Isn’t that the dream? That elusive thing that many promise, but turns out to be impossible?
Well depending on how you look at it, it is.
You CAN gain prospects and keep clients without directly laying money down to get them – there are plenty of ways.
Each means of gaining real estate leads, especially the free ones, cost in activities, in materials, in effort and in personal care. All of which costs your own time.
So, it’s not absolutely free; there is time and effort involved. The key is to figure out which activities will result in the most effective leads, given the time and effort invested.
Tip 1: Know your target
Know who you want to connect with. Specifically.
Your efforts will be more effective if you know who you are trying to reach, and what they respond to. Know your target audience, and narrow your focus.
The first thing to do is to find out who you already have on your books, and shift your aim according to what you discover, rather than the other way around.
Which brings us to:
Tip 2: Retain before gain
It is far, far easier to stay in connection with those you already know than to go to the effort of finding new prospects. So if you are going to adopt a new strategy to find leads, don’t abandon your old base.
The people you want to reach are probably those who you already have as prior customers, and their friends are likely to be in the same demographic.
Find out what makes them happy and connected, and do that. Do more of that. They will keep you in mind the next time they want to buy again, and when their friends ask who they recommend, you know who they will say.
There is nothing more powerful than word-of-mouth from friends and family.
And besides, a database of leads is just a list, but an audience has already proven themselves as willing to buy. These are gold.
Okay, so now to some ideas you can use:
1. Search Facebook, Twitter and other social media
People keep themselves connected via social media, seek advice and offer news. You can find out who they are by conducting a search for key words. “Should I buy in Footscray” might be one, or “Got a job in Moorabbin – need to move” might be another. Offer to connect! They may need your help.
2. Create pages on LinkedIn (and Facebook again!)
You can use LinkedIn, and your Facebook page, as your own sites-away-from-site with the great advantage that it is easily shareable. Make a comprehensive page full of all your details and geared towards the audience you are after. On average there is a younger audience on Facebook, an older or more professional one on LinkedIn.
Keep this page updated with content, links, and news from your local area that are worth reading, worth sharing, and free from sales spin. If they like it, they’ll share it! It could be a drama about a dog saving a cat in the local park, or plans for a new games Café on Station Street. Anything of interest.
You can also use LinkedIn to find local businesses and connect with them. Perhaps consider sponsoring something, especially if you or a member of your team has a hobby in a particular area already.
3. Build Personal Connections
Are Australians a little aloof? Is there a difference between us and how a Kiwi would interact with clients? Judging your audience, they may like a personalised, hand-written letter, or a social-esque connection, or may regard this with suspicion. It may work! From my experience, though, some need an excuse to connect, and not a forced one, to find common ground, relax and talk.
Perhaps offer to host some gatherings for something that is NOT your line of business, and meet them in that context. How great would that be – to be talked about first as your squash partner, and second in your professional capacity.
4. Other agents
You are not in competition with agents from another area, and they can be your greatest ally. People migrate from place to place all the time, and as your trusted agent, they may ask if you know someone trustworthy in the area they are headed to.
If you do the other agent a favour, you firm up an alliance (maybe hold a social event between you!) and they are likely to reciprocate.
Just make sure they ARE trustworthy before you do.
So these methods might require extra effort, but low cost, and you get to know your prospects personally. The more you know them and what they respond to, the more you know what you can do to grow more leads organically. Instead of just watching numbers increase on a list, they will be people you can get to know better, which in itself is worth the effort.
5. Real Estate List Provider
If you’re looking for a list of fresh real estate leads, complete with phone numbers, addresses, etc – don’t forget our local residential list at the suburb level. It is washed against the do not call register every 21 days and as fresh and local as you will find!