Real Estate Marketing “Hole in One”: A Perfect Contact Database

Real estate marketing "hole in one" Regardless of the system you use to build your contact database… from an excel spreadsheet to real estate specific lead generation and tracking software… the information you have is only beneficial when you use it.  It’s most useful when you can access it to identify and pull out specific segments from the whole for targeted marketing.

For instance, if you want to reach everyone in your contacts who are retirees… do you have a way to do that? If not, it’s time to pull your business and your database together to make them both work for you a little better.

Tags and Labels and Categories, Oh MY!

The easiest way to be able to pull out the information you want is to make it easy to record that information. To do that, you need to be comfortable with the tools you can use to differentiate and “categorize” the people in your contact list.

Tags or labels (or whatever your software calls the equivalent) is the easiest way to record little bits of information in an easy-to-retrieve way. Why not use categories for this? Categories are like large bins for information (or filing cabinets, if you prefer that analogy). An example of categories for your contacts might be: family, personal, clients, and potential clients. These are broad differentiations. Save tags and labels for the tiny bits of information you discover as you talk to people.

How it Works in the Real (estate) world

Let’s say you just met Joe Smith through an existing client. You were introduced just outside the Brookcove clubhouse. As you and your client were going out to play a round of golf, Joe was coming in from the green.

During your talk, you learn that Joe is a science teacher at Union High, a graduate of Western University, is involved in Toastmaster’s, lives in Oak View Subdivision, and took his wife Sarah to see the latest performance of the community theatre at the Star. You exchange business cards and shake hands before parting.

Later, your client tells you Joe and he both serve on the board of the local humane society and that they both own cocker spaniels.

Sure, most of the information you gathered is “small talk,” but it’s also useful information to have. Don’t trust your memory. The second Joe is out of sight, jot down the information you know… the “tags” about Mr. Smith on the back of his business card.

So, what are the “tags?”

Teacher, science teacher, high school teacher, Union High School, college graduate, Western University, Humane Society, Humane Society BOD, Cocker spaniels, Toastmasters, Oak View Subdivision, Community Theatre Attendee, Star Theatre, Animal lover, Dog lover, Humane Society volunteer, golf, Brookcove,

What else would you add to your contact listing?

You would add his wife’s name and you would add a note on how (and through whom the introduction was made) and when you met him.

You may also want to note additional information you now know about the client that introduced you. He should be tagged for the information you discovered about his service to the humane society and his affection for cocker spaniels.

How Should You Tag a Contact back at the office?

Tagging will work in anything contact management system that utilizes tags or labels or has open slots for you to add custom, searchable content as you see fit.

For instance, if you are using a simple excel spreadsheet, you can dedicate one column to “tags” and add your various bits of identifying information there or you can create a custom field in Google contacts and call it “tags.”

Easy In, Easy Out

The only way to ensure you will fully utilize the information you gather about people is to make sure it’s easy to find and “pull back out” when you need it. Tags and/or labels are searchable “tidbits” of information you can search to compile a list of your contacts containing those terms.

  • Have an open house planned for the Oak View Subdivision? Query your contacts for the tag and send out a real estate postcard inviting those people to the open house (and invite them to tell and/or bring their friends!) People like to have their friends living close.
  • Want to send out a “Just Listed” on a property facing the newest golf course? Query your contacts for the term “golf” to target just the right potential house buyers.
  • Want to generate a little interest for a rural property, perfect for people with pets? Query your contacts for “animal lover” and send out a targeted postcard campaign highlighting the “pet friendly” nature of the listing!

The more information you add, the easier it will be to target postcard campaigns, handwritten notes, and other communications with your contacts to improve your marketing success.

It will also help you to remember people you meet and be able to have “talking points” the next time you see them. This builds relationships and helps you become the real estate agent they choose when they are ready to buy or sell their home, business or undeveloped property.