Choosing the best real estate brokerage for a new or experienced REALTOR® requires time and effort. Quickly learn how to choose the right brokerage model for you and your business. We explore no desk fee models, split models, and flat fee models.
As a real estate agent, you are always on the hunt for new lead gen ideas to help propel your real estate business. The way buyers and sellers find their real estate professional is continuously changing and there are new ways to get in front of clients all the time. That being said, Realtors can overcomplicate the lead gen process, and we tend to forget about the tested methods of connecting with the public. Here are 52 ideas to kick-start your lead gen.
1. Weekly live real estate show on social media
2. Festival Booths
3. Home selling/buying seminars
4. Home selling/buying webinars
5. Strategic alliances with business
6. Promotion of local businesses
7. Create networking group
8. Host garage sales
9. Post an MLS house of the week on social
10. Post a daily real estate tip
11. Organize community events
12. Challange yourself to blog 3x per week
13. Buy breakfast for local do-good group (police, firefighters, volunteers, etc)
14. Sponsor local sports
15. Hand out gift cards for Starbucks outside the store (with your business card or mug)
16. Speak at career days at high schools/universities
17. Teach a course
18. Take a local course of interest
19. Donate to a cause
20. Provide more value than you request in payment
21. Call/Mail/Email FSBO consistently
22. Buy a book of business from a retiring agent
23. Hold a new home marketing show for builders
24. Visit 2 past clients per week
25. Volunteer for causes
26. Run local Facebook Ads to your farm
27. Narrow down a Geo-Farm
28. Narrow down a demographic farm
29. Host quarterly events for your clients
30. Deliver stats packages door to door
31. Publish on LinkedIn - Find leads on LinkedIn
32. Join HOA
33. Sit on community boards
34. Use text to lead on signs
35. Explore your hobbies and do so with other people
36. Talk to 10 people every day about real estate
37. Network with out of town agents
38. Add live chat to website
39. Add chatbot to social media page
40. Use Facebook pixel retargeting ads
41. Learn/Use Google Adwords
42. Use a tool like Buffer to schedule social media
43. Move in parties
44. Join your Chamber of Commerce
45. Join Toastmasters
46. Join country club
47. Network with contractors
48. Share testimonials
49. Host a leaving the neighbourhood party for your sellers at an open house
50. Connect with local social media influencers
51. Monthly database postcards and e-newsletters
52. Be enthusiastic in all you do
There you have it! 52 Lead gen ideas for real estate agents. The biggest tip of all is to just get into action. Thinking and planning only takes you so far. So get out there and generate some leads!
Planning in real estate is extremely important. Ask any top producer out there if they have a real estate business plan and you will hear a resounding "Yes." The tricky thing can be where to start with a business plan, and which one do you choose. At Renzo Real Estate, we believe that your success should be reverse engineered to precisely what you need to do every day to achieve the result you are after.
For that reason, we have created this real estate business plan. In this real estate business plan, you will dive into last year's production, and you will look forward over the next 12 months. New to real estate? No worries, you can still work through this business plan to set yourself up for success.
Please download the real estate business plan:
And follow the video to walk you through each step.
Please pause the video at the appropriate times to allow you to fill in the blanks.
The more disciplined you become, the easier life gets. Or said in the words of the extreme navy seal, Jacko Willink, "self-discipline is the root quality that will improve every aspect of your life."
In looking at discipline, it's logical that resisting temptation will lead to preferable long term circumstances. Few people would debate this, however, developing the discipline muscle is far from easy.
How does a real estate agent build discipline in a world that has numerous demands on our time and pulls us in many different directions?
Follow the steps below to find your bliss-ipline (happiness out of discipline).
Before jumping into the steps, let's first unpack the concept of discipline being a limited resource. Some of us may have been warned not to use too much willpower as it will run out. This means resisting the unhealthy breakfast may lead to improper choices later in the day. Many studies are supporting this. However, numerous studies are indicating your willpower and discipline are like a muscle and can be grown with deliberate practice.
1. Positive impact
Without a committed goal and a focus on the positive impact, you will fail. By definition, discipline is doing things you do not "feel" like doing, therefore, if you are not committed to your goal, you can't succeed. Start by writing down the positive impact you are looking to create. Perhaps that includes more clients, more balance in your business, or a healthier lifestyle so you can better serve your customers, etc.
2. Self-knowledge and conscious behaviour
Once you have determined why you are building your discipline, you must understand where you will falter. If you are like most people, you will be at your weakest in the afternoon and evening. This might be due to an empty willpower tank, but it is also tied to your natural hormone fluctuations. If you hit the wall at 3 PM, then it would be in your best interest to handle your disciplined tasks before 3 PM. If you must do your activities after 3 PM, then write a reminder and a reason why you wish to push through.
