Now is the time to take charge and remind yourself that there are still opportunities in today’s world. Be proactive, resilient and willing to seek out opportunities even when they’re not exactly knocking on your door. Here’s how.

Your long-term success as a real estate agent is, without a doubt, clearly linked to building lifelong relationships with clients for current business, repeat business and referrals.

The key to that success? Your ability to assist motivated buyers and sellers, but also your ability to connect with people and stay top-of-mind when their families and friends need the services of an outstanding real estate agent in the future. You should do all of this while focusing on brand-building and exceptional customer service.

There are a few other takeaways you should consider here. First of all, make sure that you’re putting your clients’ needs first, and take nothing for granted. Remember that people have many choices. You must earn their confidence and their business. Always be authentic and genuine. Integrity, ethics and professionalism take priority over everything and create your brand.

In today’s COVID-19 era, however, you have to be willing to take extra steps. The current obstacles in our market are primarily based on the need to adhere to new distancing and safety needs and regulations, while taking into consideration that millions of people have lost their jobs.

Obviously, the way you connect with people depends on your personal style. However, you must remember that no one owes you anything. Instead, you must have a value proposition to offer.

Try to have an enthusiastic and positive mindset, while staying knowledgeable and informed. Practice building your resilience, and keep an open mind. Recognize that life is about overcoming obstacles and that obstacles are exciting challenges, not something you should dread.

Go back to the basics, which is following up either by phone call, personal email or handwritten notes with as many people daily as possible. If you’re looking for more ways do business when it’s not coming to you, here are a few more takeaways.

  • Work your past clients. Keep in close touch with people from your children’s school and sports as well as college and high school friends. Also stay in touch with previous employment colleagues, spouse’s employment connections, synagogue, church and other groups where you may have current or prior affiliation.
  • Consider fundraising. Stay connected with people who share your passions, like for a nonprofit organization. Donate your time, and make a commitment while building relationships in the process.
  • Ask for referrals. Always talk about what you do and your joy for assisting people in buying and selling homes. Ask for your physician, vet, CPA, lawyer or neighbor to keep you top-of-mind if they know of someone who might be looking to buy or sell.
  • Get to know people while walking your dog. Taking your dog out on a long walk in the neighborhood or being a regular at the dog park provides you many opportunities to talk with people and casually let them know what you do.
  • Advertise yourself as a go-to person for information. People will definitely keep you in mind as a resource. Provide solid referrals for a painter, handyman or house-cleaning services.
  • Become active in a network group. Network groups are a great way to share referrals among professionals. Many network group are currently using Zoom to continue even while social distancing is being practiced.
  • Go after leases. A great way to do business if you have very few clients is by assisting people who need a lease and are not quite ready to buy just yet.
  • Try teaching and public speaking. Showing your knowledge, experience and wisdom can often lead to business through your efforts as a speaker, educator or writer. Although in-person classroom settings are not the norm now, webinars and platforms such as Zoom and FaceTime are certainly allowing many valuable opportunities to communicate during this time.

Now is the time to take charge and remind yourself that there are still tremendous opportunities in today’s world. Be proactive, resilient and willing to seek out opportunities even when they’re not exactly knocking on your door.

Ron Wynn is a real estate broker with Compass in California. Connect with him via LinkedIn and Instagram

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