What REALTORS® can do during COVID-19 to keep their business active

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to cause significant challenges for real estate professionals, the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) continues to support its members. 

We continue to highlight the unique challenges REALTORS® are facing during our ongoing discussions with government departments and agencies. While information related to COVID-19 is constantly evolving, we’ve created a hub—What REALTORS® should know about COVID-19to help members access the information they need quickly.

With open houses being cancelled; buyers and sellers are fearful of entering homes, and the government enacting physical distancing measures, your business has been uprooted.

As you cope with this new reality, you might be wondering how you can stay productive?

There are several ways you can continue building your business while the world deals with this crisis. Here are a few examples:

Make an after-quarantine plan for each of your clients

While it remains uncertain when REALTORS® will be able to return to business-as-usual, COVID-19 measures will end. It’s important to plan for when that happens.

Take some time to consider each of your current clients and their needs. What are they going to need “after”? Write down your goals and create some hypothetical solutions. Then reach out to your clients one at a time and request to discuss your plans. Make sure they know this is a personalized plan just for them. Now more than ever it’s important you build a solid relationship with your clients.

Update your online presence

Normally you’re more concerned with your in-person relationships with clients, but now is the perfect opportunity to beef up your online presence.

Make sure you’re not missing out on leads by updating your REALTOR.ca profile. Include a recent headshot, your phone number, website, social accounts and other additional details (fields vary by board and association). You can also identify your trading area and office address to ensure you’re reaching as many clients as possible.

Then head over to your website. Put yourself in your prospective client’s shoes. What is your first impression? Is the website helpful and add value to clients? Does it work well on both mobile and desktop?

If you’re tech savvy, great! Get to work. Otherwise, connect with your brokerage’s IT department or whoever is managing your website to start implementing these updates.

With so many people at home right now, this is an opportunity to reach more people on social media. First make sure your profiles are complete with a current headshot, bio and links to your website. Next, consider what type of content you can post. Show off your expertise with some educational and information posts (did you know you can repost REALTOR.ca Living Room content? Retweet it, share it or try a repost app for Instagram), but don’t forget to show off your personality, too. If you’re working on a special project around the house, or spending more time with your family or pets, you can include it in your social plan.

Update your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system

A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system allows you to manage your interactions with current and potential clients. It allows you to use data to analyze your business relationships, track leads, marketing campaigns and delivers other actionable data.

Now is the time to make sure your clients’ profiles are filled out with up to date information: name, phone number, email address and their communication preferences along with other personal information important to your relationship: closing dates, birthdays, social media profiles and if they’ve sent a referral to you. You can also categorize your clients (beyond just buyers or sellers): first-time home buyers, vacation home buyers, luxury, investment and downsizers. You can use these categories to focus your marketing plans.

If you currently don’t use a CRM, now’s the time to get one. You’ll wonder how you ever kept track of your clients without one!

Listen to real estate podcasts

REALTIME podcast

You don’t need to sit at a desk all day to stay productive. You can learn some valuable information listening to podcasts while doing the dishes, washing the floors or taking on that DIY home improvement project.

We recently launched REAL TIME: a podcast for REALTORS® to engage with, inspire and empower REALTORS® through conversations with exciting guests about all things Canadian real estate and issues impacting our industry, profession and communities. REAL TIME is hosted by motivational speaker and best-selling author Erin Davis. Our francophone equivalent EN DIRECT features public figure and host Mitsou Gelinas. Download episodes on our website or your favourite podcast platform, including Spotify and Apple Podcasts.

2019 REALTOR.ca Insights Report

REALTOR.ca continues to promote REALTOR® value and is an indispensable lead generator and customer engagement tool. Read the full REALTOR.ca Insights Report to learn more about consumer behaviours and trends and to see how REALTOR.ca continues to support your business.

While information related to the efforts to mitigate the outbreak of COVID-19 is constantly evolving, we recommend REALTORS® follow the guidelines and precautions set by Canada’s public health authorities. See Health Canada’s website for comprehensive coverage.

The most important thing you can do right now is take care of yourselves.

How are you staying productive during this time? Tell us about it in the Comment section below.

Sarah Doktor brings her experience as a small-town journalist and national online editor to the Canadian Real Estate Association as a Communications Advisor. Sarah helps facilitate conversations between CREA and our members, boards, associations and the public via our online communities. She also helps coordinate the content presented to you here on the CREA Café. In her spare time, Sarah can be found at the gym, running on a trail or watching Netflix with her cat, Libby.

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