You and I both know Lead Generation is the Holy Grail in real estate…
But today, let’s examine a different step in the funnel where the gold is reallllly made.
I’m talking about automated follow up.
If I had a dollar for every agent I’ve talked with who wants leads… I’d have enough to buy lunch for the few agents who actually DO follow up with their leads!
Now don’t get me wrong, leads are important. But where a lead becomes valuable is in the follow-up step.
Today, we’re not talking as much about referral leads… or leads from people you know. Those folks are often looking to talk with you as much as you’re chasing them.
What we’re talking about are cold-traffic leads – leads that generated by a landing page on your website. These leads don’t quite know you yet and are at most expressing a little interest in a particular listing or some other piece of value you’re offering.
Sure, they saw your picture and maybe your website, BUT they don’t know you yet.
And you don’t really know them.
They’re coming into your funnel from all sorts of points on the real estate journey:
– Some are ready to find a house and make a deal.
– Some want to sell.
– Some aren’t sure if they’re even in the market for an agent.
So how do you sort all this out?
How do you figure out their next step and support them?
How do you make sure that when they call you when they’re ready?
One word: Follow Up.
But not just any kind of follow-up… Really damn good follow-up.
DON’T BE JIM THE SHARK
Let’s do a couple examples to really understand what I’m trying to get across:
Jim The Shark
- Calls all the leads he receives 5 times in the first day. He’s clearly a hard worker and wants to be successful.
- These leads wanted more information about a listing, so he’s reaching out to give it to them.
- Better make some more calls!
Jill The Brain
- Calls her leads twice the first day
- Then calls once or twice each day for the first week
- Then she calls once a week.
- She peppers her calling schedule with some email follow-up as well. In the emails, there are links to information about buyers, sellers, and different aspects of the real estate process.
- Depending on the links that are clicked, Jill tailors her next actions to deliver more targeted information. Sometimes she sends text messages, looking for the best avenue to connect with her prospect. After a couple of weeks, she locates a physical address and drops a postcard in the mail. ‘Whatever it Takes’ is her motto.
So, in only six months who do you think has generated the most business from an equal amount of cold traffic leads?
It’s Jill! And here’s why…
Jill didn’t just take action when she got a lead, she took the RIGHT ACTIONS.
… tailored to the specific needs of her clients
… sprinkling in different methods
… showing she cared
So how does Jill manage to do all of this? Seems like a lot of work.
- No, she is not super-woman. Although she is super smart.
- No, she doesn’t have a super secret followup script that works every time.
Jill is a normal agent.
She is a normal agent that builds lead generation systems.
A system for follow up can be all the difference between success and failure in cultivating and nurturing leads. And even better? It saves you time and makes you money – on autopilot!
Here’s a sombering thought:
In many deals, the contact info of the buyer or seller are in several agents’ databases.
They’ve often been ‘in touch’ with multiple agents along their journey to the closing table.
If you’re going to be that “top-of-mind” agent who gets called when the time is right you need a follow up system that works for you.
5 RULES FOR BUILDING THE PERFECT REAL ESTATE AUTOMATED FOLLOW UP SYSTEM
Let’s make this practical – what makes great follow-up? What’s the path to the holy grail?
Here’s 5 things you need to make your system work:
1.) AUTOMATED FOLLOWUP – Jill is no super-hero and neither are you.
That’s why automation is important to effective, consistent follow-up. Day in, day out. Not just the slow days.
Tired of peaks and valleys in your business?
Automate your follow-up and start to see a steady flow of transactions. Imagine your best follow-up… what would you do for a high value client that you believe had great potential if you had time and attention to devote to every step?
Your system should allow you to capture these ideas and turn them into actions for every client.
2.) FLEXIBLE – Nothing is worse than bad automation.
We’ve all been there – you send a marketing email that comes right after the sale – and it’s embarrassing. You need to gather information from leads in a variety of ways, and then change how you handle them.
Make it easy for someone to indicate they have a home to sell, then send them pertinent information.
Here’s some easy to follow ways to make that happen:
- Never send out emails without a Call To Action to do something (Schedule a call, sign up for something etc). This allows you to know WHO is engaging with your content and wouldn’t mind being called!
- Don’t go overboard with complicated automations. Figure out a goal (i.e. get potential sellers to fill out a home value analysis) and build a short sequence that helps you meet that goal.
- Tag leads on your website before they hit your CRM. This way sellers will receive seller information and buyers will receive relevant buyer information.
- Manual work shouldn’t COMPLETELY be avoided. Any opportunity to jump on the phone and provide value should be treated with care – this is the real goal of automation: create real life interactions.
3.) PERSONABLE – no one wants to feel like a number, a dollar sign, or a nobody.
Great follow-up feels real, because it is. It’s your best intention, carried out every time.
Instead of sending emails that say “if you’re looking for a home, here’s how the process works, but if you’re looking to sell, here’s how that process works…”
… Great automated follow up takes the time to ask the question, and then just sends the right information to the right people.
4.) EASY – Your system should make it easy to create follow-ups.
Your followup system needs to be easy to see the right people to reach out to at the right time, and be easy to edit and improve as you understand your market and customers better.
Your first pass at this is likely not your last – you need a system that makes it easy to improve!
5.) CONNECTED – your database has to be connected to the rest of your world.
Leads come in at all times of day, all days of the week. Opportunities show up in the strangest places. Your system needs to account for all of this and work for you, not make you work.
Leads that enter through your website should be loaded into your automated follow up system automatically, not after you perform some onerous data-entry task. A connected system is like a pipeline. A pipeline of cash. Mmm.
Think of it like this – an agent with poor follow-through can lose even an interested prospect, right? Whereas an agent with great follow-up can turn an okay prospect into a deal – just by staying connected.
The better your system, the less you’re dependent on quality (expensive) leads and the more you’re able to take a high volume of unqualified leads and land business building deals from them. This is the power of follow-up.
FINAL THOUGHTS ABOUT AUTOMATED FOLLOW UP
Here’s the bottomline:
Good Follow Up = Good Commissions.
An effective follow-up system is the closest you’ll get to a magic bullet in real estate.
And face it – we all need a super-power so get your system setup and start reaping the rewards.
Owner & Operator,
The Elite Group
Largest Home Inspection Company in North America
Best Selling Author “Secrets Of Top Producing Real Estate Agents: And How To Duplicate Their Success.”