Is it time to "hit the pavement" or is that just old school?

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Access

Is it time to "hit the pavement" or is that just old school?

As we neared the end of an office meeting yesterday, my colleagues and I started a discussion on prospecting, marketing and growing our businesses.  The usual suspects were part of the conversation (i.e. social media, blogging, sphere of influence, etc).  I am 100% convinced that those types of activities work.  Lucky for me, RE/MAX Access, happens to be (IMHO) one of the leaders in social media and blogging in the San Antonio area, so I am blessed to have some amazing mentors in that arena. 

This post, however is not about the "new" way of marketing.  It is not about the greatness of social media, blogging and online presence (although they are GREAT)!  This is about another idea that one of the agents brought up, an idea that has been around for ages.  He mentioned that when he first started in the business he attended a training that focused on prospecting door to door, and he had some real success with it. 

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That's what my brain said when I heard that idea.  I, for one, do not like rejection.  I am not real receptive of people who come to my door asking me if I want to buy the latest in home cleaning products or 18 boxes of prime meats.  So I definitely do not want to be that person on the other end of the door.  Of course, I initially thought he meant ringing the door bells of FSBOs or expired's and I can just imagine that more often than not, these folks do not want to talk to a sweaty pushy REALTOR®. (I say sweaty because in San Antonio, anyone who spends more than 5 minutes outside IS sweaty).

That, however, was not really what this agent was referring to.  He was talking about canvasing a neighborhood to advertise a new or existing listing.  Well, this doesn't sound nearly as icky.  It could be (if handled correctly) a soft and gentle way to meet new people and get your name and face out there.  For example, I have an amazing listing in a relatively small neighborhood that is located in a very hot part of town.  This listing hasn't been on the market for too long and is well priced for the area and square feet.  So what is the harm of taking an hour or two to walk this small neighborhood and let the neighbors know about this great home for sale. 

A quick five minute conversation that could potentially accomplish two things...

1) Sell the house - The neighbors might just have a friend, coworker, family member that has been dying to move into this great neighborhood.

2) Generate a new listing - One of these neighbors might also me looking to sell sometime in the future and BINGO a new lead could emerge. 

I'm still not real sure about this whole idea and I am quite honestly a bit nervous but never-the-less, I am enthusiastic about any thing that might get my listings sold and possibly bring me new business.  So, this agent and I have made a plan to canvas this neighborhood tomorrow (safety in numbers and all...). 

Hopefully it will go well and I can run back to my computer tomorrow afternoon and post the results!  I guess we'll see! 

Happy Thursday to all!


Comments (7)

Ilona Matteson
Beach Realty & Construction on the Outer Banks of NC - Duck, NC
Ilona Matteson

Jeanna - I love your courage.  I think it's a great idea!  I've coached agents who actively prospect this way for years and they have lots of commission checks to prove it works.  Since you're not soliciting anything, simply informing about a listing, what would stop you from calling?  It's much faster and less sweaty.  I do a lot of telephone prospecting in my area and always have great conversations with people because they do want to know what's going on, but simply won't call an agent to ask.  When I call them, they talk.  I'm dying to hear your results. 

I would also HIGHLY recommend writing and using a script.  Otherwise, you might be shaky or forget what to say.  It really does help.

Aug 26, 2010 05:02 AM
Jeanna Martinez
RE/MAX Access - Schertz, TX

Ilona - Thank you so much for your encouragement and advice!  A script is such a great idea, especially for my first time out! I also love the idea of calling...I will let follow up with a post on the results (hopefully good ones)!

Aug 26, 2010 05:05 AM
Carla Harbert - Avon, OH
RE/MAX Omega: Lorain-Medina County Area

I'm looking forward to seeing the results you post. We shouldn't be nervous going door to door, after all, we are a people business and should be great with conversation. But keep in mind, safety precautions. I think it's a great idea - especially with 2 people involved.

Aug 26, 2010 05:08 AM
Shannon Stubbs
Keller Williams Realty - Zimmerman, MN

Great idea.  Get out there and do it.  I was very nervous when I first did this, but I went door knocking to invite the neighbors to an open house I was having.  They were very receptive and curious about the house being listed.  When you do go out and do this, I think people considering selling take that into account when they decide to sell because they know you are working hard for your clients. (People may have been more receptive to me than they usually would, because I was 6 1/2 months pregnant at the time, and who can be rude to a pregnant girl...)  but I think that this works well. 


GOod luck!  And I agree, definitely use a script.  IT makes you more confident when somebody answers the door.

Aug 26, 2010 05:11 AM
Terri Adams-Scott
J. Rockcliff, REALTORS - Walnut Creek, CA
Realtor, Walnut Creek CA Real Estate

I always feel more comfortable knocking on a door when I have something to inform them on...not selling them something!  Another agent and I walk the surrounding neighborhood of a listing to hand out "Open House" invitations.  We usually go out on a Thursday or Friday before the Sunday Open House.  We tell them we want to 'personally' invite them because we welcome neighbors...and there's no such thing as a 'nosy neighbor'!  We always get a warm reception because most are truly interested in what the market is doing in their neighborhood.

So I say GO FOR IT!  It's also great exercise!

Aug 26, 2010 05:23 AM
Neal Mansfield
Keller Williams - Mabank, TX
Cedar Creek Lake Realty

These are a great series of posts.  I have an open house coming up and hadn't thought about taking the opportunity to knock on neighbors doors first. 

Thanks to you all!

Neal Mansfield - Excite Realty, Gun Barrel City, TX (Cedar Creek Lake)

Aug 26, 2010 05:24 AM
Jeanna Martinez
RE/MAX Access - Schertz, TX

Carla - You are so right...I shouldn't be nervous!  It's just a new thing for me (the door to door) so I am just a bit! :-)

Shannon - Ha!  That is so is very hard to be upset with someone who is pregnant!  Hopefully a hard working agent is what they will see!  Thanks for the encouragement!

Terri - I think that is why I am much more comfortable with this idea..I will be sharing info, not selling!  I love the idea of doing it before an open house!  I will definitely do it then as well...and yep I can always use the exercise!! :-)

Neal - Thank you!  This will be first for me too so hopefully both of us can report some great news from the door to door thing! :-) 

Aug 26, 2010 05:34 AM