S6 E10: LEAD FOLLOWUP SECRETS
It’s that time! Welcome to Roadmap, how to take three listings a week until you’re ready for more. Each week, we interview a great agent who’s consistently taking several listings each month. And we have an exciting guest today, because it’s the lead follow-up show. This is a very important show. It’s a short show. And take some quick notes, and you’ll get 1, 2, 3, 4 nuggets that you can use forever if you take at least one extra listening a month. One extra. Pen and paper or keyboard ready? Alrighty. Let me introduce my co-host from San Diego, Carley Hathaway. That’s CarleyHathaway.com. Hi, Carley. How’s the real estate business?
Hey, Ren. Hey, everybody. Real estate is fabulous. San Diego is a great place to be for real estate right now, mainly because everyone’s moving away. So, it’s perfect for a listing agent.
How about that? Yeah more room for you. There you go.
I’m really excited for today’s show, because I’m sure, like a lot of people, lead follow-up is my biggest weakness because it’s boring. So, I’m excited.
Good. Good, good, good. And are you going to wear your orange cape? Don’t you wear that orange Vulcan 7 cape?
I do have my cape. It’s at the dry cleaners though, so maybe next show.
Oh, it’s at the dry cleaners? Okay. I want to remind everybody, we simulcast the show on the private Lead Gen Facebook group. They have 52,000 members, so we have a large audience there today as well. And we’ll be pausing for a commercial message during the show as a thank you to the Lead Gen folks. So let’s dive into it. lead follow-up. And if people want to follow along, we have the prospector’s creed, and you can get your copy at vulcan7.com/dirt. And you may want to download it, print it out, and put it on the wall. So, it’s a lot of fun. Lead follow-up is where all the money is. When you think about sales and persuasion, we’re having a conversation to illuminate that part of somebody’s mind that wants to move forward with a purchase or a sale. Now, a lot of the folks on this program watch to become a strong listing agent.
Buyers take time. Listings take skill. So you want to be a strong listing agent, carry a lot of inventory, so that when you’re gone on the weekends, that you’ve had three or four sales. Try to do that with buyers? Not easy. So, lead follow-up is a critical piece and it’s the gold. 75% of all business comes from lead follow-up, so we have to get good at it. Number one, we have to do it. So it all starts with the definition of a lead, Carley. When we look at the definition of a lead, we’re looking for an answer like, “Someone that would buy or sell within blank days.”
I think seven to 10 days.
Seven to 10 days. I know you say that. Everybody else is going to say you’re crazy. Now, if somebody in your database says, “We’re going to do something in the spring,” it’s a lead and it’s not. It’s a note and you’re already in touch with them, and you may put it in a special category, but it’s not in your hot leads list. You’re going to mark it separately, because you’ve got a long period of time and a lot of things change. And you’re going to track that a little more closely along with the rest of your database.
Right. But you’re not going to be called-
But it’s not in your hot leads list. “Oh, they’re going to do something in the next nine months from now!” It’s not one you carry around. We used to do a little chart. If your goal is to sell 20 homes, your listing is anybody, anytime, anywhere. If your goal is to sell 50 homes, you may want to lead maybe anybody that’s going to do something in the next 30 to 45 days. If your goal’s 100 homes, it’s going to be somebody who’s going to do something in 10 days to two or three weeks. If your goal’s 150 and up, your goal is somebody that’s going to buy or sell in the next week or seven to 10 days. So, that begs the question, “How many leads do you have?” When we ask people how many leads they have, the people that aren’t doing much will tell you they have 800 leads or 300 leads.
Those are not leads. That’s basically their database. Those are suspects. They haven’t identified themselves with an immediate need to buy or sell to move forward. These are people we’re touching as part of our database, and everybody’s going to buy or sell sometimes. Yeah, those are not leads. So typical answer, how many leads do you have, Carley?
Four. Somebody that’s going to buy in the next two or three weeks, four weeks, something like that is a reasonable number. And we’re looking at it, we’re staying in touch, because that lead follow-up is critical, critical, critical. We have to keep following up. The best way to look at when someone says, “Well, I don’t want to bother people. They know I’m available. I approached them once, and I don’t want to keep checking in, because they’ll think I’m being pushy or I’m a pest or something like that.” Then, wear the shoes on the other side of the fence. Be that other person. Can you remember somebody that approached you? You didn’t make an immediate decision, you’re thinking about it, and they won’t call you. They won’t touch in, they won’t email, they won’t text, they won’t call, they won’t stop by. And you’re thinking, “I’m right for the picking, but they’re not talking to me.”
Yeah. And then, someone else will just happen to call at the right time, and you go with them.
