Whether you’re getting leads from your broker’s lead generation program or are using your website or Facebook ads to grow your marketing funnel, you may be in the habit of thinking in terms of “good leads” and “bad leads.”
Good leads call you right back, are ready to sign and result in a commission. Bad leads give a fake name, don’t respond to contacts or say “No.”
In reality, of course, all leads are good leads — some of them just take more work in order to convert. Instead of good and bad, start thinking in terms of cold leads and warm leads and the most effective strategies for following up and converting those leads into clients.
Make multi-channel follow-up the goal
A lead may enter your sales pipeline with just one piece of information. That could be an email address, a phone number, or a social media profile. If you’re not getting the response you’d like, make it your goal to keep the conversation moving forward. It may be that your lead simply prefers a different type of communication.
Don’t just plug your lead’s email address into an automated drip campaign and assume that will work its magic. Follow up with a phone call.
Follow up the phone call with a text. Look for online and social media platforms where you can more effectively connect. The more ways you find to communicate, the better your chances are of connecting with, and converting, that lead.
Optimize your drip campaign and personalize as much information as possible. Think beyond first and last names and optimize for neighborhoods, school districts, and other information. Consider creating multiple drip campaigns for niches like first time home buyers, senior adults, and military families. That will help you target your message more effectively.
Use analytics to further target your nurturing. Move leads who click through to links, reopen multiple times or otherwise respond favorably to your communications into more hands-on campaigns. Reward the behavior you want with more targeted, meaningful and robust responses.
Attach content to follow-up
Make sure that your drip campaigns include content, which works around the clock to nurture your leads.
Each email, text message or Facebook message can include a link to one of your blog posts, videos, or podcast episodes. This will help draw leads into your digital universe, where they will experience your expertise and insight firsthand.
The beauty of content is that it turns cold leads into warm leads, substituting for some of those early conversations where you establish yourself, your background and your experience. As you provide meaningful content that is targeted to their interests, you make each point of contact an opportunity, rather than a routine.
Follow-up, then follow-up some more
Many leads do not turn into clients for weeks, months, or even years. Sometimes people need to get their financial house in order. Sometimes people are waiting to find out whether they got that new job or what date they will be retiring. Sometimes people are thinking about a real estate sale or purchase alongside a major life event and are not operating on your timeline.
Continue to follow up, adjusting your schedule from a short-term daily contact to a more sustainable, long-term weekly or monthly contact. Provide value-added content and reminders from time to time to keep yourself top-of-mind. You never know when that seemingly ice-cold lead may be ready to heat up.
Don’t stop following up
Some people eventually get tired of following up or want to clean out their contact list. At that point they will send one of those, “You haven’t answered my messages. This is your last opportunity…” emails.
Unless someone asks to be taken off of your list, or you’re getting bounce backs or error messages, there’s really no good reason to stop following up. Perhaps their plans changed. Perhaps they need to save up more money. Perhaps it’s going to take some time for them to make the biggest financial decision of their life. Attaching a time constraint to what is already a stressful process does no one any favors.
Rather than constantly looking for new leads, nurture the leads you have more effectively, more thoughtfully, and more meaningfully. You just might find that there are no good or bad leads — just leads you haven’t yet converted.
Christy Murdock Edgar is a Realtor, freelance writer, coach and consultant with Writing Real Estate. She is also a Florida Realtors faculty member. Follow Writing Real Estate on Facebook, Twitter, Instagr