Teach Your Members How to Use Public Records to Stay in Touch with Clients

  We recently talked about how real estate agents can use public records for prospecting. While your public records solution is a powerful tool for accomplishing this, did you know that agents can also stay connected with past clients, thanks to public records? As the MLS, you are in a unique position to educate your members on how to do this. Here's how. How Agents Can Use Public Records to Stay in Touch First, let's dive into how public records can help your MLS subscribers keep in regular contact with their clients. For inspiration, we turned to CRS Data for content inspiration, and added a few ideas of our own: 1. Anniversary letter. Agents can remind their former clients of the value they brought to the home purchase process, and the value they can continue to offer, on the anniversary of the close date. Rather than a simple "I hope you're enjoying your new home!" greeting, agents can tap into their public records system to show how the value of their client's home has changed over the past year. After all, a home is often the biggest purchase of most people's lives, and knowing how their investment is faring is information that people want to know. Agents can offer a simple market valuation for their clients' properties, and even pull comparables to show how it ranks against other homes in the area. To facilitate further contact, agents can include a call-to-action that invites homeowners to call them for more information, or even to list their home. 2. Introduce them to new neighbors. Public records gives agents insight into what it happening in the neighborhoods they serve, including new home purchases. With public records, agents can see when a home sale has been completed, as well as the names of the new owners. Agents can use this information to notify their clients of when new people have moved into their neighborhood. A simple, friendly postcard along the lines of, "You've got new neighbors! Have you met Sally and John at 555 Elm St. yet?" should suffice. 3. Solicit referrals for listings near former clients. Speaking of new neighbors, CRS Data offers a sample letter that agents can send to former clients near a listing they've just signed. It says, "Would you like to choose your new neighbor? I have just listed a home for sale at {234 Street Avenue}. If you know of someone interested in re-locating to your area, please contact me." This letter does two key things: it lets former clients know of current market activity in their area while also informing those clients that their agent is the driving force behind that activity. This paints the agent in a positive light and keeps them top of mind. How MLSs Can Help Agents Leverage Public Records The items above are just a few ideas to get you started. As the MLS, you undoubtedly have a better idea of what tactics work best in your area, and of what your particular public records solution in capable of. With that in mind, how can you communicate these ideas to your members? Here are a few simple ways: Training sessions: You can incorporate these ideas into existing webinars or in-person training sessions. Or, if you think the topic would be of enough interest to your subscribers, consider holding a webinar/training event that focuses solely on how agents can stay in touch with public records. On your blog: Your blog is great place to offer in-depth insight into how to leverage any of the solutions you offer, including public records. You can write a straightforward "how-to" article, or interview agents that have had success using public records to keep in touch, or even create a quick video that talks about this topic and embed it into a blog post. Newsletter: Have a print or email newsletter? This is another good place to talk about the capabilities of the solutions you offer. If you want to start simple, use the caption "Did You Know?" and a short blurb about how agents can leverage CRS Data, or the public records solution that your organization uses, to stay in touch. Social media: Short blurbs like the one mentioned above, video, and links to blog posts or training registration firms are all perfect for social media. However you're spreading the word about the power of public records, be sure to amplify it on social media! Repurpose RE Technology content: Last but not least, don't forget that as one of our partner MLSs, you are free to repurpose and reuse any content published on RE Technology! We publish plenty of content on using public records, in addition to strategies for keeping in touch. Feel free to use these articles on any of your media channels. You can post them as-is, rewrite them to tailor the message to your members, or even just use relevant snippets. It's your choice! We're here to be your partner in technology education. These are just a few ways that MLSs can help their members understand and leverage the power of public records. Want to learn more about how CRS Data can help? Visit them at Booth #3615 at NAR Annual in November or this link www.crsdata.com!


