You’re Terrible at Follow Up

So I’m gonna say something right now, and I don’t want you to take it the wrong way, but you’re terrible at following up. I just gotta let that sink in. And the only reason I say that is not because I want to say it, but because of what I’m seeing.

In a recent survey we conducted of several thousand mortgage and real estate professionals, all said that they wish they had done a better job following up during their career. And what’s interesting to me is right behind that was another survey. We have the 30th anniversary of Sales Mastery coming up and we’re asked what people would like to hear from us this year. And one of the top rated responses was how to build great partnerships. 

How to Engage Partnerships that Last Forever

So if you’re a mortgage professional or a real estate professional, and you’re reading this right now, I’m gonna give you two different kinds of ideas, both supported by a step by step process on how you can engage partnerships that last forever.

I believe very, very clearly that we don’t understand this concept to the degree that we should and probably need to: Transactions will make you a living, but relationships will make you a fortune. 

When I was a loan originator, my real estate agents, and I were able to help just under 6,000 people with our team’s real estate in a decade. And during that time I had 13 real estate partners. I was on a podcast with somebody recently and they said, how many real estate agents did you have to make that kind of volume work? I said back to the guy, I said, this is gonna surprise you, but I had 13. And it was like, wow, really? You even know the number. And I said, yeah, I know the number because I turned away a lot of agents. If I had taken on any more, I would not have been able to serve the partnerships.

The Conversations You Should Be Having

So I learned a concept as a loan originator that I teach in our high trust sales academy. It’s on page 269 in this beautiful 400 page playbook on how to build the real estate practice of your dreams. And the top of the page says partnership planning is game changing. So I ask people, “Have you ever sat down and had a conversation with a real estate agent?” Or if you’re a realtor, have you ever sat down and had a conversation with another referral type partner, like a financial planner or somebody like that. Or perhaps you’ve had conversations with sellers and buyers. And the interesting thing is we learn stuff through those conversations, right? We learn what people are looking for. At least we should, if you’ve downloaded the talk less, sell more white paper, you know that we ask better questions.

The One Critical Action To Get More Referrals

They give us more information on how we can help somebody win. So I’ll give you just an example of a mortgage professional who has approached a real estate agent. They’ve had a great High Trust Interview together, and the interview has come to the end and the mortgage professional says this. So based on what I’ve proposed, do you feel we have a basis for doing business together? Hopefully that agent says, yes, I’ve really enjoyed this conversation. Awesome. Okay, I’ll follow up with you next week and I’ll see what’s going on, and that’s about it. Right? And so they leave the appointment and I’m sure this has happened to you. If you’re on the mortgage side, buying and acquiring real estate, I’m sure that like a week later, without a referral, you start to think, Hmm, she, or he said they wanted to do business with me. I wonder why I haven’t gotten a referral yet. 

Then maybe two weeks come and go. And there’s still no referral. And, and what ends up happening to most people is that the longer the referrals don’t come. The more call reluctance you end up developing, which then actually puts you in the reverse modality. Because the longer you wait, the more you talk to yourself about what is not happening instead of owning that before you ever left that first appointment, you should have done something uniquely different. What is that thing? Okay. So what we tell people is whenever you have an appointment, you may not leave the appointment without scheduling the next action. Not hearing that there’s a next action. Not trusting that maybe they’ll honor their word and refer somebody to me. There’s nothing wrong with that. But listen to this: Only one out of 10 mortgage professionals actually schedule the next strategic activity.

So if I don’t have that scheduled, then I’m probably not gonna get the same kind of follow up and the traction I need to get. So here’s what we teach people. 

How to Schedule a Follow Up Appointment

We teach people that right then and there, when somebody says, yes, what you’re gonna say is, “That is awesome to make sure we get this relationship off to the right start. What I would like to do is to schedule a 15 minute weekly meeting for the next 10 to 12 weeks, get it on our calendar so we can have a check in. Would you be open to that?” And hopefully, if you’ve done a good job, they’re gonna say, absolutely. Because this follow up is now baked in. So what I do is I pull my phone out and say I have a time block for partner development, on Thursday, and right now it looks like half a 12 o’clock slot, a two o’clock and a 2:45. Do any of those work for you on Thursday? 

Pretty consistent, maybe 10 minute meetings just to make sure we get this off to the right start. And they’re gonna say yes. So I send them the invite right there in the meeting and they accept the invite right there in the meeting. Now what have I just done? I have scheduled 12 weeks of follow up with that particular person who only said, “I love the meeting and I’ll give you my next borrower. I look forward to doing business together” without follow up. That is okay, but it’s not great because we do know that what doesn’t get scheduled is likely not to get done.

