Lead generation is a challenging and competitive task for all business owners regardless of the industry you are in. Since the internet has completely revolutionized the way we find and communicate with our customers, more and more platforms have emerged to create a complex array of lead generation opportunities across all businesses industries. However, due to a recent boom in the number of realtors in North America, very few industries have become as competitive as real estate when it comes to finding leads online. So, the important question is;
How do you generate leads in a competitive industry such as real estate?
In our opinion, the best place to start is from the perspective of your customers. If you were a prospective home buyer and had never purchased a home before, where might you start? Perhaps by asking a friend or family member for a referral, doing some research online or posting a query in a local Facebook group. In all likelihood, anyone looking to buy a home already has two or more realtors in their direct network. However, even if the prospective home buyer was given a referral from a close friend or family member, they are still highly likely to do their own research online.
This means that moving forward, some of the biggest opportunities for generating new real estate leads will come from building a strong presence, reputation, and authority online. The problem that most realtors face today is not in finding a lead generation strategy, but in figuring out which of the many lead generation strategies to focus their precious resources on. We recommend starting with only one or two of the strategies below.
Here are 12 of the Best Real Estate Lead Generation Strategies
- A Website Designed to Convert
- Leverage a Reputation Management System to get reviews
- Create High Value Content
- Use SEO to Increase Search Visibility
- Social Media Marketing
- Create Social Media Quizzes and Polls
- Live Chats
- Paid Advertisements
- Community Service
- Engage the Subscribed Leads
- Leverage Current Network/Followership
- Customer Support Service
1. Design a Website That is Built to Convert.
Just having a website is no longer enough. Since most of your competitors will have a well designed website, if you want to stand out from the crowd you’re going to need a website that has been designed to convert visitors into leads and then into customers. If you have an existing website, you may want to speak with a Conversion Rate Optimization specialist to learn how to take your site from an informative resource to a lead conversion machine.
Since your website will be the central hub of all of your marketing. it’s important to go beyond the basic home, about and contact pages. Ideally, your website should include pages for each service you offer, complete with relevant content, lead magnets, contact forms and other call-to-actions that will help you to capture your visitors contact information. For example, first-time home buyers have different needs than property investors, therefore, the information you are providing to them should be separated onto a different page to better target them, and increase conversions for that particular target audience.
Along with a page for each service, we highly recommend creating a unique page for each of the cities or target areas that you’re serving. Not only will this create an opportunity for you to demonstrate your knowledge of local markets, but it will also increase your odds of showing up in Google when someone searches for a realtor in their city. We will speak more about this in the Use SEO to Increase Search Visibility section.
You’ll also want to make sure your website is well optimized and loads quickly. If it is difficult for your customer to navigate your website quickly, you run the risk of visitors leaving before your page even loads. If your pages load slowly, have broken links or other issues, you will also undermine any other marketing efforts such as SEO and PPC. There is no point in increasing exposure to a web page that performs poorly.
Since almost all of your marketing efforts will point back to your website, it’s critical that you optimize your website to convert visitors into leads. Having a high-quality website that is full of relevant content will give both you and your business more credibility and greatly increase your ability to generate real estate leads.
2. Create High Value Content
There is a popular addage in digital marketing that “Content is King,” and although there are more important aspects to your marketing strategy than content, it still plays a key role in the development of a successful real estate lead generation system. There are two main types of content that you should focus on creating; Pillar Content and Supplimentary Content.
Pillar Content for Realtors
Pillar Content is the content that is most important, useful, or commonly misunderstood by your target audience. Pillar Content should provide highly valuable insights, answer your customer’s most commonly asked questions, and contain resources your potential customers might want access to in exchange for their contact information. Some examples of Pillar Content for the Real Estate Industry are;
- The Ultimate Guide for First Time Home Buyers
- 10 Tips to Sell Your Home Above the Market Average
- How to Become a Real Estate Investor in 5 Years
This type of content is beneficial for a few reasons:
1) It supports your sales cycle by positioning you as an expert in your field.
2) You’ll educate your readers and spend less time answering frequently asked questions.
3) You can use it as a lead magnet to get contact information from website visitors.
4) It will allow you an opportunity to demonstrate the unique value you bring to the table.
When creating pillar content, a great exercise is to write out all of the frequently asked questions you have gotten in the past, or questions you feel would be helpful for your customers to know the answers to. We also recommend using a service like SEMrush to see what types of articles are ranking high for keywords related to your services such as “First Time Home Buyer,” or “Selling Your Home.”
Supplementary Content for Realtors
Supplementary content is also helpful to keep your fans engaged and your website up to date. For example, maybe you have a real estate seminar coming up that you want to promote or have a few features homes you want to showcase on your site. This content can also be used for social media posts too!
Don’t forget to be visual while developing pillar and supplementary content! Video marketing is quickly becoming the number one form of digital content as it drives some of the highest online engagement. Don’t be intimated by creating a video, even a 30-second video can be enough to capture the attention of your audience.
