Clients are the lifeblood of a successful real estate career. Your success hinges on your ability to leverage the right marketing and communication techniques to generate and convert leads into clients. From leveraging technology to volunteering in your community, hosting events, and posting on social media, there are countless ways to get leads and clients. To help you reduce overwhelm, we’ve compiled ten of the best tips on how to get clients in real estate to build a thriving business.
1. Define Your Target Market
Many new agents who start thinking about how to get clients for real estate end up doing too much—attempting to market to anyone and everyone. However, the most effective real estate prospecting tips involve narrowing your focus instead of overgeneralizing yourself and your services. To find clients as a real estate agent, you must have a clear picture of who your potential clients are, where they spend time, and how to reach them.
Therefore, you should sit down and consider the types of people you want to work with. One of the best ways to find real estate clients is by choosing a real estate niche. This can be as simple as defining the geographic area where you have the most expertise (typically called your real estate farm area), or it can mean developing a specialty in commercial real estate, with expired listings, or with divorcees. Being a specialist in any particular client niche is a faster way to build authority and become the go-to real estate agent for specific types of clients.
Defining your target audience is a crucial step to reaching potential clients, so it should be the first step of your business planning. Learn about potential niches and why they are important in our guide to 10 Most Profitable Real Estate Niches & Why They Work.
2. Tap Your Sphere of Influence (SOI) for Referrals
Your SOI is arguably your most important asset when learning how to get more clients in real estate. Your SOI is made of anyone who already knows and trusts you, including your friends, family, colleagues, agents in different locations, or community business peers. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) found that 63% of sellers and 38% of buyers found their agent through a referral. The same survey also found that 89% of sellers were happy to recommend their agent to other buyers and sellers. Ultimately, referrals are one of the most powerful ways to generate real estate leads.
To get more real estate clients from your SOI, start by sharing on your social media platforms or within your social circles that you’re an agent and open to referrals. Your trusted friends and family members may not need any more encouragement to spread the word, but you can increase your results with more encouragement and reminders. This could be as simple as regular emails, texts, or pop-by gifts with handwritten notes.
For more details on how to get the best results from your sphere of influence, read 9 Ways to Get Real Estate Referrals & Grow Your Business.
3. Buy Real Estate Leads
Although it isn’t free, buying real estate leads is a legitimate strategy to supplement your business while you learn how to get real estate clients in other ways. This is a great way to start generating income and gain valuable experience with clients as a new real estate agent. It takes time to build systems to effectively nurture new leads and learn which type of clients you want to work with. Paying for real estate leads, although it may seem expensive or intimidating, can be the fastest way to establish your expertise and boost your business.
Some of the best places to buy real estate leads are listed in our article 8 Best Places to Buy Real Estate Leads, see our top picks below:
- Best for lead generation and marketing automation: Market Leader
- Best for solid brand reputation and high traffic: Zillow Premier Agent
- Best for exclusive and niche leads: REDX
- Best for consolidated marketing: CINC
- Best for real-time leads and custom lead packages: zBuyer
- Best for targeting leads through social media: Real Geeks
- Best for agents focusing on targeted sub-areas: Zurple
In particular, being a Zillow Premier Agent gives you access to buyer leads ready to purchase a home immediately. Although you are required to pay a fee for leads, Zillow includes a return on investment (ROI) calculator to adjust your budget and ensure that you are making a profit. It also gives you premier placement on local listings, increasing the chances of buyers and sellers reaching out to you. Since Zillow is the most popular real estate website with more than 36 million monthly visits, becoming a Premier Agent may be a great strategy to learn how to reach potential clients.
4. Strategically Market & Promote Your Services
There are an endless number of real estate marketing ideas you can employ to get customers in real estate, so it’s important to be thoughtful and strategic about the methods you choose. Start by considering where the people in your target audience are paying the most attention. If you have demographics who prefer social media or text message marketing, that might be the best place to start. On the other hand, an audience with a different demographic might respond best to real estate mailers.
Start by gathering a list of potential marketing strategies, like the following:
If you’re not sure where to start with your marketing materials, explore ProspectsPLUS! and its inventory of templates. ProspectsPLUS! provides premade postcards, brochures, and newsletters that can be customized to your brand and target audience. It also has direct mailing lists that you can use to farm specific locations or demographics to generate clients.
5. Automate Follow-ups With Real Estate Software
As you learn more about how to find clients in real estate, it will become clear that you need the right tools to stay on top of all communications, follow-ups, clients, and leads. If you fail to respond to messages or calls quickly or don’t consistently follow up with prospects, your business won’t grow. Luckily, there is a wide range of real estate software that will save you time and massively increase your ability to find clients as a Realtor.
Real estate software can include mobile apps or web-based systems that help you generate leads, manage transactions, automate email and social media marketing, schedule appointments, organize leads, and communicate efficiently. Taking the time to choose the right real estate marketing tools and learn how to use them will help you become much more efficient and benefit your business in the long run.
If you’re just starting out, your budget for software might be small, but there are free real estate CRMs you can use for lead generation and nurturing. In addition, many paid real estate CRMs offer a free plan and low-cost pricing tiers to meet a wide range of real estate agent budgets. Zoho CRM offers a free plan and additional paid plans to support you as your business grows. It includes many marketing automation tools, like email marketing, SMS, and social media, and integrates with a wide variety of third-party apps and tools.