There are two parts to simplification. First, handle 1-3 disciplines at a time. Most of us can work on our health while also focusing on prospecting, but few of us can build this muscle with an emphasis on a handful of other disciplines. Second, cut out the distractions that will challenge you unnecessarily. Put your prospecting in your calendar. Fill your fridge with healthy food. Make it easy on yourself!
4. Self Coach
Use the power of your internal dialogue to stretch in times of difficulty. When you feel like quitting and at the end of your rope, remind yourself internally why you are on this path. Take a moment to reset and refocus.
5. Celebrate the wins and reward yourself
Use the power of psychology and pair a positive result with the work you just put in. You have finished your prospecting, so now you can read that article. You worked out all week, so now you can take Sunday off. Celebrating your wins has shown to improve your motivation and continues to fan the flame as you push forward.
6. Discomfort training
Know that no matter what your discipline is, it will be uncomfortable. This is tied to the elastic analogy. Stretch yourself on a daily basis without snapping the discipline elastic. Calling 10 clients every day is much more manageable than blocking off 8 hours to call 100. Understand that you are building discipline and not just being disciplined in an isolated case.
7. Bounce back from failure
Failure will occur. You will skip a day here and there. The main question is how do you respond when you have dropped the ball? Are you going to give up on the day or are you going to dust yourself off, watch an inspiring video on YouTube and get moving? This is truly where your discipline will grow. We can all be motivated for a period, but when we fail, we feel our discipline drops with our hope. Focus not on the black/white idea of discipline but instead shades of grey - just shoot for a dark shade of grey. Skipping a day of prospecting won't make you a poor real estate agent, but skipping a month will. When a failure occurs, acknowledge it, release it, and pick it back up!
Discipline as a real estate agent is crucial. You do not have a boss telling you what to do that day, so you have to craft your own schedule. This can consist of a disciplined structure, or you can be in reactive mode. Discipline is a habit, and a muscle, so train that muscle like you would anything else.
Bonus: if you need some additional motivation around discipline, check out Jacko Willink and David Goggins!
Crafting a strong elevator pitch as a real estate agent is more important than it has ever been. Everyone knows what a real estate agent does but do they know your unique selling proposition? In Calgary alone, there are over 5,000 real estate agents, so you have your work cut out for you if you want to stand out.
Let's walk through how to develop the perfect elevator pitch as a real estate agent. We live in a world that constantly pulls our attention in every direction imaginable. Although scientists can't agree, some report that the human attention span is only 8 seconds! That is only a few seconds longer than a goldfish. Therefore, you do not have a lot of time to communicate your unique selling proposition.
Here are the rules:
1. Shorter than 20 seconds
2. Do not start by saying you are a REALTOR® or real estate agent.
3. Have energy and enthusiasm.
The elevator pitch we like the most is compliments of Allan Dib and can be found in his book The 1-Page Marketing Plan.
Here is the formula:
You know how X? Well, I Y. In fact, Z. Call to Action
How easy is that?
You know how X - here you are sparking their interest with a pain point while getting them involved.
“You know how hard it can be to sell a home in this market?”
“You know how challenging it can be to navigate the first time home buying process?”
“You know how it's crucial to sell your home with an area specific professional?”
Well, I Y - this is the answer to their pain point.
“Well, I have a proven system to make seller's homes stand out on the market.”
“Well, I simplify the whole home buying process for first time home buyers.”
“Well, I focus on helping exclusively sellers in this neighbourhood.”
In fact, Z - this is the proof.
“In fact, we have successfully helped 15 sellers this year.”
“In fact, I am helping 3 first time home buyers as we speak.”
“In fact, I sold 21 homes in this neighbourhood last year.”
Call to Action - this invites the next step
“If you are interested in learning more, I can send you an example marketing plan.”
“If you know anyone thinking about buying their first house, I would be happy to help out.”
“If you are interested, you can go to my website and have a look at some of the gorgeous homes listed in this area.”
This is the simple yet powerful elevator pitch crafted specifically for the real estate agent. You hit on pain points, find a solution, back it up with facts, then call them to action! You will notice that we do not think it is important to say you are a real estate agent. Reason being, everyone has an image in their head of a "real estate agent". Instead, paint a specific picture of them based on your unique selling proposition and tailor your elevator pitch to your audience.
