In our previous post, Offline Lead Generation Ideas that Work, we discussed some of the most effective ways to generate leads for your business by being present in your community and focusing on others first. Essentially, you’re filling your pipeline by being generous with your time and attention. This time, we’ll be focusing a bit more on actual nuts and bolts marketing channels you can try in conjunction with those efforts. These are scalable ideas that you turn on when you see your pipeline might start thinning in a few months, and off again if budget or time constraints demand. The ultimate goal is to keep them going and hire more help in the office.
Seminars. We’ve all heard about hosting seminars, but how many of us actually do them or even know how to get started? The Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council and NAR have put together a great 4-step guide to help you get one off the ground. You can find it here http://rebac.net/sites/default/files/downloads/Homebuyers_Seminar_Guide.pdf. Consider partnering with preferred vendors and finding a niche that is particularly important in your area, like helping military families understand the VA loan process, or showing people how to find down payment assistance. Look for space in community centers to hold your event – often that’s a cost-effective option and a neutral place for people to meet.
Drip mailers and phone calls. Another tried and true method for agents, and one that’s starting to fall by the wayside as more agents are focusing their attention online. There are loads of places to get scripts and letters for withdrawn, expired, and FSBO owners. Give them a try and see if they work for you. Remember that it’s a commitment – these methods rarely work outside of a full drip campaign. You’ll also have to make sure not to run afoul of the Do Not Call Registry. The advantage is that these two caveats are a big reason most agents don’t bother anymore.
Advertising. A little advertising can do wonders. Try a few radio ads on stations relevant to your market. If you can, try to pair it with a guest spot on a local radio talk show. Pitch yourself as a local market expert. It’s funny how often advertisers can win interviews. Use stealth advertising, too. Planning a day of coffee meetings? Put your logo on your laptop lid and have that open and on the table while you’re at the coffee shop. Put ads in local parenting organizations, HOA and PTA newsletters or directories.
Referral programs. Start a referral program with local businesses like hair salons, personal trainers, nail salons, and other personal services. Places where people often go, see the same people, and have conversations with them. Have special referral cards printed for them, and if that service provider passes your card along to someone (or better, calls you when they are speaking and puts the potential client on the phone), then you’ll do something in return – a small gift card, for example. Give them a referral fee when a deal closes.
No matter what strategies you employ in 2017, be sure to plan out your campaigns throughout the year and stick to them. It can take a full year to really see the full impact of your efforts. Track any upticks in business and where clients found you. At the end of the year you’ll have a more complete picture of the return on your investments of time and money. That way, planning next year will be even easier.