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prospecting for real estate leads

Prospecting for real estate leads is something many of us spend lots of time and energy on.  But how do we know what works and what doesn’t?  I mean, you can spend copious amounts of time and money prospecting for real estate leads with no results whatsoever.  So what can we do?

Well for starters you need to understand that prospecting for real estate leads is something that needs to happen often.  It’s not just something you can start up when you’re slow and turn off when you’re “too busy”.  Because you’re smart little ass won’t be “too busy” for very long if you do.

So let’s get down and dirty with 19 tips and tricks for how you can successfully start prospecting for real estate leads and keep that train moving, even when you’re busy.

Be Consistent

Whether you’re sending out a newsletter, holiday greeting, or just helpful information; make sure your sphere hears from you on a consistent basis.  Try to focus on creating a schedule for your content and correspondence that you can stick to.  The worst thing you can do is to send out emails and letters at random times throughout the year.  Go for a monthly, quarterly, or annual schedule.  Whatever your schedule and budget can allow… just stay consistent.

Stay on Brand

The best way for you to start getting real estate leads is to become memorable.  To do that you’ll need to keep your marketing materials and correspondence “on brand”.  This means the same color scheme, fonts, and logos appear on everything you send out to your sphere.  This includes broad range advertisements.

Value, Value, Value

When you’re prospecting for real estate leads you are not always asking for business.  In fact, 80% of your prospecting efforts should not include any type of “ask” at all.  Instead, give your audience something they can take and use or find interesting.  Providing value on a consistent basis will build trust; which is what you need to attract new leads.

YouTube Tutorials

When it comes to prospecting for real estate leads, attention is what you want.  And there’s no other medium that’s getting more attention than social media videos.  YouTube is an amazing platform that’s free for you to use and distribute high quality informational videos that your audience will find useful.

Think about what your audience’s pain points are.  What do they struggle with?  How can you help them with something for free?  Whatever that is, tape a video explaining or showing them how to solve that particular problem.  Share it across all of your other social media platforms and you’ll start to gain credibility within your community.

Snapchat Behind The Scenes

You’d be surprised how many people would be interested to know what it’s like to be a Realtor.  Show your audience what it’s like to be you for a day.  Shoot a Snapchat story and include links to your website or a helpful article that relates to your story.  Your goal here is to provide entertainment so they feel like they can relate to you.  This all builds trust which is what you need when you’re prospecting for real estate leads.

Use Geo Targeting

When you are sharing content on your social media platforms, specifically Instagram… use their geo-targeting feature.  It allows you to reach people within a certain mile radius of you, which is absolute gold for Realtors like us.  I’d use this for open houses, scheduling showing appointments at new listings, and general advertisements leading to my website or landing page.

Local Blog Posts

In order to prospect for real estate leads with success you’re going to need an in-bound prospecting plan.  This means that leads come to you instead of the other way around.  The best way to start this is to create a hyper local blog.  On it you’ll post all about your city, things to do, where to eat, and anything a local or newcomer would want to know.

Not only will this create an SEO monster and drive organic traffic to you, but it will be providing value to your audience and put you in the local expert category.  #leadmagnet  I talk about how I created a six-figure business with in-bound prospecting in The Rookie Agent and walk you through how to do it too.

Nerd Out

Dive deep into your local real estate market.  It’s your job to know what’s happening with home sales, changes in neighborhoods, and everything in between.  By knowing the ins and outs of your local market you have the upper hand.  You can represent your clients better, educate your audience on new happenings, and become the local expert.  If you can really dive deep into your market’s stats and help to educate your audience on those stats, you’ll start attracting leads like crazy.  Because people want to work with the person who knows more than anyone else about their neighborhood.

prospecting for real estate leads

Find a Niche

There’s very few better ways to prospect for real estate leads and create an inbound lead system than to work a niche.  This involves finding a small area of the market that you can become a well known expert in.  Finding a niche is easy but owning that niche takes some time.  But you know what they say about things that take time.

Related: 11 Highly Effective Real Estate Prospecting Ideas

Work Orphans

This sounds terrible but I promise it’s not how it sounds.  A real estate orphan is someone who was working with a Realtor who no longer sells real estate.  You can find these people by looking up the past sales of Realtors who have left the business.  This is another example of a niche and is similar to a FSBO or expired listings approach.

If it were me, I’d reverse engineer this and get ahead of it by networking with older agents and helping them out.  That way when they’re phasing out you’ll be the natural choice for who to send their clients to.

