What’s Kevin Bacon got to do with real estate?

What’s standing between you and your next listing?

Chances are it could be fewer than six social connections if you subscribe to the mathematical theory that all people are connected by six degrees of separation.

So how exactly does this concept apply in real estate and how can you play that to your advantage every time you forge a new connection or list and sell a home?

The six-degree (Kevin Bacon) theory

The six degrees of separation theory is a mathematical formula that states every person on the planet is connected with each other by six or fewer acquaintances.

Also known as the six-handshake rule, it is based on the reasoning that ‘a friend of a friend’ statement can be made to connect any two people in a maximum of just six steps.

For example, there are, at most, six people standing between you and Tom Cruise or former US President Barack Obama.

The idea was widely popularised by the play Six Degrees of Separation and also the game Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, whereby any two actors in Hollywood can be connected via their film roles in less than six steps.

But in this case, we’re not talking about your connection to a former US President, Maverick or the actor who pulled off a wicked warehouse dance in the cult classic film Footloose.

Logic also suggests this theory can be applied to every vendor or buyer that is in the market.

Connections count

Everyone we meet has the potential to connect us with our next buyer or seller. That’s a simple real estate fact.

Every past seller and buyer has the potential to be one of the acquaintances that connects us to our next client. That’s a real estate reality.

But what exactly does this tell you and how can you tap into the six-degree effect?

Well, it should reinforce the need for conscious activity when it comes to staying connected with past sellers and buyers and also inspire you to ask simple questions of acquaintances when the opportunity arises.

Staying connected

Every agent knows the importance of staying connected with past and present clients, but how effective is your connection strategy?

Do you:

  • Have a current and clean database?
  • Know where your past sellers and buyers are at in their property journey at present?
  • Provide your past sellers and buyers with pertinent market information?
  • Indicate their value to you with well-timed calls, messages or even gifts (first anniversary of a purchase or sale, quarterly market updates, quick phone check-ins etc)?

Each of these practices is key to the six-degree rule, and if you’re seeking to improve your results you need processes and procedures around these activities.

The right question at the right time

Then there are acquaintances. Regardless of where someone is at in their selling or buying journey, the aim is to move them beyond acquaintance to prospective client.

It’s also about creating a network which they are part of with the six-degree rule front of mind. And often this comes down to asking the right question at the right time.

For example, to move someone from contact to prospective client, simply ask if they’d like to be updated about market conditions.

If so, add them to your database and start working your magic when it comes to staying in contact and abreast of their property journey.

But in the interim, don’t forget to kick-start that six-degree network in the knowledge the next person you meet may connect you to the next. To do this, simply ask a question like the following:

“Mr and Mrs Homeowner, thank you for the opportunity to appraise your property. I understand that you are not coming to market in the immediate future, however if I may ask, would you know a friend or neighbour who may be needing some help with their real estate needs?”

Obviously, the question is framed for the appropriate circumstances. But it takes just a second to ask and their answer might just connect you to your next listing.

There’s six degrees between all of us, and in a local area like your target market that factor is often less.

The takeaway? Today, make every conversation and every connection count.

For all enquiries and more information on how the Agents’Agency can help you take your career to the next level, please visit or email

Show More

Manos Findikakis

Manos Findikakis is the CEO of Agents'Agency, Australia's first multi-brand real estate network.

Promoted Content

If you have any news for the real estate industry - please email us: Promoted content is content that has been paid to be promoted. For more information on paid content please visit or click the 'house' icon below.