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  STOP ask yourself do you do your follow up calls or thank you cards?!?!?!?

 By Jolene Sopalski Leasing Specialist WRH Realty Services

If you answered no to that question then I want you to hold up your right hand and pledge the following “ I will  start following up with my prospects no prospect will go un-followed up”. Good now if you are one of the ones that said yes I do my follow up calls and thank you cards I want to give you a big hug so just picture me giving  you a hug.

 Why are follow ups with prospects so important to you and your owners? They are important to us because our prospects are the key to our success in this industry with out them leasing our apartments there would be no need for us. So why would you let them walk out of your office and never make contact again with money? All to often we use the excuse there's just no time to follow up. I really don’t like hearing there is no time to follow up on a potential lease because that is our job. I want to share with you some tips on following up on prospects that will hopefully increase your leases, make your owners happy and make it easier for you to follow up.  Always keep in mined that you are not the only property that your prospect is looking at so you want  to stay in the game by following up with them. You may not get the lease for many reasons but they will remember and either come back after the lease they sign at the other place or refer someone to you.

 Thank You Cards–  Thank You Cards should be sent out with in 24 hours of showing the property. These can be lots of fun to send out and adds a personal touch to your  relationship with your prospect. I love getting greeting cards in the mail especially on my bad days so think of it this way you just put a smile on someone's face. The key to the greeting card is to make sure you stand out and they remember you. Include a personal message about your tour what they liked about your community and a picture. Give them a special incentive to come back. You can hand make these cards, go to the dollar tree, vista print or maybe your company has some already. Post cards also work great for thank you cards.

 Phone Calls/Text– Phone Calls/Text should be done with in the first 24 hours, then with in 72 hours and then five days from the initial visit or till they say no I don't want to rent from you (sadly this dose happen). With everyone having texting capabilities it is sometimes preferred way of communicating. I know that when I get home I don't like to answer the phone I prefer texts so I like to do both a phone call within two hours of leaving my property if I’m able to and text by the first business day. When you are making these follow up calls make sure you include the hot points they loved about your community and even try to give them an incentive to comeback. If you have a hard time remembering when to phone or text you can set it up in Microsoft Outlook for a reminder call and your company software program.

 Email– Is also a great way to follow up with a prospect. There are all kinds of free e-cards that you can send to your prospect. This is also good to invite the prospect to any future resident activities that you will have on your property. What better way to follow up then invite them to a resident party?!?! Email is also the most cost effective for your owners but the email follow up may get lost in the spam filter so I advise not to rely heavily on this but to pair this with any of the follow up procedures.

 Now I like to include a few other tips that I do with my follow ups that have work for me. I like to get the prospect birthday from their drivers license and I put on my desk calendar and my outlook calendar their birthday. Depending if I have their mailing address or email I will send them a birthday card from me to them. Every one loves birthday cards and this will still keep you in the forefront even if they did not lease with you the first time. I also like to do a follow call, greeting card or email at the six month point of visiting (again calendar or outlook email) just to see how they are doing and to let them know we still have a home for them when they are ready. Also most of us are on sixty day notices so I will at the 90days before its been a year of coming to our property try to contact the prospect again. So as you can see I have done a year of follow up and the results are phenomenal.

 Making sure that you and your staff are following up on your prospect is so important that it should be mandatory and be held accountable for not doing it. Our prospects equal money and by following up we are going after the money. I hate letting money leave my wallet for silly things so why would we do that to our community or owners. FOLLOW UP with your prospects its that important.

 

Feel free to follow up with me on your thoughts and ideas for follow ups.

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