Real estate prospecting is the process of cultivating leads to generate new business. Prospecting is a mix of sourcing new leads, leveraging social networks to discover new opportunities, and engaging in community events to boost brand visibility. Successful agents commit a consistent amount of their time to prospecting; we recommend you spend at least one hour of prospecting every day.
Here are 19 strategies top agents use when prospecting:
1. Outsource Your Marketing
Delegate lead generation to marketing experts so you can focus on nurturing leads and meeting clients in person. Try using real estate lead generation and contact management software like Real Geeks. Plans start at $199 per month and include an IDX website for lead capture, a customer relationship management (CRM) tool to manage those leads, and automated follow-ups to nurture them.
2. Make Weekends Social
Your weekends may be busy with showings and open houses, so while you’re out and about, be sure to pop by and participate in community events as they become available, and mark these on your calendar. These are perfect opportunities to show involvement, create social media posts, take photos, make videos, and showcase the best of the area you represent.
3. Create Video Tours of Your Favorite Places
Videos are a great way to show people you’re in-the-know about the places and events in your area. It’s as easy using your phone to film yourself while you walk through your farmers market or visit a local landmark. Keep them short and sweet. Post your videos to social media and use real estate-specific hashtags to drive more people to your page. Learn how to create a virtual tour to make your videos 3D and interactive.
4. Meet People for Coffee
Part of any successful prospecting plan is scheduling time to actually meet people in your lead funnel. Don’t be shy about reaching out to grab a coffee with a potential client or local business person. People like to do business with those they know and like, so reach out and be flexible enough to set things up on their time frame.
5. Follow Up on Every Single Lead
Too often we hear about leads that were left on the table because no one followed up. Successful real estate agents are relentless about following up on their leads. Start by storing contact information, keeping records, and following up often by phone, email, or letter. Chris Taylor, a broker with Advantage Real Estate in Boston, says, “One of my best prospecting tips is to keep meticulous notes. Keep a record of anything and everything you learn about a prospect.”
One of the best ways to organize your sales prospects is to use a CRM. Propertybase is a real estate-specific CRM that allows you to connect and centrally manage all of your leads, no matter where they come from. Their Smart Lists feature helps automate and target follow-ups.
6. Set Up Your Real Estate Business Website
A strong web presence adds legitimacy and authority to your brand. There are a variety of things to consider when creating your own website specific for agents and brokers. For example, you should consider internet data exchange (IDX) integration that allows you to show real estate listings on your website. Placester lets you create a sleek website with beautiful templates, IDX integration, and built-in CRM and drip email campaigns—no coding required. National Association of Realtors®️ (NAR) members get discounted rates.
7. Create a Daily Real Estate Prospecting Plan
Make the most of the time you spend prospecting by making a very specific calendar for tasks related to it. Consistent prospecting leads to consistent business, so block out time every day and aim to complete specific goals during each prospecting session. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel every day or set out to achieve an impossible goal. Try setting aside 30 minutes every day to post to your social media accounts and send five emails to check in with people in your sphere of influence.
8. Find Leads on Facebook & Instagram
Facebook and Instagram are valuable tools for agents who want to get their services in front of a large audience. You can run ads or promote your posts to specific audiences by setting demographic variables and choosing specific areas where you operate.
Check out our post on Facebook for real estate agents to see what’s available on Facebook and for step-by-step instructions to help you set up a business page. Then, set aside some time to create your Facebook business page and learn about posting. Once you have established your business page, you can start running promoted posts and ads that will be invaluable in your lead generation strategy.
Although technically part of Facebook when it comes to running paid ads, Instagram is a separate entity that requires a separate account. Create an Instagram account using your email address or phone number and choose a profile picture that represents your brand and will appeal to your ideal audience. Then, start posting one or two images each day to share your listings, build your brand, encourage engagement, and stay top of mind with potential clients.
9. Make Networking a Priority
Word-of-mouth recommendations are very powerful. Buyers and sellers tend to find their agent through a friend or family member, so getting yourself out there as an agent is one of the most important things you can do in real estate prospecting. Make sure everyone knows you’re an agent and set aside time in your schedule specifically for professional networking events, community events, and neighborhood gatherings.
💡Tip: Keep a few business cards inside your phone case. That way, you’ll always have a pristine card at the ready to hand out to anyone who asks for one.
10. Build a Lead Capture Landing Page
One of the best ways to capture more seller and buyer leads is with a landing page connected to your social media accounts. This makes it easy to direct potential customers to a place where they can provide their contact information and signal their interest. BoldLeads not only lets you create real estate-specific landing pages, but you can create two versions to determine which performs better and captures more leads.
