Internet leads can be hazardous to your health.
Between January and May 2012 I accumulated 685 internet leads from a push ad campaign targeting buyers from cities around the country that LOVE Lee County, Florida homes. That was the easy part. Now the fun part.
I assigned these leads to a group of ten agents with high hopes that we would close 1 out of 10 leads and whoopee, the money flows in. The leads cost me roughly $14,000 in ad expenses and so my journey to recoup the initial investment began. Or so I thought. Most of my agents had very few positive experiences in performing follow-up on "internet leads". They were pretty good at sign calls and such, but, internet leads pose several hurdles that many agents fail to recognize and adjust to.
Hurdle #1 - Internet leads are clicking around faster than buyers in cars can drive around inquiring about homes. you are not the only "lead gatherer".
Rule # 1 - Get to the lead early! Remember these are internet leads and the folks are clicking away on more than just your site.
Hurdle #2 - Internet leads typically begin their search earlier in the "home shopping" process and may require a longer "cook time" than your average sign caller who is actually on the buying prowl so to speak.
Rule # 2 - Don't leave the lead early. Early termination of an internet lead can be costly to the purchaser of said lead and to the expectations of the lead agent. Patience and diligence is key. Not everyone is cut out for this type of lead.
In closing, setting the proper expectations on time to close with the responsible agents is critical. Fail in this area and your team may fail at converting internet leads, period. Take it from me. I had to rework the entire lot of leads from scratch in June since I failed to train and set expectations properly the first time.
The good news for me? Internet leads typically begin their search earlier in the "home shopping" process and may require a longer cook time than your average sign caller who is actually on the prowl so to speak. I actually was able to recover and get several more closed. Also, I have about 45 buyers leads actively participating with one of my agents who were originally a part of the 685 leads. Pheeew!
All-in-all it was a close call and a real lesson for me. YTD I am several thousand dollars ahead of the game , but a few years older to be sure! I hope this blog helps those of you who are forming teams or achieving leads en masse. They can be a bit tricky and you better understand the committment required.
Jack Solloway, Mng Mbr
Right Choice Realty, LLC