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Going Places

Bring business home by treating special clients to a memorable trip.

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This story appears in the August 2008 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

When Leighsa Francis and her husband, Randall, wanted to stand out in the real estate business, they went on vacation--and brought customers with them. The owners of Bend Real Estate Team Inc. in Bend, Oregon, took a builder and his wife and daughter to Hawaii for a week of fun in the sun. When they sold a house to his cousin, they took his family, too.

"It's a great way to say thank you and build strong relationships through a personal touch," says Leighsa. "The investment you make comes back in spades." Indeed, the Francises' excursion paid off big time: The couple got four referrals from the cousin, and the builder now works with them exclusively.

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