The Details of Lead Conversion - It's Not an 'All For One' Approach

Services for Real Estate Pros with Classy Inbound



So how exactly DO you reach the goal of converting a lead? In my last post, I said I would give you some tips and tricks. Actually, it's pretty basic. The 'tips and tricks' are in the follow up, not the strategy. Sometimes an oldie REALLY is a goody.


Let's focus on buyers, since they are not in any hurry and can take such a long time to convert from Lead to Closing. In some markets, this process can take up to 6 months or more! You've got to have a strategy in place!


Yes, it's that simple. Call. If they are a lead from an ad, you've got to call in the same day. If they are someone who is capable of referring business to you due to their past experience with you or network they are in, call them monthly. You are calling to CONVERT! How? Well, this is where a real estate coach with a great script comes in handy, but here are some pointers: Tell them something GOOD about the market, or about their specific situation. If you know they want a home within a certain school district, call them about a hot new listing that you know would meet their exact needs. Or tell them about an upcoming event near that community. Give them information on a cool new tool that you offer that applies to their situation (a home finder tool, if they are possible sellers, a new marketing tool). Personalization IS KEY. Drip campaigns are nice, but only if they can be personalized as well (Eneighborhoods is a fabulous tool for personalization). I know many of you are calling your leads on a monthly basis, but just as many of you ARE NOT. Get on the phone!! It's 100% necessary!



Thank You. I don't think a hand-written thank you is sufficient or the right touch at this point. A form letter which thanks them AND highlights your best features is the way to go. Now when I say form letter, this DOES NOT mean I'm referring to your 'yearbook description' in which you paste all your designations and accomplishments and your 'Million Dollar Producer' information, but a real life attribute that turns you from salesperson to human. What could this be? Again, real estate coach script could help tremendously, but let's look at some examples:

  • Your ties to the area; if you've lived there a long time, say so! Give them examples of how well you know communities (I watched neighborhood xyz be built from the ground up) etc etc.
  • Your personal experience if it is similar to theirs; if you have relocated from another state and you did the same thing, highlight the points that will enable you to empathize
  • In summary, find something in common, and run with it. If it's simply a phone call prospect, and you happen to have their address, write something about yourself that no one else can claim! It's up to you to find out what that is...


Email Drip. Believe it or not, some of you are not doing this for buyer prospects on a regular basis! They should be receiving valuable, up to date market information from you bi-weekly at the minimum. YOU are positioning yourself as the expert in their mind!! Even if they don't open them, they will still have you in the back of their mind because YOU are in their inbox and you do not give up! Now, if they DO open your email, then you know which buyers are going to be moving up to your A list!


So what is different about this plan, from others you've heard of? I would say that Personalization is the key. Buyers are probably being recruited by more than one agent these days, and merely sending them canned emails isn't going to cut it anymore. You've got to find something in COMMON, whether they are a lead or a source of referrals, and CONNECT. Wine lovers? I bet you can find a series of postcards that speak to the wine connoisseur. Kids? Find out info from the Chamber of Commerce on free events for kids and get this information to them.


The season of a hot buyer calling us from our yard sign is OVER. It's time to cultivate and plant seeds, so that you are not struggling in 2011 the way you did in 2010. If you are not struggling, kudos to you! Now please share with us what you did that felt 'right' in converting your leads!


ALERT! The Purpose of a Lead Management System is.....CONVERT! It is NOT for Data Storage!!

Efficiency Boot Camp 101 : Hem and Haw Not Welcome!

Strategic Organizing - Drip Campaigns and Lead Status

Delegation 101: Psychic Powers and the Assistant

Agent Web Sites - KISS 

How Do You Fire a Referred Client, Without Burning Referral Bridges?



Comments (3)

Jenny Durling
L.A. Property Solutions - Los Angeles, CA
For Los Angeles real estate help 213-215-4758

The majority of my leads are Internet leads with no phone number and no address so email is the ONLY way I can contact them. It gets difficult to think of things to tell them, particulary if they are not responding. 

Nov 01, 2010 12:44 PM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Markelle, great tips.  It's a difficult thing to do well as different folks need different levels of contacts.  Having multiple plans is a valuable asset.

Nov 02, 2010 12:25 AM
Markelle Harden
Classy Inbound - Charlotte, NC
Digital Marketing Specialist

Jenny, your comment could have been written by MANY Realtors, so my reply is directed at everyone who receives leads without phone numbers.

The companies who offer email communication tools want you to believe that it's absolutely necessary to have the latest and the greatest to keep all these people informed so you pay them the subscription fee each month.  HELLO REALTORS! Keeping people informed who won't even give you a phone number is not your job! These are COLD LEADS so please don't spend valuable time trying to provide them with information in hopes they will call you.  Yes yes, we know sometimes they come out of the woodwork and call after being on a drip for 6 months to a year, but hello, don't you want paid sooner than that? You are not a real estate article writer, you are a REALTOR. (My maiden name is Sargent, please excuse my drill sergeant communication style).

Here is a plan if most of your leads are emails with no phone numbers:

  • The #1 goal of your communications with them should be a 'call to action' i.e. get them to contact you. What does this look like? For example, the price range in your market right now is generating interest from first time home buyers. You should know of a loan product or incentive just for these buyers, and create a teaser campaign around this information. Also, buyers think in terms of payments these days, not interest rates. Start showcasing listings with PAYMENT scenarios, not just prices.
  • Give them a tool to use that will capture their phone number. I believe some of the information on that site has grown a little 'outdated' due to the swift change in our market and influx of foreclosures, but you can still use this amazing tool within your newsletter to entice the reader to call. You can also use text capture technology by subscribing to This is going to call for some creativity on your part, but once you see results, you'll be ready to get even more creative!
  • You MUST be able to see WHO is opening up your emails, and then you must play detective. Google the email address. If you have their name, google it. Put these email addresses on a separate list, email them more often,  and see if you can't get them to call you. THESE are the leads that should be in your 'Gateway' or 'Property Search' system within your MLS.

Work with your lender for content. In many cases, vendors you work with have content based articles, you can simply copy and paste, and hit 'read this article in its entirety by clicking here' and provide some source info, and you're good!

Thanks for the feedback Gabe. I wish there were a 'one size fits all' for lead management; but with our ever changing market, I've found that multiple methods work best for the madness!


Nov 02, 2010 07:52 AM