6. Be Active on Social Media
Social media is an incredible tool for learning how to build real estate clients. It allows you to not only generate leads at no cost but also turn cold leads into clients through genuine connections. You don’t have to become a full-time social media professional, but you should pick one or two platforms to invest your time. A few of the most effective social media networking sites for real estate are:
With some simple real estate social media marketing strategies, you’ll start increasing visibility and building trust with your target audience. Keep in mind that there are also a variety of social media tools available to help with every part of planning, creating, implementing, and tracking your strategy—and many of them are free or highly cost-effective. Below are just a few examples of how other real estate professionals get clients on social media:
7. Build a Strong Online Presence With Websites & Landing Pages
According to the National Association of Realtors, 96% of all homebuyers use the internet in their home search. This means having a professional real estate website is one of the best ways to get new clients in real estate. Setting up a real estate website with your listings, branding, reviews, and information about your expertise builds trust and can make it easy for new real estate clients to reach out to you.
In addition, using real estate landing pages to target specific types of clients and audiences is an especially effective strategy to generate leads. For instance, if you are looking to target seller leads, your landing page might offer a free home valuation. You may also create real estate community pages to share details on specific neighborhoods and geographic regions within your farm area. This positions you as an authority figure and helps drive organic and paid traffic.
Creating a professional internet data exchange (IDX) real estate website can be quick and easy with Placester. Placester is a real estate lead generation website creator that doesn’t require you to use code to create a robust, user-friendly custom website. It provides a variety of website templates for you to choose from, an unlimited number of landing pages, and a marketplace for you to outsource tasks to Placester-approved professionals. Learn more about how Placester can help you create a powerful website and build an online presence.
8. Establish Your Expertise & Exposure Through Publishing
Another way to build an online presence and boost your credibility is through real estate public relations (PR). This includes contributing to publications, like your local newspaper, online blog, or email newsletter. For example, if you work closely with a mortgage professional who sends a monthly newsletter to their clients, ask if you can write a column in the newsletter that showcases your real estate expertise.
You can also reach out to writers of professional real estate publications like Inman or The Real Deal and see if you can contribute to their articles through quotes or guest posts. Explore tools like Help a Reporter Out (HARO), soon to be known as Cision, a popular place for publications of all sizes to request quotes, interviews, or other resources from professionals in every industry. It sends you daily emails with a variety of opportunities from publishers. It is free to use and has helped hundreds of real estate professionals expand their online reach and get quotes in national publications.
9. Host Events That Leave a Lasting Impression
When considering how to get real estate clients, open houses are an age-old marketing strategy that has helped agents grow their businesses for decades. However, open houses aren’t the only events that provide opportunities to gain clients in real estate. Events help you get face-to-face time with potential clients, which cannot be undervalued. Instead of holding an identical open house to every other agent in your area, think about unique open house ideas and other types of events you could host.
Here are a few examples of real estate events that can help agents get clients:
- Themed open house
- Open house with food and drink
- Holiday parties
- Block parties
- In-person or virtual events to discuss common pain points and explain processes for the different buyer or seller types, such as first-time buyers, empty nesters, and investors
- Host events in conjunction with other industry professionals, such as mortgage brokers, title agents, divorce attorneys, and financial advisors
10. Get Involved With Your Community
Networking has been a foundational factor of successful real estate businesses for decades, so it should be a high priority for every agent. It can be done in a variety of ways, like formal networking events, conferences, workshops, and industry associations—or through everyday activities like going to the gym, interacting in Facebook groups or book clubs, or sitting in a restaurant and chatting with the person next to you. You can also participate in charity events, volunteer at your neighborhood schools, or become a member of a local foundation.
Regardless of the networking activity, the most important element is to introduce yourself and your real estate services to new people. Learning how to find real estate clients comes down to building authentic connections with people and communicating your value. The most successful network opportunities may appear at unexpected times, so keep your eyes open for opportunities and be prepared with an elevator pitch.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
As a real estate professional, you are the owner of your business and are not required to follow specific steps to build your business. Therefore, there are an unlimited number of ways that agents and brokers have learned how to get clients in real estate, including networking, referrals from past clients, advertising, building an online presence, and hosting events. The options are endless, and it is ultimately up to the individual agent to find and choose strategies that work for their business and audience.
Starting a new career as a real estate agent is undeniably challenging because you don’t have experience, credibility, or a network to depend on for consistent leads. It is essential to learn how to get clients in real estate as quickly as possible by trying multiple strategies until you find what is most effective for your business. To help you minimize the learning curve, read about the Top 9 Reasons Why Real Estate Agents Fail (+ Tips to Overcome Them).
Many new or aspiring agents ask the question, “How do real estate agents find clients?” There are an endless number of potential ways to learn how to get more real estate clients. Start by creating a business plan, establishing real estate branding materials, and building recognition and authority through online and/or print marketing.
Figuring out how to get clients in real estate can be confusing and overwhelming, especially for new or struggling agents. There are many potential strategies, and ultimately, you must decide which avenues are best for your unique real estate business. Although lead generation does not happen overnight, you will find that combining multiple Realtor tips for clients will help you learn how to get real estate clients quickly and efficiently.