A prospecting strategy is a must for real estate agents. In our experience, it isn't the prospecting that agents don't like. What they don't like is the icky feeling that accompanies the "P" word. Agents do not want to call their database asking for Realtors??, nor do they want to begin rifling through the phone book to lock down their next lead. Worry not, we have your back! The following are our most recommended prospecting strategies.
- Media Commitment - Video, Podcasting, Blogging, Social Media. As with farming, we should all be open to using our phones to broadcast our message. The primary resistance point is "I don't know what to say". You don't have to reinvent the wheel. Just document your day-to-day life. What is it like to show a house? What are your daily habits? How about that new listing in your neighbourhood?
B2B Partnership Building - Businesses help businesses. The other entrepreneurs out there know how important it is to build relationships in your community. Take excellent care of these relationships as they can potentially be a huge source of referrals. Be sure to pass their names on to your network, and they will do the same in return.
Get in front of Peeps - Speaking, Seminars, Webinars. You have heard it a million times, so how about once more? Real estate is a relationship based business. Technology has great power, but it doesn't replace the power of being in front of another person. Host seminars and promote that you are open to speaking. This will help establish you as the pro. No worries if you are not comfortable with this yet, start with webinars.
Build it - Start Events Build Groups. If you truly want to establish yourself in the community, you have to build something. Starting an event or a group does take time, but it will pay off. Bringing people together is one of the most powerful ways to secure your place as an industry expert and here is the great thing, it doesn't have to be around real estate. As long as everyone in your group knows that you are in real estate, then you’re building something that could lead to endless business.
Geo Farming - Pull a Gary V and be a media company for your community that happens to sell real estate. Build a community website/Facebook Group, have ongoing targeted Facebook Ads, deliver door hangers with relevant information, go door knocking with items of value, use relevant hashtags, have coffee at the local coffee shop and meet the regulars.
5.5. Demographic Farming - Farming doesn't have to end at a geographical line. Demographic farming is the same as Geo Farming but you are focusing on a general demographic, cause, activity, or organization. You can be the go-to Realtor® for doctors, engineers, cyclists, tech companies, pet owners, basketball players, condo buyers, investors, etc. If you can name it, there is likely a group out there. The trick here is to farm based on an activity you like and then find a way to connect with these people.
Prospecting is a part of every successful real estate agent's business. Do it well, and you can see enormous growth to your business.
Many real estate agents will wait until they are licenced to begin the dive into real estate. However, there is prep work one can do in advance to help you succeed like crazy in your first year. Preparing for your real estate career can be one thing that propels you forward in your exciting new career in real estate.
1. Be brutally honest with yourself.
Did you get into the business for a flexible schedule and lots of money? Change this mindset ASAP before entering the industry. You are jumping into a career that takes long days and the income will take time to build. There is no shame in having this mindset when you enrolled in the course work, but it's recommended you work on this before the wake-up call coming your way when you are licenced. Prepare yourself for challenging days, hard conversations, rejection, fear, confusion, slow months, and hardship. In return, you will reach financial freedom, flowing business, happy clients, an expanding network, and an organized schedule. Stay honest with yourself!
2. Work hard on your confidence
Often, confidence is lacking in new agents. It is a new industry, and we are left to sell homes on our own (although you should choose a brokerage with tons of training). Confidence comes from experience, wins, knowledge of product/process, and strong self-esteem. Focus on what you can control: learn everything you can about sales and real estate, shadow an agent in the industry, attend open houses, work on rejection therapy, and focus on improving your self-esteem. My personal favourite: Join Toastmasters to improve your confidence and leadership in front of people. Focus on coming from a place of learning and stretch your confidence daily.
3. Build your database
Ok, so you don't have a database full of clients. Of course you don't, you are new to the business! That said, your database will become your best friend and within your database is more business than you can imagine. It doesn't matter if your database begins with just two friends and your parents. It's not the number when you start; it's how you approach them and how you add names.
Add the following information for each person in your database:
- Full Name
- Cell Number
- Home Address
- Birthday/Important Dates (use Facebook)
- Important Notes
Where do you add the following? Start exploring different CRM (Customer Relationship Management) options, there are tons of free and paid solutions out there. If you would like to review a few options try these.
Most people that begin will not have this info on people they wish to add to their database; this is perfect! Now you have an opportunity to touch base with everyone you know (you will be looking for these opportunities constantly in your career).
Text or Email
Hey ___________, guess what? I'm working on my real estate licence! Can I grab your email address and home address so I can add you to my database so we can stay in touch?
Hey ___________, long time no chat! How are you? Just touching base to let you know I'm almost a fully licenced real estate agent. I'm just reaching out to my close network to let them know and add awesome people like you to my database. Can I grab your home address and email?
