The way we work has changed as a result of the pandemic. People who work in industries that have traditionally had a lot of personal contact now must adapt. In the real estate industry, we all know that building a successful career and business is based on building a great rapport with clients, maintaining excellent communication and forging strong relationships. So how can real estate agents keep the communication channels open with clients during the pandemic?
Here are some tips to help you to work closely together while apart, so you can continue to nurture those important client relationships remotely.
Review the touchpoints of the customer journey
Write down all of the touchpoints of the customer journey and look critically at each stage to identify what really needs to be done in person. You may be able to automate some elements of the customer journey. Using a Messenger chatbot, for example, can be a quick and effective way to respond to initial inquiries.
Minimizing in-person interactions overall can help minimize the spread of COVID-19. So, replacing face-to-face contact where possible with online, telephone or video call options can help to keep you and your clients safe.
After more than a year now of dealing with the pandemic, the world has adapted to be more accepting of online communications than ever before. Using tools such as Zoom, Facetime or Skype can help to make the digital experience more personable. Agents can show prospects a property in real time, and you can respond to questions and feedback as you would if you were doing the showing in person.
Keep in mind that during the pandemic, many people are feeling disconnected from one another. So to build rapport with reduced face-to-face contact, real estate professionals should carefully plan communications to ensure connections with clients are meaningful.
Build trust through empathy
Now, more than ever, empathy and compassion are needed in business and in life. If you want to build strong relationships with clients during the pandemic, you need to demonstrate empathy.
Through empathy, you can tune into how your clients are feeling — what they like, what they don’t like, what they fear, and what’s important to them. By taking the time to understand your clients, you will build a level of trust not possible without empathy.
You can develop a more empathetic approach by being self-aware, unbiased, and non-judgmental. Ensure you’re listening actively to your clients and truly engaging with them about their needs and requirements.
Keep your clients informed
During the pandemic there’s a possibility of increased stress, heightened emotions and uncertainty. It’s critical to keep your clients informed every step of the way. Absence certainly does not make the heart grow fonder when it comes to clients.
Plan to use a mix of communication methods to keep in touch with your clients at various points on the customer journey. From emails and online newsletters to video calls and telephone conversations, consider how much attention your clients need and how they wish to engage with you.
A customer relationship management (CRM) platform can be a useful way to keep track of customer communications, if you’re dealing with large numbers of clients. It can also help you tailor your communications to clients, so they receive exactly the information they need for their particular stage of the customer journey.
Reduce the possibility of misunderstandings through clear communication
Misunderstandings can lead to lawsuits. Be clear and concise in your communication with clients to avoid confusion and misunderstandings. Ensure communications for all important matters are in writing (for example, communication of and an acceptance of an offer). If you do discuss something important over the phone or in a video call, follow up with a written recap of what you discussed soon afterwards as a written record of the conversation.
Sometimes typos and mistakes do happen in emails and letters if you’re in a rush. Even though you’re a busy real estate agent, it’s so important to proofread and check all outgoing communications to ensure they’re accurate.
Protect Yourself With CRES E&O Insurance
Unfortunately, despite your best efforts, sometimes misunderstandings will occur. And these misunderstandings could lead to a costly lawsuit. CRES E&O + ClaimPrevent® is an ideal choice for real estate professionals who want to protect their business and minimize risk.
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Your CRES specialists are experts in real estate E&O insurance and can tailor an insurance package to suit your real estate business. (If our offerings aren’t the best options for you, we’ll even do the shopping for you to find you the right policies. We’re part of one of the largest insurance brokers in the world, and have unparalleled access to more E&O and other insurance options than just about anyone.)
Contact the CRES team at 800-880-2747 for a confidential discussion today.