Someone is calling. You don’t know who it is. The number doesn’t look familiar. And you’re currently busy. So, you don’t answer it. Then you hear the beep … they left a voicemail. Now a thought runs through your head. Why didn’t they just text me? That way, I could answer on my own time.
Let’s think about it from a real estate perspective. You are on the phone daily. Sometimes you’re talking with clients; other times you’re cold-calling. How many of those calls are answered?
More and more, people are spending time with digital activities. They’re on social media, consuming content. They’re using Google to search for information. Or they’re emailing back and forth. If the phone rings, it’s an interruption. Growing numbers of people are preferring the conversation to be held off the phone.
So, why should we promote texting when there are other channels like social media and email? Because texting is the most widely-used and frequently used app on a smartphone. 97% of Americans use it at least once a day (PEW Internet).
Now, let’s discuss why top real estate agents are using texting to close deals.
1. Texting’s Reply Rate is Really Good
Getting leads to respond can sometimes feel like climbing Mt. Everest. You call them. You email them. But no response. What some real estate teams discovered was that texting had an impressive reply rate: 36% to be exact. Out of every ten people, 3-4 individuals responded back.
Compare that to the 5-10% reply rate for emails (average for all industries), and you see the potential revenue you’ve been leaving on the table.
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2. You Can’t Review Phone Calls Later
After a call, have you ever had a moment where you thought, what did he say again? Something could have distracted you or too many things were demanding attention. Providing excellent customer service means remembering what the homebuyer (or seller) wants – and if you’re forgetting, that’s no bueno. Text messages give you a transcript as to what you talked about. It helps you remember and keep track of things.
3. Younger Generations Prefer Communication Differently
Every day Generation X and Y (Millennials) are out-sizing the Baby Boomer generation in terms of real estate shopping. And those people have a much different taste in communication than their predecessors. Increasingly, they’re looking to shift the conversations onto other mediums like text messaging.
4. It’s Easy to Automate
Want to increase your productivity without burning out? Implement a lead follow up plan and combine it with a CRM that can automate the steps. Having a real estate software to help you send texts to leads can have positive results for your team.
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We recently had a client who told us they had a lead register on their website around 1:30 pm. The system sent them a quick text thanking them for registering, confirming the area she was interested in and their price range. Fast forward 10 minutes and the prospect was texting the agent to request a showing. By 2 pm an appointment was set and everyone went back to enjoying their Sunday. Unbelievable, right? What if I told you that it happened twice that afternoon! Not bad for 30 minutes of work … from your couch.
5. Text Messaging — The Results
Now, I’m not suggesting that texting is a substitution for hammering the phones, but if you aren’t already texting, there is no better time than now to start, especially if you are reading this from your couch.