How to Party your Way to the Top
For the past 10 years, I have had the pleasure of helping hundreds of real estate professionals build great businesses by using Buffini & Company’s referral based lead generation system. One of the reasons I believe our clients are so successful is that they truly have fun implementing many of the fundamentals we teach. One of the parts of the system I have seen my clients have the greatest success with while having fun is Client Parties. I encourage the clients I work with to plan and execute at least one party a year for all the people who support their business.
Our Coaching Members who follow through with this, not only generate an impressive number of referrals, they have a blast getting to celebrate with their favorite clients. However, I tend to get plenty of resistance from first-timers. Typically, they are either nervous about hosting this kind of gathering, they don’t have a lot of experience planning and executing events, or they feel they don’t have the resources (i.e. time and/or money) to put into a party.
It can be overwhelming at first, but I highly encourage each of you to use the tips I’ve outlined below to throw your first Client Party. It gives you an excellent opportunity to make multiple contacts with your database, even if everyone cannot attend. Plus, most people appreciate being appreciated and love a good party. It has been my experience as a Coach, that even my clients who were most timid or skeptical not only generated great business from their parties, they had a lot of fun along the way!
How to Plan, Execute, and Leverage your Client Party
Select a date and location
Put your Client Parties into your calendar early. I encourage the clients I coach to plan their party (or parties) as a part of their yearly Marketing Calendar. Find a location and if necessary, reserve the space well in advance.
Determine a theme and budget
Client Parties should become part of your annual business budget. In fact, they are a great way to leverage your time, energy and money since most of your A+ clients will be in one room. Remember, you don’t need to over spend to throw a great party.
The theme should align with your interests or be something you enjoy. This is a great way to deepen your relationships with your clients because they’ll get to see another side of you. Here is a short list of ideas I have seen be very successful: Summer BBQ, Bowling Party, Ice Cream Social, Wine Tasting, and a Baseball Game.
[box size=”medium”]Hot Tip! Planning your event around a holiday is also a great way to determine your theme! Choose a holiday you enjoy, like Halloween, Marti Gras, St. Patty’s Day or Labor Day and invite your clients to celebrate with you. [/box]
Identify your guest list and send out invitations
You guest list should be prioritized so that your best referral sources and clients are always invited first. I recommend sending your invite 30 days prior to the event by snail mail, evite, or a combination of both. Your RSVP deadline should be 10-14 days prior to the event.
Make several points of contact with your guest list
About 3 days after sending out the invitation start your follow up calls:
“Did you get the invitation? It would be great to have you there. This event is created for you and the other awesome people that support me and my business.”
[box size=”medium”]Hot Tip! You do not have to wait until the RSVP deadline to call. It’s important for them to see the value in getting it on their calendar well in advance.[/box]
Send personal notes to the people that RSVP:
“So happy you can be there!” “Sorry that you can’t make it”.
Call or send a video email as a confirmation and reminder several days before the event.
Arrange for a photographer
You’ll want to have pictures taken of everyone having a great time. Post these pics on your professional networking sites, like Facebook, and on your website.
[box size=”medium”]Hot Tip! Maximize the experience by using the pictures to send in a thank you note or to hand-deliver as a post-party Pop-by.[/box]
Don’t get too caught up in the details once the big day arrives. Trade in your party-planner hat and go have fun with your best people!
[box size=”medium”]Bonus Tip! If you want to add on a couple special touches, create a speech and present awards for your top referral givers.
The speech can be simple: “Thank you so much for taking the time to be with me today. This event is for you – to simply say thank you for your support by allowing me to serve you and your referrals. I can’t do this alone and I appreciate your support.”[/box]
I have seen so many of the clients I have worked with over the years have tremendous success with Client Parties. They’re a great way to show appreciation for all the people who support your business. Please share any of your Client Party ideas or experiences with us here. Now get out there and start partying your way to the top!