Overcoming the Summertime Blues
Mark Schnurman July 14, 2014, 5:26 p.m.
Summer is a time of barbecues, beaches and vacation. But it should not be a time for brokers to relax. Instead it is a time to plant the seeds for a great second half of the year. Here are some ideas to make the summer productive and profitable.
Keep priorities clear: An interesting aspect of summer is that as the days become beautiful our minds become less focused. It is important to not make excuses. It may be true that there are fewer decision makers around in the summer. But it is equally true that business transacts during the summer and critical decisions are made. Do not choose to participate in the summer slowdown. Create weekly call, meeting and listing goals. Your focus now will allow you to enjoy the weekends more and avoid suffering later.
Keep your call volume strong: While your rate of connections to decision makers may fall during the summer as many people take vacations your level of competition will also drop since brokers take vacations too. In addition, when the sun comes out many people lose their mental edge. Stay focused on making calls.
Conduct an email marketing campaign: The summer is a great time to run a campaign focused on letting your connections know that you are still focused and working. It also provides a simple way of staying in contact.
Build Owner relationships: Brokers speak to hundreds of owners a week. Summer is a great time to deepen these relationships. Reach out to some of your top prospects and along with discussing their properties and their buying preferences endeavor to make a personal connection. Find out where and when they vacation, golf, etc. Track this information so that the next time you speak with them you can reference it. Asking questions about a person’s vacation will help to connect you with them.
Never eat alone: Summer is a great time to connect. One of the best ways of networking is breaking bread. Create a list of the people you would most like to meet with in the industry and invite them to lunch. It is a fabulous way of deepening relationships and building trust so that you can become their broker of choice.
Invite key contacts to an outing: We all like to be outside during the summer, so why not facilitate an outing? Things like golf, tennis, boating or the beach are great methods of relationship building. This is a great way to complement your never eat alone strategy. Regardless of which one you lead with use the other as an equally acceptable alternative. For example, if you ask for a lunch meeting and don’t get it you can simply say “Sorry you cannot do lunch. I golf every weekend and have an opening the last week in July and the second week in August. Would you like to join?”
Create a list of the people you would most like to connect with in the next 60 days: The list should be broad and can include owners, purchasers, attorneys, etc. Don’t limit your list. Then prioritize it. Once you have a list in descending priority order simply start contacting it to schedule meetings.
Walk around: In the dead of winter with snow, sleet and slush no one wants to go outside. In contrast, summer is a great time to be outside. Plan on walking neighborhoods a day or two a week. By getting out of the office you can better learn what is happening in neighborhoods, meet people and stay focused. It is best to do this in mornings or evenings.
Don’t get caught in the summer doldrums. Instead use the summer as a launching pad to the biggest autumn of your career!