Like we concluded in the last chapter, hiring a real estate ISA to work in your office is expensive, time-consuming, and risky.
That’s why Real Estate ISA Appointment Setting Services have recently come to light as the secret weapon for many of the country’s top-selling real estate teams.
It allows them to guarantee that their leads are followed up with and converted at a high level without having to doll out salaries for a full-time employee. To say nothing of the money they save on recruiting and training.
There is a catch though, contracting a real estate ISA service isn’t foolproof, there are plenty of mistakes that can be made when picking the right company.
However, the benefits of 24-hour coverage and highly skilled ISAs make the upfront leg work well worth the effort. That’s right, unlike in-person ISA’s who are available at most 8 hours a day 5 days a week, real estate appointment setting services work your leads 24/7.
In this chapter, we’ll discuss the primary questions you should be asking when qualifying the many different real estate ISA companies in the market. One of the important factors to consider is whether or not the company actually does set appointments, since so few do. Instead, we see most companies simply offer to mark some leads as hot or pass the buck to you as soon as a lead responds.
Before you even consider a real estate ISA company, take a moment to make sure they’re using the right communication strategy to get in touch with your leads.
We’ve discussed in an earlier chapter that the obvious winner should be text messaging, robocalling has demolished any chance of converting leads by phone.
Any real estate ISA company worth their salt uses text-based ISAs because if you follow up with leads at a large enough scale certain patterns emerge, patterns that pretty much spell out the fact that SMS reaches more leads.
Texting not only gives you the highest chance of converting your leads, but it can save you the embarrassment of having an ISA mispronounce a lead’s name or worse the city they’re searching in.
How can you position yourself as the Louisville [LOO-ee-vill] expert when your real estate ISA pronounces it Louisville [Loo-iss-vill]?
Small blunders like that can make it impossible for a lead to take you seriously, which is why text messaging should be king.
If you hear an ISA company gloating about dialing instead of texting just know it’s all for posterity and has no positive effect on your brand or your lead conversion.
We know through experience and tons of data that most text messages are opened almost 100% of the time and 90% of them are read within just 3 minutes.
Compare that to phone calls where “You’re doing great!” if just 30% actually pick up.
We also want to look at the costs associated with phone calls, the ISA provider needs to pay someone to dial your leads, knowing full well that there’s a very low chance of your leads answering the phone. They pass this cost on to you.
So in effect, you could be paying a real estate ISA to dial your leads, not talk to your leads, just dial them. This is the closest thing to money down the drain I can imagine.
In Real Estate people don’t buy from brokerages, brands, companies or websites... they buy from humans.
But still, so many real estate ISA companies believe (or at least try to convince you) that leads and clients don’t mind talking to a chatbot.
I’m willing to bet you’ve never dealt with a chatbot and honestly believed there was a real person on the other end. In fact, I’d bet you knew you were dealing with a chatbot and were actually kind of frustrated with the company.
Humans can quickly spot the disparity between a chatbot and a real human, even through text or email.
Matter of fact people have a clear preference for real people.
In fact, we recorded a 15% increase in response rate just by telling leads they were talking to a real person. So if you haven’t already, read our semi-famous chapter called Real Estate Chatbots Comparison: How To Determine Whether Chatbots or Humans Are Better Real Estate ISAs.
Not every real estate ISA company is a real estate appointment setting company.
Okay, that might sound weird but seriously most real estate ISA companies don’t set appointments.
For the most part real estate ISA companies do one of the following 3 things.
They give you Hot Leads: These real estate ISA providers just give you the names of leads they consider to be interested. This usually just means that the lead has responded to a few texts. So they essentially just filter out the bad phone numbers.
They connect you via Live Transfers: Some real estate ISA providers call your leads until one of them answers, then they transfer the call to you. The big problem with live transfers is if you’re too busy to reach out to a lead yourself, you’ll be busy during the live transfers too.
There’s no difference between being available at a moment’s notice to call a new lead that registered online and being available at a moment’s notice to answer a live transfer.
Live transfers aren’t really solving a problem as much as they just delay it.
They set 15-Minute Phone Appointments: Oddly enough, we are one of the only real ISA companies that actually sets appointments. We use 15-minute phone appointments and put them directly on your calendar.
This gives you a chance to connect with leads during a time slot that you are actually free.
