If you’re looking to up your real estate game, there are about a million places to start. Marketing, masterminds, tech tools — the list is long and daunting.
We’re here to help you cut through the hype and focus on what it really takes to boost your contract rate. We have consulted with some of the biggest names in real estate to bring you the exact action steps and insider tips that helped them close over 80% more deals.
Set Goals You Can Control
Dreaming big is awesome, but the truth is, millionaire brokers and agents aren’t sitting around daydreaming about the 157-foot yacht of their dreams.
They’re thinking about the next call. The next email. The next lead.
Successful agents know EXACTLY how many leads they need to hit each day in order to conquer their sales goals. Do the math, then break it down to focused daily actions you can track.
Mitch Ribak, broker owner of Tropical Realty Beachside in Melbourne, FL (a.k.a. The Grandfather of Lead Conversion) breaks it down by short term and long term conversions so he can easily see his exact conversion rate for each kind of lead (~2.5% new leads and 5.5% for long term leads).
Knowing your numbers is what separates the high-octane leaders like Mitch (who saw $127 million in transaction volume in 2015) from the agents who keep running in place. Mitch recommends Follow Up Boss to track each conversion point along the way. Every time your agents connect with a lead, complete an appointment, show a home, or make an offer, this critical step is logged for future follow up.
We live in an instant response culture. If a lead has given you their phone number, they expect to get a call. According to a study by Dr. James Oldroyd, a professor at the Sung Kyun Kwan Graduate School of Business (who was at MIT at the time of the study), the best time to call is within five minutes of the time the person was viewing your website.
Agents who win are those who follow up fast and consistently.
The good news is, it’s not hard to outrun the herd. According to Mitch, 42% of internet leads NEVER get a phone call, and the other 58% wait more than 24 hours to hear from an agent.
From a client point of view, that’s horrible customer service. How can you serve your buyer if you never even speak to them?
Ambitious agents always call first, fast and keep in touch. They know it’s not about being pushy, sleazy or salesy. Customer service and seven-figure success are simply two sides of the same coin.
Pro Tip: In Follow Up Boss you can automate a personalized text to go out immediately to new leads. This little trick can get you a response rate of up to 70%.
Build a Boss-Level Follow Up System
In 2015, Mitch and his team closed 45% of their deals within three months of the lead registering on their site, and 82% within six months.
They have what other teams don’t:
A rock solid follow up strategy.
Here’s a peek at their call back schedule:
- Agents always call within 24 hours of lead being qualified by their ISA.
- After the call, make sure to send them exactly what was discussed (not enough agents do this)
- Then, 1 week after your initial call with the prospect follow up again to make sure they received everything and see if they have any other questions
- From there, organize leads by buying timeline and follow up accordingly.
- If they’re buying in 12 months or more call every 2 months
- If they’re buying in 6 months, every 6 weeks
- If they’re buying in 3 months, once per month
- If they’re buying in 1 month, call weekly
Remember, it’s different for every lead. Buying timeframes change and it’s on you to get to know your prospects and update your strategy based on your conversations.
In a resort or transient market, this is especially common. If you have leads that don’t have a ton of urgency your best bet is to keep following up. President of Real Estate Champions, Dirk Zeller recommends categorizing leads by how committed they are, “To me, “committed” means that I would bet my car or my house on the chance that I would get an interview with them or that they were going to list or buy with me.”
Leads that don’t make Dirk’s “committed” list get tagged as “probably” or “possibility,” depending on Dirk’s hunch for how likely they are to convert. This is largely a game of intuition — the longer you’re in the game, the easier it becomes to effectively gauge and categorize your leads.
Pro Tip: If you’re itching to see some movement, try sending an email once every month or two to your list saying, “I had a last minute cancellation. Would anyone like to take their spot for a showing?” This 2-second email is worth major $. (And of course, make sure you mix up the language a little each time. No one wants to feel like they’re reading a template!)
Hi [First Name],
I’ve been sending you listings for a while now.
