8 Common Mistakes That Cost Real Estate Agents Repeat and Referral Business

Last Updated May 12th, 2017

88% of home buyers say they would use their real estate agent again, but only 11% actually do [NAR].

That’s a huge gap. And one that must be closed. Repeat and referral business is one of the least expensive and most valuable opportunities available to you as a real estate agent.

Transactions potentially worth millions of dollars in additional, untapped revenue are sitting in your database as you read this. Although you’ve already successfully served someone in the past, you’ve got no guarantee that he or she will actively seek you out or recommend you to a friend in the future.

Misconception: repeat and referral business simply happens organically.

Truth: Repeat and referral opportunities are typically much warmer than leads generated online. But re-converting clients and their referrals requires the same thoughtfulness as winning new business.

If you’re the type of agent who wants to stack your business through sphere of influence, do your best to avoid making these common mistakes when driving repeat and referral business.

Read time: 4 minutes, 40 seconds
Takeaway: 8 mistakes to avoid, plus a free checklist to help you win more repeat and referral business


8 Common Mistakes That Cost You Repeat and Referral Business


1) Not asking for referrals (simple, right?!)

It may seem like a no-brainer, but – again – too many agents simply think that repeat and referral business will just happen on its own.  While this is true in very select and sporadic circumstances, this is a considerably weak strategy to bet on.

When it comes down to it, you don’t know unless you ask. And if you don’t ask, the answer is always no.


2) Only thinking about referrals when you need referrals

For many agents, generating referrals becomes an afterthought to driving new business. They just happen organically, right?


You can’t wait until your pipeline is dry to begin trying to drum up repeat and referral business. Instead, plant the seed for referrals starting with your very first interaction by giving them an incredible client experience.

And assume the close. Make referrals a normalized expectation in the ways you communicate with current and past clients.


3) Providing a forgettable, cookie-cutter experience

In this hyper-connected, online-reviewed, and digital age, people are loyal to brands they connect with in a meaningful way through unforgettable experiences. How your brand communicates is a big part of that.

You, as your own brand and company, have the opportunity to craft a memorable experience through sincere, personal touches that can reach buyers and sellers on any device no matter where they are. Tools like BombBomb make this easier than ever.

Here are some examples:

  • Sending a text message showing reminders to prospective buyers
  • Sharing listings with clients via social media
  • Sending monthly market update emails with client-focused meaning
  • Triggering autoresponders from website inquiries
  • Creating and sending personalized video walkthroughs
  • Reaching out on holidays and special occasions


4) Disappearing after the sale

Obviously, it’s important that your relationships with buyers and sellers don’t end once the transaction is closed.

Now that commission is no longer on the line, your clients don’t necessarily expect you to keep in touch with them.  Incomplete and lackluster customer experiences have trained them to think this way.

This is a great opportunity for you to “WOW” them on occasions like birthdays, purchase/move anniversaries, and holidays. Easy and simple messages like these contribute to an unforgettable and extended experience with you.

Here at BombBomb, we advocate getting in front of your webcam or smartphone camera and sending at least one video a month to your database to stay top of mind for repeat and referral purposes. However, this doesn’t mean you should ask for referrals on a monthly basis.

Simply get your face, voice, and personality back in front of your sphere of influence every 30 days or so with a simple video. Share a tip, idea, or update that relates to the special place on Earth that you live and work.

80% of people recall a video they’ve watched in the past 30 days. So, by sending a video of yourself once per month, you ensure that you’re always top of mind. [Insivia]


5) Sending non-segmented messages

Although staying top of mind is vital, you want to stay top of mind in the right way.

You don’t want to be that agent who just constantly blasts their database with irrelevant nonsense. You don’t want to send an email just for sending’s sake. You want to truly connect with someone and generate a conversation.

By segmenting your database into specific categories (new buyer leads, new seller leads, past buyers, past sellers, zip code, price range, A/B/C clients, agents, lenders, etc.), you’re able to send targeted messages that are more relevant to each recipients. This drives higher engagement over a longer period of time.

The days of mass-blasting are over.


6) Not GIVING referrals

There’s a “scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours” mentality that tends to get overlooked during the grind of converting leads and serving clients.

By networking with and providing referrals to agents, lenders, and other professionals, you’re building an extremely fruitful referral network that you can legitimately build your business on.


7) Being unreferrable

Maybe you knocked your client’s socks off, but – for whatever reason – you feel uncomfortable asking him or her for referrals.

If this sounds like you, then you NEED to create an easy way for your clients to refer you to a friend, family member, or co-worker on their own. And if you do ask for referrals, you should still do this, too.

Create a referral form on your website, or put a “Refer a Friend” link in your signature that redirects to the form. If you want to go the extra mile, create an autoresponder email from that referral form, or redirect them to a custom “Thank You” page upon submission.


8) Not scaling yourself

At the end of the day, you are your very best sales asset.  As the face of your own brand in a human-to-human industry, YOU — your personality, actions, and expertise — drive your business forward.

Unfortunately, it’s impossible for you to be hands-on and in-person with everyone, everywhere, all the time. Therefore, it’s vital that you diligently craft your digital communications as a reflection and extension of yourself and the value that you provide.

Hint: video’s a GREAT way to do this. It lets you be there in person when you can’t be there in person.


Get the Checklist!

If you want to start stacking your business with repeat and referral opportunities, but don’t know the easiest way to get started … look no further!

We’ve created a checklist to help you start crafting a strategy around driving repeat and referral business today!

Click here to access the checklist


Try This Out Today

If you’re not yet using BombBomb, click here to start your 2 week free trial with no credit card information required.

You can send by email or text messages (with our mobile app), with your webcam or smartphone (or upload any video you’ve got), to one person or your entire database – and track all your results.

Give it a try.

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Taylor Wagner | About The Author

Taylor is a Product Marketing Manager at BombBomb. He's passionate about hiking & mountain biking, eating lunch way before noon, and leaving things better than you found them.

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