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Real estate tech reported that private equity firms invested $8 million in 2010, and more than $100 billion in 2019. Wow! This is good news/bad news.

The bad news is that transactions have only increased from 4.5 million to about 5.4 million—not very impressive—and that money being spent in real estate tech is focused on online leads, the cost coming out of the hands of hard-working real estate professionals.

An executive of a top 10 real estate franchise observed that the top 10 percent of his company’s producers received 83 percent of their business from referrals. He believes the answer for REALTORS® is in referral networking. In good times, referral networking not only increased their company’s bottom line, but also, in extremely challenging times, his business remained healthy.

Referral networking has consistently been the foundation of my success over 35 years of experience in selling. For that reason, I founded Referral Book, a marriage of high-touch and high-tech that produces exponentially higher results in the same time, or less, than typical methods of doing business.

In real estate, this means more closings, more consistently, while affording the professional more valuable leisure time to spend with his or her family.

Referral Book is an online application designed to build a productive referral network for its members by effectively positioning the real estate professional as the center of his or her own circle. At Referral Book, these are known as “Circle Builders.” Referral Book partners with REALTORS® by providing them with the online tools to build their platform for free—yes, free. What’s more, we pay you to build your own referral circle.

Traditional referral networking groups have had certain challenges. First, they must be willing to spend time. Referral Book believes that time together is great…but every week? Once a month may be better, and, until coronavirus passes, face-on is passé.

The second consideration is cost. Joining most referral networking groups is relatively expensive, especially for someone who has just entered the field. Annual cost ranges from between $600 and $1,200 annually.

The third challenge is accountability. After you leave a referral network meeting, you hope someone thinks of you when an opportunity comes up, but you can never be sure.

Finally, there’s accessibility. There are more than 1.4 million REALTORS® in the United States, and of this number, approximately 50,000 available referral groups. Because of the “mono profession rule,” which means only one REALTOR®, one mortgage broker, one insurance agent, etc., to a group, the competition of fitting 1.4 million REALTORS® into 50,000 openings is quite the contest.

Referral Book has worked diligently to address all four concerns—time-friendly, cost-efficient, accountable and a guaranteed seat for REALTORS®, and the REALTOR® will be the center of attention, building TOMA (top of mind awareness), i.e., more referrals.

With the coronavirus, people are frightened, and they want to hold onto their money. However, you, the real estate professional, need not fear! Be intentional in building your business and aggressive in prepping for the other side of this event. Referral Book is the perfect activity, now. Join us today and let us help you not only maintain your business, but grow your business in these difficult times. Remember: Activity rules success. Referral Book is a tool you can employ now for free. As you sit at home, or when we reengage into our business, you can build a referral circle that will help you explode the other side of this coronavirus ditch.

So, become a Referral Book Circle Builder, and build your own referral networking circle and learn how to nurture new relationships that will work with you toward a brighter future. We’re here to help you, mentor you and watch you prosper. Go to www.referralbook.com and watch the How it Works video. We welcome you!

Todd Swicegood is founder of Referral Book.