Over the past couple of years, most agents have learned to manage maybe two, three, or four clients (usually buyers) at a time. But with days on market rising and buyers looking at more homes than they have in the past, agents should multiply that number by at least ten—it’s one of the power rules for agents in a recession.
You need a bigger pool of clients to have a predictable, repeatable, and scalable business month after month. Working a top prospect list is one of the keys to success in this business.
So, how do you create a prospect list and make the best use of it?
The first step is simply putting the hottest clients you’re trying to attract on a list.
This has to be separate from your CRM. There will be times when you’re driving in your car or have some downtime, and you’ll need to figure out, “What should I be doing?” That’s when you can pull out your prospects list.
Print it out so you have a physical sheet of paper that you can mark up when talking to these prospects. Update it once a week and constantly add to it.
The list helps you stay organized and focused and remember your hottest leads. Because the average realtor follows up 2.7 times, and they tend to forget when they’re supposed to call people. To stand out from them, you need to do things differently.
Write how much money you will earn from each transaction on the list. Remember, these people could sign a contract with you at any time.
So make this a physical list of names with a little bit of intel and how much money you will make in front of you. Keep it handy, so it continues to motivate you.
Updating your list
The second thing you want to do is update this list every week.
When I was in heavy production, I had a list of anywhere from 30 to 50 people. These were folks I was trying to sign to listing contracts to get them to convert and sell.
Anytime you have a good conversation with somebody, they should go on your prospect list so they stay top of mind. It’s a working document, like your business plan should be.
Talk to (way) more people
The third part is to talk to way more people. Conversations are the game right now, and not enough agents are focusing their time on having the right amount of conversations so they can have more opportunities.
The whole point of having a bigger list is to increase your odds of putting people under contract. The more at-bats, the more hits you can get, just like baseball.
When you talk to most agents right now, they’ll say, “Oh, I’ve got like five or six hot people.” To me, you need 20 to 30 folks that could go under an agreement of sale at any time.
Two lists, one strategy
Top prospects should, at some point, move to your client list. Once they become clients, don’t just list their property and respond to questions. Be proactive.
Your client list should also be marked up with who you will put under contract and how much money each transaction will bring you. This group of people is who you are working on getting under contract and into an agreement of sale. So, follow up here matters just as much as your top prospects.
For these two separate lists, talk to every one of your prospects and your clients once a week. That way, they’re constantly top of mind. I’d have both lists printed and write “M” next to their name if I talked to them on a Monday and “F” if it’s on a Friday.
Mark your lists up in real-time on a weekly basis. Reproduce them every week. Over-index the number of conversations you’re having. Because whoever talks to the most people and goes on the most appointments sells the most houses.
Make sure you’re overcommunicating with people. As the market changes, overcommunication is going to be something the consumer almost expects when things are slow.
These don’t have to be long conversations. Even if all you’re saying is, “Hey, I haven’t seen any homes for you this week,” or “We’ve still got issues with the property,” you’re letting people know you haven’t forgotten about them.
Being the agent they want to work with makes these lists so critical. Devote time to building trust with both groups: those you want to work with and those you’re already working with.
Most people are not working with nearly enough folks to accomplish their goals for the year. If you’re trying to sell 50 homes a year, you should have 15-20 people you could put under contract at all times, because the results are out of your control.
What you can control are your communication and lead activities.
Keep working until you convert—then work some more
That’s how you work a top prospects list. It’s live, it’s in front of you, and it’s new every week.
Most realtors are going to quit after one or two attempts. And we know all the conversions happen at six, seven, or eight attempts. All the data shows six plus attempts is where all the sales convert.
So, work your top prospects list until you convert them into clients. Then, work your client list until the sale closes. Make sure you’re communicating with each person once a week—whether it’s email, video, a phone call, text message, or whatever their preferred form of communication is.
This is how you broaden your client base, expand your business, and sell more houses in a different climate.