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It used to be that the only way to instantly follow up with leads would be to pick up the phone and call them. Then, email was introduced to the scene. Many homeowners preferred getting emails from Real Estate agents, over phone calls because they could decide when to read the email and how they wanted to follow up, when it was convenient for them. As time went on, email inboxes became inundated with tons of unwanted email messages from all kinds of companies, making open rates less effective and the tool much more difficult to succeed with. Enter text message marketing. Not only do text messages have a 97% open rate, but if you are effectively sending them to your best prospects, you will close more business.
So who are these best prospects? What is it you want to send them, to get them to become clients? Today I’m going to cover this, and give you some best practices, ensuring you crush it and convert these leads.
Who You Need To Send SMS Messages To
ALL Your Online Leads
This one should seem like a no-brainer, but you won’t believe how many people don’t have the necessary tools in place to make this happen. Simply put, you have to have things set up so that any online lead that comes into you (e.g. Zillow, Realtor.com, your website, etc.), automatically gets a follow up text message, within a minute of the lead coming in. Clearly, based on the time requirements for this, you can see how this system has to be automated. Most Real Estate CRM systems, such as ours, have SMS messaging built in. If you don’t have an automated way to do this, you are missing out on converting a bunch of leads.
The message you send them doesn’t have to be difficult or long. Simply follow up with a message like this:
Hi <LEAD NAME>. Sally Jones here. I just got your request from <LEAD SOURCE>. I will follow up with you shortly, but just wanted to reach out right away and see if there was anything urgent that I might be able to answer for you, right now?
Custom, short and simple. Remember, simple always wins.
Your Very Best Leads You’ve Haven’t Been Able To Connect With Yet
This group of people are your very best prospects. You would LOVE to do a deal with them, but, most likely, much like you, they are very busy people. Sending a short, direct text message to them is the perfect way to spur the start of a conversation. Again, 97% of all text messages sent get opened. Your perfect lead can open that message, quickly read it, and then easily follow up with you to either push things along the path of nurturing, or to tell you they aren’t interested. Either way, you are winning, because you are effectively communicating with your leads, allowing you to plan your next steps accordingly.
Great Leads That You Have Had Great Conversations With, But Just Haven’t Closed The Deal Yet
The one thing I always tell Realtors® is that consistency is everything in Real Estate, simply because you can’t force someone to sell their home. The trick to getting business is to be top of mind with a homeowner, when they are finally ready to sell their home. The problem with this comes when you are trying to figure out how to follow up with this group of people. Yes, you can keep them on your postcard mailing campaign. You can also keep them on your monthly Real Estate Update email list. But how can you have more one-on-one conversations with them? You can’t always call them and you can’t always try to get together with them. Doing so will make you seem needy, or possibly annoy the homeowner and turn them off.
A quick SMS check-in message periodically is a great alternative. You can quickly and easily communicate with these great leads, and keep your top of mind awareness in a simple way, without annoying them.
So those are the three groups that really truly need and SMS follow up strategy, if you want to convert more leads and do more business. Stay tuned for my next article. I will discuss best practices in putting together an effective SMS follow up message, as well as a fantastic, inexpensive SMS platform you can use to handle all this.
Chris Leo is a Silicon Valley, CA entrepreneur, complete workaholic, top notch inbound marketer, dad to the coolest kid on the planet, type “A” personality, shameless self-promoter and never ending “connector”.
Even though he is seemingly always working, when he does take breaks, the “work hard, play hard” motto takes on a whole new meaning. Most people talk about “wanting to do things”, Chris goes out and actually does them.