There’s no reason to over-complicate the online arena, because all you need is a proven model to follow. So, why is it that so many agents make this process much more difficult than it really needs to be?
I personally believe that what keeps people from ever taking action to begin with is a feeling of overwhelm, confusion, or a lack of clarity. With so many platforms out there like Facebook, Google, Craigslist, YouTube, and more, it can be really hard to identify the best plan of action.
But, by simplifying the process you can significantly reduce these negative feelings and get clear on your objectives FAST. That’s precisely why you must define your target market and decide on how you are going to reach them before your competition does.
…that over 90% of prospects start their home search or home selling process online? This is why you must develop an effective online strategy, because you need to be where people spend most of their time. Particularly, you want to be there when they start the process, because the buying or selling cycle can take a very, very long time.
When you have a solid online strategy that captures quality leads, gets the prospects’ attention early on in the process, and maintains a high level of communication/follow up throughout the entire cycle (whether it’s 1 month, 6 months, or a year), buyers and sellers will never feel the need to talk with anyone else.
Here’s what you need to get started today…
3 Step Lead Sucking Formula Revealed
- Step one is simple…you must have an irresistible offer that has a high perceived value. You need to have a compelling reason for someone to willingly exchange their contact information in order to access the information. This is the first thing that people often screw up.
A simple example of something that is working like gangbusters right now is a free home valuation. “Find out the value of your ‘blank area’ home right now. Enter your information to find out more.”
- Next, you will need a lead capture page, so people can exchange their information for the offer that you’re making.
First, there should be zero navigation on this page. If you add navigation, people inevitably will start clicking different links, and they’ll be gone. We want to give them one choice and one choice only. Am I going to enter my information for what’s being offered, or am I not?
Secondly (and this is really critical now more than ever, because consumers are becoming more savvy), your page should utilize micro-commitments. Imagine if your form autopopulated their property address on the home valuation offer, and once they clicked the ‘submit’ button, you asked them for additional details via a simple survey. Do you think they’d be more likely to provide even more information?
Robert Cialdini in his blockbuster book “Influence,” expounds on microcommitments, and identifies them as one of the top 6 core influencers. For example, if I go to a page and I start filling things out, I make a microcommitment. I’m then much more likely to fill out the next bit of information, because I’ve already made a commitment.
I don’t want to break my commitment that I’ve already made by filling out the first piece. On the other hand, if I go to a page and there are 7 fields on this capture page…I’m probably not going to take action unless I’m really, really motivated. This allows you to get much higher conversions by having little microcommitments.
- The third part in the process is to start generating traffic. You need a way to get potential prospects to your capture page. This can be done both online and offline using a multitude of strategies, but the key factor is that you must be as congruent as possible.
In my opinion, Facebook is the most effective, most efficient, and quickest way to start getting leads within a matter of hours. For instance, if you wanted to generate seller leads for people living in Plano, Texas, you would want to have a fan page that was centered around Plano, Texas. Maybe you’d call this “Plano Real Estate Hub.” This is the first level of congruence.
The second level of congruence is your ad copy. Your title could read, “Plano Homeowner?”, or “Own a home in Plano?” Then the body may say, “Find out the real value of your home in Plano right now.” The third level of congruence would occur with your capture page, because the same message is echoed there as well. “Do you own a home in Plano? Free report reveals the value of your home right now.”
The idea here is being congruent throughout the entire process. Think about it from the prospect’s perspective. If you live in Plano, Texas and you’re on Facebook where you come across a page named, “Plano Real Estate Hub,” with an ad that says, “Do you own a home in Plano?”…You’re going to start nodding your head.
“Would you like to find out the value of your home right now?” They’re nodding even more in agreement at this point. They click on the link. The page then reflects the same message where they’ve already made a microcommitment. Then they enter their address and they make another microcommitment, and so on.
That’s the idea of congruency. I gave you a specific application of this when it comes to Facebook marketing, but this is vitally important in all of your marketing. The more congruent you can be with your messages, whether it be direct mail, email messages, outbound phone calls, etc., the greater your results are going to be. You’re going to get more results from far less effort.
