Ep. 7 - Is Social Media Killing Your Lead Gen?


Have you googled your name? Your clients will research you! Listen to this episode and learn how to increase your lead generation by making some simple adjustments.

Hello my friends, Kenny Stephens here and welcome to Rookie Real Estate, where your road to success begins right here, and right now!

Whether you are looking to transition from your day-job to your dream-job or you are on the road to your first 50 transactions…..

Success is in the details my friends and we are going to unpack the fundamental principles required for you to thrive!  Are you ready? Let’s do this!

Alright, alright!  It’s great to be back in your world.  I hope this podcast finds you well! I have honestly been blown away by your feedback and those that have reached out.  I love hearing your success stories and also questions about how you should transition.

I had a truck driver of 21 years from Jacksonville FL send an email saying that he was considering real estate as a career.  He asked some great questions. David, I hope you found my responses helpful. Good luck in your launch!

Listen my friends, I going to make a promise to you.  I promise to read every email you guys send! I will do my best to reply to your questions or refer you to an episode that will answer your question.  So, send away!

Now, could you do me a favor?  If you are finding value in this podcast, could you pause right now and give me a 5 Star review and write something nice in the comment box?  In the podcast world, Reviews and Comments is how more people become exposed to the podcast. It’s how you can help in changing somebody's real estate career.  Together, with my content and your 5 star review, we can actually provide value and make an impact in lives around the world. Thank you for your time and willingness to help, I’ve got the best audience, I really do.  I’ll be giving a shout out to those who leave positive comments. Please add what city & state you are from in your comment.

My second episode was “Knowing your WHY” and I asked you guys to share your WHY with me so that I can share it with everybody.  Together we can inspire! Right? Send some LOVE out into this world. I want to play the very first “why” voicemail I received.  If you are listening on the Anchor App, you can actually record your question or your “why” or anything else you want to share, just by hitting the “record” button.  It sends it directly to me! I LOVE IT and I’m really enjoying your feedback.

Ok, so here is 25 year old Sean from Lebanon Pennsylvania… sharing his WHY.   

I’ve got to be honest, that episode was one of the hardest for me to record.  It was so raw and I felt vulnerable. I told my producer, Scott Parker…. The weight of this endeavor was heavy on my heart.  It made me question, was I really the man to be speaking these words into complete stanger’s lives. I pushed through and then received a voicemail off the Anchor app, like this.  I received emails and text messages with people’s why. Thank you for the affirmations my friends. Keep sharing so that I can encourage others with your success, failures and the reality of the journey!  This is how we better our best.

Alright today, I want to share with you all the ways you can get leads!  I’m often asked, “how do I get business”? It’s pretty safe to say, that’s a fair questions to ask as you launch into a new career? RIGHT?  Well, I’m fixing to blow your mind! I’m giving it all to you my friends.

1,) Within our company we encourage all of our agents to have 3 sources of leads.  Typically the first source is always the person’s SPHERE OF INFLUENCE. That’s a list of everybody that you know….. Who qualifies as a SOI? If you picked up the phone and called them, you wouldn’t have to tell them who you were.  They would already recognise your voice. That’s usually the first leg of our three legged approach.

2.) Then we encourage agents to work our “team leads”.  The leads that our company generates. That helps them build their hopper as they become known and trusted by their sphere. That’s the second leg of our 3 legged approach.  

3.) Then we feel our agents need one more solid source of leads.  We have found this to be the key to success in our company. Not chasing 30 rabbits but actually laser focus.  For the longest time our agents averaged about 35 transactions with several doing 50 to 75 to over 100 transactions on a regular basis.  With our newest group with a lot of very new agents, last year our people averaged 18 transactions. That’s still 6X’s the “average” across the country.  I personally feel the 40-50 transactions a year is strong, consistent numbers that allows you to save well, give well and spend well. You are less likely to sweat the small stuff when you are closing 50 transactions per year.  

I have no idea how your company distributes their leads.  I’d love to hear. Feel free to email me and I’d love to hear how your company also does their commission splits.  If you don’t want it shared, just tell me in the email or voicemail and I’ll keep it private.

So, 3 legs.  

  1. SOI

  2. Company leads

  3. ???

When it comes to your SOI, I’ll tell you what really worked well for me.  I created a text that said; “Hey Adam, I just wanted you to know that I’ve just transitioned from many years of law enforcement to joining “The DeSelms Team”(it was called at the time) as a Realtor.  I’ll still be protecting and serving, but now I’ll get to help families buy and sell their homes. I’ve got a top-producing agent by my side every step of the way and would be honored if you know of anybody buying or selling to send them my way.  I’ll treat them like family! Yell if you need me”.

