The importance of a VIP list in any business and why your future self will thank you
In the course of any business you are going to start to develop a small circle of customers, associates, colleagues that become your biggest fans, this list develops over time as your business builds trust. However, these individuals can and will become a top lifeline to the success of your business and as business goes on over the years they will be a top resource of referrals for you as well.
I learned this lesson early on when I was selling real estate in high volume as a real estate agent I remember my coach telling me that in about 5 years as my list of past clients grows I'll get no less than 10% of my annual business from repeat customers and referrals I didn't believe it until that time came. The first 3 years where grueling though I did enjoy it a lot, prospecting consistently hours each day fighting for each and every client, each listing day after day for a long time. I did the same in my real estate investing business long hours, 2-3 years of prospecting building relationships with agents, cash buyers, investors, referral sources, etc 1 by 1 until one day you get a large enough list and from that list you get a steady flow of deals and capital almost effortlessly. And no you dont have to wait 5 years each you will get 10% from that list so if your list is just 50 people if you work those 50 people frequently you will get 5 deals a year! When your list grows to 1,000 you will get 10% 100 deals a year!
Let me give you an example, let's say over the next 12-36 months you deal with and accumulate a list of 1,000 people in your business that are made of past clients, others in the business, agents, etc. If you make it a goal to work that list once a quarter that list will feed you deals with minimal effort. We call this working your SOI “sphere of influence” and again the 10% rule applies here. I can remember vividly once I reached this promised land it was true, If I had a list of 1000 top fans each year I would get no less than 100 deals just from referrals alone this worked in both my real estate agent days and my real estate investing business and continues to work until this day. I still have deals sent to me almost daily from the relationships built while building my business and working this list.
Each of you should make it a goal right now to develop and work a VIP list. Here's how I do it.
I separate my contacts into categories. Any good CRM can do this I just use google contacts. I create a list of VIPs i.e. my top most important relationships in each category, the people that are my “top fans” that if I asked for help would help in a heartbeat. I have a list for the following
VIP cash buyers, people that have bought properties from me before and I go to first when I send out a deal as they always and consistently buy and trust me VIP investors, those that if a deal comes up don't even think twice and place the capital as they trust me and I trust them
VIP support services. Title companies etc
VIP attorney list
VIP lender List
VIP Multi Family Syndication list
VIP people in general, those that might not fit into any particular category but are raving fans and will do anything to support me
I then set on my calendar to follow up and touch base with people on each of these lists once per quarter at the bare minimum. I touch base by a phone call, schedule a lunch, send them a gift I know they may like, etc. I keep good notes on them as well and what we talked about/did last. You can also take this list and say if its 500 people break it down by each quarter say 90 days in the QT / 500 people and touch base with say just 5 people each day to make it more manageable.
This step of developing and consistently working and touching base with my VIP list has been a critical step in my business today, it also allows you to at some point not have to work so hard! Now you should always work hard don't get me wrong but at some point if you do what I am telling you now most people can get away from the daily grind of developing new business and just work on working your VIP list and SOI and have more than enough business from that alone each year you can take your foot off the daily grind of new prospecting.
Pay close attention to this now, otherwise you will be prospecting daily with high intensity forever and most people burn out in that scenario its not sustainable, its required when starting any new business to get the momentum and get it off the ground but not sustainable past 3-5 years for any one individual this is why sales have such a high burnout and turn over rate , Take the time to build and work the relationships now and your future self will thank you . It doesn't take very long in the grand scheme of things say 3-5 years is what I have seen and then you've made it. How nice would it be to get 100 deals a year from “walk-ons” to get an email referral every day from a past client or associate? Your list begins to work for you if you take care of them and stay true to your level of commitment, value, and service.
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