Have you ever wondered how many contacts it takes with the same prospect before they might do business with you? Many say seven. Actually, research has shown that the number ranges from five to twelve, but seven is a good rule of thumb.
The Rule of Seven is an old marketing adage. It says that it will take seven "touches" before the marketing message you are delivering will have any significant impact. Now the number seven isn't cast in stone. The truth of the Rule of Seven is you can't just engage in a marketing activity once or twice and then be done. Marketing must be an on-going process in order for it to be successful.
So why do prospects need to receive your message so many times before taking action? When it comes to target farming in a new area, at first people don't know you from a hole in the ground. They might have seen other marketing pieces from other real estate agents claiming to be the best one to get the job done. Maybe they have received "just listed/just sold" cards from other agents. There is a lot of clutter out there when it comes to real estate marketing. Not only are there are too many messages, there are too many messages that aren't true.
It takes time for people to get to know you - remember your name, your offer, your message. Once they know you, they need time to get to like you - and your business. Over time, they'll eventually start to trust you. Once they trust you - trust that you're honest and provide true value - then, and only then, will they be ready to do business with you.
The Rule of Seven is why "information marketing" is so effective. By providing free information to your prospects on a regular basis, you are building a solid relationship. Information offered in a newsletter doesn't set off alarms because it's not a sales pitch; it's a genuine attempt to educate and help.
To enhance your marketing efforts even stronger try supplementing your newsletters every now and then with follow-up phone calls. Does your prospect have any questions about what you are sending them? Would they like any additional information above and beyond what you are able to send them? Be sure to wait until some familiarity with who you are has been established before making these calls. They therefore become "warm" calls, not cold calls
Finally, simplify or automate the process as best you can. Too many real estate agents only market sporadically because they are "too busy" to market themselves. Then they wonder why they don't have enough clients. Set aside regular times to engage in marketing activities, even when you're busy. Or better yet, find someone else that can do it for you. If you continue marketing even when you're busy, you'll have fewer slow times.
Based upon a survey completed by the National Sales Executive Association, below is the percentage of sales made relative to the number of contacts made with the prospect.
- 2% of sales are made on the 1st contact
- 3% of sales are made on the 2nd contact
- 5% of sales are made on the 3rd contact
- 10% of sales are made on the 4th contact
- 80% of sales are made on the 5th-12th contact
Patrick A. Hale, ABR, CCS, CDPE, CID, SRS
Chief Executive Officer | Broker of Record
The Local Realty, Inc.
A LocalRealtors.com Preferred Partner
CA BRE Lic. #01777558