Anyone embarking on selling real estate will realize early on that finding property to sell is much harder than selling it. After all, you need inventory to sell. In many cases, high-quality real estate seller leads pretty much sell themselves.
Seasoned agents love seller leads because closing the deal takes much less effort than buyer leads. The trick is to claim territories to get new leads, which can be a tall order for new agents with a limited network. You can buy real estate leads, but that does not guarantee you’ll get good ones.
However, with the right strategies, real estate lead gen without using a service can be a cinch. You can start attracting listing leads to build your network and reputation. The following tips can start you on your way to unlocking the secrets to generating more real estate seller leads.
Many people miss the trees for the forest. The Internet has opened a wide vista of opportunities, but sometimes, the best exclusive leads you can get are right there in front of you. Focus first on your sphere of influence to find people looking to sell their property.
Your first line of offense is family, friends, and school contacts. Engage them in conversation at social events or group chats to find out if anyone is selling property. You can also spread the word in your social media groups.
It doesn't matter if you don't get a bite at once. You just want to inform potential clients that you're the resident real estate agent. Because you have an existing (hopefully positive) relationship with them, they are more likely to prefer you to anyone else. Working with someone you know also makes lead nurturing easier.
The next group of people in your circle you should tap is your past and current clients. They may know people who are looking for a reliable agent. Ask them for referrals. A National Association of Realtors (NAR) study in 2022 shows about two-thirds of sellers found their real estate agents from referrals.
Keep yourself on your clients’ top of mind by keeping in touch. It could be a handwritten note congratulating them on their purchase or asking them how they're doing. A nice touch would be asking if they're having any issues and assuring them of your full support. Nothing breeds confidence more than a glowing recommendation from a satisfied client.
Finally, tap other agents in your network for a mutually beneficial relationship. Suppose you specialize in residential condominiums and know people who sell commercial properties. You can swap leads, and everyone goes home happy.
Casting your net over a wide area might work in a buyer's market, meaning the supply is more than the demand. However, 2023 is a seller's market in the US, so you might get better results by focusing on a specific demographic.
A good area is one with many older couples who may be empty nesters or getting ready for retirement. About a quarter of home sellers are 60, so that's a safe bet. They own their homes but may want to downsize or move to another state.
Meanwhile, their homes would be perfect for young families looking for an area near schools or good parks. All you need is to convince one couple with long-term ties in the neighborhood to trust you with the listing. If you can sell it successfully, you develop an excellent source of seller leads.
A successful real estate business is about the people you know and what they think about you. Make yourself known to the people in the community you serve by participating in public activities.
Go to neighborhood barbecues, school events, fun runs, or bake sales. Host a charitable event to fund a community project or donate to a local charity. Shake hands, get to know people by name, and establish yourself as a friendly source of real estate information. Your goal is to make yourself a household name locally, so you will be the first person they think of when they want to sell or buy their homes.
Part of the community are local business owners and service providers; all have their spheres of influence but with a plus. Hardware stores, contractors, plumbers, and landscapers are likely to hobnob regularly with homeowners in a professional capacity. A homeowner thinking about selling will likely make home repairs and renovations to increase the market value. The people that do the work or supply the materials will be the first to know about potential clients.
Connect with local business owners and service persons to get a lowdown on potential sellers. Establish a symbiotic relationship with them by using their services or buying their products for the properties you sell. You can also promote their businesses or services with a shoutout on your social media accounts or a feature on your site. They will be more likely to contact you when anyone in the community wants to sell.
Local businesses also tend to have a significant influence on the community. They know a lot of people and likely have been in the area for a long time. You can develop your reputation as a credible professional by staying on their good side.
Homeowners come in many shapes and sizes. Perhaps the easiest targets for real estate seller leads are those that buy and sell properties for a profit. Real estate investors and flippers often have several homes in their inventory and perhaps need help in marketing them. Let them know you are ready and willing to do it for them.
These real estate professionals also have an extensive network for finding distressed or pre-foreclosure seller leads. You can partner with them to do the legwork, negotiating with the seller for pricing, timelines, and terms for a quick close. The investor saves time by not having to meet the seller, and you get access to a pipeline of property owners looking to sell quickly.
Divorce, probate, and bankruptcy often involve property that needs selling, and lawyers typically have inside information. They are not likely to have real estate marketing experience or contacts, so they are an excellent lead source.
Create a working relationship with lawyers handling these specialties in your area to get referrals. Giving them referral fees is illegal, but you can scratch their backs in other ways. For example, if you know someone who wants to file for divorce, you can refer them to a divorce lawyer in your network. You can also endorse them on LinkedIn or do a feature on your website.
Cold calling sends shivers down the back of most real estate agents, but they can be effective. A nice compromise to calling prospects is to send them postcards. Better yet, send them handwritten postcards for that personal touch.
Don't worry; you won't need to write each postcard yourself. Find a reliable lead generation company that can provide you with a prospect list and send handwritten mailers on your behalf. Your postcard could be a birthday or holiday greeting, community news, etc. An excellent way to get them to think about selling is to send market updates to give them an idea of their home's value. Ensure your card includes your name, logo, headshot, and phone number.
Email marketing is also an option, although it is less effective than direct mail. The average open rate for real estate email is 19.17 percent. By comparison, the open rate for direct mail is 90 percent.
You will not be the only agent going after seller leads; going after niches can give you an edge. Some niches with a lot of promise are for sale-by-owners (FSBO), expired listings, and rentals.
Check real estate marketplaces like Zillow for FSBO listings in your neighborhood. Filter the results for a particular area and listing type. Check listings for the magic phrase "For sale by owner." Get the address and visit the site to offer your services to the owner.