And a lot of times, people haven’t made the final decision. Carley, I got to tell you. A lot of times they would decide when I called. That’s when they decided.
Yeah, because it’s on their mind.
“How does your schedule look for, say, next Thursday?” “Well, hold on. Okay, how about four o’clock? Okay.” It’s important to check in and sometimes call from different numbers, because they might just go, “I don’t know what I want to do,” if they see your call come up. It’s a powerful tool.
If we’re carrying our hottest leads, let’s say you have your four. Well, let’s say you had eight or nine or 10, you’re carrying them around. And I checked with you a month later and looked at your leads list, and they were mostly the same names. What would that tell us?
Those were not strong leads, or I did not call them.
Yes, probably both, because if you still have them four weeks later, they were not what you say. It’s usually an indication you’re not talking to enough people. So if you are carrying your leads around, and four weeks later you got the same leads, it means you’re not talking to enough people. Because a month later, it should be a whole new list.
Mm-hmm. Yeah. Agreed.
And people carry them around, “I got my lead. Got my lead.” But we have to keep taking in new people. If you’re talking to, say, 20 a day, that’s 100 a week. That’s 400 months, you’ve talked to 400 people, and you’ve still got the same lead list. Nobody new came in? Nobody new went off? This is a game of old maid here, folks. It’s really important to keep that rotating.
Yeah. And if it is a hot lead that you’re carrying around, how often do you suggest we call them?
It’s going to depend on the source. If they’re an expired listing or a for sale by owner, here is an active house sitting there, and they just came off the market or they’re for sale by owner and they’re sitting there, that is hot. You got to be talking to them…
Every day. If they are someone you sold or worked or somebody you know, it may be more like every week, something like that. It just depends on where they are in the spectrum of things. But if they are already in movement, like a for sale by owner expired, that’s days not weeks.
Yeah. Okay. Yeah.
I wanted to touch on motivating people on the prospector’s creed. It’s kind of fun. Everybody should download this. Volcan7.com/dirt.
I love this.
Every mind has more dirt than gold. A prospector’s job is to remove dirt as quickly as possible, leaving the gold behind.
So, you got to dig through that dirt.
A prospector who analyzes every speck of dirt won’t find much gold. You run into people that are prospecting, and they shadow you, you shadow them. You see somebody, they’re researching before they make the call. “I wonder when they bought it, how much they paid for it. I wonder what their loan amount is.” They’re talking themselves out of it. That’s a form of call reluctance.
Yeah. It’s like paralysis by analysis. And it’s like, they’ll have a couple calls, and they’re like, “Ooh, I really like that street. Let me dive deep into that expired.” And they start looking on the MLS, they start looking on pictures. You’ve already wasted 20 minutes, you could have called 30 people by now.
Right. What’s been proven is, don’t do the research. Talk to them, talk to them, talk to them, and ask the right questions.
Do the research after.
Right. And then, alchemy doesn’t work. No one can turn dirt into gold. We can’t motivate people, folks. We can’t motivate someone who says they’re going to sell and they’re wishy-washy. “Well, my wife wants to.” The wife wants to and the husband doesn’t. You can’t motivate them. You can’t motivate them. Basically, you’re going to rule them out. You can’t motivate them. You’re looking for, “Are they ready to go?” If they’re waffling, throw them around. Your best tool is a very large trash can. That’s your best tool.
Throw them away. “Don’t get mad at dirt for being dirt. Move on for the gold,” as it says right here in the prospector’s creed. It’s real important to focus on the people you can help, because they want to go. You’re not trying to talk them into anything. You won’t find these people on the candy aisle at the checkout down low where the kids… That’s an impulse buy. Hershey bar, Snickers, those are impulse buys. These are sellers, and buyers are not impulse buys. “Some dirt hides more gold than other dirt.” That means if you’re not good at your people skills, if you’re not good at asking questions, getting in rapport, you need to work on that so you can find asking better questions. Like, a better question. Here’s a good question. Write this one down. “How will your next home be different than the one you’re living in today?” Ask anybody that question. How will your next home be different than the one you’re living in today? You want to get a good conversation started? How about that one, Carley?
Yeah, agreed. And I think, too, when you’re in the discussion, you have to be excited for them. You can’t be like, “Okay that’s great.” And then, onto the next question. It needs to be real excitement to get them thinking that you’re really interested in the conversation.
Well, generally it’s always a series of questions. That question begs the next question, which begs the next question. So if you’re doing it right, you’re not passing onto the next question. You’re drilling down. Just say, “Well, how will your next home be different than the one you’re living in today?” “Well, I won’t be surrounded by all these neighbors.” “Really? Tell me more about that.” “Well, we were thinking we want to move out into the country.” “How exciting? What draws you out to the country?” “Well, when we got married, we decided we wanted to have a farm one day, and now the kids are 17 and 19, and we’re going to get that farm.” “Wonderful. Have you seen anything you’re interested in now? What part of town would you live in?” All those questions connect.
