This is part of a new series of articles focused on providing helpful tips for customers on making the most of their online lead business.
If you’re like me, you get sales calls every day. Everyone wants to sell you the latest and greatest idea that is going to help you sell more homes. Sometimes they’re good ideas, other times they’re not, but if we took the time to listen to every single call, we’d never get anything done. However, there was something intriguing enough about the call you got from a lead provider to get you to sign up for the program. In a whirlwind, you gave the salesperson your credit card and the next day you wake up to new leads on your BlackBerry. Then it hits you… I’ve never bought Internet leads before, what do I do with them now!?
Don’t be afraid, you’re not alone. Most of you surely know that the first thing to do would be to work the leads, but everyone probably has a different idea on what “working leads” actually means. In this week’s newsletter, we’ll discuss two of the most important follow-up strategies that lead buyers like yourself have found to be the most effective.
Almost unanimously, all successful lead buyers usually agree that the first step to following up with an Internet lead is to pick up the phone. While some of you may be thinking this is obvious, others might not. After all, it’s fair to assume that an Internet lead should be responded to via Internet (email). However, it’s important to remember that your chances of engaging with the prospect are far greater when you are the first person to make contact with them. Sending an email is okay, but it should only be used to support your conversations over the phone. When a consumer submits a request to receive information from a service provider like yourself, they did it for a reason; they wanted more information. In a microwave society, if they don’t receive that information right away, they’ll find it somewhere else. Bottom line, a quick response time is the first critical success component to working online prospects. Successful agents typically respond within 30 minutes or less.
Along these same lines, the second most important element to keep in mind is that again, the consumer filled out a request because they wanted information. While some lead buyers get lucky from time to time, most consumers are not filling out a lead form, because they’re ready to spend money with you the next day. You’re going to deal with consumers in all different stages of the process, and some may never enter that process at all. Bearing this in mind, your initial contact with an online prospect should be customer service, and not sales oriented. Let the consumer know up front that you received their request for more information, and you’re here to provide them with whatever they may need. Help them feel comfortable, and build trust early on. Consumers who feel pressured into an appointment on the first call will more than likely give us the common sales resistance “just looking” response, and you as the agent may be left with feeling as though none of your leads are interested. Are they truly not interested, or are they perhaps interested in working with someone else?
Achieving a profitable ROI on Internet leads does not happen overnight. It takes patience, a commitment to make the program work, and a well thought out strategy on what your follow-up process will look like. Treat every lead as an opportunity, because you never know what it can turn into.