You can also create an FSBO prospecting list by scouring the classified and public ads in grocery and convenience stores. Drive around the community for FSBO yard signs and attend open houses. Subscribing to a paid FSBO lead provider service might also be a good idea to get regular updates on new listings.
Whatever method you use, personalize any contact you make with the owner. Strike up a conversation to find out the homeowner's pain points and offer advice. Be sure to leave a calling card and follow up with a handwritten note asking them about their progress.
You might want to use a template or script that will help you close the deal. Keller Williams offers a Sellers Wanted Client Communication Kit you can check out.
Expired listings are a goldmine for real estate seller leads. Typically, it means the agent was unsuccessful in finding a buyer and a property owner ready to sell. You can find them from multiple listing services (MLS) and filter results by area and listing type. You can also buy them from services such as REDX.
Once you find a promising listing, contact the seller to find out why the property didn't sell so you can offer solutions. You may go through quite a few before you close a deal because they are probably wary of agents. It's a numbers game, so the more listings you prospect, the higher your chances of generating a hot lead.
Suppose you have clients with rental properties. You might want to convince them to sell instead by letting them know the value of their home. Pointing out the many challenges of rentals, such as maintenance and collection, can help you swing the balance in your favor.
The NAR study also indicates that social media is the most effective tool for generating quality real estate seller leads. You can use social network platforms to share posts about successful listings, real estate advice, or property walkthroughs. They should showcase your agent chops in selling homes well and fast. Consider the following platforms for your social media strategy:
Most real estate agents use Facebook ads and posts to generate seller leads. Statistics show that 10 percent of realtors that use it get at least six percent of their business there. Posts can be practical real estate tips, memes, jokes, success stories, or new listings. The point is to post relevant and engaging content consistently.
Most people go to LinkedIn to find professional or business content. Ensure you have a well-crafted professional profile before you post anything, highlighting your accomplishments as a person and agent. That will establish your credibility with homebuyers and homeowners alike. You can then create relevant content for home sellers, contractors, mortgage brokers, and other professionals that serve homeowners.
More than half of real estate agents maintain a presence on Instagram because it is a visual platform. Pictures paint a thousand words, so it is easier to capture and keep the attention of your target audience. Plus, there isn't as much competition as Facebook, and you can repurpose content you post on other platforms. Win-win!
Many people go to social media to gather information before selling their homes. Video walkthroughs can have a significant impact, so YouTube is the ideal platform for dynamic real estate listings. They get four times the number of inquiries than listings without a 3D walkthrough, so do the math. Is it worth the extra trouble?
TikTok is famous for videos like the Harry Potter illusion or explaining the cheug life. Using it to generate seller leads might not seem like a great idea, but you might be surprised. Real estate is a numbers game, so with 117 million users in the US and 1 billion worldwide, that's a pretty good gamble. Here are some great ideas for your TikTok content.
A website might seem superfluous when you can generate seller leads without them, but an omnichannel approach pays. Ten percent of sellers find their agents when asking about a listing they found online. An appealing and properly optimized website adds to your online footprint, increasing the chances of a seller finding you. Combine that with a significant social media presence, and you're well on your way to getting discovered.
The best part of having a real estate website is you have total control over the content. Aside from listings, you can show your expertise through customer testimonials, video walkthroughs, case studies, and an impressive about page. You can also include resources that will convince sellers you are at the top of your game and capable of getting them the best deal. Blog articles, white papers, and comparative market analysis (CMA) reports are good choices.
Having knowledge of search engine optimization is critical. Potential sellers will only become leads if they can find your website. Employ SEO best practices specific to real estate, including an SEO audit, mobile optimization, keyword research, and site speed optimization.
You also need to pay attention to creating highly targeted landing pages. For example, a home valuation page on WordPress can include the Home Value widget. It allows users to input their addresses to get an accurate price for their property for free. That can help homeowners decide to put their property on sale and creates a ton of goodwill for you. They will more likely provide their contact information on the sign-up form.
It would be best to track the performance of your site regularly. Free tools like Google Analytics can help monitor website user behavior, track your key performance indicators (KPIs), and identify areas that need improvement. Many of these tools have built-in integrations with popular customer relationship management (CRM) platforms, so it shouldn't be a problem.
For example, Google Analytics can identify pages with the most and fewest visitors and how long they stayed on them. It indicates the content that resonates (and what does not) with your target audience, informing your future content-creating strategies.
Pro Tip Direct mail is non-intrusive, so it is effective as a cold-calling technique. When executed correctly, it can generate interest in your product or service. A handwritten postcard informing homeowners of their homes' potential value can motivate them to consider selling their homes.
Real estate seller leads are valuable because you need inventory to be a successful agent. The best way to generate them is through referrals from your spheres of influence, including local businesses and the community.
Maintaining an online presence via social media and your website is also essential. But perhaps the most effective way to generate leads is to personalize your contact with potential sellers.
Addressable uses automation for lead generation, sending personalized postcards through an all-in-one platform that uses AI and robotic handwriting. It generates a list of prospects based on a specified area to receive the cards. The platform also analyzes the results of each campaign with integrated lead tracking.
The best part is it's so easy to get started!
There are five types of real estate leads based on the lead source.
That depends. A real estate lead list company may charge $3 per lead plus a monthly fee, but many leads are dead ends. Nevertheless, they may be worth the money, time, and trouble if you're experiencing a dry spell. Suppose you spend $1,000 to get one closing. It will be worth it as you earn about $5,000 on average.
The highest customer conversion rate for a real estate agent or brokerage is about 1.2 percent. That means you need at least 200 leads before making one sale.