It took me 3 days to text that to every contact in my phone list.  And it was amazing the response I got from my friends and family. I really do attribute that text to being able to complete 18 transactions in my first 6 months.  BUT, don’t be shocked if it takes months or even years for your friends and family to hire you….. It’s not personal. Don’t burn bridges. You are going to be great, give them time to realize it.  I was known as Kenny the Child Abuse Detective or Cop…. It will take time for people to know you as a Realtor. Give it time. Today, people are shocked to learn that I was an officer for 13 years because they only know me as a Real Estate Professional.

Team Leads…. If you join a brokerage that provides leads, they will likely have expectations on how you contact those leads, what you say and what your limitations are…. Let me say this… DON’T SAY NO TO A LEAD!!! It’s not about the money, your first year…. It’s about transactions and experience.  Knock out as many as possible, as fast as possible… the money WILL COME! Make yourself irreplaceable! Be the best so the broker hands the best leads to you, knowing you will get the deal closed! DON’T SAY NO! GET TO WORK!!! If you feel the need to complain about the quality of leads… don’t do it to the Broker or teammates.  Take what you can and do the best you can. Some leads will require more work than others. If this was easy, everybody would be successful at it and I assure you, most aren’t….. Hence the need for this podcast.

The third leg is where this get’s fun.  Throughout the next year I’m going to highlight different ways to generate leads and what to say when somebody actually agrees enlist your services…… There are just too many to cover, even in 10 back to back podcast.  I don’t want to burn you out, so I will give it to you in bite size pieces.

Ok, there are two types of leads in our industry: Active & Passive.  Active Leads are where you “actively” pursue clients. Passive leads, clients will automatically come to you as a result of your marketing.  

Active Leads are the most common and what people chase the most.  I want to give you some examples of Active Leads so that you can think through which one fits you best.  I’ve got a list of 60. I’ll trade you that list for a 5 star review! Ok, sorry… shameless plug…. Just send me an email and I’ll share with you the entire list…. Even if you aren’t willing to help a brother out, I’ll still send you the list.   

We give it out to all our Rookie Agents and ask them to pick the dollar producing activity that best fits their personality.  The thing that they will ACTUALLY DO! Here is where people get into analysis paralysis! A few episodes ago, I gave out 115 things you’ve got to do in your first 90 days in order to succeed.  There will be people that never get that list done and just get stuck in a rut of being overwhelmed. If you will remember, I taught you to space those items out, with your brokers/mentors help so that you can complete them over the period of 90 days…. Allowing time for you to actually do this right here….. Which is generate business!  Some activity that will actually make you money!

You don’t have to be an extravert to be successful.  You don’t have to have a crazy high IQ in order to be successful….. But you DO have to DO….. something proactive, to generate leads!  Business isn’t going to fall into your lap from the “lead fairy”. Real Estate Agents are a dime a dozen. You must find a way to provide value, to connect with people, for people to know what you do and to feel the need to work with you!  This is the name of the game! Active lead generation that translates into closed transactions should be second to nothing else in your work day! Look at your time-blocking…. 80% of your day should be generating business!

The first thing that most new agents lean towards is Social Media.  Facebook and Instagram specifically. Be careful starting with this…. 1st, check with your broker and see what the marketing rules are in your area.  You can likely use your personal account to highlight your real estate activity but make sure your profile mentions: 1.) what company you work for 2.)listing its location and 3.) phone number…. Again, check with your broker for the rules.

There are arguments about needing a Facebook “business page” and that would be necessary if you are posting ad campaigns but let’s not start spending money if it’s not necessary…. There are plenty of FREE ways to generate Active Leads.   

Think with me just a minute.  Hopefully the people who are following you, ARE actually your friends on Facebook and Instagram….. Meaning the already KNOW you are brand new and they KNOW you don’t know what you are doing.  So, I don’t recommend starting here, begging your friends for their business. It will be awkward and your post will get hidden quickly.

I’m not saying become a “Secret Agent”, I’m saying, start with celebrations pictures when you list a new home.  Ask as fellow agent if you can highlight their new listing on your social media…. It’s more exposure for them and you might capture a buyer for the home.  We let new agents highlight our new listings and advertise an open house with our listings. It builds social proof and confidence in your abilities. Let them see you KILLING IT for a couple of months, be subtle.  Find ways to engage your friends but never directly asking for their business. Always allow other people to bring up your profession. THEN, tell them how well it’s going…..

