-workers; also invite anyone you know who lives nearby
- Pottery Barn teaches home decorating classes; you invite the people; the store gives a discount for purchases that day; pass out survey cards asking for their contact info and if they would like to know the value of their home
- invite clients to pick up a Thanksgiving pie from you; do it the Tuesday before Thanksgiving; send invites and call/text them reminders; it’s not about the pie; people love seeing you again and catching up
- quarterly buyer happy hour
- seller seminar twice a year; people are more likely to come if you host it at a nice restaurant
- BBQ in the park
- day at the zoo
Lead Generation Around Events
For each event, there are seven touches. Each team member reaches out to the past clients they served and to their own sphere of influence.
- 3 months before event, send a “save the date” by mail or email.
- 1 month before event, mail an invitation
- Sent a Facebook invite or FB private message (let them bring a friend if you want to add that element)
- Check-in call for anyone who hasn’t responded yet; ask those who can’t come for a coffee, drinks, or lunch date
- Facebook post and final phone call as a reminder confirmation
- After the event, email them the photos from the event (hire a professional photographer for this)
From My Notes
“Technology can’t disrupt your tribe.” Essentially, sites like Zillow and Realtor.com can’t compete and lure away your clients when you have a tribe of people who love and respect you because of all the value you offer.
Stack events in the fourth quarter so that you have a good first quarter. Some markets have seasonality where the winter months are slower than the rest of the year and this tactic keeps your first quarter busy.
Have big rocks in place that you do every year. Photos with Santa and giving away Thanksgiving pies were the top two. If you have something clients look forward to every year, you stay top of mind.
Have a catchy name to your events. It’s like a secret handshake and people feel like they are part of something special.
Your mindset has to be that you are adding value. Don’t talk about real estate at the client event. People don’t want to feel like the only reason you asked them to the event was so that you could hit them up for referrals. Be subtle about it; have a sign-in sheet and have them check a box if they’ve been thinking about buying or selling in the next year. You could have printed flyers on the tables with current market data for people to take if they are interested.
On your survey card, ask people, “When you refer our team, what do you say?” This will help you understand what people are saying about you and how you add value to them. It’s a good measure of what your tribe thinks about you.
People want to be missed. Love on those who don’t come. If they RSVP’d for the event and then don’t call and don’t show up, that says something about your relationship with them. Follow up with those people and tell them how sorry you were to not see them there.
Partnering with a charity for your events gets community involvement. People can see how much you like giving back and it’s a warm fuzzy for them.
Put your logo and phone number on the photos you share on Facebook so others can see it when your clients share the photos on their own wall.
Your ROI will never be better than what you get off your own database.
Don’t try to throw money at the event. Hosting something like a potluck at the park is a low-cost way to have an event. Partner with your vendors so that you keep your own cost down.
For your budget model, your salaries category might be skewed higher than your lead generation category if you are paying someone to party plan.