Early on in your days as an agent, you will likely get excited about anything and everything that looks, smells and sounds like a lead. As time progresses, and you learn you need to be more effective with your time, you will realise that the leads you follow need to be qualified before you invest any further time in to them. Therefore, today we present a piece on how you can validate which leads are worth chasing, and more importantly which ones are worth leaving.
When looking at leads you need to look at how qualified they are in their buying process and at what stage they are at. The first things to look for are:
1. Do they know the market and what is currently happening?
2. Are they certain that they want to buy/lease or are they just looking?
3. Do the have social influencers in the same area? (Do friends and family live near by)
Once you have assessed these, try and give them each a score out of ten for the three categories. Any consumer that scores above 20 are definitely worth pursuing. Once you have established this, you're ready to know who you should pursue.
Does that mean that there is a formula for lead validation?
Not entirely, you are going to see a lot of prospects that waste your time. They may score relatively well in the categories mentioned, but may never return a call, and all of a sudden go cold. The lesson here is that if you invest the time following them up, you need to put a time frame on how long you persist. You can validate generally that if a prospect doesn't get back to you within a few days, and you have tried multiple forms of communication, it may be worth sitting off them. Whilst they may be away etc, if they want to get back in touch they will, you can come across as a pushy agent here, so only persist with prospects that scored exceptionally high, or consumers who you think can validate that they are buying prospects. And when you do follow up, keep a reminder that they aren't chasing you, if they desperately wanted it, you'd expect a basic level of interaction.
In a recent study, 10,000 online lead enquires converted 600 signed leases. Do the math.
What signs demonstrate they are a keen prospect?
With digital technology, it has become all to easy to hide behind systems and not actually meet an agent. As an agent, your number one job is to validate them as a prospect and to create rapport. Therefore, a lead that is very keen to meet you, is a great sign. If they can only look at the house on a certain day or time, be accommodating, they are showing you a clear sign that they are interested in this property. Don't lose them because of bad service. Also make sure that if you are going to show a lead the property, there is interaction repeatedly between the first conversation and the inspection.
You may want to do the following:
1. Send an email after speaking on the phone about how excited you are to show them the home.
2. Send a reminder email the day before the scheduled inspection as a reminder, confirm the time, date and address for them.
3. Send a message or call them an hour before to ensure they are on time.
These are not hard steps to undertake, especially if you create templates, and create a huge validation platform for you. If you can ensure that you have had three points of contact with a prospect before they see a home, you will be a lot more assured they are a viable prospect, and won't entirely waste your time compared to those who just submit an enquiry and expect you to turn up.
Have a referral program to ensure validation:
Another way to ensure you validate leads is to have consumers validate people as leads. You can set up a program where you ask three people to write a 50 word validation of a prospect who knows them well. This will help build up their profile as a prospect and give you a better profile of the prospect. You can incentivise people to write reviews of prospects by offering vouchers etc. This will also entrench the consumer in the process as it will vocalise their desire in your listing.
Once you have run a consumer through all of these steps, you will have a very good snapshot of the prospect. Who they are and who their network is made up of. This will help you in the long run, because it will ensure that when you do meet them and engage them as a prospect, you know their positioning. Putting in systems like this is essential. It will ensure you don't waste time, and take in a much clearer vision of the prospect by the time you meet them.
About the Authors:
Rocky Bartolotto is the National Sales Director for Homely.com.au - Rocky's extensive experience in introducing new product offerings to the market and client management abilities makes him one of the most knowledgeable property specialists in the country.
In addition to his time working in the online space, Bartolotto is also one of Sydney’s top auctioneers, with over 4000 auctions performed through his business Auction Services.
Todd Schulberg handles all things marketing for Homely.com.au - Living and breathing property, Todd has a keen interest in the movements in the market and how agents can utilise new tools and technology in order to be more connected. Using all things social, Todd suggests different ways that agents can engage and think outside the square with their marketing approach.