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TOP 5 IN REAL ESTATE NETWORK, February 2010—Betty Hensal
Davis & Hoyt Hensal Realty
Years in real estate: Since 1976
Region Served: Fairfield & Southern Litchfield counties, CT.
Average sales price in your market: $450,000

What strategies do you employ to communicate with and stay connected to your clients and prospects?

I still believe in direct mail because people in our market like to receive statistics and timely information by mail. Many of my clients like to have something they can hold in their hands—something they don’t have to print from an e-mail. I mail out a monthly newsletter that includes a list of area properties that have sold, the list price and the sold price, as well as a list of all the new listings in our market area.

Being involved in the community is very important. Having been a Director of the local Chamber of Commerce, I now provide them with yearly statistics which they publish in their annual magazine. Being responsible for these statistical comparisons of all the local towns helps position our company as a resource on the community. Membership in local organizations and charities is also key as almost every personal contact leads to a discussion of the local real estate market.

The primary focus today is to provide clients and potential clients with critical information as opposed to promoting ones own self. The consultative selling approach is best where I provide the clients with the information they need to make an informed decision and then I guide them through the sales and listing process.

What types of communications/messages are best received by clients?

The best messages are those that will help them understand what’s happening in the world of real estate. The average consumer wants to be educated. You have to help them grow in their knowledge base. Whether it’s how to use the tax credit to their advantage or staging their home to create the best first impression, I help them understand the entire process. When I work with buyers, I counsel them for at least an hour before I ever take them out to see any homes. I give them checklists, mortgage information and community information including a list of websites to visit.

How have you updated your communication methods to keep pace? I love computers and technology. All clients today expect immediate response, so my business revolves around my computer and my cell phone/Blackberry. I am on Facebook and LinkedIn. I am essentially available 24/7 and that is a “must” in today’s market.

What type of messaging works best in your promotion and marketing materials?

The important thing is that I communicate the extent of my vast experience and knowledge of the real estate market and that this will enhance my clients’ buying and selling process. I also stress the importance of working together as a team and that my “goal” is to help them achieve their real estate goal.

Why did you become a Member of Top 5?

First, Top 5 is on the cutting edge. Second, I have known Allan Dalton for over 30 years. I know whatever he does is successful and his energy is amazing. I also joined for the networking with this core group of successful people. “Success breeds success” so if you surround yourself with successful people, you can’t help but succeed. Top 5 is also a great source for referrals.

How are you/will you utilize the Top 5 program to help build your business?

The articles are outstanding and I like the fact that there is a core group of writers that create the material that I, in turn, can send out to further establish myself as the expert.

What is the key to a successful life in real estate?

Balance. It is easy to become so immersed in this business that you forget that it is important to have a regular life too. You want to try to be a leader in the industry but you can’t get so carried away that you lose sight of the other important life experiences. My family helps keep me balanced.