So, I agree with you. “Agents are afraid to dig deep for motivation, because they are afraid they will find out that they have no lead.”
That’s very, very true. And I am guilty of that as well, because you’re so excited that they are talking to you and you know in the back of your mind it’s not a good lead, but you’re like, “I’m just going to keep going.” It’s kind of like how you don’t want to ask the prequal questions, because you don’t want to know the truth.
Yes. Right. And it’s important to have those prequal questions ready to go. Folks, if you want to dig deeper, just write this down because in general, this is what you’re saying. “What’s important about blank? What’s important about moving out to the country?” “Well, there are less people.” And “What’s important about that?” “Well, we’ve always wanted to…” “What’s important about that?” You take them down to the deepest level, they will feel a kinship with you. And then, you’re in rapport, and a lot of wonderful things happen.
Yeah. And you can use those tools later to help you close. “Well, wouldn’t it be exciting if you were out in the country away from your neighbors? Let’s just get the contract signed.”
That’s it. There you go. And then, you always close. I’m glad we’re talking. Great. Let’s see. “To get you one step closer to the country and those pigs and chickens and cows and birds, all we need to do now is set an appointment so I can help you get out to the country by this summer. Won’t that be great here? Here, how does your schedule look for Thursday? Or would Friday be better?”
There you go. Perfect.
Dig deeper. I agree with that one.
We need to keep moving through the leads, throwing them away, getting new leads, and then check to your hot leads list. You may want to lay them out. “Is this a good sign?” If you look at your hot leads list week by week by week. And every day, this is what I always did for many years. I write down, pulled out a blank sheet of paper, “What is my number one hottest lead? The Morris’.” And then, the Morris’ have said they’re ready to put their home on the market today or tomorrow. And I would put a percentage next to them. 90% odds I was going to get. What was my second hottest lead? The Andersons. The Andersons I’ve talked to twice, they’re checking with this or that. I put a 75% odd, and then number three, and I would make a list every day. Every day. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.
The hottest leads. And then, that reinforced it in my mind. And when I wasn’t able to make a good list with percentages I was truly happy with, I was like, “Oh, I better talk to more people.”
Yeah. Get on the phone.
And if you’re going to take 10, 12 listings a month, this is what you’ve got to do.
And what I do, too, is I put the commission I would make if I close them, because that’s a lot of incentive for me because I’m really money driven. We know that.
If there’s call reluctance, put dollar amounts by it, because that will get you calling.
Alrighty, good folks. Hopefully, some of these notes helped set up a good lead follow-up system. The lead follow-up system, Carley, is one of the things that people struggle with when they’re newer in the business. They’ll set up an electronic folder, a manual folder for somebody, and then that lead goes poof! So we have to keep it simple. These are simple entries that you got to make lots of because these things go poof! Don’t dedicate a whole electronic folder to this one person because odds are not good you’ll still have them as a lead tomorrow. Just set up four or five things on an electronic file or a three by five file or whichever you prefer. And make them easy to read. Look at them. Look at them all day. Look at them every day. Look at your hottest leads.
Go through that 8, 10, 12. Your database is not your lead list. Those are not leads. That’s your database. And you’re going to want to flag your hottest ones in the database, because you’re talking to them and communicating with them all the time. Good. Glad everybody could join us for this show. And I want thank Aaron Wittenstein for airing it on his LGSO group. If you want to get involved with them and watch this show on that private group, 52,000 people, all about lead generation, they’re at facebook.com/groups/gotobjections. And if you’re watching on this group and you’re not involved with Vulcan 7, go to vulcan7.com/leadgen for a special deal. And then finally, the top agents have that are listing a lot of property, they have a secret. Some of you know this secret. After they do their lead generation, they go to the refrigerator and get delicious Graeter’s mint chocolate chip.
If you go to Graeters.com, you can find this ice cream anywhere in North America. They have it at the seaside market, not too far from you, Carley, and several other places that have yet to be discovered in San Diego. So, this is the one for listing agents. The other ones, the other flavors are for working with buyers, like Rocky Road. So, if the listing is slow to sell and this works, folks, dig a hole in the front yard, bury it upside down, and that listing will sell just like that. Want to thank everybody for being here. Next week, we have an exciting guest who is taking 2, 3, 4 listings every week, and we’re looking forward to interviewing them. And I know you’ll want to be there for that. See you next week folks.
Thanks, everyone. Have a great week.