Part II: I am having a hard time keeping up with my contacts. I use Outlook Calendar and try to stay in touch with reminders, but things keep falling through the cracks. I don't know how anyone produces and stays in touch the way they need to. Any insight on this issue?
--Trevor from Colorado
Last week we set the stage for answering this issue, a common one in today's overdose of technology. The keys are a centralized system for tracking and also personal discipline. This week we will address the concept of a centralized system. When I entered the industry, there was not nearly the technology we now have access to. Today technology is everywhere and so are your databases. As a matter of fact, the issue is that we have multiple databases and these are growing all the time.
Where are these databases? They are in your smart phone, your personal and business email contacts, your Facebook and Linkedin accounts, and more. And the use of paper to track contacts has not ended, as we still have stacks of business cards, business calendars and notebooks with contact information. Many still have access to old paper client files. Plus, you might have an Excel spreadsheet with data from a previous employer and perhaps an outdated database system such as an old version of Act.
Sound familiar? Thus, your task is to put all of these contacts in one place. For example, you can export email addresses from Linkedin to an Excel spreadsheet. You should have a fully functional CRM to house this data, one which is designed for the mortgage industry. The system must a library of relevant content so that you can deliver value to your database automatically on a regular basis. You should be centralizing this data, or hiring someone to do the task for you. Though, even if you hire someone to centralize the list in the CRM, you must identify the category of each contact. The process of categorization enables your value marketing delivery to be more on-target. You wouldn't always send the same piece to a consumer as you would a real estate agent. Next week we will speak about discipline and what other things we can do with this database.
Dave Hershman has been the leading author and a top speaker for the industry for decades with six books authored and hundreds of articles published. His website is . If you have a reaction to this commentary or another question you would like answered in this column? Email Dave directly at [email protected].