New Year Tips
By Richard Palfreeman, Northfields
Firstly I want to wish everyone a very prosperous New Year and I hope that you all find my top 3 New Year Tips helpful for getting your business off to a great start.
1. Plan out the Year
It is important to start the year knowing where you want to be at the end – so start with the finish in mind! I like to decide what my focus is for each month, for instance, in January it’s all about the ‘clear out’, the ‘resolutions’ and the inspiration to get a move-on. My team’s focus will be getting our customers ready for marketing, that could be a clear out, a through clean, odd-jobs or a splash of paint to make sure that the initial marketing is as effective as possible.
In February I would suggest that it is the month to ‘give back’ so I like to say ‘thank you’ to valued staff, long standing clients and the customers who recommend Northfields to their friends and family. Don’t forget it is a leap year and that is as frequent as the average house move, so make the most of it.
Easter falls at the end of March in 2016, just before the hike in stamp duty, so it should be a hectic time for buyers & sellers. I think it will be a month of long days so I will make sure that my team are ready to go the extra mile and be on hand to work evenings and weekends to get everybody moved before the end of the month.
I am sure you get the gist and can think of different examples for your company, but always ensure that your marketing plan reflects the focus of the month, that the team buy in to the message and that you use the right terminology to pass the positive messages onto your clients.
2. Inspire Your Team
This year we are celebrating our 30th anniversary at Northfields so it is of major importance for me to get our team to buy in to our agency milestones and to know how valued they all are.
This year I shall be introducing the 2016 Northfields Anniversary Journey with one milestone every month and, whilst I don’t wish to give the game away, some of these will be very exciting for the team.
As a family run business my team are of great importance and many of them have been with me for a long part of the journey so I plan to offer a monthly incentive to coincide with the marketing focus. For instance, spa break or personal training sessions in January to focus the staff on getting the December stock sold or rented, romantic meal and theatre outing in February for best testimonial, Thorpe Park outing with fast-track tickets for Easter to the office who outperforms the other teams, beating their usual monthly targets by 20% minimum.
Again, I expect you get the idea, this theme will run for the entire year and I know how delighted the winners are going to be because the prizes just get better and better.
3. Embrace Online Marketing
Last but not least, we intend to continue to embrace new technology and explore new trends coming to the market this year. In 2015 we built a new website using a wordpress responsive platform with live chat, Feefo review integration, in-house content management and video blog facility. We looked at websites from within our industry but also from other genres and loved how some sites were so simple to use and really embodied video, particularly to focus the customer on the team and our company message.
Mid-year Northfields employed a video company to work on a weekly basis to showcase all of the individual staff stories, to bring market updates to the customers and really give an insight into the hard-working yet enjoyable environment of the company. The videos have been so well received by the staff and the clients, we shall be utilising this medium even further during 2016, in particular to highlight the wonderful aspects of our location and to market our properties to our overseas clients.
Social media has been our forte for the past few years and video has enhanced our offering, bringing us more engagement from clients past and present. We know that our online presence has to be exceptional to compete in such a crowded marketplace, so my final tip is to get on board with your online marketing, if you haven’t already…
All the very best for 2016.
Richard is a Property Academy Mastermind member to find more about how membership works and the benefits it has click here.