I have some availabilities this weekend. See anything you’d like to check out?
Protect Your Focus
As a team leader, you’ve got to be ruthless about protecting your team’s time and energy. The more they’re in the zone, the more deals you’ll close.
Beware, if you overuse your task management system, your agents will lose steam fast.
Duplicate entries, complicated lists, a zillion notifications — they will literally dread logging in.
Whatever CRM you use, make sure there are no messy distractions. Ideally, you’ll want to use a system that enhances, and never disrupts, the workflow. For example, in FUB, the system automatically surfaces your best follow up opportunities and puts them into a list so you can move quickly from lead to lead. The goal should be to easily see the top 10 or 20 follow ups you can make that day rather than having to choose from hundreds or thousands of options.
Another common pitfall is overestimating the numbers. Many brokers and agents fail because they think they should be getting more responses. Help your agents protect their money-making momentum by setting realistic expectations.
The average conversion rate is less than 1% so if you’re following up consistently and hitting 2%, you are a ROCKSTAR.
Pro Tip: A consistent, repeatable system is key to overcoming follow up overwhelm. Ryan Melville, Owner of The Melville Team at Keller Williams Realty, uses smart lists to deliver personalized follow ups to 100 leads in 1 ½ hours. Daily distraction-free persistence will get you there.
Follow up isn’t easy, but a great CRM tool can make it feel that way.
10x brokers and agents use smart systems to streamline the sales funnel and stay on top of massive amounts of leads without drowning in task lists and spreadsheets.
At Follow Up Boss, we use tags and smart lists for focused lead conversion. For example, you can easily see which leads are viewing and responding to your emails and move them from weekly to daily follow up by simply deleting and adding a new tag.
You can also use custom filters to generate follow up lists based on the last time you emailed, called or texted your leads. After you contact them, the leads are automatically moved off that list and only reappear when it’s time to follow up again. What you see in front of you are actionable leads only.
Pro Tip: Make sure no lead ever falls through the crack with a catch-all smartlist excluding all follow up tags. When this list is at zero, you know you’ve got a follow up plan for 100% of your leads. Ambitious agents NEVER leave money on the table.
Show Like a Pro
You don’t want to follow up like a boss only to drop the ball when you’re face to face. Rockstar agents always have a sales strategy for when they’re in the field.
Mitch shared his personal showing strategy which got him 80% more contracts. It’s a two-day, eight-house approach — and it’s pure gold.
Day 1: Education day. Meet with the buyer, show them one or two homes, and learn everything you can about who they are and what they’re looking for. Then go home and pick out the home you know they’re going to love (and buy!).
Day 2: Show six more homes which are better than the ones they saw yesterday, but still not “the one”. Then, take them to the one you singled out for them. Finally, show them one more eighth house just like the houses you showed before.
Then, offer to show them the seventh “dream” home again. After that all you have to do is watch their eyes light up and get that pen ready.
Empowerment + Accountability = Your 10x Team
When it comes to managing your team, make NO exceptions.
Boss brokers and team leaders train, train and train again to keep the team lit up and moving firmly forward. And they ALWAYS hold their agents accountable.
Use an agent tracking sheet to stay on top of your total number of active leads, calendered showings and contract rates. This also helps you become a better leader because you’ll know exactly where your agents need help.
For example, if you have an agent that’s great at getting leads in the car but isn’t closing any contracts, a little extra coaching on showing strategy can easily bridge that gap and help her bring in way more deals.
If this sounds like a headache, rest assured, it’s a minor pain that’s well worth your while. You’ll feel the difference where it counts: your pockets.
Pro Tip: Bring on a small team of Inside Sales Agents (ISAs) and watch your conversion rate soar. ISAs take care of first follow up calls and track agents’ callbacks so you don’t have to. For more on ISAs checkout Mitch’s lead conversion masterclass.
What are your goals for yourself and your team? Got any of your own 10x tips you’d like to share?