Spring Into HELOC Growth

Spring has sprung, which means more people will be starting home repairs, home upgrades, lawn enhancements and preparing their gardens. All this curb appeal cost money, and one way home owners pay for these improvements is with a home equity line of credit (HELOC). HELOCs are designed to help homeowners use the equity in their home responsibly, and obtaining a HELOC to improve the value of a home only makes sense. Of course most banks realize this and have already increased their advertising with the goal of growing their HELOC portfolio. But instead of spending a fortune on mass media advertising, why not strategically focus your marketing and sales efforts by targeting the right type of customer? But how? Banker Suite’s Search by Mortgage Data If you are a CRS Data Banker Suite customer, then you’re in luck! The Banker Suite offers an easy way to search for the right customer, and give you the information needed to target those potential HELOC customers. Here are a few simple steps to get you started: • In the Search by Mortgage Data screen, select a loan amount range and Maturity Year. • Narrow your target market by selecting a competitor lender in the Lender Name section and then enter a loan origination when you know rates were higher than your current HELOC product. • Under Owner Type, select Owner Occupied. Once the search results are available, you can customize the columns to include: • Borrowers Name • Borrowers Address • Zip Code • Loan Amount • Plus, any other column you believe is necessary. After the columns are customized, save the changes. Now you have a targeted list that can be exported to Microsoft Excel. Target Market Tactics Next, start your advertising tactics. Here are three examples any bank can use to reach their target market: • Direct Mail Postcards: Create eye catching postcards that tell a story and contain an immediate call to action. • Search Engine Marketing (SEM): Select the area your bank is interested in, and pick the search terms that focus on home improvement loan options. If you are using Google, then contact Google directly and speak to a customer service representative regarding this type of search. Google’s customer service team will help you find the best search words, along with other tips, at no extra cost! • Online Display Advertising: What makes online display advertising great is that you can target in on locations and interests. For example, you can focus on specific sub-divisions in your area and select people that are interested in home repairs. Brand It When building the different tactics, be sure that each piece looks, sounds and feels the same. In fact, each outlet should resemble all your current brand channels. Most likely, anyone reading this understands the importance of branding, but sometimes, branding is forgotten when putting together new communication tactics. If you are not familiar with branding, check out Seth Godin’s Book, Meatball Sundae. Take Action Now is the time to capitalize on the home improvement season. Again, if you are a Banker Suite customer, you have the tools to get the ball rolling. If you are not a Banker Suite customer, then contact CRS Data today to schedule a presentation.


Announcing our 2015 Real Estate Tradeshow Schedule

Our CRS Data team has been perfecting our tradeshow travel plans for the year and we’re very pleased to have a long list in front of us. This is an exciting year since we’ll be traveling throughout the U.S. to share our new CRS Data MLS Tax Suite, complete with updated mapping capabilities and refined usability across our entire product. We know you’re itching to take a look at all our new features, so we’d like to share the tradeshows we’re currently planning to attend. These are great spots for us to meet with our customers, so please don’t hesitate to reach out if you’re planning to attend and would like some one-on-one time to take a closer look at our new MLS Tax Suite (or just want to say hi!). Our tradeshow schedule is not set in stone of course. As always, we like to keep things fluid so we have the chance to add new events as they come up. We’re looking forward to seeing you this year! 2015 Tradeshow Plan: GAR Inaugural & Legislative Conference (previous event)Clareity Workshop – Feb. 25-27 (Scottsdale, AZ) (previous event)XPlode Real Estate Conference – May Mid-Year NAR Conference & Expo – May 12-15 (Washington, DC)RE Tech South – JuneRegional AE Conference – July 19-21 (Charlotte, NC)Inman RE Connect – August 4-7 (San Francisco, CA)Florida REALTORS® Conference & Trade Expo – August Carolina REALTORS® Conference – Sept. 12-15 (Hilton Head, SC)Georgia Association of REALTORS® Annual Conference & Expo – Sept. 9-12 (Savannah, GA)Tucson Association of REALTORS® Conference & Expo – September (Tucson, AZ)Council of Multiple Listing Services Conference & Expo – October 7-9 (Kansas City, MO)Virginia Association of REALTORS® Conference & Expo – OctoberNational Association of REALTORS® Conference & Expo – November 13-16 (San Diego, CA)


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