Before discussing how to get real estate leads online, let’s first understand the basics.
Generally, real estate leads can be categorized into two parts: Buyer Leads & Seller Leads.
Buyer Leads means leads who are prospective real estate buyers. Whereas Seller Leads means leads who are propective real estate sellers.
Getting buyer leads is generally considered more challenging in the real estate industry. Therefore, I would focus on the same in this post.
I started my career in a real estate company (as an Internal Auditor). During that stint, I learned about the various digital marketing tricks that I am going to share here.
So, without wasting time, let’s dive in.
HOW TO FIND REAL ESTATE LEADS ONLINE
1. Using Facebook Ad + Landing Page + Email
Facebook is one of the best ways to generate real estate leads online. (Albeit, a paid one.)
Because of the low lead cost offered by Facebook ads (as compared to AdWords & native ads). In fact, Austin Wilson ran an experiment & got leads from Facebook ads for as low as $7.
But, simply using Facebook ads won’t work that effectively (since every other real estate agent is doing the same).
Also, the age of direct marketing is long gone. You can’t just go & run a direct facebook marketing campaign for one of your real estate properties & expect buyers to show up.
Instead, offer a lead magnet to your prospects in exchange for their email. Then, target the leads with a series of emails where you can pitch your real estate portfolios.
Example: If you want leads from San Francisco then run a Facebook ad offering a free e-book (lead magnet) titled “10 Things To Look For In Your Next San Francisco Property”. So, the people who click on your ad will be directed to a landing page where they can download the free e-book by submitting their email addresses. Once they submit their emails, they have become your leads!. Now, you can target & re-target them by sending timely & automated emails.
The whole process can be broken into the following steps:
Step 1) Create a lead magnet
A lead magnet can be in various forms like e-book, report, template, checklist etc.
Irrespective of the format, a good lead magnet should give immense value to your target audience.
I use Beacon.ly to create lead magnets & would recommend the same to you.
Step 2) Set up a landing page
You can easily set up a landing page using ClickFunnels. It is not only a landing page builder but also a powerful sales funnel system.
Make sure to integrate the landing page with the lead magnet created at step 1.
Recommended read: What is ClickFunnels & how to get started with it
A simpler alternative would be LeadPages.
Either way, both are robust solutions to build conversion-optimized landing pages within a matter of few minutes. They also offer a plenty of ready-made templates.
Step 3) Set up an automated email campaign
Once you have leads, you need to start nurturing a relationship with them using automated & timely emails.
It’s simpler to set up an automated email campaign than you think. How?. Simply use an autoresponder like GetReponse.
Don’t forget to integrate the autoresponder with the landing page created at step 2.
Remember, after the automated email campaign ends, you need to target your leads further with one-off emails. These are generally called ‘Broadcast’ emails.
Emails are one of the greatest assets that a real estate marketer or agent can have. So, use them judiciously.
Step 4) Set up & run a Facebook ad
Last but not least, set up & run a Facebook ad. The following video can guide you on setting up & running a successful Facebook ad campaign:
The targeting part is very crucial in a Facebook campaign. So, make sure you get it right.
Also, to avoid loss, do not invest more than $ 50 a day. As you start seeing results, you can always scale up your budget.
2. Start A Real Estate Blog
Nothing is ‘free’ in today’s world. Either you invest time or money.
So, if you are short on money, try investing your time.
As a real estate agent or marketer, the best way you can invest your time is by creating a real estate blog.
A blog can help you drive massive traffic to your real estate website. How?. When you write a blog post, there are chances that the same will show on search results of search engines like Google. After getting traffic to your website, all you need to do is pitch your portfolio in the forms of banner ads or internal links.
Example: If you write a blog post on “Top 10 new villas in San Francisco”, there are chances that the post will show up in search results when typing in the query “villas in San Francisco”.
Please note that this real estate lead generation idea is a long-term strategy & therefore you shouldn’t expect an immediate return from it.
For best results, try to add as many blog posts as possible on regular basis.
The whole process can be broken down into:
Step 1) Start a real estate website
It’s not that tough as it seems.
Simply use a drag & drop builder like Wix to create a beautiful website within a matter of a few minutes. They have got ready-made templates for the real estate industry.
Alternatively, you can create a self-hosted website using WordPress & a hosting provider like Siteground. (Not recommended for beginners)
Step 2) Write blog posts by following SEO best practices
You would ideally like to write blog posts targeted at user queries.
Use a tool like SEMrush to get an idea of what people are searching for in your industry. Once you finalize the topic, write an awesome blog post around that topic. Try to include images or videos wherever needed.
And, do not forget to implement SEO best practices while writing the posts (since blogging is a competitive space).
Step 3) Convert the visitors into leads
Remember, the goal of this strategy is not just to drive traffic but to get LEADS.