Once received, send them a handwritten note in the mail!
4. Start using social media as a business tool
Don't just be a lurker on Facebook; it's time to be a creator! You will hear over and over that content is king, and you need always to be producing content. This is true, and a Facebook or Instagram post is content. Use the 4 to 1 principal and post 4 personal posts to one real estate post. This will show people you are in real estate while not bombarding them with real estate content. Post when you are taking your exam. Post when you are at an open house. People need to think you = real estate!
Have a daily plan! Start a conversation using social media:
10 Likes on others posts
5 Comments on others posts
Send Happy Birthday notes - make it personal. Better yet, call them!
5. Build new relationships and rekindle old ones
As an agent, you do not need more leads; you need more relationships. Keep this in mind and you will be successful. Chasing leads will never be the best source of business for top agents.
First, start planning how you are going to build new relationships:
Determine your interests and join 3-5 clubs/groups/meetups that align with your interests
Say "Yes" to invites and events
Make it a goal to talk to 10 people/day - phone, person, text -- this can be in the Starbucks line or lunch with your best friend. How isn't important; what's important is that you have conversations constantly!
Now, plan to rekindle old relationships:
Write on friends’ Facebook walls
Shoot a text to someone you haven't spoken to in a while
Invite some friends over for dinner
Say "Yes" to invites and events
Important note: you shouldn't always be talking about real estate or my guess is people will be turned off, but mention in passing that you are building your real estate business and working on your licence!
6. Open houses, Realtor.ca, and Events
Go through 5 open houses each week. Browse Realtor.ca constantly. Attend real estate related events and learning sessions (community, city, real estate brokerage, etc). Work to sharpening your understanding of your product. This will pay off when you are out showing your first few homes.
7. Set a budget
If you are switching from a career that provided you with a pay cheque every two weeks, be prepared for a change. You can make millions in this business and not have any money. Research budgeting and set yourself a personal and professional budget. You will be happy you did this.
8. Treat it like a business
You are not getting a job. You are starting a business. You will be spending money on listings, marketing, licensing, etc. and you will need to understand this is all part of running a business. You will wear all sorts of hats when you enter the industry so know how you want to run your business. Take an objective look at businesses you love and ask yourself what type of business do you want to create. You will need to know about everything from accounting to branding. Always keep in mind you are running a business and not just working a job.
9. Grow personally
Personal growth is crucial. You can know everything about real estate but if you don't take care of yourself, what's the point? Growing personally will directly impact your business. Feel free to jump on board with what gives you energy. Here are some important daily personal growth habits of many top producers:
Wake Up Early
Phone Off Time
Reading For Personal Growth
Learn a New Skill
10. Train, Train, Train
Choose a brokerage with modern training and mentoring. If you choose a brokerage with little training or antiquated techniques, you could be in for a bumpy first couple of years (or worse - you may not make it through your first year and leave the industry). Ask if you can attend training before you are licenced.
Attend the following types of events (real estate or not) regularly:
Real estate investing
Read books, listen to podcasts, and listen to audiobooks - always be absorbing content!
Most people will wait until they are fully licenced to begin their real estate career, but there are a ton of things one can do to prepare for your new career. Sure you can't sell homes yet but you can certainly begin the process of building your network, learning, and growth.
Follow the above 10 activities prior to receiving your licence and you will hit the ground running!
Possessing the traits to be a success in real estate is not on most new Realtor's® radar as they dive into this business. New agents jump into the business with high hopes and enthusiasm only to have it slowly degrade as one encounters the daily challenges of real estate. We can all point to one statistic or another that indicates the vast majority of real estate agents will leave the business in less than two years.
What if it didn't have to be this way? Personally, I quit the industry in my first year (...only to return a year later). The reasons for me leaving the industry were similar to many of those that pack up shop: I'm running out of money, the industry is too saturated, I can't stand not knowing when I'm going to get paid, the public looks down upon my profession, etc.
Then there are those success stories of an agent breaking through the setbacks and creating a life for himself/herself.
There are two traits that if honed will guarantee success in real estate. These are grit and curiosity.
Every time I sit down with a potential agent looking to join my brokerage, I am assessing how gritty they are and how curious they are. Regardless of your production, age, or experience, if you are gritty and curious, I will invest my time and brokerage resources in you.
Grit in Real Estate
If you haven't heard of Angela Duckworth, watch her TED Talk now or pick up her book on grit. She defines grit as " [a] passion and perseverance for long-term goals." Grit is a dogged and stubborn, relentless pursuit of your goals. It is perfectly summed up in Will Smith's quote that "if we are going to get on a treadmill together, there are one of two things that will happen - You are getting off, or I'm going to die on the treadmill."