And if you’re understanding the value of a partnership with a realtor, if you’re understanding the value of a partnership with a builder or any business follow up is the name of the game. If you don’t follow up with people, they’re not gonna follow through with you, it’s that straightforward. 

Following Up Makes You the Most Money

And so the guys and gals that make the most money, that have the most significant impact that change lives the most consistently and regularly are Kings and Queens of follow up, they own follow up. They realize that I can do everything to get somebody to Yes, but if I don’t have a follow up plan, I’m likely to not get any activity from them. So I set that meeting for 12 weeks with a 24 hour reminder. And so now the agent or the builder or whomever is getting reminded and then a 15 minute reminder.

Three Questions to Ask to Build a Partnership

So what we’re gonna do is we’re gonna get on the phone and there’s three questions I’m gonna ask. Okay. Two are to get the business going. Question number one is: Who have you met in the last seven to 14 days that you would like to sell real estate to, but you are not sure they’re gonna use you? The first time I talked to a mortgage professional about this idea, he went out and talked to his number one real estate agent, but instead of seven days, he wrote 30 days. And as he tells the story, the real estate agent, when she thought about all the activity and looked at the open houses and that kind of stuff, there were 132 names on that list.

So my friend Jim called every single one of those people on the list and cross-sold his real estate agent Mary, as a realtor that these people could trust to seller purchase or both a real estate agent that had years of experience and therefore wisdom to coach and advise and out of that entire 132, I believe Mary got in excess of 30 contracts. And so I want you to be thinking about that kind of idea. Here’s the other idea, cuz we do know that people need to win. Most markets are making offers. We want their offers to rise to the top. We want their time spent looking for homes to be refined and focused. The 80 20 rule says help your realtors, not show 10 homes to try and get a contract, but to show two to get a contract.

So here’s the second question. Write it down. Who do you plan on showing property to then next? And again, you can do seven days, 14 days, whoever you plan on showing property to in the next seven days that I’ve not had a consultation with to help you determine their short and long term goals and their actual purchasing power in the marketplace. So what this particular question does is it gets you any buyer that doesn’t have a lender that they’ve met with. It gets you a buyer that maybe knows a lender, but you haven’t had a conversation with or gets you any buyer that’s pre-approved with another lender to which you can have a high trust interview with that borrower and you could either win the business or you could offer a second opinion. Both are great, right? So those two questions feed the activity.

Now listen to this on the mortgage side, you need 10 realtors referring two buyers to you a week each, and you’ll have 80 buyer consultations in a month. And out of 80 buyer consultations, if you convert 25 to TRID triggered applications that go into processing and nine out of every 10 loans at that point, get approved and close. Right there. You’re funding just shy of 200 loans a year. Assuming you take two months off, but listen to the big vibe here. So the big vibe is what if I get the conversion to 75%? Well now I’m involved in 540 transactions. So it’s about follow up. It’s clearly about follow up. 

Now, in addition to those two questions, here’s a pack of questions, three things during that same call, provided you have business going at this point in our relationship, ask how can we build efficiency together?

And it’s observational. What do they observe about you and your team? What do you observe about them and their team? How can you tighten that up and make it even better? Second question. How can we build productivity together? My ideas for you, your ideas for me. And that is again, based on the six questions that are found in the talk, less, sell more white paper that you can get here free of charge. If you haven’t seen it, it’s six question categories.

Then the third question is, Do you have any needs at this point that I’m not aware of or that you feel I need to meet better than I am? And that is a question that creates super glue in the partnership. 

Why Do People Leave You?

Here’s the reason why people leave you. They leave you because of either a bad service experience or they have needs that you’re not giving them solutions to.

So the smart high trust loan originator, the smart real estate agent for sellers and buyers is like, if I’m a real estate agent and, and a mortgage person during a transaction, how are we doing for you at this point in the journey? Seven days, 14 days, 21 days, you know, seven days prior to close and then seven days after close, how did we do, how are we doing right? 

If you don’t get input about what needs they have or you don’t get affirmation that their needs are getting met, then you’re not creating the super glue that we’re talking about. So how can we be more efficient? How can we generate more productivity? And what needs do you have that I’m not meeting? Take those three and now your partnerships are gonna go off the roof and you’re gonna get more buyer referrals. 

If you’re a realtor, you’re gonna get more seller and buyer referrals. Then you ever dreamed possible. But partnerships require effort. You can’t have a partnership if you just are on cruise control. 

So remember if you don’t follow up with them, they’re not gonna follow through with you.

Want More?

Do you want more guidance on which questions to ask to achieve a deeper connection? 

This step-by-step process, also known as the The High Trust Interview, will guide you through which trust building questions to ask in order to build loyal, long lasting referrals and happy relationships. 

Download it for free here.


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