How to be a smart real estate networker

The concept of networking is often perceived as quite a mysterious one across all industries.  Images are conjured up of aggressive power suits shoving their business cards into the hands of unsuspecting people at cocktail parties, or a room full of people that have never met before expected to make meaningless chitchat.  To successfully network is none of these things.  It is in fact an incredibly useful tool, not just for business, where connections with other people are proactively constructed, eventually encouraging those in your network to think of you ahead of others. 

For a real estate agent, the ability to network is often the key to success.  And the process doesn’t need to be a chore; in fact, most real estate agents are networking on a daily basis without even realising it!  There are a number of small things that you as an agent can do to increase the power of your networking efforts, which in turn will ensure that you are the agent that comes to mind when somebody in your network, or somebody in their network, requires the services of a real estate agency.  

On a personal level, taking care of your appearance is a must when trying to make a good impression on those you would like to network with.  This doesn’t have to involve expensive haircuts and European suits.  A simple, well cut, clean suit, with an ironed shirt says a lot about you as an agent.   Did you know that people will most often make a judgment about you, based on your appearance, within the first twenty seconds of meeting? Presenting a well-put together image could be the difference between you being taken as a dishonest, untrustworthy agent, as opposed to the respectable member of the community that you are.  

Think about your day to day activities and the people that these bring you into contact with.   For example, if you drop your children off at school in the morning or are involved in school activities, make an effort to foster relationships with other parents and learn about their jobs, lives and interests.  This could see you not only making friends, but also being invited to functions, where in turn you will be able to meet friends of friends and push your circle out further.  

Be proactive within your community.  Identify events in your area that people you would like to meet are attending, such as council meetings or street fairs.  Make sure that you communicate with these people effectively and remember to listen to what they are saying as well. 

Try to always remember to carry business cards! There’s nothing worse than establishing a relationship with somebody and for them to have no way of contacting you.  If you don’t have any cards on you, try to email the person as soon as you can with your contact details subtly displayed in your email signature. 

Networking should be fun, never a chore! Remember that the people you are meeting are interesting and can very possibly help your business, but so too can you help theirs.  Forming genuine relationships and friendships will not only help your business, it could improve your quality of life.   And always remember that as a CENTURY 21 agent you are part of the CENTURY 21 network – an invaluable source of nationwide associates and assistance. 

Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 07/04/2010 at 1:34 PM | Categories:

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