Joshua Smith

The Top 8 Reasons Why Your Real Estate Leads Are Not Converting Into Appointments


There is not much worse than showing up every day, putting in “the work” and having weeks (even months) pass by with little to no results. Everyone has experienced this. The fact that you are reading this means that right now you are probably experiencing this huge frustration in your real estate business. Continue reading to learn how to get more clients, close more deals, and make more money in real estate.

The work you put in today, you may not see the rewards of that work until 3 - 4 months after that fact, so you must be willing to push through the pain and suffering every day by consistently putting in the work, and doing your lead generation and follow-up.

But, there is one extremely important thing you need to know and fully understand. It isn’t just about showing up and working hard, this is something you are going to have to do regardless. However, you must be showing up and working hard on the right things. In the business world, it doesn’t matter how hard you tried, how good your intentions were, etc. Effort doesn’t pay the rent. The only thing that matters is the results.

Being a real estate agent is much like trying to lose weight and getting in great shape. I used to be morbidly obese - I was almost 300 pounds and got fed up with the way I looked and felt, so I decided to go on a personal health journey. The first few months were the hardest. I was going through the daily pains of cutting out all the food I loved, replacing Taco Bell with grilled chicken and broccoli, going through the pain every day of hitting the gym hard, etc. Then, I would look in the mirror and see ZERO changes. It was a ton of pain, and it seemed to have zero payoff! But, I stuck with it, I had faith, and between months three and four, I started to see results, and the results started coming in fast! Eventually, I lost over 100 pounds and have kept it off for more than a decade, so the journey was a success!

Now, you may be asking yourself “Why is Joshua Smith talking about his health journey?” Here is why - as I mentioned above, being a real estate agent is very similar in that the work you put in today, you’ll see the rewards of that work three to four months after that fact. So you MUST be willing to push through, putting In the work each and every day on your lead generation activities and lead follow-up. But I promise you, it will 100% pay off and 100% be worth it. Your future self with thank you for the work you put in, the pain you pushed through, and the sacrifices you made.

Before I get into the reasons why your real estate leads are not closing, I want to quickly discuss the importance of getting clarity on your ‘why’. If you are not clear on your ‘why’, you will cave into all the reasons why NOT to do the hard work. I recommend that you take some time today and write what success in your real estate career means to you personally, means to your family, and why it is important to you. Read that list every single morning as a reminder of why you are willing to show up and do the necessary work each and every day.

Here is the great news: I am going to show you exactly what to work on, and what those right things are that you should be focusing on. If you choose to: #1 - fully read and pay attention to what I share with you here, and… #2 - take action and implement what you learn today, it will be a game changer for you and have a MASSIVE impact on your success! And, none of the things I am sharing with you today are complicated, you don’t need to have a high IQ to do them (I am a college dropout and by no means someone you would consider to be highly intelligent or gifted… BUT I have still been able to sell 6000+ Homes, make $20 Million + in commission Income and become one of the Top Realtors/Team Leaders on the Planet). I don’t want you to be hard on yourself for not doing and/or not knowing the things I am going to share with you today, as it is NOT your fault! The reason you aren’t doing these things currently is that you more than likely haven’t been told about them and/or to do them, as these are not commonly taught inside our industry. Let’s jump in.

The 8 Reasons Why Your Real Estate Leads Aren’t Closing: What You’re Not Doing

It’s important to note that all eight of these items are essential for you to have the most success in your real estate business. I highly recommend not just picking out the ones you want to do, but instead, do/implement all eight of them as they all play an extremely essential role in your success. Also, these are not in a particular order, meaning the last item isn’t more powerful than the first. So make sure to read, understand and take action on all eight for ultimate real estate success.

#1: You Don’t Have an Effective Process

A process is just a sequence of action steps. You must have proven action steps you follow. Let me ask you these questions:

  • What is your exact follow-up process for each of your lead sources?
  • How often are you calling them, emailing them, or texting them?
  • How long is your follow-up process and what do you say within each of these follow-ups? Would you be able to tell me exactly what/how/when you do these things? If not, you don’t have an effective process and you need to get to work immediately on building one out!

