Clients themselves are not enough to build your portfolio. As a loan originator or private lender, you also need to build your professional network.
Here are two ways networking can help boost your future profits:
Forge new relationships.
Networking groups bring together like-minded people. You might meet potential investors and strike up a friendship with like-minded professionals. Either way, getting out there and talking with business colleagues gives you a much-needed break from crunching numbers and being on zoom meetings all day.
Establish your reputation.
It is hard to grow your business when nobody outside of your immediate circle knows what you do. Before you blow your budget on an advertisement piece, such as billboard by the highway or purchasing bulk data, here is a simpler solution:
Bring along a stack of business cards and a firm handshake to your next networking event and start introducing yourself and your accomplishments to others.
Now that you can see the potential impact of networking to your bottom line, here is where to mix and mingle with folks in the field:
There is usually only one reason to go to a house auction, and everyone is there for the same reason. Go often enough, however, and you will start to see the same people, so you will likely get an idea of who is serious about growing his or her real estate investment business and who needs someone on the inside of loan acquisitions.
Your local REIA group or economic development corporation is a great place to make professional connections. Community organizations such as these host mixers and other networking events, usually at a discount to members. Attend a few and start chatting. You may be surprised how many people are looking to expand their business and even if you can’t work with them directly, don’t out rule the power of referral sources.
Real estate investment clubs
These local organizations join both beginner and experienced real estate investors in a dynamic learning environment. Become a mortgage mentor to a newbie investor, or simply connect with others to see how they are taking their portfolios to the next level — and how you can help. If you are looking to grow your business outside of your immediate community, Private Lender Link, Connected Investors, and Bigger Pockets are all excellent online resource that will help you connect with real estate investors and loan originators.
Trade shows and conferences
Before social media, these were really the only ways that professionals from all over the world could meet in person, however briefly, and in the same time zone. Today, they remain an excellent way for you to spread the word about your lending company. Even in the digital age, conferences and trade shows are excellent opportunities to connect, learn, and grow as an investor or lender. Utilize events that are tailored to your needs.
Find a conference to fit your needs
If you are looking for deal flow, make sure that event has a strong focus on placing deals. If you are seeking capital, inquire and make sure the event has a focus on getting those capital sources there. For example, events like Geraci’s Captivate Conference in Las Vegas focus on pairing you with high-net-worth capital sources such as family offices, RIAs, institutions, and other capital providers.
Of course, platforms like LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook have all but eliminated constraints when it comes to communication. Now, we can post and tweet from wherever we are, no matter the time of day.
Take advantage of being “on” 24/7: Join a Facebook group dedicated to real estate investing or search relevant hashtags on Twitter to find out who is tweeting about #RealEstateInvesting on the #WestCoast, for example.
Whether you connect with others online or in person, it is important to keep building your professional network to increase your opportunities — and ultimate success — in the private lending business.