A profitable property management company is always looking to grow. The question becomes how you can use what you have already established as a great customer base and professional contacts to gain new clients. Well, that is where referral marketing comes in. Setting up a program for real estate referrals and offering incentives to clients who refer others can assist in growing your business. Continue reading to find out more about how to set up a referral program plus the pertinent rules and regulations involved.
Types of Referrals to Grow Your Business
- Owner Referrals: One of the best assets a company has is its satisfied customers. So, when looking to grow, maximize what you already have. Clients that start as a referral have a higher rate of closing thanks to the personal connection of the endorsement.
- Vendor Referrals: Solid relationships with vendors is another good source of leads. This is a mutually beneficial partnership since more work for you will mean more work from them. So, don’t overlook your vendor contacts.
- Real Estate Referrals: Real estate agents have access to a large group of property buyers and investors. Providing incentives to drive business your way has the potential to grow your property management customer base drastically.
Steps for Setting Up a Referral Program
As you begin to consider a referral program for your company, these tips below can help. Whether you are focusing on real estate referrals or any other kind, the set up will generally be the same. Continue reading to find out the first steps.
Update Your Property Management Website
Your website offers the chance to convey a ton of information about your business and services. Additionally, this is also where you can showcase a referral program. So, create a dedicated Referral Program Page that states any essential information and procedures clients need to be aware of. Consider making a convenient online referral form for clients to submit leads more efficiently.
Things to Include on Your Referral Program Page
- How does the referral program work?
- Who is eligible to participate?
- What the compensation or incentive is?
- Explanation of the payout process
- What is the payout schedule?
- Explanation of any special conditions or provisions
Let Your Customers and Contacts Know
So, your referral program page is ready; now, it is time to get the word out. Generally speaking, a targeted email is the best way to reach clients easily. However, do not just send a mass email. Personalization speaks to a client more and stands a better chance of compelling them to action. The email should link directly back to your program page so they can review the benefits and incentives available to them.
Best Ways to Ask for Referrals or Paid Referrals
Referrals are an effective way to generate new clients, but only if done correctly. The last thing you want to do as a business is to come off as desperate. That said, there are some easy ways below to help get you started asking for referrals.
- Just Ask: Excellent customer service speaks for itself, so sometimes, direct is best. You can ask a client directly, send them an email, or even solicit referrals using your invoicing paperwork.
- Target Select Clients: While your first instinct may be to reach out to every client, being selective may prove more effective. Clients in which you have built up a strong relationship are more likely to act on a referral or incentive program.
- Make Referrals Easy: A simple online form where clients can enter in minimal key information is the most convenient way to get referrals. This not only shows a professional appearance on your part but also shows you respect your client’s time by making the process as streamline as possible.
- Follow Up: Everyone gets busy, and your clients are no exception. So, set up reminders for yourself to check back in with them every few months.
- Thank Your Sources: When someone takes the time to send a new client your way, thank them. It seems simple, but a note, phone call, or email can go a long way in showing your appreciation and further fostering the relationship.
More Ways to Illicit Referrals
- Start a Blog: A blog can be a great way to stay in touch with your clients and meet new ones as well. Stick to subjects and tips that can benefit your industry clientele. Send out links to the articles to your clients and include a call to action that directs them to your referral program page.
- Utilize Social Media: The simple request of asking clients to visit and like your Facebook Business page can be a huge asset. The average Facebook user has over 300 friends, that is a lot of potential exposure for your business that should not be underestimated.
- Giving to Get: When it comes to vendors and real estate agents, offering a referral for their services can encourage a return favor. Providing mutual benefit can create long-lasting and profitable professional relationships.
- Paying Referral Incentives: Paying for referrals is a widespread business practice used by many industries. Having a referral program and a transparent fee or commission schedule helps entice people to spend the time to refer someone to your business.
Rules and Laws Regarding Referrals
When it comes to paying for real estate referrals, in particular, there are laws in place. As a landlord or property management company, it is your responsibility to know your local laws and adhere to payment schedules accordingly. For example, a licensed real estate agent can only be paid through their broker. Direct payment to the realtor from another broker or property management company is a violation. You’ll want to have a good understanding of your state’s real estate laws when working with realtors and brokers.
Referrals are an essential part of the property management industry, as well as many others. So, cultivate healthy relationships, set up an online real estate referral program, and don’t be afraid to ask. Did you know that Bay Property Management Group has a comprehensive and competitive referral program? We offer up to $500 per unit for any new client referral that signs on with us! Check out our Referral Page or contact our office for more details!