Maintaining Business Relationships in a Crisis
Crises can become complicated situations to navigate, especially with clients. They often can bring out fear, stress, anxiety, which makes everyone feel on edge and uncertain. With an unpredictable climate, maintaining a strong client- REALTOR® relationship is more important than ever. As people are looking to move out of densely populated urban areas and into more open spaces, maintaining these relationships is even more important for REALTORS® in Ulster and the Mid- Hudson Valley area. When building and maintaining business relationships in a crisis, make sure you take note of the advice below.
Humanize your company: Crisis brings uncertainty, and having empathy towards your clients during an uncertain time such as COVID will go a long way. Make sure to check in on them, without always trying to push a sale. Sharing humorous and interesting content online, that is not always sales related helps clients remember that even REALTORS® are humans too. Having this empathy will show your clients that you appreciate and care about them, and you want them to be happy. As soon as they have found their feet and a new routine and are ready to restart the home buying journey, they will feel more confident in working with the REALTOR® that showed empathy & a genuine connection rather than kept pestering them like a salesman during a crisis.
Education: Crisis means change and adapting to the new normal. The pandemic has uprooted how most businesses can operate. Real Estate is no different, and often the way we can practice Real Estate is changing weekly, if not daily. This can often be stressful for clients that are trying to purchase or sell a home during the pandemic. By staying on top of the latest industry trends, and reaching out via email, social media, blog or newsletter keeps your clients informed and at ease and goes a long way towards maintaining business relationships. Knowing that their REALTOR® is keeping them apprised of the latest changes allows them to concentrate on other parts of their lives, knowing that they can rely on you to keep them up to date.
Assurance: With the economic and personal impacts the pandemic has taken on individuals’ lives, we often look to companies and industries to give us hope and to reassure us that things will get better. Keeping your clients informed that even though the market might not be what it was six months ago, that the real estate industry is still ticking along, gives hope that things are on the right track. If you have had a recent sale or added a new listing, share this with clients. It reassures that business is still on the right path, even in the new normal. If you are doing house showings, having the COVID-19 release form for showings also helps put sellers at ease. Buyers are asked to keep hands in their pockets, wear PPE, and if sellers can unlock doors and turn lights on prior to a showing, it greatly limits contact.
Revolutionize: Adapt to the new normal. While in-person showings have been allowed to resume, being cautious by limiting the amount of in-person contact is still recommended. Making sure all your listings have video tours, drone footage, and have voice-overs of all the information is a great tool in allowing your clients to safely view properties and see whether it is a fit or not. This way, you avoid unnecessary in-person contact and can narrow down your list to view houses that are the right fit.
Tackle: The pandemic has changed business as usual, and likely some of these new normal practices will be incorporated into future business practices. Embrace the technology: If you had not been using video tours prior to the pandemic, this should now be on your list when listing a house. Video tours are an efficient way to let clients view a house and decide whether they are interested or not. In-person showings can be time-consuming and are much more useful when a client is serious about purchasing a property. This saves you time and money, as well as your client to narrow down your search to the properties that are most suitable.
Crises often force adapting to new situations and business practices. Take the knowledge developed during the pandemic to innovate your business, and strengthen your relationships with your clients. Read more on our blog and additional resources on our website.