Most will think a gritty Realtor® just doesn't give up in the face of adversity, but it is much more than that. Yes, you will not give up when the road becomes rocky, but you need to muster a burning passion for your craft. Working hard without passion will lead to burnout and just being passionate about being a successful Realtor® without putting the work in leads to a whole bunch of Facebook scrolling through real estate articles.
The supremely gritty Realtor® is not afraid to completely tank. They get back up after a failed marketing campaign. They put their suit on the next day after a client has fired them. They knock on another door after the last homeowner just yelled at them.
We all know real estate is not a cheap business to hang your hat on. That coupled with widely accepted notion that we must always portray ourselves as a success (which I think is BS, FYI). At one point or another, every agent will face financially challenging situations in life. The gritty agent with a low bank account balance will find a way. They will work a part-time job. They will force themselves to walk up early and get two more hours of prospecting in. When they don't have the money for that online ad, they will pick up the phone, go to that free networking event, and strike up a conversation with a neighbour.
Traits for Success
This all sounds great in theory. But being gritty in one aspect of life doesn't mean you will be gritty in another. When times are good we all think that we will handle hardship, but when we are down to our last dollar, we have just been yelled at on the phone, and you have no active buyers, is when true Realtor® grit will come out.
The beauty of grit is it can be improved. Garnering discipline and habits will build grit. Looking at failure through a different lens will help build resilience and grit. Not getting the listing is an opportunity to adjust your listing presentation or it is a pass to go home and down four beers.
To build my grit, I always focus on "why" (purpose) I am doing what I do. I focus on my goals and choose to looks failure as an opportunity to learn. You must have hope and pursue your interests.
The gritty agent will always end up ahead of the naturally gifted agent that is not willing to put the work in.
Curiosity in Real Estate
Curiosity goes hand and hand with grit. Curiosity can fuel grit. There are two types of agent traits that I see as strongly oppose to curiosity: The Know-It-All Agent and The I'll-Do-It-Tomorrow Agent. Know-It-All Agents may see some success with certain personality types, but these are the kinds of agents that can work in the industry for 20 years and instead of having 20 years of experience, they have one year of experience 20 times. The I'll-Do-It-Tomorrow Agent lacks the will and drive. This type of agent needs to work on improving their outlook ASAP, or they will not last. (They may also just be in the wrong position or industry)
The curious agent looks at problems with zeal. They want to learn! A challenging CMA is all part of the game for them. They read growth books and follow real estate news closely. They want to know what is happening in their industry and they are constantly looking to improve.
This doesn't mean you have to love reading through a condo's 130-page bylaw document. Nor does it mean that you're amped about an update course required by your board, but it does mean you are interested in learning about the bylaws and updates to your industry.
Successful agents are curious when it comes to new strategies. Look at a curious agent's bookshelves or podcast list, and I can guarantee you see self-improvement material and business building content.
The Important Conclusion
Don't think this means you have to be jazzed every day and leave unsuccessful appointments with a big smile. This also doesn't mean you should never take a day off or only sleep 4 hours a night to be "gritty." No way (I need 8-9 hrs)! - We will go through times of high and low motivation. That is part of running your business. But it's not about always being motivated, happy, or excited. It is all about getting up just one more time.
You just finished a real estate listing presentation with a seller and you feel like everything went smoothly. You are smiling when you finally ask the seller "do you have any questions?”. The seller turns to you and asks, "Why should we do business with you instead of the 3 other agents whom we interviewed?"
This is when your palms start to sweat as you prepare to dive back into your marketing plan, your brand, your brokerage, your team, your new haircut and your nifty logo. Pump the breaks and consider this approach instead.
How are you different?
While this may seem counterintuitive, start by indicating that they shouldn't necessarily do business with you. Instead of jumping back into your pitch, establish that you are comfortable letting the business go if it is not the right fit. This actually shows confidence and will assure the seller that you aren't just hungry for a commission cheque.
Now, shift the conversation back to the seller. Ask the seller if it is alright if you ask them a couple of questions to determine if they should do business with you.
Follow this with asking them about their greatest concern about listing with you (or any agent). They will begin to talk, and you must start writing like crazy. Take notes. Tons of notes! Note taking is essential for keeping your ideas straight, but more importantly, it shows the seller that you are listening.
This is the time they will tell you exactly what they are looking for. Now you have a high-level conversation about their concerns. Put their concerns away (people avoid pain) by discussing solutions (people are attracted to pleasure) and you will soon have yourself a signed listing contract!