By Mark Burstein
In Real Estate, lead generation is the name of the game. Some agents farm a geographic area in order to extract leads by door knocking, mailers, or flyers; or they leverage social media like LinkedIn, Facebook, and blogging. They may advertise their website online with PPC or SEO campaigns.
Some utilize traditional advertising in print publications like newspapers, magazines, and property pages. Other take times to make SOI (sphere of influence) phone calls.
Pick your path- and hopefully that path is one that has a combination of several of the ones described above. Eventually your path will lead to a generated lead! Great, now what do you do? In an ideal world- you make a call, schedule an appointment, and sell your services.
Depending on your method of lead generation, some may be receptive to commit to a personal meeting on the first call and others require a little more work before you can get some face time. This is where your AccelerAgent website comes into play.
Upon generating a lead, it is important to reach out personally. A phone call is best. The next best is email, social media, or even a text message. When reaching out by phone, it is important to quickly identify yourself and how you got their name and contact information.
For example this is, “This is John Matten – thank you for registering on my website. I just wanted to reach out and introduce myself. Do you have moment to talk?” If the prospect does not answer the call, I personally, do not leave a message, but rather switch to email or SMS if a number is all you have. For SMS I would send the exact message above and wait for a response.
Before committing your time to a prospect it is important that they are properly qualified on the phone or via email. That is the number one purpose of your initial call. Yes, you do want to introduce yourself, but the most important goal in that moment is for you to want to find out if this prospect is worth pursuing (but you should have a plan of consistent touch-points to them through the whole year, even if they are not).
It does not make sense to schedule appointments to meet people just to find out that they are not motivated or that they are unrealistic. The way to qualify a prospect is to ask appropriate questions. For example:
Questions to Ask Buyers:
- Where would you like to live?
- What type of property are you looking for?
- When are you looking to move?
- Do you currently own a home?
- Do you have an established budget?
- Have you been pre-approved for a mortgage?
For buyers, my initial goal is to gather enough information so that I can start emailing them property listings. I need to be able to do this in such a way that they are getting the specific information they need to make informed decisions. I must be of value to them. I need to extract a budget, a property type, and a general location. If they are not in a hurry or if they are not ready because of credit issues or financial barriers, then I do not want to commit my time for a personal meeting. Keep in mind that they are still leads. There is NO such thing as bad leads.
Make sure to add them to your database and send them relevant information and solicitations consistently until they are ready with a decision. They have to remember MY name when they are read to move forward, not the listing agent’s name on the For Sale sign next door.
Here are some good Seller questions.
Questions to Ask Sellers:
- What is the property address?
- What is the general condition of the property?
- What do you think the home is worth?
- Why do you want to sell?
- Where will you go? (do they have an agent? If not, this is a referral opportunity if they are moving out of your service area)
- When do you want to move?
- What happens if we do not sell in time?
For sellers, my initial goal is the same, I want to gather their complete information so that I can rev my marketing engine. Start a Seller’s Corner search (and sign up for one of our Seller’s Corner webinars while you are at it) so that the prospect is made aware of local market activity as it happens. Also, I want to send some other basic seller information like a report on preparing a house for sale.
Remember a few years back when pre-listing packages were all the rave? Well, now your website is your pre-listing package, so my goal is to provide them with information to entice them over my website so that they can view my marketing and all the useful content that I have available for them. If they are not ready to sell now, Seller’s Corner will ensure they remember you when they are ready.
If the prospect is qualified, go ahead and schedule the meeting. If the prospect falls short of qualifications, make sure you outline the necessary steps for them to qualify. Continue to send property information and make sure to follow up when you see they are active on your website. AccelerAgent’s client tracking will tell you what they are doing and when.
Every now and then you get a hot lead that is ready to be converted. Most leads may take some time to nourish. They may not be ready, but do not fret, if you have a good system like PropertyMinder’s AccelerAgent website & CRM, that reminds your prospects about you and your business on a regular basis, those luke-warm leads will be far less likely to fall through the cracks. I have closed many deals in the last couple of years due to the fact that after my that initial contact, my system maintained regular, value-driven contact and I always followed up.
Please register for one of our Free Webinars. This is your chance to learn how to use the tools in your Toolkit if you are already customer and enhancements we have made. If you are not yet a PropertyMinder customer, take advantage of this educational opportunity to not just learn about our tools, but best practices around real estate marketing in general!