This is NOT your chance to be Eeyore…. If a friend ask you about Real Estate… The sky is not falling, don’t say…..”I’ve not closed a deal yet and I’ve been full-time for three days now… things aren’t going the way it was promised to me!    If this is actually what you expected, go back to Episode 1 and listen to me telling you IT’S HARD, DON’T DO IT” But if I didn’t talk you out of it….. Don’t be Eeyore! You’ve now given up the right to be negative! STOP IT! It’s just simply unattractive! Desperation STINKS!

Let’s talk about some Deal Breakers if you plan to use social media for lead generation:

***You can no longer vomit your political beliefs all over your pages…. Nobody cares!  Never has anybody ever converted a Republican to a Democrat or a Democrat to a Republican through a facebook rant or arguement!  Never! It often causes more division. If you feel the need to confront a friend… set up a coffee meeting.

***Some people live miserable lives…. They are bound and determined to be unhappy, no matter how good or bad their lives are going.   They are likely on social media so they can envy your life and hate you for all your happiness and success. I’m not saying unfriend spirited Americans who love politics or un-friend people who are having a hard time….. I want you to love on them but don’t fall into the trap or get on your soap-box.

***Do not use foul language on social media or in your really in your daily interaction with people.  You never know who will hear you. Nobody is perfect at this but there is a level of professionalism necessary to build your personal & business reputation.  If this is rubbing you raw…. Start back at the beginning of this podcast where I said… “don’t do it”.

Why am I having to spend 5 minutes talking about this??? Because it’s not as obvious as you would think.  I assure you your Broker will research your social media habits or at least they should. I know for a fact that clients will read your bio and then search you on social media to decide on your value to them.  Especially higher end buyers and sellers. Don’t give either of them the a reason to keep looking!

It is likely that your association will have training class on how to advertise on social media…. It’s a great tool.  You can geo-target actual buyers who can afford the home you just listed and who have been shopping for homes…. It’s creepy and Big Brother-ish but know what you are doing.  These training classes usually last all day… nothing I can cover in 30 minutes and give it justice.

Seek wise counsel, make a plan… execute the plan.  Be intentional, be available. Don’t be “that guy”.... If your friends see you walking down the hall and they avoid eye contact…. You’ve become that guy.  I mainly use my social media to write handwritten notes to people who post “prayer request, losses of pets, losses of family members, promotions, demotions, job changes”  There are hundreds of ways you can “touch” and “connect” with your friends… these people should be your friends…. Love on them. Soft approach at first and then when you are a Rock Star, they will naturally reach out to YOU!  Always remember, perception becomes reality. Give people a reason to see you as an expert!

Email me for the entire list.  I’ll continue to work Active Lead generating into these podcast… it’s really the only way you are going to make money.  

I want to wrap up with the 3 Passive ways to generate leads.

  1. Open Houses(New listings hitting the market)

  2. Model Homes(New construction)

  3. Listings for sale(meaning sign calls and internet calls from that listing)

All three of these, clients actually seek you out and come to you.  Therefore being passive leads. It doesn’t make them any easier to “capture” but it does make the warmer type leads.  

That’s it my friends!  Let’s not explode any brains.  Let this sink in. Share it with a friend. If you find value in this content, give me a 5 Star rating so that more people will see it.  I’ll keep throwing free content at you if you will help me and your fellow Realtors out too.

Don’t forget you can record questions in YOUR VOICE on the Anchor App.  You can also email me any questions or topics you would like to learn about.  I’ve got a lot to share and some amazing special guest lined up for you. I’m like a kid at Christmas here…. Excited to walk with you in this journey.  Please share your success stories with us and maybe even some screw-ups, that made you a better agent….. Let’s win together.

Special thanks to Scott Parker, my engineer, my marketing & design manager, my photographer, my videographer and my friend.  We would not be here without Scott…. Thanks, brother!

Rookie Real Estate is powered by DeSelms Real Estate in Franklin, Tennessee.  DeSelms Real Estate is an empowering partner bringing agents, clients and communities home, simply put, we bring you home.  

All the content is written by me, your host, Kenny Stephens… I hope you’ve enjoyed our time together.  Until next time my friends…. #Betteryourbest