You’ve got your real estate license, have landed yourself at a brokerage, and have bought yourself some fancy threads for your first day on the job… now what?
Unfortunately, your job as a real estate agent isn’t always as easy as waiting for the leads to pour in. You’ll have to do a little real estate lead generation for yourself!
These leads are potential buyers and sellers who may end up becoming your first clients. And once you help them close the deal, you’ll finally get paid that desired commission.
The more leads your real estate business has, the more successful you’re likely to be. You won’t have to hinge all your hopes on working with just a few clients at a time.
Here’s our guide on how to generate leads as a real estate agent and get started on your path success.
Table of Contents
- How do Real Estate Agents Find Buyers?
- How do Real Estate Agents Find Sellers?
- What is a Real Estate Marketing Strategy?
- What is the Best Way to Generate Leads as a Realtor?
- How Inbound Marketing Works for Realtors
- How to Generate Real Estate Leads via Referrals
- How to Set Up a Real Estate Website with IDX
- How to generate real estate leads through social media
- How Much Does it Cost to Advertise on Zillow or Trulia?
- How Can I Get More Leads from My Real Estate Open Houses?
- Real Estate Leads Overview
How do Real Estate Agents Find Buyers?
For real estate agents, finding the right buyer for a home is more than just snapping a few pictures and listing the square footage of each room.
Real estate agents must get their listings in front of the right people looking for just the right house to make a connection.
Buyers demand certain things from their real estate agents, including:
- Prompt response to emails and phone calls, especially when they have questions about a specific home
- Broad knowledge about the home, its features, and how the home compares to others in the area
- Understanding of the home-buying process, and what is reasonable in negotiating a price and terms
In modern home-selling or commercial real estate selling, much of a real estate agent’s prospecting for buyers is done online through their own websites, listings websites, and social media.
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How do Real Estate Agents Find Sellers?
Real estate agents find sellers in much the same way they find buyers: by offering exceptional service and being able to connect the right property with the right buyer.
Sellers’ agents also operate greatly on referrals, meaning former clients recommend the real estate agent to their friends and family who are looking to sell.
What is a Real Estate Marketing Strategy?
In order to find clients, every realtor needs to have a solid real estate marketing strategy.
This strategy needs to involve not only marketing the property that the client has for sale but also marketing yourself as an agent. Customers want to work with people they feel they can trust and who will do the best job possible, and conveying that to potential customers is a key part of a real estate marketing strategy.
Some elements of a solid real estate marketing strategy include:
Every real estate agent needs to become their own brand, which helps build name recognition with potential customers.
Branding should include a logo, professional photo, color scheme, and tagline. When real estate agents join brokerages, some of this branding work may be done for you, but making sure your brand is personalized to you as an agent is important.
Modern realtors need a strong web presence that includes an easy-to-navigate, well-designed website. This will become your “virtual business card” where prospects can learn more about you and your latest listings.
Even better, you can post informative content to attract traffic to your website and then follow up with users via email marketing and ads.
Some things that your real estate website must include are:
- Your name
- Your email address
- Your phone number
- A high-quality photo of you
- Informative blog posts about your business
- The area/zip code where you provide your services
- Your current listings, or a link to the website where your listings are housed
Again, your brokerage may take care of much of the design and information on your website, so be sure to check before creating one.
Social media is a great way to build name recognition and relationships with potential clients.
Create profiles on a few social media networks to start, such as Facebook and Twitter, then add other channels as you grow comfortable with posting.
Don’t try to tackle too many platforms at once because you think you “should” or else you’ll overwhelm yourself and not be very effective at any particular platform.
Traditional Media Channels
Print advertising is still incredibly effective in the real estate space. The same is true for other forms of advertising, including radio and television ads.
As you grow your real estate business and generate more profits, consider adding these channels to your marketing portfolio.
What is the Best Way to Generate Leads as a Realtor?
When it comes to generating real estate agent leads, there’s no one “best” way to make sure you’ve always got enough clients.
Instead, utilize multiple channels in balance to generate the best results.
Yes, you may have more success with one channel over another, but throwing all your eggs in one lead-generation basket is a good way to have your realtor leads dry up fast.
How Inbound Marketing Works for Realtors
Thanks to the internet, inbound marketing has become a go-to method for many real estate agents.
What is Inbound Marketing?
Inbound marketing is letting the right people come to you at the right time.
Instead of putting all your information out in a mass-produced manner such as a newspaper ad and hoping to get a few leads from it, inbound marketing for real estate brings leads to the agent, as people search for homes to buy or agents who can help them sell.
With inbound marketing for real estate agents, searchers type in “homes for sale in Gilbert AZ,” for example, and the search engine results direct them to a realtor who can help.
Inbound Marketing Methods for Realtors
Inbound marketing for realtors requires creating and fully optimizing an online presence.
