Lead generation is how a business funnels potential clients down the path of buying/subscribing to their services. It is a crucial component of the growth of a real estate business. Without it, your business will struggle to make sales and expand. This article will focus on and highlight the three key areas of a lead generation model.
1. Prospect and Market of Lead Generation Model
Prospecting involves finding potential customers, while marketing is the process of attracting potential customers. A prospect is someone who has got an interest in buying or selling homes (a potential customer). Potential customers are everywhere as these are at first strangers that you are yet to know.
A successful lead generation model mixes inbound and outbound marketing that attracts prospects before they become customers.
The definition of inbound marketing is a way of attracting people to your business through the creation and promotion of content. It consists of activities like social media posts, blogs, or articles on sites you own that are relevant to your needs and much more.
Outbound marketing is for reaching prospects who are not interested in social media or other forms of online advertising. It’s often more traditional and consists of direct mail, telemarketing, email marketing, and event marketing.
Other proactive and direct prospecting methods are:
- Face-to-face interactions such as networking events, open houses, and seminars.
Some marketing (proactive and indirect) methods that attract prospects include:
- Advertising on realtor websites like Trulia and Zillow, Social media,
- Open houses
- Voice-Activated Search Engines
- Email marketing, and more.
There are four groups that which prospects can be categorized into:
- General Public – individuals whom you haven’t met and they don’t know you.
- Target Group –individuals you haven’t met, and you don’t know, but you’ve targeted them as people with whom you’d want to do business with and generate business leads.
- Met Group – individuals you know; you’ve met them in person or by phone.
- Allied Resources – individuals (subset from Met group) you expect to do business with or to receive business leads from every year (referrals)
2. Create a Customer Database
A customer database is mainly a collection of information from individuals relevant to your business. It consists of customer name, address, phone number, email address, location, and transaction history (if any). A database keeps business contacts’ information orderly and updated. Simply put, building up a customer database with contacts’ information and creating a good relationship with them is at the very core of what nurturing a real estate business (database) entails. The size of your real estate sales business is directly proportional to the size and quality of your contact database. Without a solid database, even the most creative and attractive lead generation model will not effectively impact potential clients.
A customer database also helps you with:
- Keeping your prospects informed and updated.
- Offering personalized promotions.
- Following up on old and/or undecided clients.
The following are some ways to collect contacts for your customer database from the general public category.
1. Request your buyers/sellers to give their complete contact information as part of their transaction process.
2. Create competitions with prizes such as free t-shirts or discounts; participants must register with their contact information to win.
3. Market To the Database
Succeeding to high levels in real estate sales will require a frequent commitment to contacting your database. Regular communication is encouraged to ensure that your customers are ‘touched’ (contacted) numerous times consistently and systematically. Every time you communicate, you must educate the contacts. Emphasize being their professional realtor, showcase your experience and the knowledge you have.
The three ways in which you can market and prospect to your two primary audiences, Met and Haven’t Met (General Public):
- 8 x 8
The foundational idea to this method is that you should have no fewer than eight touches or rather communication to your database over eight weeks. These touches have been proven to be the minimum number of touches needed to establish a bond between you and the contacts. Everyone that you know/meet will first go into your 8 x 8 program. It’s a systematic way of establishing relationships and solidifying their minds, who you are, and the benefits they stand to gain from your business. Then, once a week for eight weeks, make meaningful contact with these individuals via phone calls and letters; contact should be made, establishing yourself as the top realtor in their minds. You may also choose to extend this approach for 12 weeks instead. Once completed, new contacts will go into the Met category of your contact database.
- 33 Touch
This method requires making 33 systematic touches throughout an entire year. It’ll ensure year-round contact with the Met group. Create time each week to ensure that communication with the contacts happens. Research shows for every 12 people in your Met contact database that you market yourself to 33 times, reasonably expect at least 2 to convert to sales. Like a game of numbers, the more people you contact, the higher the conversion rate.
- 12 Direct
This method is best applied to your Haven’t Met portion of your customer database. It stands for 12 direct mail pieces sent out on an annual basis. Again, research shows that you should reasonably expect to generate at least one sale for every 50 people you market yourself to 12 times a year. For example, if you’re aiming to consistently hit an annual of 50 closed sales, you’ll have to have 2,500 people in your database. Gathering such an extensive database is not difficult. With focused effort and time dedicated to collecting contacts, moving them into the database, and planning out a 12 direct marketing approach, you can create a wave of sales.
Your approach to lead generation should always be systematic and marketing-based. Long-term success in lead generation needs you to be purposeful and consistent. Find ways to automate this contact process with email automation tools and scheduling time to call or visit your prospects into your diary.