Some other content ideas you can use to attract your leads include:
- Blog posts
- Virtual Tours
3. Leverage SEO for Increasing Local Search Visibility
Again, the first thing your leads will do is do their research on your online, which is why incorporating search engine optimization (SEO) will help make your business appear on the top of local search results. Doing so can increase the chances of people visiting your website and doing business with you. There are a few ways you can incorporate SEO to take your website and digital presence to the next level.
On-site SEO is the first element of SEO you should focus on. It acts as a foundation for your website to ensure it can be easily found by search engines and also improves the overall site experience for a visitor. On-site SEO includes optimizing text headers and subheaders to ensure they are relevant to a topic or service, drafting photo captions and other accessibility enhancements, and of course, adding keywords to your text.
Off-site SEO refers to high-value websites that link back to your website. These can include high-traffic blogs, news sites, social media pages, or being listed on real estate websites or directories. Off-site SEO can help build the authority of your site and increases the potential reach of your site content by leveraging the audience and digital strategies used by these higher-traffic sites. Search engines will often favour websites that have good backlinks to reputable sites.
Facebook and Google Business pages can also help improve your SEO because they are both very high authority websites. For example, adding your business to Google can help you get listed on maps, bring up your hours of operation and also offers contact information for your customers in an easy-to-find place.
4. Use Social Media Marketing to Connect
Social media has swiftly turned from a place to post personal memories to also becoming a place for business owners to connect with customers. With billions of people connected through a single platform, it is ideal for finding your target audience and sharing how you can help them with your real estate services.
The most effective platforms for realtors are typically Facebook and Instagram as they have the largest community and effective marketing features. However, TikTok has been blowing up since 2020, so it’s a smart idea to jump on that bandwagon as it is one of the more popular platforms, and you want to be where the people are!
At the very minimum, your should be using Facebook, as it is the top social media lead generation because it can offer customers a more personal connection with their leads than any other source. If you don’t already have a business account, set one up and be sure to keep your profile updated on a regular basis with new offers and promotions at least once a week. Posting new content and visuals with short descriptions is always a good place to start. Need inspiration? Check out what some of your favourite social media accounts are doing and see how you might be able to transform that type of content into something valuable for your followers.
5. Develop a system for getting reviews and testimonials
A five-star and say more about your service quality than anything you post on your website or social media! Businesses with a good rating is an easy and passive way to drive new business. Would you buy a product from Amazon if it had a 2.5-star rating? Likely not, and the same goes for real estate agents. Since trust is the most important factor with purchases of this magnitude, chat with your existing customers to see if they will give you positive feedback on your social media profile, website, or Google My Business profile. You can even give your current and future customers a heads-up that you would like a review from them.
If you have trustworthy services and a thorough customer support strategy, this might be a piece of cake for you. Customers usually want to appreciate businesses for the good services they provide, so you likely will not have trouble getting your customers to agree to leave you a review.
It is even more important to ensure client satisfaction to avoid low-star reviews, yikes! If you do receive a negative review, respond publicly in a professional and respectful manner to rectify it. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes, how can you turn the negative experience into a positive one?
6. Use Quizzes, Polls and Other Viral Content
Quizzes and polls are convenient, engaging and fun. Social media quizzes are a great way to get to know your followers and to get feedback from them. Polls and quizzes can be engaging and entertaining in their own way, so people tend to be more willing to do them vs. commenting on a listing. You can make quizzes regarding frequently asked questions, or you can have polls to find out when people are going to want to purchase or refinance their homes.
7. Chat Bots & Live Chats
Potential customers may want to know about your services immediately instead of waiting for you to return an email, respond to a direct message on social media, or call them. Creating an automated chatbot or a live chat option on your webpage can help give them the answer they need right when they need it.
Live bots can also buy you some time by engaging leads without them having to commit to your services. They will keep talking to them about their query and try to satisfy them as much as they can. Potential customers can also leave their contact details with the bot so that you can contact them if they have more questions. Live chats are especially useful if you have customer service representatives who are able to answer queries more effectively than bots and with a quick and personal response.
8. Paid Advertisements
There are various types of online advertising that can give you and your services more exposure.
You can get PPC ads on different websites or search engines and only pay for the number of clicks you get on your ad. Hence, you can plan your budget accordingly and even cap it at a certain amount. If you don’t know how to do it personally, many businesses, such as Grapevine Realty, can help with setting up PPC campaigns.
Remarketing or retargeting means to target the same audience twice. If someone visits your website once, they will also be shown ads related to your business to gain more exposure.
Social Media Ads
Paying for ads on social media can be one of the most effective advertising strategy because of the massive community there. Facebook and Instagram are great for this as they are common social media platforms and can reach a larger community.
In addition, social media advertising features allow you to only target the audience that is relevant to your business. So theoretically you are only paying to advertise towards people who are interested in real estate.
9. Local Community Marketing
The community your business is in is where you should focus your marketing strategies first. Some people feel strongly about belonging to a community and want to work with others within that community. Work with and for the people in your neighborhood to increase the exposure of your business and get referrals to grow your network even further. You can increase your exposure in the community by:
- Hosting Charity Events
- Sponsoring Park Events or Local Fairs
- Giving Presentations at Local Colleges
- Physical Advertisements (Flyers, Radio, Posters, Etc.).
- Releasing Podcasts
- Social Media Posts Regarding Community-Related Topics