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Add Oomph to Your Real Estate Outreach

Looking for creative ways to build relationships with your sphere? We’ve got them!

Last Halloween, Kara Wisely, broker-associate with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Realty in Mount Dora, dressed up as a character from “Grease” and handed out candy-filled boxes with her contact information. A few days later, several people reached out to say they’d found these gifts in their kids’ trick-or-treat bags. “You never know what will make an impression,” says Wisely, who instills fun and generosity into her relationship-building.

Photo of Kara Wisely
Kara Wisely

Read on for some of her strategies for adding oomph to your outreach.

Be outgoing

Traveling and meeting lots of people is fun and impactful, according to Wisely. Attend local, state and national industry events, with the goal of connecting with professionals everywhere—not just in your immediate area. “They might send you a referral,” she says, mentioning a
Nebraska-based agent she met at a National Association of Realtors® event. Since that conference, he’s sent her six referrals.

Make your business cards stand out

When an Arizona-based agent at an industry event attached cactus magnets to her business cards, Wisely took note. Now she does the same, but with candy or snacks. “It helps people remember you,” she shares, revealing that during a winter holiday season community event, she gifted bags of hot cocoa mix.

Bake holiday cookies

Each December, Wisely sends her network homemade cookies, sometimes shipping them across the country. Last year, she prepared nearly 275 cookie boxes, visiting local contacts to say “hello” and check in. “You want to keep in touch with people,” she says, relating that one of her first clients (and cookie giftees) has already given her eight referrals.

Hand out thank-you presents

Whenever she closes a deal, Wisely sends her client a gift, usually a basket of items representing their new neighborhood. For instance, she presented one of her buyers with locally made olive oil, soap, candles and chocolate. For a client moving to a golf community, she gathered golf balls and bottles of moonshine crafted by a nearby blueberry farm. In each basket, she includes a “thank-you” card with her contact information, offering to help in the future. When Wisely gave one of these gifts to a builder, he told her, “I’ve sold 2,400 homes, and you’re the first agent who’s ever given me a gift.”

Give talks

Recently, when one of the 55-plus communities Wisely works with asked her to give a talk, she quickly agreed.

“They asked me to come and do a presentation for people in their community about selling or buying their home in one of those communities. We talked about how to perfect your home before selling it,” she said.

As part of her presentation, she gave away two bottles of wine. “These communities are always looking for in-person events, which put your skills to the test and let you present yourself in a fun way,” she says.

Embrace a positive mindset. Being optimistic will make your job more fun, Wisely says. A smile helps her connect with people, she says. Even when deals fall through, Wisely doesn’t give in to discouragement, but instead adds the contact to her holiday cookie list. Although they might not be buying that home now, they might work with her in the future, she says. If you take the disappointment of a lost deal in stride, your client will likely appreciate your attitude and be even more eager to keep in touch.

Dina Cheney is a Connecticut-based freelance writer.