The next thing I see so many real estate agents make a mistake with is the way that they communicate with their leads. First, by the way that they craft their messages, whether they are email, text, or phone. Additionally, they fail to remain consistent with their message.
So here are a few ideas on how to improve your follow up…
4 Ways to Effectively Communicate With Leads for a Better Response
- Principle number one is to keep your communication short, sweet, and conversational in tone. Your prospects do not care how many homes you’ve sold, how wonderful you are, etc. They only care about what’s in it for them and how you can help them achieve their goals.
Additionally, they want to feel like they’re communicating with a person, and not a company or salesman/saleswoman. So you want the tone of your emails to be similar to something you would send to a friend or relative.
- The second principle is that you must convey a benefit or potential benefit to them in your message. What is in it for them? What benefit will they get by taking the action you’re asking them to take, or by even simply reading your email?
- The third and most important principle is that there should be an expectation of response. This goes for emails, voicemails, and even in person conversations. If you can change your perspective from thinking less about conversions, and focusing more on how you can get into a conversation with this person, you’ll improve your conversions as a result of building relationships.
Conversion is event-based, but conversation is process-based. If you focus on process and doing the right things by effectively using those 3 principles in all of your communication, you’re going to get into more conversations. The more conversations you get into naturally, the more conversions, ie. clients, that you’re going to get!
- Finally, your email communication should be about one thing, and one thing only. Ask one question, get them to respond, and once they respond, you can then ask them another question. Before you know it, you’re in a natural conversation, and they feel like they’re getting to know you, that you value them, and they’re more likely to become a committed client.
Consistency is Your Key to Longterm Success
Unfortunately, most agents lack consistency and are not able to see past the next transaction. How does that relate to online lead generation? Too many agents in my experience focus too much on the person ready, willing, and able to do a deal today, which is only 20% of people.
To illustrate, you generate 10 leads today. One or two of those leads are going to be ready, willing, and able to do a transaction within the next 45-60 days. That still leaves 8 or 9 other leads that are at least somewhat interested, somewhat thinking about real estate, but they’re just not ready now.
Consequently, agents don’t do the right things to consistently follow-up with the majority of their leads…that 80-90% of people who are going to be ready to do a transaction at some time in the distant future. Maybe it’s 3 months, 6 months, a year or more.
In fact, the longest time it took for me to incubate a lead was around 29 months! How does that possibly happen!? The only reason was because I consistently followed up and communicated with them, so when that person was ready they emailed me and said…
“Hey, you don’t know me, but I feel like I know you. I’ve been getting your emails for almost 3 years now. I’m finally ready to sell the house I’m in and go buy a new home. What do we need to do?”
That person had already come to the conclusion that they were going to use me, only because I followed this 3 step process and consistently followed up with my leads. You can’t forget about constant communication and follow up. Without it, you are leaving the majority of potential clients and potential commission dollars on the table.
If you can’t take a longterm view of your business, you’ll always be chasing the next deal, and you will never build a scalable, predictable business where you’re in control. Remember, you’ve got a real business, so you’ve got to think longterm and consistently follow up with your leads to convert them into clients. If you do, you’ll ultimately turn them into repeat clients and build a strong base of referral clients to boot.
How to Automate This Entire Process With Goodwill Pages (FREE Bonus With CA PRO Membership)
Now, at this point you may be feeling slightly overwhelmed with this process. And until recently, it could literally take months just to figure out all the moving pieces, code a quality landing page, and build an effective follow up strategy. Thankfully, there is now a much easier, out-of-the-box solution that totally shortcuts this entire process, so what would normally take weeks or months can be done in seconds.
Goodwill Pages & CA PRO membership provides an incredible amount of leverage with the ability to very easily apply the principles that we covered, while automating a significant portion of your follow up campaigns so that you can effectively build lasting relationships with your leads and make more sales fast.
You can also create personalized pages that can be used in so many different ways. For example, you can create a custom Goodwill Page for every FSBO that you are prospecting, or for every expired listing that you’re prospecting, or for every one of the homeowners in your neighborhood farm. Just think about the level of congruency and the personalization of that!
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