Become a Real Estate Prospecting Power House
3 Next-Level Prospecting Tips for ISAs and Agents
By Andy Cole, 0260 Labs
Whether the market is going up, down or sideways, 2023 should be your best year yet. Why? Because what the market is or isn’t doing should have zero impact on your bottom line. Real estate is sales, and sales is a numbers game. If you understand (and apply) this principle to your business, you can crush your goals this year, regardless of what the market is doing.
Let me share three tips to demonstrate what I mean.
When prospecting in real estate, expect the “no”
As with all sales-related roles, you’re going to hear “no” a lot more than you hear “yes.” Use that to your advantage. For example, let’s say you make 100 calls a day, and 20% of the people you call pick up the phone, you get 20 responses. (Generally, I have found that you should be getting one pickup for every 10-15 calls, so a 20% pickup rate is straight fire.)
About 90% of all of those responses will be “no.” In other words, 18 of your responses will be a variation of: “no”, “not interested” or “not right now.” The other 9% will be a “maybe.” If you’re lucky, a tiny 1% will be “yes.”
Yep, that’s right. 1%.
That “yes” you are in search of is the proverbial pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The unicorn. Very, very rare – so rare it might as well not even exist. So, if less than 1% of all of your responses (if you are lucky) will be a straight “yes”, why is everyone so focused on finding that elusive “yes”?
Listen, nobody likes rejection. Why? Because most people don’t know their next move when they get a rejection. The key to success in sales is to find the most common objections in the marketplace and master managing them. View objections as opportunities instead of obstacles. In other words, expect the rejection, be ready to flip it into a “maybe,” and then, ultimately, a “yes.”
In fact, don’t just expect the “no.” Crave it. Delight in it. Dream about it.
Obviously, you can’t build a business on the 1% who say yes, especially when everyone else is going after that same 1%. It doesn’t make sense. You have to go where the competition is not.
Let’s look at an example:
John submitted his contact information on our website. He was one of the 18 folks (20%) that picked up the phone in the earlier example.
According to John, he “is not in the market to buy a house because interest rates are too high.”
How many times have you heard this answer? The difference is when you expect it, you can be ready for it. You can have your next move lined up before John even speaks.
And most importantly, because John submitted his contact information online somewhere, we know beyond a shadow of a doubt that there was a reason why he did so in the first place.
Find out the “why” behind your prospect’s answer
Understanding what is behind someone’s answer is the most important piece of information you must have when it comes to being successful in sales. All of the rest of the information you need to gather from your prospect flows from that question.
Nobody ever struck oil or found gold by digging two inches into the dirt. You have to dig deep. To drill down into the true “why” involves asking questions like:
- Can you clarify what you mean here?
- What do you mean exactly?
- Sounds like…?
If you don’t strike oil, drill another hole. Ask more questions. The answers you receive here allow you to determine motivation level and emotional commitment to taking action, which ultimately determines your level of conviction in following up.
When you get their answer, rate their motivation on a scale of 1-10 to help you prioritize. For example, do they need to move or do they want to move? That is an important difference to learn. Ideally, we want to be working with the need-to-move leads because they will have a much higher probability of closing.
When you know the true reason for someone taking action, the only thing that would prevent you from doing business with this person would be your failure to follow-up correctly.
In the example with John, here’s a possible response to his common objection about interest rates:
“John, you know what? I agree with you. The housing market is crazy right now. I think holding off on your purchase is a smart move. There should be more options in a few months. Mind if I ask what had you thinking of moving initially?”
John: “Well, my grandma is 85 years old and she is living by herself. She fell recently and I am debating having her move in with me, so I’ll need a bigger house.”
Do you see how powerful that is? We went from no, to maybe, to yes. Motivation level goes from 3 to 10.
Ultimately, what’s more important to John: interest rates or taking care of grandma? The likely reality is that John is moving regardless of what interest rates are doing. You simply have to identify the real motivation behind someone’s action (or lack thereof).
Make sure you record those nuggets of information in your CRM because it will be impossible to remember every single conversation you’ve had with a prospect. Put your most important notes at the top of the lead profile, front and center, so you don’t have to hunt for them later when making a call. Keep the notes concise – 2-3 sentences max, grammatically correct.
Remember: Real estate prospecting is math, not rocket science
97% of all leads will not be ready to buy or sell today. So, focus on stacking your long-term pipeline. This means planting 2-3 seeds per day. That’s 2-3 conversations with “Johns” per day, just quick conversations where we are expecting the “no,” finding out the “why,” and asking if it’s okay to touch base with them at some point in the future.
Remember: Long-term, consistent follow-up is where the money is made.
Here’s some more math. 3 seeds planted per day results in:
- 15 seeds per week
- 60 seeds per month
- 720 seeds per year
- With a close rate of 10%, that’s 72 closed deals per year
The only reason why you would not be successful in this game is if you are terrible at math or you’re not willing to do the work.
So, do the work (!) and make 2023 the best year yet.
0260 Labs is a Sierra Platform Partner, offering fully trained ISAs for real estate teams and brokerages.
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