Jimmy Burgess shares this step-by-step program to help you make the most of your sphere of influence and incoming leads so that you have a never-ending supply of real estate clients.

Is your database set up to produce consistent listing and buyer opportunities? If not, this is for you. 

An optimized database is the foundation for successful real estate sales businesses. It can keep you organized, on task and consistently growing your business. But all of this is only possible if the value of this asset is maximized. The ENGAGE CRM strategy outlined in this article helps transform your database into an ATM.

This strategy utilizes the word ENGAGE as an acronym for the steps in the process. Follow these steps to get results.

E: Everybody goes in your database 

The first step is to make sure your database includes as many people as possible. This should include friends, family members, past clients, people in your sphere of influence, and anyone else who either owns real estate or dreams of buying a home (in other words, everybody you know or meet). 

This should not be a one-time event. A healthy database has people being added consistently. The most successful agents have a plan of action and multiple sources for new leads to flow into their database. These could be purchasing online leads, leads gathered by circle prospecting, people met at open houses, or the use of QR codes on signs or in conjunction with mailers or social media content.

The first step is to understand that the more people you have in your database, the more opportunities you have to add value to people who can use your services. A complete, growing database is a clear sign of future success.

N: Notes on everybody and every conversation 

You need as much information as possible via notes on every person in the database and every conversation you have with them. As your database grows, it will become increasingly difficult to remember conversations, names of children, or timeframes when the prospects have mentioned they would be considering buying or selling.

Keeping detailed notes makes it easier to remember the crucial factors affecting their buying or selling decisions. If they tell you their daughter is graduating from high school in 18 months and they may consider downsizing at that time, a call in 12 months that asks if they are still considering downsizing once Suzie (their daughter) graduates in the spring would be ideal.

The ability to remember names, dreams and previous conversations shows the prospect that you were paying attention and deepens their trust in you as their agent. The more detailed your notes, the better your future conversations will be, and the more your business will grow.

G: Generate automated property details 

The primary thing most homeowners want to know about is their home’s value. The primary thing most prospective buyers want to know about are homes that come on the market that might fit their criteria. Both needs can be fulfilled by setting up automated property emails through your CRM. 

Almost all CRMs can automate this process via preselected home criteria for the prospect. Keeping a seller informed when a home comes on the market or is sold in their neighborhood is of value to the homeowner and keeps you top of mind. Automating the process of sending an email with details about a home that might be a fit for a buyer as soon as it comes on the market is of value to buyers as well.

By making sure every prospect in your database is set up to receive automated emails with property details that are relevant to them, you will have a system in place that will reach out to prospects with relevant information daily. This is how you shift from being a real estate salesperson to running a real estate business.

A: Add personalized value

The automated email property alerts mentioned above are a great way to stay top of mind, but nothing outperforms personalized communication. This can be done in several different ways. 

Here are a few examples:

Send a video email using a service like BombBomb where you say the following:

Happy Friday. It has been a little while since I spoke with you. I hope you’re doing well. There is a link below to a home that just came on the market, and I immediately thought of you. After you look at it, feel free to let me know if I can answer any questions or if you’d like to see it. Also, have you seen any new listings that caught your attention? I look forward to hearing from you soon.”

Here is an example for a homeowner that could be sent via video email or plain text:

Happy Thursday! It’s been a while, but I just saw where the house four doors down from yours sold and the price they sold it for is going to affect the value of your home. Call me with any questions and also, let me know if you’d like me to put together a free, no-obligation updated valuation estimate for your home. Take care, and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Everything doesn’t always need to be about business either. This is an example of a message that can be sent after you see a life event posted on their social media via direct message or email:

Congrats on your new promotion! Much deserved. Continued success, and let me know if I can ever help you or your family in any way.”

People do business with people they like. The more you notice people and show them that they are of value to you, the more they will return the favor.

G: Get systematic and social

Systematic communication is not just automated property emails. The best systematic communication involves a monthly or weekly newsletter to everyone in your database. 

There are multiple ways to format your newsletter, but consistency breeds trust and it also makes putting the newsletter together easier. I like newsletters to contain three sections.

  • The first section is ideal for a market update or article about something that is affecting the market like interest rates, increasing inventory or shifting transaction numbers.
  • The second section should include highlighting a specific property currently for sale.
  • The third section should be about upcoming activities in the area or a heartwarming story about someone in your community.

Consistency is key to sending a newsletter, so get systematic, and make sure the frequency you commit to is sustainable.

The social part is where we can shift from just another real estate agent to a friend of the prospect. You should search for new leads that come into your database on social media. Send them a friend request, or follow them. Comment on their posts, direct message them congratulations on achievements, and direct message them to say happy birthday on their birthdays. 

When people feel connected to you, they want to do business with you. Getting systematic and social are both critical to optimizing the relationships with the prospects in your database.

E: Every interaction prompts the next conversation

I mentioned above keeping notes in your database of every conversation you have. But keeping notes and never following up defeats the purpose. 

Every conversation you have should also include putting a date in your CRM or your calendar for the next call to make. This ensures that no one falls through the cracks. Even if they say they are two years away from even considering selling their home, put a reminder to call them in one year to see if anything has changed and to check in on them.

Filling your future calendar with follow-up calls is the best way to build lifelong clients and a pipeline that is full of future opportunities.

If you’re looking for a way to grow your business in the coming year, start by completely optimizing your database for success. If you follow the steps in this ENGAGE strategy, I have complete confidence your business will grow.

Jimmy Burgess is the CEO for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Beach Properties of Florida in Northwest Florida. Connect with him on Instagram and LinkedIn.

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