Wednesday, July 27, 2011

How Many Calls Do You Make Before You Are Annoying?



Lead Follow up
Even though this is a real estate blog, I have to tell a story that you might relate to. It’s about buying carpet. Yes, that’s me. I decided to finally change out the old carpet in my house and get something new. Where did I go? Home Depot, of course! My adventure started with picking out the most plush and cat-stain resistant carpet I could find. The brand happened to be Martha Stewart, (who would have guessed?). I took the swatches home and found the color I wanted, “Twisted Pine” or some such. I was excited, and went back to the store to arrange a “measure” of my home to get a price.
A few days after they measured, they called me with a final price quote– 25% higher than the original estimate. “Wow, that’s high! I’ll have to think about it”, I told them. Meanwhile, I had to figure out what to do with all the books I’d collected over the years, so I could get them out of the way in preparation for the carpet. It wasn’t going to be a quick process.
Almost immediately, though, the carpet company called again. In fact, they called me every day. My cell phone, my work phone and my home phone. Hadn’t I told them, “I was going to think about it”? For three weeks, I would get messages on my answering machine asking me to call regarding the carpet. After three days I was annoyed. In fact, I considered going to a different store when I decided to move forward.
My thoughts turn to real estate. How could you apply this scenario when following up with new buyers and sellers who are are the fence about meeting with you, listing, looking, etc? After the initial conversation, how often can you call without being annoying? What is the opposite of being "annoying"? It's being "polite"!
Here are my quick hints on how to stay “polite”:
1. Ask if you may follow up
2. Ask when you may follow up (“May I call you on Monday?”)
3. If they say they are going on a trip, give them a couple of days to get back
4. If they don’t respond to your email, wait a couple of days to try again – they might be busy
5. If they don’t respond again after a few days, wait a bit longer
If they never respond, move on. If the carpet company had given me room to breathe, not been annoying, and been polite, I might have already had it installed.
It's Wendy!
Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call toll-free 1-877-487-9639 or local 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

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