Many real estate planners and developers think that being good at negotiating, identifying opportunities for profit and having the ability to spot deals are the keys to being successful, but there is one tactic that isn’t really taught that acts as the primary factor in successful real estate planning and developing.
Don’t worry we’re not about to tell you the key is hiring a real estate broker, but it goes to say hiring someone who is an expert at finding great deals, negotiating beneficial agreements and giving their expert advice, will help you succeed.
So, what is the trick to successful real estate planning? Making authentic connections. Building connections with people in the community that can provide you insight, alert you to property not yet available on the market and bring parties with fragmented interests together.
Often the focus of real estate planners and developers is to study the market in depth, define the potential opportunities and master the art of negotiations to acquire the land and achieve the necessary entitlements.. These are all important factors in the process and will help you be successful. However, creating genuine connections is by far the best way to find out about the non-obvious opportunities..
Let’s explore how to be successful at making authentic connections and building a rewarding network.
Building Your Real Estate Planning & Development Network
Effective networking and building personal connections are important for a successful real estate business. Traditional methods of handing out business cards at networking events or old listing photos are not enough to create a deep personal connection for you or your business. You need to curate your own personal network of connections.
Start with the Connections You Already Have
When building a network that will help with your real estate planning and developing start with the network you have. The very first thing you can do is start calling your contacts. This doesn’t have to be to only discuss real estate matters but just to check in on people. See how they’re doing, maybe grab coffee with certain contacts that are likely to be fruitful. Let people know the field you’re in and the type of people you’re hoping to connect with.
This might not even seem like a business tactic. Just call people and ask them how they’re doing? But it really is a great business practice.. Genuinely caring about the people in your network helps to foster a connection with them, people by nature want to help people they care about. So, when they meet someone who has great real estate connections and they know you recently mentioned you’re looking for someone like that, they will think of you and connect the two of you.
By reaching out to your current network you are expanding your network in the direction you want to grow.
“Relationships are the currency of business.” — Brian Basilico
Track Your Connections to Make it Systematic
Keeping track of your network will be easy while it’s small, but as you start making more connections it can be tricky to remember who you should be reaching out to next. We highly recommend you start using a CRM (client relationship management) tool to input all your contact into and track information. A CRM will allow you to keep everyone’s contact information in one place, set reminders of when to follow up with people, set automated emails and even create pipelines for hot connections.
A CRM will allow you to treat different people in your network differently. Example, if you have built a strong network of commercial real estate brokers you might want to set reminders to follow up with them once a month because these contacts will benefit your business the most. Whereas, old college contacts, while still useful may not need your attention once a month and you can set reminders for them once a year.
Create a System Where Leads Come to You
In this technological world, an online presence is necessary for real estate development so that it is easy for people to access your details. To achieve this, an attractive website with creative content is crucial. A lot of people utilize websites to attract customers and clients, but many forget they can also be a helpful tool to attract and provide necessary information to network connections.
Don’t hesitate to create a page on your website dedicated solely to the type of connections you want to build. Tell them directly what type of network connections you want to build, how you can serve each other (which be mutually beneficial), how to connect and what type of opportunities you’re looking for.
How exactly can you use this for real estate planning and development? Well, if you’re looking to expand and buy commercial property, update this page on your website to list exactly what you’re looking for. Then link the page so connections may see it.
You can link your website in your email signature, your personal social media, your business cards, comments you make in LinkedIn groups, and more. This let’s people who see you, gather information and come to you if they’re a good fit.
Use Social Media to Build Your Network
Social media presence is beneficial for businesses including the real estate development business.. In the United States, this means there are bountiful opportunities to build connections through creating content to post and interact with other’s content. You CAN create business pages on the different platforms and create content this way but making a personal profile will get you a lot farther.
Commercial real estate planning and development is a relationship business. Always value personal connections, nurture them, and keep them close. Network connection that will help you find inside deals is your key to successful real estate planning and development.