According to an article recently submitted by RISMedia, nearly 75% of online real estate marketing…
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In basketball, the player that stands by the net the entire game and takes the easy shots is considered a cherry picker. This is frowned upon because they want you to be more engaged in the game. They want you to sweat and push your self so hard to earn each and every point. Not take the easy way out and cherry pick all day.
That’s not how you play the game, right?… Or is it?
Let’s get right to the purpose of this post. Because I’m not here to talk about going in the field and picking cherries and I’m not here to talk about the game of basketball.
I’m here to talk about the game of real estate and whether the concept of cherry picking in real estate can help or hurt your business. I’m also going to let you in on why I don’t follow the “first come, first serve” rule in my business and why you shouldn’t either.
But first, let’s start this off the right way…
What the heck is Cherry Picking When It Comes to Real Estate?
When I first got started in real estate, out of all things that could be important, there was one thing that stood out the most . . . Having a website!
Now, I’m not saying you have to have a website in order to be successful in real estate, however I’m sure you see how powerful a website can be, if used correctly. Just look at this website!
Anyway, in spite of all the buttons, features, images and whatever else that makes a website look pretty, there is one portion of a website that you should be most concerned with. If you don’t have it, then you need to get one fast!
I only care about one portion of my website (on the backend) and that is my Lead Questionnaire Form. Basically this form asks questions that allow me to qualify/disqualify leads based on the type of investing strategy I use, as well as their motivation and their ability to do a deal.
Today’s post is the fifth in my series, “The Investors’ Realtor.” In previous posts, we have discussed thinking like an investor in order to find and gain investor clients, as well as looking for current hot spots (not necessarily in your own backyard) and going to where the investor actually wants to buy. In the third edition I explained how to start and run a local real estate club in order to gain exposure for yourself, market your services, find prospects, and network with others in your local market place. My last post detailed how to find and generate quality, qualified leads for yourself using principles that apply to all business professionals, not just Realtors.
Building off the tips shared in last week’s edition for creating leads, I would like to discuss following up on the leads that you generate. Great marketing and great lead generation are useless if you do not follow up on your leads promptly and effectively.
Following up with your Real Estate Leads
The first step I perform is to log all of my leads into an Excel spreadsheet. If set up correctly, this spreadsheet can then later be exported to an email blasting service like Constant Contact or sent using a program like Microsoft Outlook (which is what I use) to send bulk emails to these potential clients. While Outlook allows you to blast up to 50 emails at one time, newsletter sites where you pay a monthly fee for their services allow much larger email blasts from your qualified list.
In my “new leads” spreadsheet I create the following fields: Name, Phone, Email, Source of Lead, Date, Notes, and three columns to record each of the three times that I try to make contact with a new lead.
In this, the fourth installment of my “Investors’ Realtor” series I would like to dive into how to market yourself and create quality leads. In my mind, quality leads are real, qualified prospects that are ready, willing, and able to buy real estate from you.
My BiggerPockets blog post from last week detailed how I use a local real estate club to generate leads. I realize, however, that starting a real estate club isn’t for everyone; this kind of marketing can be costly and very time consuming.
Press Releases for Lead Generation
The second tool that I use for lead generation requires less initial outlay of time and money. About two years ago, one of my local friends, Robin Jay (author of “The Art of the Business Lunch” and an accomplished public speaker) told me about one of many internet press release websites that allow you to write articles and press releases about any topic you like, and post them electronically on the site. They then distribute these articles to various internet ezines, blogs, websites and other publications.
I have used these services extremely effectively over the past couple of years to promote myself as the “Foreclosure Expert” in the Las Vegas real estate market. As I noted in my previous blog entries, in order to succeed in real estate it is important to pick a niche in which to focus your energies and efforts. Once you decide on your niche, you need to become an expert in that field through reading and doing. Once you are an expert, it is not that hard to sit down, write an outline on a subject that you know a lot about, and create an article that will be valuable for someone who is looking for information on that subject.
How Valuable is One Lead? People often ask me what the average response rate is…