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Is your struggle to follow up consistently with your motivated seller leads costing you deals?
While everybody knows finding motivated sellers and following up with them is crucial, without the proper systems in place, there are too many opportunities for your hard-earned real estate leads to slip through the cracks.
No matter how good your intentions are to follow up with every single one, there is always going to be a margin for human error.
Life happens. Sometimes you get busy and simply forget to follow up.
Or, maybe you’ve got so many leads coming into your real estate investing business, you’re having trouble keeping up and not only does your customer experience suffer, but you’re wasting your time chasing down leads you haven’t even qualified yet.
So, how do you overcome this?
You make sure there’s a system in place and a nurture sequence for every single lead no matter how they’re coming into your business.
Here at REI BlackBook, the way we do that is through a system we call the 15×3 Framework.
By the end of this post, you’ll understand exactly how to put those systems in place in your business to convert more of your leads into appointments on auto-pilot so you can spend your time talking to your hottest leads and closing more deals.
Introducing The 15×3 Framework
There are 6 stages in the real estate sales cycle:
- Lead Generation
- Lead Qualification
- Analyzing the Deal
- Offers and Negotiation
- Getting the Property Under Contract
- Sell/Rent Property
Stage 1, lead generation, is the stage most people get excited about.
While lead generation is the 1st stage in your funnel or customer journey, it’s not actually the first stage you need to focus on in your business.
Before you find motivated seller leads or drive traffic to your marketing channels, you need to have the systems in place to follow up with them and lead them to the next stage in your funnel.
The first stage of the 15×3 Framework is the 15 Minute Follow-Up sequence.
The 15 Minute Follow-Up Workflow
The first 15 minutes after a lead opts in is the most crucial point of your follow-up sequence.
You must respond to the lead as quickly as possible.
Let me be clear:
The #1 objective of this 15 Minute Follow-Up sequence is to get your seller lead on the phone. Period.
The bottom line is, if a property owner has taken time out of their day to contact you, they’re contacting you for a reason (even if they’re not ready to sell their house today).
And you’re most likely not the only investor in town they’re going to talk to. So the faster you respond, the more likely you are to qualify that lead and book an appointment.
It’s no secret that we’re fans of marketing automation here at REI BlackBook, but just because you can automate something doesn’t mean you should.
Automation is great, but you don’t want to remove all personalization.
There’s tremendous value in picking up the phone and actually calling your leads back.
So how can you ensure you are getting back to every lead in the first 15 minutes?
How To Manage All Of Your Inbound Leads
The 3 most common ways a motivated home seller will contact you are inbound calls, filling out a form on your website, or sending you a text message in response to an ad.
You must have a dedicated plan in place for receiving and managing your leads from all three of these sources:
- The Inbound Call Follow-Up: Never miss another call
- Website Lead Follow-Up: Book more appointments from online leads
- Inbound Text Message Follow-Up: Convert texts to appointments and deals
The Inbound Call Follow-Up
The first thing you’ll want to do with inbound phone calls is tag and source your lead.
The way the REI BlackBook software is built, you have the ability to set up a different call tracking phone number for each lead source (ex: bandit signs, Facebook ads, cold calling, direct mail, etc.)
So why would you want to make sure you know exactly where every motivated seller lead is coming from?
First, so you know what’s working in your marketing strategy so you can funnel more of your budget and energy to those places.
Secondly, where the lead came from will have a huge influence on how you communicate with them.
Maybe you’re running Facebook ads for probate leads and you’re doing a direct mail marketing campaign around your local area targeting frustrated landlords.
You wouldn’t talk to a probate lead the same way as a landlord because they have different pain points.
By knowing where a lead came from (and thereby what their pain points are,) you will be able to further tailor their customer experience.
If you answer the call, have the system tag the lead to reflect that.
In the event that you’re not able to answer the call live, you’ll want to have the system send a notification to you or your team to call the seller back.
Next comes the most important step in the first 15 minutes:
You or a member of your team need to actually pick up the phone and call them!
Assuming you get the seller on the phone, the next thing you’ll want to do is disposition the lead based on their motivation level.
(More training to come on that topic in the future.)
But what happens if you aren’t able to contact the seller?
You need to automatically trigger the 15 Day Follow-Up sequence.
Why is that?
While the goal of the first 15 minutes is to get every single motivated seller lead on a qualifying sales call to book the follow-up appointment…it doesn’t always happen.
No matter how great your process is or how good you are at returning sellers’ calls within those first 15 minutes, there will be days when you don’t (or can’t) do it.
If and when that happens, automatically triggering the 15 Day Follow-Up workflow is your fail-safe to ensure that no lead ever slips through the cracks.
If and when human failure occurs, your system will still take them through to the next stage of follow up and keep them moving through your funnel.
