Building a buyers list is essentially a targeted networking campaign. It is a culmination of work-relevant relationships that happen to facilitate a particular role in your real estate endeavors. Therefore, as an investor, it is absolutely critical to understand the importance of networking and how it translates into the creation of a buyers list. Who you associate and surround yourself with in this industry is perhaps more important than the knowledge you retain from years of experience. Taking the time to entertain people with similar interests will facilitate the development of a quality buyers list and ultimately lead to timely and profitable transactions.
It is important to establish relationships whenever possible, particularly with those in the industry. Accordingly, the real estate business neglects to reward the timid or shy. Networking opportunities are truly limitless. It is up to you to take advantage of them. The contacts you create are only limited by your imagination and willingness to act.
Those who take the time to network and build relationships may be rewarded as follows:
- You will be awarded more control over each deal
- You will generate new opportunities where they may not have previously existed
- You will generate new revenue streams
How To Network and Make Connections
As mentioned before, networking is a proactive form of marketing. As such, it requires an unwavering commitment to both establishing and keeping relationships. This, as you will assuredly find out, is the quintessential fundamental required for building a buyers list.
Learning how to make connections is the first step in building a buyers list.
Networking With Industry Professionals
The nature of the real estate industry promotes the establishment of relationships. By participating in real estate investment opportunities, networking and marketing, you will be introduced to like-minded individuals intent on joining your buyers list. These relationships have the potential to stimulate your business beyond its current potential. Always keep in mind that whatever it is you need, someone else has the ability to provide it. Why not take advantage of their assistance? You must, however, put in effort to find that individual through specifically designed networking systems.
Networking with industry professionals requires that you actively seek out and contact contractors, Realtors and investors. They are all prospects that should be added to your buyers list because of their familiarity with the industry. Their current usefulness is irrelevant, as they may be of assistance in the near future when conditions have shifted. Everyone has value; you just need to be able to show them that you are capable of reciprocating that value when you work together.
While your ultimate goal should focus on making a profit for yourself, it is important to place the needs of a potential buyer above your own. One of the biggest mistakes an investor can make is to relegate the needs of a buyer below theirs. Therefore, when networking to industry professionals, make the process all about them and their particular needs. More often than not, each buyer will take note of your work ethic and reciprocate their appreciation.
Attending Networking Events
Professionals familiar with the industry recognize the importance of generating exposure. Subsequently, it is relatively simple to expand your sphere of influence by attending local events. The majority of your attention should be focused on meeting individuals with relevant experience in the real estate industry. As previously mentioned, this can include: contractors, Realtors, investors and others with similar experience.
Investing in real estate is all about establishing relationships, and those investors who take advantage of this aspect will place themselves ahead of the curve. Capitalize on the following networking events to further your exposure and career:
- Auctions: Auctions are perhaps the most obvious place to find potential buyers to add to your list. It makes sense; they are likely attending the auction with the intentions of procuring a property. As such, auctions will likely provide you with the most serious buyers.
- Local REIA Meetings: Real Estate Investor Association (REIA) meetings provide you with the opportunity to meet industry professionals. Nearly every city hosts their own REIA meeting and they are a great source of information regarding particular strategies. Attending these meetings on a regular basis will announce your activity in the area and catch the attention of similar investors. Take the time to meet the active wholesalers, buyers and rehabbers in your area.It will also prove beneficial if you are able to become a vendor or sponsor several meetings. This grants you access to the list of members who attend these events.
- Landlord Associations: Landlords are involved in real estate as much as investors. Take the time to locate your local landlord associations and you may be rewarded with potential buyers.
- City Council and Chamber of Commerce Events: Attending an event planned by the city is likely to draw the attention of real players. Building a buyers list with the people you meet at these events can provide you with unlimited possibilities.
- Networking Lead Groups: Depending on the area, you may be able to attend a networking lead group. These events usually have in their attendance: buyers, potential private money lenders, and other successful businessmen looking to support others.
- Home and Trade Shows: Home shows and trade shows are places where you know you will find a ton of juicy real estate business. Go to these events with your buyers list in mind. If you do get a booth at a trade show, speak with those around you who also have booths and offer to switch lists. If you have 200 people and they have 200 people you can both double your list.
Hosting Educational Events
Hosting an educational event provides investors with the perfect opportunity for building a buyers list. Doing so will generate a wealth of goodwill and earn the trust of potential buyers. Accordingly, hosting such an event is one of the best ways to network, educate and even close deals. Done correctly, an education event provides prospective buyers with the opportunity to learn more about you. Take this time to interact with them and know them on a personal level while showing them your dedication. Give them a glimpse of what they may be able to work with in the future.
As you are doing them a service by hosting the event, they may feel inclined to reciprocate their appreciation. You may be able to develop a pipeline of repeat customers with the relationships you develop at these educational events.
Educational events may come in the form of a class, seminar, webinar expo and any formal event that conveys a message. These can be a great way to attract the attention of hundreds, if not thousands, of potential buyers for your list. Be sure to have a system that will allow you to collect their information.
It is worth looking into any events your local REIA may be hosting. Offer to assist with an “on site rehab meeting” at one of your current rehab projects. This may be the most direct route to networking with interested buyers and educating them on your credentials. The more informed your buyers are, the quicker they can act upon and react to your deals. If your buyer can understand and share in the information that you know, they will take action and make decisions on the opportunities that you present to them.
Sharon Vornholt, a writer at BiggerPockets, emphasizes the importance of a cash buyer. “I am always looking to add more cash buyers to my list. However, not only do they need the ability to close quickly, they need to be able to make a decision quickly. This is one thing that seems to separate experienced investors from the ‘wanna-be’ investors and the tire kickers. An experienced investor will look at one of my houses and be able to make an immediate decision regarding whether or not it meets their needs and their investing goals,” she says.