February 25, 2021
Finally, the truth about what it takes to make some real money
Growing a Real Estate team is no small feat.
One tactic that resonates with most team leaders is the idea that it all starts with more leads.
“You want to grow your sales? Msore leads.
Want to retain your agents? More leads.
Want to recruit new agents? More leads.”
It’s the solution you hear no matter who you ask.
So the solution is simple, you just need a stellar lead gen program that attracts new business and agents while keeping your team members happy.
So what do you do? You go to all the conventions and attend all the seminars on lead generation to learn new strategies and philosophies for growing your lead generation program.
But eventually you begin to hear some contradicting information from different agents….
This can lead to a massive gray area, where you’re getting information from other team leaders that turn out to be complete BS.
Why would anyone tell you something that doesn’t actually work?
One of two reasons:
Hint: It’s usually #2.
With all the misinformation out there today, it helps to spot common lies so you can nip them in the bud.
So let’s debunk the three biggest lies that team leaders often believe that are costing them 5 figures per month or more.
You absolutely need leads in order to grow your business.
I’m not saying you don’t, I’m just saying that the solution isn’t as simple as just “more leads”.
Imagine starting a fire by rubbing two sticks together, it’ll take a while but eventually you’ll get an ember and if you cultivate it just right you’ll have a fire in just a few minutes.
Once that fire gets going your only job is to keep adding twigs to the fire, this will sustain and even grow the flame.
Now imagine, you’re trying to start a fire by rubbing two sticks together and someone just keeps throwing twigs at you and forcing you to start over before you even get an ember....
This is what a lot of team leaders are doing to their business when trying to grow a team.
They try to just throw leads (twigs) at their business without creating a functioning follow up system (starting a fire) first.
So in order to make sure your leads will be effective there are few small things to take into consideration.
Speed To Lead
Through countless studies and articles we know that speed to lead is the most important factor in converting online leads, with response rates dwindling if you wait just 5 minutes to reach out.
So if you generate even just a few hundred leads per month, odds are they all register at at random times of the day, you’d have to be available 24/7 to have the best chance of contacting them.
Simply throwing more leads at the system doesn’t change anything if you can’t reach out to all of them inside of 5 minutes.
Persistence Is Everything
This is an important point because to spite the fact that you might be the best sales agent in the world, you’re growing a real business, you can’t devote all of your time simply to making sales calls and sending texts to new leads.
Even if you did have the time to text every new lead within 5 minutes of their registration, that’s just the start.
A lead response study shows you need to make at least 6 contact attempts, before marking a lead dead in order to convert your leads at the highest level.
The chart shows that out of everyone who will ever respond to you only a few do it on your first attempt. It goes on to show making another 5 attempts will more than double your chances of reaching your leads.
You can’t spend your time texting leads all day just to make initial contact, let’s check the math on that.
Say you’re generating 300 leads per month. And you want to text each one 6 times.
That’s 1,800 attempts per month!
Even if you’re a fast texter, that’s about 1 minute per attempt or 1,800 minutes devoted solely to making initial contact with your online leads.
That’s more than 30 hours per month spent on lead follow up.
Can you afford to do a part time job on top of being an entrepreneur? Can you guarantee your agents who aren’t paying for the leads will be as dedicated to every single lead you generate?
It’s crazy, I even hear this one from millennial rainmakers.
The old school sales psychology that says “Business is done on the phone” has tainted our view of texting so much we are pretty much sabotaging ourselves.
A big part of reducing friction (which is your prime objective with a lead) is using a form of communication they’re comfortable with and already using.
Sometimes to better understand an idea it’s good to look at the extremes.
Let’s say you used snail mail to ask a no-brainer question like “How bedrooms do you need?”.
In order to respond, your lead would need to find a pen and paper, write the number of bedrooms they need, buy an envelope, buy a stamp, address the envelope and finally place it in the mailbox.
That’s just dumb, right? You would never want to make it difficult for a brand new lead to respond to you right?
That’s why it’s so important to choose the right method of communication.
There are three common options these days.
Phone Calls: Ignoring the fact that the 2010’s have seen massively decreased answer rates. Phone calls cause friction because your leads aren’t always going to be available to talk on the phone.
Heck, they may not even know you called. With so many unwanted robocalls and autodialers bugging consumers, smartphones allow people to Silence Unknown Callers. That means calls from unknown numbers (like you) are silenced and sent to voicemail. So regardless of the number of times you call, you won’t get through.
Email: For some industries, mostly b2b, email is a great way to convert leads but it tends to be less effective for Realtors. A big point of friction is just that most people don’t really read all of their emails, with less than 20% of all emails being read. Additionally, not all of your leads will actually have their email linked to the default app on their phone meaning that in order for them to respond they have to first get to their desktop computer.
Text/SMS: With the rise of robocalls over the last few years and a steady decline in email open rates since the early 2000s text messaging has emerged as the Gold Standard in lead conversion. Not to mention nearly everyone has their phone on them all the time and can have a discreet text conversation whenever they want.
If you’re not texting your new leads, you’re robbing yourself of thousands of dollars per month.
We like to think of this as a stair case of communication where each step strengthens your bond with the lead and simultaneously moves them closer to closing on a home with you.
We start with low friction questions (which you can learn more about in our article here) through text that simply get a response then use that momentum to set a 15 Minute Phone appointment.
It’s simple and effective.... Actually it’s effective because it’s simple.
Pro Tip: If you’re in search of a killer text script, check out BANTAR.
Experiment with enough lead providers and eventually you’ll realize that sometimes a lead who registers on Website A will often be sold to you by Website B several months later… for more money.
So if it’s the same lead, why do some cost so much more than others?
High Intent VS Low Intent
A major factor in determining lead price is the level of intent.
Someone scrolling through social media and sees a pretty house that they decide to click on usually doesn’t have the same level of intent as someone who is actively searching for homes on Zillow.
The person who is actively going out of their way to search for homes has a higher intent and 9 times out of 10 will be buying a home much sooner than just a casual Facebooker who saw a pretty house and clicked on an ad.
So that’s why some leads end up being so much cheaper, but they’re still the same person.
Think about it, the people who sign up for a list of homes on Facebook are the same people who ask to contact an agent on Zillow a few months later.
It’s not like the Facebook leads you’re getting don’t use Zillow, they just haven’t gotten to that stage of their home search yet. Keyword YET.
Because of this fact, the cheap leads seem harder to convert, not because they’re not buying but instead because they’re not buying right now.
The leads aren’t the problem.
That doesn't mean you’re not leaving thousands of dollars on the table every month in missed transactions.
Bad Follow Up is costing you 5 Figures a Month in Lost Transactions
It’s the follow up, it’s not the leads.
Good follow up does a handful of things that bad follow up doesn’t:
Reading something like this can be a little tough because we’re pretty much saying that the solution to all your problems is… well, complicated and a lot of hard work.
And the truth is, if it were easy then everybody would do it.
Look, growing a team isn’t as easy as “throw more leads at it” because pretty much nothing in life is that easy.
We get that and that’s actually why we built Smart Alto.
There’s just so much that goes into effective follow up and every team is trying to recreate the ISA model in their own office but as computing shifts to an off premises cloud infrastructure we think the ISA model should too.
When looking at how hard it is to grow a team, we saw that one of the hardest things to recreate is an ISA team so we decided to create one that grows with your needs so you can focus on what matters.
Smart Alto is a no brainer because we built it that way. We built it on the premise that your time is valuable and that you deserve a service that adds to the bottom line instead of just another expense!