Therefore, your post should make users stick to your website for a long period of time. The more time they spend on your website, the more chances of them clicking on your internal links or banner ads.
Pro tip: Add a subscription form to your website (preferably at the footer or sidebar).
3. Upload Real Estate YouTube Videos
The video industry is booming like never before. In fact, as per OutBrain, 87% of the online marketers are already using video content to generate leads.
For consumers, a video is visually more appealing & hence more valuable. And, for marketers, a video signifies an opportunity to better pitch their products or services.
Needless to say, YouTube is one of the world’s best platforms to host videos.
As a real estate agent or marketer, a YouTube video is an effective way to showcase visuals of your portfolio & drive leads.
Look at the following example:
Alternatively, you can also drive traffic to your real estate website by linking it in the description.
You can add variety to your video content like:
- Property Tour/Showcase
- Tips & tricks
- Legal requirements
- Best practices etc.
This strategy can be broken down into the following steps:
Step 1) Use Fiverr to create professional videos
Fiverr is an excellent service where you can create professional YouTube videos at an affordable price.
Alternatively, you can shoot the videos yourself with a few professional video equipment.
Step 2) Optimise the videos as per YouTube SEO practices
Create a YouTube channel if you don’t have one. Then, start uploading your videos with a professional title & description (Follow YouTube SEO best practices).
Step 3) Publish the videos to your YouTube channel
Now is the time to publish your videos & start gathering some leads.
Remember, to succeed at YouTube, you need to publish a stream of high-quality videos regularly.
4. Get Online Referrals From Existing Customers
Believe it or not, but your existing customers can be your biggest source of leads.
Follow these steps to implement this idea:
Step 1) Craft a winning incentive program
Needless to say, you need to motivate your existing customers with attractive incentives.
Don’t complicate the incentive structures. A simple percentage type of incentive will just work.
Step 2) Create a lead request form & email it to your existing customers
Use a google form to create a simple lead request form. Once done, email it to your existing customers.
Make sure to explain the incentive program clearly in the email body.
Step 3) Process & follow up the leads
Google form helps you to export the leads easily. After exporting, you can follow up with the leads for closure.
5. List On Craigslist & Zillow
All you need to do here is to list your properties. The visitors searching on these platforms may find your property & contact you if needed.
6. Google My Business Online Listing & Review
Positive online reviews generate trust in the minds of the prospects. Therefore, this strategy especially works great for new real estate agents.
Step 1) List your agency in Google My Business
Google My Business is a free listing & review service from Google. You can list your business or agency there at no charge.
When Google users search for real estate agencies, then your agency can feature in the first place.
While applying for listing, try to include as many details as possible. Basic ones like phone number, website, timing etc. are a must.
Step 2) Request your existing customers to rate you on Google
Users generally prefer & trust businesses with high rating & good reviews. The quickest way to get ratings is to request your existing customers for the same.
A simple request email should do.
7. Use Lead Generation Tools & Services
BoldLeads helps to generate buyer & seller leads seamlessly. Also, they provide a software to track & communicate with your leads effectively.
The only downside is the price they charge (About $269 a month).
The other alternatives that you may consider:
- Easy Agent Pro
This lead generation idea is highly recommended for established real estate marketers.
8. Buy Keywords With Google AdWords
Keywords are the terms users input while searching for stuff online.
Example: If someone is looking for a house in San Fransisco then he may input the term “house in San Francisco” in a search engine like Google. Such a term is called ‘keyword’ in marketing parlance.
Google allows you to buy keywords & show your website at the top of the search page (Ads).
Step 1) Sign up for Google AdWords
Here is the link to get started with AdWords https://ads.google.com/home/
Step 2) Get your landing page ready
As discussed earlier, you can create landing pages within a matter of few minutes using ClickFunnels or LeadPages. Landing page is the page where visitors will land after clicking on the Google Ad.
Step 3) Do keyword analysis & target low-competition keywords
Use SemRush to do keyword analysis. Ideally, you would want to target low-competition keyword so that the CPC (cost-per-click) remains low.
Step 4) Set up & run the ad
You need to configure Ad title, description & targeting in the AdWords dashboard. Once done, publish the ad & monitor performance.
Just like with Facebook ads, you can lose money with Google Adwords. Therefore, make sure that you try running the ad with a small budget & then scale up only
Getting real estate leads online is not that difficult as it seems. With the aforesaid ideas & strategies, you can win at it.
Some bonus ways to acquire real estate leads online:
- Be active & regularly post on social media. Here are a few social media marketing tips to get started.
- Comment on other real estate blog & add links to your landing page there strategically (Do not spam).
- Actively participate in forums like Quora & Reddit. Follow real estate specific topics & answer questions.
I have tried my best to explain the stuff with as much clarity as possible. Still, if you need help then get in touch with me.
What do you think of the aforesaid ideas to get real estate leads online?. Please comment below.