How to Win at Real Estate Follow-Up
What’s the name of the game in sales? Follow-up, follow-up, follow-up! The truth is that 99% of people are not going to make the leap to conversion at first mention of your services. It takes persistence and a smart strategy to walk that delicate balance between over-selling and providing just enough nudges to seal the deal.
Follow-up is an especially important tactic in real estate, which is often a long game that may take several years to cultivate leads before they eventually come to fruition — both buying and selling a home are major, life-changing decisions in many cases, after all! Utilize these tips to perfect your follow-up strategy.
Organize your contacts.
Is your lead hoping to sell right now, interested but not ready to make the leap, or looking to sell a few months (or years) out? Organize leads by the stage they are at in the sales funnel (from top to bottom, those stages are awareness, discovery, evaluation, intent, purchase and loyalty. Learn more about the sales funnel here.) Leave room to record how many times you have followed up with them, and through what vehicle (phone call, email, etc). This will help you keep track of your leads and your communication with them, so you can personalize and follow-up at just the right time.
Personalize based on their unique needs.
Now, it’s time to use all that organization to personalize your lead communications. Personalization means more than inputting a person’s name at the top of a marketing call-out — it means actually creating marketing materials that are based on how that individual has engaged with you in the past — for example, what stage are they in their customer journey or in the sales funnel? Your communication is going to look different for someone who is ready to sell now vs. someone who wants to sell several years down the road. It’s also going to look different depending on the location of the prospect. Keep all of this in mind as you create communications, and learn more about how to execute a personalized, customer-centric marketing campaign here.
You’re probably thinking: All that personalization and organization sounds great, but how do I put this into practice? It’s not as complicated as it may sound. With today’s technology, it’s possible to follow up with segmented leads through multiple channels without expending an extraneous amount of time or effort. Use a mail platform like MailChimp to segment your leads by stage in the sales funnel, location, and more, and schedule automated campaigns. For direct mail, use QuantumDigital’s AutoMail, which allows you to send real estate postcards to your unique mail list(s) over a series of 12-months, with a frequency you set. List maintenance does take some time, but the effort is well worth it.
Build time into your calendar for periodic follow-up.
Block a few hours on your calendar a couple of times a week for follow-up so that you have dedicated time and don’t get pulled away to other tasks. Whether it’s making actual phone calls, creating a new email campaign, or sending texts or Facebook direct messages, setting aside dedicated time for follow-up will ensure you stay focused and don’t get distracted by other tasks.
Offer something valuable.
Don’t be a perpetrator of the dreaded “just checking in” marketing tactic. Send something of value to your leads! Keep in mind the personalization we talked about above and consider where they are at in the sales funnel, as well as the location they are looking to sell in. Offer up timely, easy-to-digest market information that is relevant to them. We make this easy at QuantumDigital. The real estate postcards sent via AutoMail comes with a unique market report that is accessible through a personal URL. It provides valuable, relevant information to your lead, and best of all, you’re notified when the lead visits the page so you can follow-up while they’re thinking about selling.
Be persistent, but know when to stop outreach, too.
You may have to follow-up with a lead five or six times before they respond. If they still don’t reply to you after several check-ins, it may be time to let go and move on to another lead. Send a “close the loop” email letting them know that you won’t be contacting them further, but that you are available if they need something in the future. They may very well reach out to you in the future when they have a need for your services, so courtesy is key.
At the end of the day, communication and continuity are key to gaining credibility and trust. And appropriate, intelligent follow-up is what takes a good real estate agent to a great one. Using a guiding framework for follow-up will help you build a pipeline of long- and short-term leads that ultimately drive your success as a real estate agent.
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