Now that we understand what the process looks like for handling inbound calls, let’s take a look at how the first 15 minutes will work when motivated seller leads come in from filling out a form on your website.
Website Lead Follow Up
Just like with the inbound call, the first thing you want to do is tag and source your lead.
Then you’re going to have the system notify you or your team members that a new lead came in and assign a task to pick up the phone and follow up with them.
You’ll also have REI BlackBook send an email to the lead confirming that you’ve received their information and will be in touch shortly.
Next, 3 minutes after they’ve submitted their information, the system will send out a text message from you letting them know you got their info and will be calling them soon.
Why send out the text in addition to the confirmation email? And why build in the 3 minute delay?
It creates one more contact point between you and the lead and it gives the whole experience a more “human” touch.
Imagine the difference in how you’d feel as a seller after having received an email of confirmation (that was clearly system-generated) and a few minutes later receiving a text like:
This simple act will build more trust and strengthen the relationship between you and your lead.
Next, pick up the phone and give them a call.
Remember, you are always automatically triggering the 15 Day Follow-Up workflow as a fail-safe.
Now, let’s take a quick look at how to handle leads coming in via inbound text messages.
Inbound Text Message Follow-Up
Once again, the first thing you want to happen with inbound text messages is for your leads to be tagged and sourced.
(Are you noticing a pattern here?)
Next, REI BlackBook will send a notification to you or a member of your team that a new lead has come in via text and assign a task for somebody to pick up the phone and follow up with them.
The system will also trigger a text message reply letting the seller know that you’ll be calling them back shortly.
After that, (you guessed it!) pick up the phone and call the lead back to qualify them.
And one final reminder; the last step is to trigger that 15 Day Follow-Up workflow no matter what.
Now that we’ve covered how to handle the first 15 minutes of all three of the most common ways a seller will contact you to ensure no lead falls through the cracks, let’s move on to the 15 Day Follow-Up sequence.
15 Day Follow-Up Workflow
If the first 15 minutes is all about customer acquisition, the first 15 days is all about engagement, meaning, you want to engage them in an actual conversation.
Over the first 15 days, you’re still going to want to use increased frequency and urgency in your communication because:
They’ve raised their hand and said, “I’ve got a problem, I need help and I think you have the solution.”
They had a pain point intense enough (and motivation to sell that was high enough,) that it caused them to reach out to you – so you want to stay in front of them as much as possible over those first 2 weeks.
If after 2 weeks, you haven’t engaged them in a conversation, 1 of 2 things will typically have happened:
They’ve moved on to somebody else to solve their problem.
They got busy. Little Johnny had a soccer tournament that took all weekend and they meant to call you back, but didn’t.
After 2 weeks, their urgency typically begins to fade if you haven’t yet engaged them in conversation.
But, even if you don’t manage to connect with them during this timeframe, you’ll still want to stay in front of them so that if, and when they are ready to sell, you’re the first person they reach out to.
While we know follow-up is critical, trying to follow up with these colder leads manually is time consuming and very hard to scale.
Again, your time should be spent talking to your hottest leads while your follow-up system warms up the rest.
Here’s how you’re going to put your long term follow-up on autopilot.
15 Month Follow-Up Workflow
At this point, you’re not going to reach out every day, (or even every other day).
Again, once you get beyond those first 15 days, some of the urgency has faded, so you don’t want to be as aggressive in your follow-up.
You want the frequency and intensity of your follow-up to match the level of urgency of your motivated seller lead.
Maybe you’ll reach out every week, every other week or even every 3 weeks.
It’s a good idea to mix up the cadence and also the time of day of your follow-up communication.
(Note*: This applies to the 15 Day Follow-Up workflow as well.)
For example: you can send a text mid-morning to try to set up a time to talk with them on their lunch break, try to reach them in the evenings or even early in the morning before work.
You can also use merge fields to personalize your communication.
A text that you send at 10:30 AM might look like this:
By playing with these different variables, you may find you can increase your response rates.
Here’s an example of the 15 Month Follow-Up Sequence:
Installing the 15×3 Framework in your business will help you streamline your lead management and convert more of your motivated seller leads into appointments and deals.
Download the 15×3 Playbook today which includes detailed process maps, fill-in-the-blank follow-up campaigns, and scripts.
Just click that button below and we’ll send it to you right away.
What You Should Do Now:
- Get started wtih REI Blackbook for FREE: Get 14 days FREE access to our software and start converting more leads into deals.
- If you’d like to learn the exact strategies our power users are implementing to generate motivated seller leads consistently, check out our Motivated Seller Guide.
- If you’d like to learn how our team can build out your REI Blackbook system FOR you, head to our implementation page.
- If you know another real estate investor who’d enjoy reading this page, share it with them via email, Linkedin, Twitter or Facebook.
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