11. Contact FSBO Listings
Some of the best real estate prospecting opportunities lie in a For Sale By Owner (FSBO) listing. Prospecting FSBO listings doesn’t have to involve cold-calling. Try one of the tools in our guide on how to convert FSBO leads or use a lead generation company that specializes in finding FSBOs in your area. REDX searches FSBO listings across multiple sources and verifies leads against active listings and the Do Not Call list before delivering them to you.
12. Follow Up on Open House Leads
Open house leads are incredible opportunities for real estate prospecting and, often, the mark of a successful open house is leaving with a sign-in sheet full of potential clients. People come to open houses for a variety of reasons, but most took the time to see the house because they are genuinely interested in the local real estate market.
Take the time to craft your own open house email follow-up template to help you reach out. Here are some open house follow-up email templates the pros use, and some important elements to include when crafting your own open house email templates.
13. Write an Expired Listing Letter
An expired listing might not have sold for a number of specific reasons, and determining those reasons can result in the perfect real estate prospecting opportunity. Crafting a real estate prospecting letter that will be well-received requires an understanding of the problem, empathy, and a call to action. A homeowner may receive dozens of these letters when their listing expires, so make yours stand out using these expired listing letter tips to get your foot in the door.
14. Host Free Real Estate Seminars
A well-publicized free seminar can be real estate prospecting gold. Think about answering a question that many future clients might have. A popular topic is “The Basics of Buying Your First Home.” Make a connection with attendees and provide helpful information and handouts with your name on them so you’ll be the obvious expert when it’s time to sell their home. If you offer a live seminar online, be sure to post the recording for people who couldn’t attend.
Some sample real estate seminar topics are:
- The Basics of Buying Your First Home
- The Unique Things to Know When Buying a Condo
- Tips for Selling Your Home Fast
- The Biggest Mistakes New Homebuyers Make
- The 5 Ways Anyone Can Own (Not Rent) a Home
15. Optimize Social Media With High-quality Content
Social media is a powerful tool for connecting with clients and finding new prospects because you can reach a targeted audience with tailored, high-quality content. However, finding great content to share can be time-consuming, and your social media strategy needs to adapt to current events. Social media management companies like LYFE Marketing can help you consistently post relevant content to keep your audience engaged and capture leads.
16. Connect With Family Law Attorneys
Selling the home of a divorcing couple helps them close a chapter in their lives. If all goes well, it can lead to future home purchases. While this advice may seem mercenary, consider that people going through a divorce often need to sell their home quickly and for the best possible price, and you’d be providing a valuable service.
Consider offering broker price opinions (BPOs) to law firms. When an agent does a BPO, they are paid to create a comparative market analysis (CMA) and place a value on the house that attorneys use to help people settle their financial matters. Real estate prospecting with divorce attorneys can be a mutually beneficial relationship since it’s not uncommon to have clients, who plan to divorce, selling their homes and have yet to seek counsel.
17. Reach Out to Large, Local Employers
Large employers in your area can be a significant real estate prospecting opportunity. Many companies skip the relocation company and turn to local agents to help new employees find housing. Make yourself a resource for large employers as well as universities in the area by connecting with their human resources departments and providing your information. Many employees moving into the area may choose to rent while looking for a home, so be sure to demonstrate how your services can be of great use for both renters and homebuyers.
18. Print Door Hangers & Postcards
Door hangers and postcards work. You never know when your efforts will lead to a new client who might have never found you otherwise. The content of your door hangers and postcards should capture your audience. You can promote your services, wish people a happy holiday, offer free home valuation, or invite people to an upcoming open house. ProspectsPLUS! offers well-designed door hangers and postcards specifically for real estate agents and brokers.
19. Set Aside Time to Appreciate Past Clients
Selling a home to or for a client should be the beginning of your relationship—not the end of it. Take time quarterly to reach out to past clients and celebrate various holidays, birthdays, and the anniversary of their purchase to keep your name at the top of their mind. Each client has their own network of friends, family, and colleagues who may be referred to you if you remain top of mind. In addition to using a real estate CRM to automate your follow-up, consider a set-and-forget client appreciation gift service like Client Giant, where a quarterly client gift plan is $9.99 per client, per month.
Real estate prospecting takes daily commitment and hustle, but the rewards are often substantial. To create an effective pipeline of leads and lasting business, consider using internet-based tools like social media as well as more traditional methods like direct mailers. Try some of the real estate prospecting tips above to start maximizing your real estate lead generation today.