Building our your SOI Spreadsheet is incredibly important, and is often ignored. This is why we emphasize and encourage this task so highly and frequently. After you get started, you'll find that the entire task takes no more than a few hours, and it's very manageable when you break it into steps. The best news is that once you've completed your initial build, we handle its management for you moving forward. It is truly on auto-pilot!
1: Schedule Blocks of Time to Work on the Spreadsheet
Larger tasks can be daunting, so it's best to break them up into smaller "bites" over a few blocks of time. It's great if you can get past an individual step every time you schedule time to work on your database.
2: Mentally Set Criteria for Who You Will Add
You want to add anyone to the spreadsheet who could personally give you business or who could refer you business. In general, this is anyone you've sold a house to (who still owns the house), anyone who lives in Austin who you've done business with, and any friends or family who could refer you business.
3: Reference Your Past Sales
The MLS has a production report that you can reference for all of your past sales. You probably have some sales that weren't on the MLS, but don't spend too much time worrying about those. Focus on the bulk of your sales, which are in the MLS. If you just started with us, we'll send you this report. Enter as much information as you have for each client. You'll almost always have their email address and you'll usually remember if they moved into the property. It's normal not to have their birthday. The sale date of the property is listed on the report.
4: Add Your Referral Sources
Look at the same MLS sales report and try to remember if anyone was referred to you. If they were referred to you, then add that referral source to your SOI spreadsheet. Think about your friends and family: Who has or could potentially refer you business? Add these contacts to your spreadsheet.
5: Build Out Mailing Addresses
You'll have the mailing addresses for most of your contacts because they moved into the homes you sold them. However, you won't have the mailing address of some contacts. Cross-reference tax records in the MLS to find these mailing addresses and add them.
6: Add Birthdays
When we began this program, we were hesitant to email our contacts directly to ask for their birthdays. We tried a number of circular ways to get birthdays to various levels of success. In the end, we learned that directly asking our clients and friends for their birthdays was the easiest way, it was an awesome touch, and it "weeded out" anyone who wouldn't be a great referral source. Send the following email (or some variation) to everyone in your spreadsheet. Don't send a bulk email - personally address everyone.
SUBJECT: Quick Question
I hope you're doing great! This year, I've made it a goal to say "thanks" to all of my clients and friends for their past business and support. I really enjoyed working with you and would love to send you a neat gift on your birthday to say thanks. Would you mind sending me your birthday so that I can do this? (Birth year isn't necessary. LOL)
Also, would you prefer that I send your "thanks" gift to your work or home? I've found that work is usually easier if you don't work from home. If that's better, please send over that address.
Thanks so much!
7: You're Done! (Sort of)
As you get email responses, add them to your spreadsheet. Our marketing team already has access to your spreadsheet and will update it with your new closings. Once or twice a year, it's a good idea to look at your spreadsheet and remove folks who are no longer great sphere contacts and add people who have sent you referrals. The grunt work of weekly maintenance (new closings, etc) is now done for you, though!