If you choose a real estate ISA company that actually sets appointments you are turning your business into a lead converting machine.
Here’s how it works with a company like Smart Alto that sets 15-Minute Phone Appointments:
It’s really that simple working with a professional team.
Choosing the right real estate ISA company is a make-or-break decision. Choosing correctly can make your business take off like a rocket, choosing wrong can break the bank with nothing to show for it.
When you make the right decision you’ll be receiving high-quality appointments that are ready to convert because they’ve come to trust your business from their conversation with a real human ISA.
When you ask yourself “is it worth it to hire your own ISA or should you just outsource to a company that specializes in real estate ISAs?”, the answer is pretty clear.
Now that you know what you’re looking for let’s figure out how to make the most out of those appointments and guarantee a fantastic synergy with your real estate ISA appointment setting company in Chapter 8.
The strategies you use to follow up with real estate leads will have a massive impact on your success with a real estate ISA.
The right ISA using the wrong practices is worse than a bad ISA using the right practices.
We arrived at this set of strategies by not only reading the literature and studying all of the available data on lead follow up, but also qualifying 100's of thousands of leads the past several years.
We’ve ultimately landed on 8 best practices that will each boost your conversion rate and when combined can have a massive impact on the quality of your business.
Learn all 8 practices and how to implement them to build a perfect follow up system.
The first goal of real estate lead follow up is to get a response. It’s not to set an appointment or to close a deal.
Those may be the ultimate end goal but they are not the first goal.
When first reaching out to a lead it’s important to remember the first goal of real estate lead follow up, getting a response.
We’ve found time and time again that text messaging is the best where to get a first response from your leads.
Learn all about why that’s true and where to take it from there.
A great script isn’t actually a script, it’s a series of reminders to your real estate ISA that remind them to ask important questions that not only build rapport but also qualify your leads in advance.
Through experience and experimentation we have developed the BANTAR principle, a framework for elegantly qualifying leads and converting them further down the funnel.
Learn the entire BANTAR principle complete with an example conversation between an ISA and a lead using the BANTAT method.
Live Transfers have become a hot topic of discussion over the past few years when talking about real estate ISAs.
However, through lots of trial and error we have been able to determine that 15 Minute Phone appointment is the best way for real estate agents to receive hot prospects from their real estate ISAs.
Unlike live transfers, 15 minute phone appointments actually solve the problem of limited agent availability and can help to increase conversion rates.
In fact the only reason they aren’t the norm is because 15 Minute phone appointments are hard to implement on the real estate ISA’s side of things.
Technology can sometimes seem like the key to all of business’ problems.
But through experimentation and testing we’ve found that chatbots are not the key to converting real estate leads. Instead, you need a human real estate ISA.
We review what happens when leads are met with real people. The effects human real estate ISAs have on your conversion rates, and most importantly the effects they have on your bottom line. People prefer talking to people and in this business, give people what they want.
Having your own real estate ISA is a big goal for many teams.
Real estate ISAs make it easier for you to manage your own time knowing that you can focus on going on appointments with prospective clients and providing service to your existing clients while someone else manages your incoming leads.
But hiring a real estate ISA is no small task.
Let this chapter act as your hiring guide when hiring your first real estate ISA.
Choosing the right Real Estate ISA Appointment Setting Service is not only a good alternative to but also a great upgrade over an in house ISA.
Still, it’s a difficult task so in this section we’ll review the primary questions you should be asking when qualifying the many different real estate ISA companies in the market.
Many companies offer to mark some leads as hot or pass the buck to you as soon as a lead responds, this simply won’t do.
But what should you look for instead?
Time Is Money.
Every minute matters so you want to focus on the highest revenue producing activities.
That means when you get ghosted or have appointments but can't seem to turn them into active customers and closings, you’re losing both time and money.
That’s why we’re going to give you a checklist of the exact 13 steps that we’ve found to get you a 90% appointment show up rate and maximize your conversions.
We’ll cover exactly what to do both before the appointment and during the appointment in order to improve both show up rate and conversion rate.
Find out why the smartest teams in real estate choose Smart Alto.
Hint, it’s not just because of our track record.
We integrate with their businesses like a software plug in that superchargers their CRM. Our biggest teams often say we solve some of their biggest problems.
We’ll layout everything that makes us such an obvious choice so you can make a smart decision about your ISA provider.