Free Real Estate Leads!
Perhaps nothing can evoke such a “Pavlovian Response” in the mind of an Investing Realtor® or Wholesaler such as the four words above.
One of the things that continues to surprise me about real estate wholesalers, and newer Realtors® who invest is the persistent belief that you have to pay to get leads. Nothing could be further from the truth!
In fact, I would go so far to say that the best leads are free.
That’s a pretty big statement. To take it one step further, I would say that the true “pros” of the business, the 5% making 95% of the money laugh at those who struggle along, desperately hoping that your 150 postcards will “make a difference.”
Those “in the know” understand that the best leads have always come, and will always come… for free.
So why, if you are new, do you find yourself paying for useless, time-wasting leads?
Often, because you don’t know any better; and what’s worse, nobody has taken the time to tell you the truth behind creating free real estate sales leads!
In this post, I hope to shed some light on three very powerful methods that the super-successful use to build their sales business, along with practical tips on how you too can benefit from these powerful strategies!
Insider Secret Numero Uno! Build a Powerful Center of influence!
It’s no secret. Your “network” really is your “net worth!” Oftentimes, the very best deals are done without any advertisement at all. The “best of the best” deals are reserved for the people who they know they can count on.
Building such powerful relationships takes time, effort, and a little planning. In my Executive One on One Coaching program, I counsel my Executives on how to build lasting relationships with powerful local figures to provide mutual support and assistance.
One such technique is the “Interview Technique”. By interviewing a local real estate “mover and shaker” for the people you know in your current Center of Influence, you can provide information and items of value for your current database.
A practical example of this would be to interview a local high powered real estate developer like one of my One on One clients did. Using this information (the interview) on his website, or other media will help him gain credibility, as well as support from a powerful new friend.
By helping others expose their business and achieve their goals, you inadvertently succeed in reaching your own.
Categorize, Categorize, Categorize
It’s safe to say you can never get too much information about your database. Classify them into three groups of probability. “A” (those who know, like and trust you), “B” (Those who know and like you, but haven’t got a reason to trust you…yet), and “C” (Those who know you, but don’t really know you well enough to like or trust you yet.)
By holding effective Meetup Groups, you can get other like-minded Wholesalers and Investors to work together with you in the properties you have for sale. Remember, not all Investors are created equal. Some will be busier than others, some will be starting out, and others winding down in their career.
Not every Investor is “raring to go”. Some more seasoned investors are willing to pass off some leads to a newer investor if they are outside their normal area, or outside their typical specialty or preference.
Remember, develop a good reputation as a professional who gets results, closes deals, and is fair, and you will have the world beating a path to your door.
El Secret Numero Dos!!! Free Online Methods
It’s amazing that people actually still pay for leads. Especially in light of what is arguably the worlds largest public “swap meet”. Craigslist is hands down, the best source of online leads.
First, I could start by pointing out Craigslist’s inherent “stickability” on Google’s search engines. Ads you write in Craigslist can show up for months after you post them.
Secondly, I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that you could put ads out on Craigslist nearly 12-15 times a day without being in danger of having your ads “flagged” or “ghosted” with a net result of no leads gained.
Third, there is absolutely ZERO lag time between publication of your ad and the real time application of it to the consumer. If you post an ad at 4:30, it will be seen at 4:31! Therefore, if you can write attractive, eye catching copy, you have a definite edge on your competition!
I wrote extensively on various forms of advertising in Craigslist Report found on the TenMinuteSkill Mastermind. (For more information about joining Premium Podcast Plus to obtain this, and other helpful business reports click here.)
Craigslist is but one of those methods. Sadly, most people do the same form of advertising “We Buy Houses, Any Condition, Any Situation.” These ads, while useful in their place, are not by any means comprehensive.
Lead Generation in Forums
In the world today, Forums take the place of the taverns of old. People gather in forums online to discuss the particular issues of the day. In real estate, one must think of where the average homeowner will look. For example, ActiveRain (Trulia) has a forum for Realtors® to share ideas, expertise, and more to the general public.
This is helpful, because as an “aggregator” of posts from different blogs, ActiveRain and similar sites get massive exposure from Google’s search engines due to it’s relevance, timeliness, and consistency.
For the newer Realtor® or Investor, this means you can share, collect, curate, and disseminate information (which is what the average home seller needs) that is relevant and useful. The problem with the 21st Century today is not a lack of information, but rather a easy to digest and understand relative, specific information.
It’s one thing to find “How to Sell Your Home Fast…” That is certainly a catchy title. What has more relevance to the audience, and would generate more traffic would be “How to Sell Your Home Fast… Even If You Owe Too Much!”
Believe you me, if you wrote that article (demonstrating how “wraparound financing” or a “land contract” could be used to purchase a home like that you establish yourself as the “market expert”, the “go-to” person and authority on the matter.
Don’t worry about knowing more than everyone. A useful maxim to remember is this…
“In order to teach 4th grade math, you only need to be a 6th grader.”
You don’t have to be THE expert in everything. Just know more than the customer does. Many times, the homeowners themselves do not move frequently enough to keep current with all the changes in real estate practice, and rules. Therefore, you simply need to be familiar with the process to give yourself a “leg up.”
The advantages are numerous. It is available and visible to a very specific group or demographic. For example, writing about “Renting an Apartment Vs. Renting A House In Tucson?” was just slightly less effective than “How to Stop Foreclosure!”
In each case, the target demographic is very clear. Buyers who would consider a Rent-to-Own in the previous example, and ready to sell sellers in the latter.
No matter the outcome, through effective use of keywords, and placement on Social Media, the message can be delivered in a controlled, precise way. When combined with other Social media such as YouTube Videos, Twitter posts, and Google Plus, one can reach a massive amount of the right people quickly!
El Tercer Secreto Para Grandeza (The Third Secret to Greatness!)
In order to be successful, you first must know how to survive. If you are going to survive in this business, that means you need to know how to eat! Just like the wild, if you don’t make a sale in this business, you won’t eat!
Now for some, that is challenge enough! The mental stimulation of knowing that it is “them versus the world” is enough to get them out of the bed. However, in case you are looking for those pieces of “Free, NOW business” that you can take advantage of, then read on!
As you know from my book Sales Skills for Real Estate Investors, business comes to you in three ways. Now, future, and maybe business. Let’s just focus on finding “ready to act” Sellers and Buyers so you can eat today, and survive for tomorrow!
The list of new, now, easy to find business is pretty extensive. Let me see if I can briefly share just a few of the techniques that the top professionals use!
Notice of Default Lists (available at your local Title Company or Assessors office)
Code Violations (Usually found online. This is an example of Tucson’s)
And many more… bottom line, you need to be making contacts now!
Somewhere within 5 miles of where you live, there is someone who is deciding to buy or sell some real estate… your job, should you choose to accept it, is to get in the way and help them make it happen!
In conclusion, any serious investor recognizes that to build a long-term successful sales business (which is what Real Estate is, a SALES Business), relationships must come before money. Unfortunately, while you are waiting for those relationships to build, you can go broke, hungry and out of business!
By implementing these three strategies, you can begin to add multiple streams of leads to your business without adding extra cost. An additional benefit to this strategy will enable you to survive when the market crashes (again) and you must rely on those relationships to help keep your business afloat.
Think three steps ahead, and you will ensure that you won’t waste needless money on worthless pay per click campaigns, and direct mail without the necessary sales skills to back them!