- Episode 26 -
Growing up, my parents always taught me to put things away after using them in order to stay clutter free and neat and to constantly keep things clean and tidy. No dirty dishes in the sink; always straighten up your room; never pile litter in the backseat of your car; and the floor is not the place for dirty clothes.
Staying on topic with my “cleansing month of January”, I realized that keeping things in order doesn’t stop with those items you can physically see every day. The piles that you know you’ll “eventually” get to on your desk, the files that are stuffed to the max, or the “I need to read this” stack are just a few of those unsightly things that you focus on.
But what about the things that aren’t so apparent? Like your database???
I made the mistake early on in my real estate career of adding in people to my database that simply said “hello” to me without ever qualifying them for future use. So last year, as I stared at nearly 10,000 contacts, divided out over my email contact system, my Smart Phone, other applications I was using for staying in touch, business cards I received, and scraps of paper with jotted down phone numbers or email addresses, I was overwhelmed on where to begin to bring order to this chaotic mess.
Referencing Brian Buffini and his system of qualifying clients soon became a weekly task on my “To Do” list. His idea of taking clients and putting them in categories helped me sort thought my database and eventually classify those people that needed “Attention” as “A” clients all the way through the “Delete” or “D” clients.
It was a daunting task but someone had to do it. And it honestly felt great to hit the “Delete” key on those “D’s!”
My promise to myself, moving forward was that all new folks got qualified from the start, and through time they may change from one letter to another, but at least there is some resemblance of order to this living, breathing thing we call a database.
Some people use CRM systems to do this and those folks are on the highest pedestals to me. They got it right from the beginning, and they are making it work to their advantage every day. Others use the old fashion spreadsheets, and again, kudos to you for putting something in place that allows you to work your database for future business.
The key is to bring all the contacts to one resting place so that you have a grip on those people who play or have played a part in your profession, and you, at any given time, can reference or contact them when the need arises.
Whatever might work best differs between each of us, but regardless of the tool this is a cleansing that needs to be done and supported constantly. These classifications then play into your marketing plans for staying in touch and help organize you for a year worth of effective communication.
And if all else fails, and you have no idea where to start, remember my mom’s favorite quote:
“When in doubt, throw it out.”
Works every time!
Kay Conageski is a professional Realtor® with The Keyes Company based in Plantation, Florida. Check out her RESAAS profile ›