Does the very thought of real estate prospecting make you shudder? If so, you aren’t alone. For many REALTORS® prospecting is a necessary evil, one that is all too easy to postpone and drop to the bottom of your to do list.
Yet the majority of real estate professionals are hungry for more quality leads, more of those truly motivated buyers and sellers. Real estate prospecting is one of the best ways to generate more real estate leads. It can be time consuming, but it’s an exciting endeavor! We’ve compiled some of the best real estate prospecting ideas to help you save time and prospect like a pro.
Warm Up to Cold Calls.
Does the very thought of picking up the phone give you chills? Don’t worry! Hesitating to make cold calls is natural and it won’t last forever. Find a script you feel comfortable with, check out the “Do Not Call” list, and cozy up to the telephone. Your script can be as simple as “Hello, this is Candace calling from ABC Realty. Have you thought about moving this year? If you were to move, where would you go?” A simple, friendly question like this can open up a meaningful conversation. Don’t give up on cold calling, as it still proves to be an effective prospecting method for successful real estate agents.
Understand Your Strengths.
There is a multitude of real estate prospecting methods including phone calls, door-to-door visits, Facebook and social media marketing, home seminars and attending community events. Don’t spread yourself too thin by trying to accomplish every single tactic or you won’t end up giving enough attention to any one of them. Phone prospecting is one of the more familiar (and effective) tactics and I would recommend incorporating it into your strategy, then choose your other prospecting methods based on your own personal strengths. Do you love to host and organize events? Home seminars for members of your community may be up your alley. Are you energized by meeting people at their homes? Try going door to door. You know your personal strengths the best so choose a prospecting approach that suits your personality and give it your all.
Stick to a Schedule.
With late night meetings and Saturday afternoon open houses, Realtors are known for their hectic schedules and varied hours. While there are a lot of scheduling hiccups beyond your control, it is important to prioritize prospecting on a daily basis. Experiment with your schedule and find what works for you but set aside 2 hours each day to focus on prospecting. Many agents like to focus on prospecting initiatives in the morning between 9-11am, this can be a good time to make phone calls, update social media posts and ask for referrals. Treat this prospecting time as you would any other important appointment and stick with it!
Celebrate the “No.”
Some of the fear surrounding real estate prospecting is the discomfort of rejection. Part of being a Realtor is being told “no, thanks” sometimes, and that’s ok! Think of every “no” you hear as bringing you one step closer to the next “YES!” And remember to be courteous and friendly, as often times when someone says “no” what they really mean is “not yet.” The key here is to avoid taking these conversations personally. Like any type of sales, real estate is a numbers game and the more people you talk to, the more viable leads you’ll gain and the more sales you’ll make. Stay positive!
Take Care of Your Prospects.
As you make connections it’s important to remember to nurture those relationships so they can thrive. Remember all those “no, thanks” that really mean “not yet”? Those prospects will require the service of a real estate professional some day and you want to be the one they go to. Add your prospects to your database and continue to keep in touch with them with monthly e-Newsletters, direct mail, and even wishing them a happy birthday. Like any relationship, your prospects require attention. Use a CRM like IXACT Contact to keep in touch with these leads and stay top of mind.
As I mentioned before, not every prospecting method is right for every Realtor. Choose your strategy and have fun with it! Here’s a list of some classic, creative and successful prospecting tactics I’ve heard of from real estate agents:
- Cold calling
- Offering home appraisal door- to-door
- Hosting an interior decorating seminar with an expert
- Offer advice to FSBOs (with no strings attached!). If they do choose to use an agent, you’ll already have a relationship
- An information session for first time home buyers
- Compiling and distributing a list of preferred local businesses and services
- Reaching out to expired real estate listings
- Facebook and Twitter advertising
- Send Just Listed and Just Sold e-Cards or e-Flyers
- Survey members of a community asking them how long they’ve lived there, the best parts of the neighborhood and what they appreciate in a Realtor
- Send holiday cards
- Reconnect with past clients
- Sponsor a children’s sports team and introduce yourself to parents at games
What’s some of the best advice you’ve heard on real estate prospecting? Share it in the comments section below!