Dealing with Crisis in Your Business
From pandemics to financial meltdowns, many events can create fear and panic with your client base, and this month we address some strategies to help you. An important first thought is to take a step back from any situation and try to face it objectively: the sky is never falling as much as it may seem on social media. However, that doesn’t mean such crises won’t affect you and your clients in a major way, so it’s important to stay on task and develop a game plan.
Given a situation where society and the normal workday have been disrupted, but not in a way that completely prevents you from doing business, it’s important to maintain and adjust priorities on the fly. Make sure to maintain the marketing practices that generate your greatest returns on investment, and consider even increasing investment in these methods.
For example, your means for outreach may be limited by a given situation, but if many are working from home or working less overall, your engagement on social media advertising could be higher than ever. Even if the current situation may have rendered door-to-door or cold calling outreach temporarily inappropriate, there remain many digital or written methods to stay top of mind with potential clients. That’s the biggest goal here in building your business through tough times — laying the groundwork. Those returns on your marketing investments may take longer than usual to bear fruit, but that doesn’t mean you should stop doing them.
As always, in building your real estate business, taking care of your network and growing through it may be your best bet. Times of crises are an especially important time to focus on your personal sphere of influence, as it’s your opportunity to go out of your way to be there for those past and potential future clients. If a “pop-by” their house with a token of appreciation is not possible or appropriate at the time, send a handwritten note or find some other way to get the message to them. Even if you hear nothing back, rest assured that reaching out in times of large-scale societal crises will make a positive impression — as long as you don’t include an explicitly “salesy” call-to-action, which could be taken as inappropriate.
Indeed, playing the long game with your sphere of influence in general is where you want to be, and maintaining that through times of crises could be a defining moment in your client relationship. The moment things take a turn for the better, you could be among the first calls they make to get moving on a new home. Or, as we’ve seen recently with the coronavirus pandemic, rapid swings in market conditions and changing personal circumstances could actually create abrupt rushes of activity during the crisis. Make sure you are the agent they turn to in a pinch.