During Gary Keller's vision speech at Keller Williams Family Reunion 2017 stated that the real estate has a -32% Return on Investment (ROI)* for online advertising, including purchasing online leads. The funny thing is, agents are purchasing more and more leads, even though they are continually not converting them to sales. Generally, most agents believe the lead quality is low when originating from online sources. However, experts say that it’s not because of lead quality; it’s all in the follow-up.
A study performed by the Sales and Marketing Executives Club of Los Angeles states that 90% of sales are made after the 4th call, yet the average agent calls a prospect only an average of 1.4 times. With just 2% of sales reported to close on the first call, no wonder the ROI is so low!
The questions becomes: How do we get better at following up?We interviewed Ryan O’Neil with RE/MAX Advantage Plus from The Minnesota Real Estate Team.
Ryan’s team continues to be the #1 Selling Real Estate Team in Minnesota (for any real estate company) every year since 2006. In 2017, the team closed over 1700 transactions (435 million in sales) and finishing as the #1 RE/MAX Team in the World in both closed transactions and overall sales volume.
Boasting quality numbers like that, Ryan and his team must be pretty great at follow up. Let’s see what he has to say:
1. Do you find that follow up is an important aspect to converting an online lead?
“Follow up is truly essential in converting any and all types of online leads. You must be quick to respond to the client, focus on providing outstanding customer service, and do your best to help that client however you can. It is also important to try contacting the lead multiple times, through multiple methods, at various times of the day. Consistency of effort over time is crucial.”
2. What methods of follow up do you use?
“We use email, phone, text, video email, video sent by text, and occasionally we send out a written thank you card.”
3. How often do you encourage agents to follow up with a lead that was non-responsive after the first contact?“It can take a number of contact attempts to the client before meaningful contact is established. It takes a number of phone calls, texts, and emails. Focus on your scripts. It is important that the agent asks himself or herself: What are you saying to the client? Are you giving them a reason to call you back? What value are you providing to the consumer and how can you help them? One of the keys, in my opinion, is not being “sales-y”. Simply doing your best to provide value, to LISTEN to their needs, ask questions, and then fill those needs. If you are able to meet someone face to face, we find lead conversion increases dramatically. Even if the client “says” they are a ways out from buying. Take a little extra time to meet them in person, learn about the buyer or seller, their needs, their family, and by taking an interest in them as a client, the client feels a higher level of trust and likability to our agent. This makes the client want to work more so with our agent. And when the time is right, we are fortunate enough to help the client buy or sell.”
"Opcity has provided our team a wonderful opportunity to connect with more home buyers and sellers in our local market. And their staff is fantastic. They truly care about their referral partners and are continually doing their best to help our team convert as many leads as possible. Thank you, Opcity!" - Ryan O'Neil
4. Do you have any tips or tricks to make the follow-up process more efficient and effective?
“Focus on the client and providing value; think how can you help the buyer achieve their goal of buying a home in his or her desired area. Can you connect the client with your trusted referral partners in the industry to help them with credit issues or questions, financing, various types of home questions? Sometimes by taking a little extra time with a buyer or seller that may not be ready to buy right now, our agent will not only get the sale with this lead. But they end up getting multiple referrals from this client as well.
When our agent focuses on providing outstanding customer service, on working with the buyer or seller on his or her timeline, on being low pressure, and simply focusing on providing value, we find we are able to convert a high number of leads over time.
The buyer and seller can tell that we truly do care, are there to work with them on their timeline, and will do our best to help them.”
Opcity understands the value in an agent consistently following up. Our CRM solution that we provide to all of our partners prompts an update from agents every 7 days which is a great reminder and the perfect follow-up opportunity.
Around here, we don't let leads slip through the cracks...do you?