One of the things that I learned early in my career is that persistence is a needed trait in this industry. Really in any sales arena. As is true in many things "one shot" tactics or efforts normally do not produce very good results. It is the person who stays the course, is consistent and persitent, that will be the most successful.
Details are critical. When I originally built a group of sources for business the one phrase I kept hearing was "I do business with you because you return your phone calls in a timely manner and stay in touch". Sounds simple doesn't it? Over 25 years later I still hear the same thing. Follow up is extremely important. Just a note, an e-mail, a quick phone call after a closing can be the most important contact you make. Follow up with customers after the fact for referrals. Follow up with sources of business with newsletters or communication and mining those new potential sources. But it can't be done just once. It needs to be consistent and persistent.
I used to tell some realtors I was going to keep after them until they sent me a deal just to get rid of me! While it was said in a fun way it was actually the truth. The challenge of working hard to get that first one, and then to keep them coming, is a challenge I enjoy. I also used to tell sources and potential sources that I had to have some business because my two sons had to eat! I used this one so often that one day a good source, a realtor, told me "Merlin you need to get a new line, you have been using that one too long!"
Follow up just for follow up sake is just as important. If you develop a relationship with your referral network those people are very important. New sources are very important. But most important of all is that they are people. Calling or e-mailing just to find out how they are is important. Caring is important. We are all human beings and it is nice to know we are thought of occassionaly. Caring about people beyond just the business aspect helps develop RELATIONSHIPS, which is what this business is all about.
During these times when things are slow it is easy to get discouraged, but now is the perfect time to work that much harder at being consistant and persistent, building those relationships that matter, and helping each other get beyond the issues we currently deal with. We will all be better on the other side of this if we do!