Some of the ways real estate agents can do this include:
- Search engine optimization
- Content creation, such as blogging
- Social media marketing
- Pay per click advertising
- Social media advertising
Learning how to properly use all of these channels, or find someone who does, can pay off with qualified leads and more clients.
How to Generate Real Estate Leads via Referrals
Referrals are among the bread-and-butter tactics real estate agents use to get more leads.
By providing exceptional service to each and every client, you increase your chances that you’ll get a favorable recommendation when someone your client knows is looking to buy or sell a house.
A great way to help increase your referral leads is to set up a real estate referral program.
With a referral program, you incentivize your clients for telling their friends and family about you. When someone new becomes your client on a recommendation, you give your client a gift - a gift card to a restaurant, a nice bottle of wine and some wine glasses, a fruit basket - as part of your real estate referral agreement.
The overall costs of the gifts you give as part of your referral program are very small compared to the potential lifetime value of a new client, but they make your clients feel appreciated and help your referral program continue.
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How to Set Up a Real Estate Website with IDX
As an agent, you will need a real estate agent website that integrates MLS (multiple listing service) home listings.
The best way to do this is to set up a website with IDX.
Each MLS has its own rules on what is and isn’t allowed on IDX websites, so check with your provider before setting up your website.
Social media is a powerful tool for realtors. It is especially helpful if you’re wondering how to get leads as a new realtor.
Here are some common social media platforms, and how you can use them to generate leads as a real estate agent:
LinkedIn is a network geared toward professionals, so it’s especially helpful for those in the commercial or retail office space niches.
Posting photos and walk-through videos, as well as links to listings for new office properties, can help your posts get seen by people looking for a new space.
Because of a string of changes to the way Facebook shows posts, real estate agents no longer can trust just showing up in the newsfeeds of their fans.
Instead, agents must work a little harder to be seen by people on Facebook.
One great way to get seen by more people is to network. Connect with your clients on Facebook, tagging them in posts and responding to comments. This engagement can help boost your organic reach.
Additionally, Facebook ads can be an incredibly useful tool when trying to get traction on certain listings. By spending some money, you can target entire age groups, geographic locations, or people with particular jobs with a new listing.
A platform owned by Facebook, Instagram is also a very visual medium.
Posting photos and videos of new listings, client stories, and testimonials can help you get seen by people looking for a realtor.
And don’t forget about the hashtags! Hashtags are vital to Instagram success, so make sure to include at least one hashtag with the location of a listing to show up in the searches.
How Much Does it Cost to Advertise on Zillow or Trulia?
However, breaking through on these platforms as an agent is going to cost you money.
Advertising a listing on Trulia is priced depending on the market you’re in, and is key to getting Trulia agent leads. For hotter markets with higher home prices, Trulia charges more.
Zillow also operates on the same model, but the site does offer a Zillow Premier Agent designation. It is one of the keys on how to get leads from Zillow.
For a price per lead, Zillow Premier Agents get two benefits:
- They are the sole agent listed on any homes they list for sale, and
- They are able to advertise on the listings made by non-Zillow Premier agents
The price per lead to be considered a Zillow Premier Agent varies depending on the market you’re in, but can range from about $20 per lead to more than $60 per lead.
How Can I Get More Leads from My Real Estate Open Houses?
When it comes to open houses, the fortune really is in the follow-up.
In some cases, you’ll get people at an open house who have no intention of buying, such as curious neighbors or people who just wanted something to do.
But if you’ve got an actual potential buyer who walks in the door, here are two things you can do to increase your chances of getting leads from open houses:
Talk at the Open House
Not every home will be right for every potential buyer, but that doesn’t mean that a “No, not this one” has to be a “Never.”
As they’re leaving, approach the potential buyers and engage them in conversation. Tell them you’re looking to give the sellers some feedback, and you’d like to know what features they really liked in the house.
Once they’ve given their answer - which you should write down - ask them what they didn’t like about the house.
Use this information to casually recommend homes that you have listed that may meet their criteria. Some people may bite at the chance to see a personally recommended property.
Don’t Wait Until Monday to Follow-Up
Waiting until Monday to follow-up gives buyers two whole days to find other options.
Instead, sit down that evening and send out follow-up emails to everyone who signed in. Make sure to personalize these follow-up emails so they’re more likely to get read.
If you suggested properties to them during the open house, include links in your email. If they provided feedback when you asked, or expressed interest in a feature of the home, mention that.
Waiting too long to send these follow-up emails can lose you a potential sale.
Real Estate Leads Overview
You may have thought taking the pre-licensing exam was the hard part, but now it’s time to get your real estate business off the ground!
There can be a bit of a learning curve when it comes to generating real estate leads, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll see the profit come pouring in.
Brand yourself to stand out, use open houses to your advantage, create an online marketing strategy, and grow your referral network to attract warm leads your way. Soon enough, buyers and sellers will hear of your stellar reputation and come flocking to you.
Table of Contents:
Chapter 5: How To Generate Realtor Leads Like A Pro!
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