Traveling Billboards

One thing I try to work into my prospecting every year is to give out traveling billboards.  This is something of value that your audience physically uses, but it has your name and/or contact information on it.  Examples of this would be a refrigerator magnet with baking measurements on it or a sports team schedule.

Use a Hook

Any marketing materials or correspondence you’re sending out to your audience should include a hook.  Meaning, you need to give them a reason to engage with you.  It’s one thing for your audience to see your correspondence but it’s entirely another to spark up a dialogue with them.  It’s tapping into another level of bonding and trust building that you want and need when you’re prospecting for real estate leads.

Ask for Referrals

After, and only after you’ve provided value to your audience, you should start asking for referrals.  The way in which you ask for referrals is more important than whether or not you ask out right for them.  It’s a pretty bold request to ask someone you’ve never served to throw business your way.  So most agents don’t ask at all, or ask in the worst way possible.

I personally don’t ask for referrals other than an email signature blurb and at the bottom of my client satisfaction surveys  – both of which still bother me a little bit.  Honestly, my entire business model is making referrals come to me; and not the other way around.  This topic is one that I’m super passionate about and my Referral Engine students know what I’m talking about.

Whatever you do, if you’re going to be so brave as to ask for business – make for damn sure you’ve given that person so much value that they basically feel indebted to you and want to give you business.

Train & Reward Your Advocates

When you do receive new business from your network or anyone in general be sure to reward their good behavior.  You’ve got to start looking at each person in your network as a gateway into an entirely new network, (their network).  Once you serve someone in the real estate capacity they’re likely going to know at least a few people each year who want to move.  And if you train your network to refer you business, and reward them when they do so, this gravy train (sorry for the cheesy term) will keep on moving.  And you’ll continue to receive referrals from old and new clients.  I teach you how to do exactly this in The Referral Engine.

prospecting for real estate leads

Create Time Blocks for Prospecting Activities

As Realtors we get so busy and days can fly by without a second notice.  You never really have a set schedule and that’s a blessing and a curse.  But you’ve got to control your schedule to some extent if you plan to successfully prospect for real estate leads.  Block out a few hours a week when you’re working strictly on prospecting activities.

Once you’ve blocked out your time, this is a non-negotiable appointment.  It’s your chance to work “on” your business instead of “in” it.  It’s a chance for you to secure your future by filling up your pipeline so you’re busy all year long.  To encourage commitment to this appointment with yourself include your favorite treat or reward yourself after you’ve completed it.

Prioritize Your Prospects

Prospecting for real estate leads is something that you need to become efficient at.  It’s not something that will bring you business if you just do busy work that doesn’t convert to leads.  To prevent wasted time and money, prioritize your prospects and focus on the most promising leads first.

This way you’ll make sure you’re spending quality time building your business.  It will also boost your confidence by working with prospects that have a higher chance of becoming a sale, which will help keep you motivated to keep going.

Follow Up Religiously

When I first started in real estate I got so many comments and lots of my testimonials centered around one thing.  “She follows up so quickly”.  This is my blessing and my curse.  Yes, it creates happier clients and more conversions, but it’s tiring to be “on” all of the time.

My advice to you, as a fellow Realtor who understands the demands of this job, would be to follow up within 30 minutes with everyone.  Even if you can’t answer the question or you’re waiting for more information to form a full response.  Just email, text, or call them back and let them know you received the message and are working on it.

Practice Patience

Regardless of what type of content you provide or which medium you use to disseminate it to your audience, you’ve got to keep the long view game in mind.  What I mean by that is that you must not make decisions based on short term gains.  That will never be a good business plan.  Come up with a marketing plan that spans at least 5 years.  Think about what the end goal is 5 years from now and reverse engineer from there.  This will give your prospecting substance and increase your conversions and scalability down the road.

Give Back to The Community

Prospecting is all about growing your network.  But that doesn’t mean cold calling.  At least not in my book.  I like warm leads; people that already know who I am.  Adding to your network warm leads is the best way to enjoy prospecting.  And one great way to do that is to start getting involved with a non-profit in your local community.

This should be something that you’re truly passionate about.  A cause that you believe in and truly enjoy.  This will help you relate and bond with the other members of the organization so that relationships are formed and they become a solid part of your network.  Go here to find out how I added over $3 million dollars in sales in 1 year from this strategy.

Jenna Martindale

Jenna Martindale

Jenna Martindale teaches online courses and workshops for new + experienced real estate agents who want to enhance their skills, grow their business, and live the life of their dreams.She believes it’s always the right time for coffee and that if there's a heaven it's a pool filled with golden retreivers.
Jenna Martindale