It’s no secret, online leads can be tricky. They take longer to convert and require more hands-on nurturing than other lead sources. This is simply because the average online home shopper is at least 6-12 months out from being ready to purchase. But imagine if you had the right process in place to strategically engage, qualify, nurture, and convert those leads.
That’s a lot of closed deals over time.
At BoomTown, we’ve been working with highly successful real estate agents and teams for over a decade, helping them generate and convert online leads. Over those years we’ve learned what works and what doesn’t. And the following steps are absolutely crucial for an effective lead plan.
1. Reach Out at the Right Time
The early bird gets the lead! Did you know that more than half of home buyers work with the very first agent they speak to? That’s why it’s critical to have a system in place to engage with new leads as soon as they register on your site.
If you are partnered with a strong CRM, you should be notified as soon as a new lead registers on your site. (If you’re not, STOP what you’re doing and read this.) Do you have a system for responding to new leads? Perhaps you have an ISA or an admin that is responsible for engaging and qualifying those leads. Do you track how quickly they respond?
Industry best practice is that you should be engaging those leads within about 5 to 15 minutes.
So, are you set up to respond to all of your new leads within 5-15 minutes? If not, you need to figure out a new game plan. The truth is that most agents are incredibly busy and can’t be available around the clock to engage new online leads (especially when they’re not the hottest leads you’re dealing with). That’s why, at BoomTown, we designed a solution that allows agents to focus on other things, while a Lead Concierge does the lead qualifying on their behalf.
The concierge acts as an extension of your team, responding to new leads in as little as 90 seconds. They will engage the lead, qualify them, and serve them to you when they’re ready to chat! They’ll even set appointments for you.
2. Know HOW to Engage (Text, Call, Email?)
Based on our data, a text-to-call “hybrid approach” works really well. First, leverage the consistency and high open-rates of a text message to start the conversation and get the lead engaged and build a little bit of trust. Then, invite the lead to a phone call and if you’ve executed well, they’re more likely to accept.
Our Lead Concierges are trained to use the highest performing text and call scripts and adjust their communication based on the unique lead responses and preferences. They also make connections with over half of the leads the reach out to, with about 22% of those leads being conversation-ready.
Once you understand these numbers you can calculate how many leads you need to generate and qualify in order to close your desired amount of deals. (Rinse, repeat.)
3. Personalize & Brand All Communication
Consumers are inundated with sales pitches and marketing, especially in the social-distancing environment with elevated use of social media and technology. That’s why it’s critical to approach a new lead with the right language.
Lead with a personal touch and address your lead with their first name. If you have insights from your IDX Website, reference what they’re searching for. Additionally, you want to introduce yourself and establish your brand from the get-go.
Example: “Hi there! This is John from The Williams Group. I see that you’re looking for a 3 bedroom home in Savannah. Do you have a few minutes to chat?”
This is your first point of contact, so it has to be your best foot forward. That’s why we recommend if you are going to automate this process, not using a bot, but a real person. BoomTown Lead Concierges are highly trained, and agents are able to rate their conversations if they see room for improvement or if they’d like them to adjust to better fit their branded communication standards.
4. Follow Up Flawlessly
Follow-up… everybody’s favorite task! I kid, but this is the more monotonous task that is absolutely essential. It’s important to streamline your follow-up and have it function like a smooth system.
90% of real estate agents will give up on a lead after the first FOUR touches… despite the fact that 70% of the time that lead will go on to buy a home within the year.
Let that sink in… only 4 touches. Internet leads are so often given up on after only minimal engagement but imagine the possibilities if you thoroughly worked them and stuck to a strict routine for converting them. BoomTown Lead Concierges on average work with a 22-touch lead engagement plan. Even after that, they’ll continue to nurture them on your behalf for up to a year.
Fortune in the follow-up… Profit in the persistence.
5. Find the Hidden Gems
If there is one thing we’ve learned from over a decade of working with real estate professionals and helping them with their database…it’s that agents are quick to deem a lead, “trash.”
80% of prospects are deemed “bad leads” by sales teams, yet still go on to purchase within 24 months. This is simply a case of agents wanting short-term gratification and not thinking long-term with a systemic approach.
I can say with near 100% certainty, there are opportunities in your database that have gone overlooked. There are hidden gems. Which is why all of your leads should be set up on long-term nurture plans, e-Alerts, and drip campaigns. It’s why our Lead Concierges will re-engage past leads for you. To mine your database for hidden opportunities.
6. Track Your Own Performance (Accountability is King!)
“You can’t manage what you don’t measure.”
With any good formula, you need to show your work! Whether it’s an ISA, a lead concierge system, your team of agents, or YOU executing your lead engagement plan, you need to be tracking your performance.
Use the tools within your CRM, like BoomTown’s Accountability Dashboard and Lead Central, to see that all leads have been followed up with and they are all tagged/categorized appropriately. (This will make sure your long-term leads that are 6-12 months out from buying are on the proper nurture plan.)
7. Evaluate Your Own Time… Be Where the Money Is
The reality is, it’s impossible to do this effectively on your own without the help of a technology partner. To remember every conversation, every follow-up call, text, email, etc. If you want to implement a profitable and effective lead engagement plan, the perfect mixture of technology and people is critical.
Think about it. More than likely, you’re not sitting by your phone at 2:00AM on a Saturday, waiting to engage with a new lead. But that just might be the very moment that lead is ready to talk. Your time is simply too valuable to be spent qualifying and engaging leads ’round the clock.
Your time is better spent talking to the hottest leads, the referrals, the call-ins. Out showing homes, taking meetings, closing deals. But, these online leads are still incredibly valuable for your business. And they need that meticulous attention to detail in order to convert. Which is why it’s smart to invest in a solution that will handle this work for you and let you focus on your most dollar-productive activities.
At BoomTown, after more than ten years in the industry, we’ve uncovered a formula that essentially assures success in real estate. It’s not just lead generation, it’s qualified lead generation.
We reach out to your leads for you, in as little as 90 seconds, 24/7. And then deliver them to you, transaction-ready. This process allows you to maximize your ROI and leverage real experts to nurture your pipeline. Better yet, it allows you to focus on the dollar-productive and fulfilling tasks that you got into this business to do — build relationships, stay in front of your sphere, and close more deals.