Here is an example of one of my follow-up processes with paid Facebook leads:

  1. Immediately and automatically placed into my Real Estate CRM (Perfect Storm).
  2. Immediately and automatically send an Autoresponder email and text from my Perfect Storm CRM.
  3. Immediately and automatically added to my 1000-day long email and text drip plan inside my Perfect Storm CRM.
  4. I call them the same day, then every other day for the first 14 days, then every 21 days for a full year (until we have communicated and I know their goals, timelines, etc, and adjust the call plan accordingly), and these call tasks are automatically triggered/happen inside my Perfect Storm CRM, so I get alerted when I need to call to ensure I never forget.
  5. I set the lead up on a “Daily Property Alert” inside my Perfect Storm CRM.
  6. Lastly, I send three different types of mass emails through Perfect Storm -- every Monday I do a “Monday Motivation” mass email, I send out a mass email for every holiday, and lastly, I send a mass email every month with a “Monthly Market Update”.

I know this sounds like a lot, but when you have a great real estate CRM, almost all of the things I do are done automatically within my CRM, so all I have to do is set up the property alerts (takes me about 30 seconds to do that inside my CRM), send out the mass emails, spend about 3 minutes to write each email, that is then sent out to thousands and thousands of my leads at once. Then, I only have to do the actual phone calls, which my CRM reminds me to do. Don’t allow yourself to overcomplicate this - it is much easier than most think.

BONUS: All my follow-up email/text drips, autoresponder text/emails, call tasking drips, along with what to say, when to say it, are all built into Perfect Storm CRM, so you can plug them immediately into your business and eliminate all the guesswork.

#2: You Don’t Have an Effective CRM System

As you can see from reason #1 above, having an effective CRM System is crucial and is 100% your most important asset inside your real estate business! A CRM is a “Customer Relationship Management” system, and this system allows us to ensure our processes are not missed.

You must have a great CRM, you must make sure it is set up correctly, and you must work it correctly! Your CRM is in place to ensure your processes (aka your action steps) are not missed. A great real estate CRM will automate and do many of the manual processes for you. For the processes you must do, it will remind you to do them so they are never missed.

A great CRM should allow you to effectively work all of your: Leads, Clients, Under Contract/Pendings, Past Clients, and Sphere of Influence. This is important as you want one system that allows you to work and manage all the different stages of your real estate business.

#3: You Don’t Know Your Numbers

It is impossible to plan effectively and make smart decisions inside your real estate business if you don’t track, measure and know your numbers. You must know how many Leads (per Lead Source), Reach Outs, Conversations, Appointments Set, Appointment Conductions, and Clients are needed to equal to one Closing. This allows you to create a predictable business so you know exactly what to do daily/weekly/monthly/yearly to make your goals a reality.

Also, if you are not tracking your numbers, I can guarantee that you are wasting your time and money on things that are not getting you results. Meaning, you could get the same results in half the time (or for half the money spent), and have more time to spend with your family, have more money in your pocket, and work the same number of hours you are currently working while getting double the results.

#4: You Don’t Have Enough Frequency with Your Lead Follow-Ups

According to Zillow, the average Agent follows up with a lead two times and that is it. Depending on your strategy and methodology for lead generation, it can take an average of seven to twelve follow-ups just to get the lead on the phone to have a conversation. On average it takes five “NO's” to get one “YES” in regards to setting an appointment, with that same lead. As you saw in “Reason #1” above, frequency is crucial, because it gets results. You must follow up with enough frequency!

This brings me back to the importance of having a great real estate CRM, as it reminds us and keeps us on track so we never forget.

#5: You Don’t Have Multiple Ways To Follow Up

The reality is that some people like to communicate on the phone, some via email, some via text, some on social media messaging, etc. The list goes on. I have my CRM set up where I can contact my leads through all of the outlets mentioned above. For example, through the CRM, I can edit the lead’s contact record and add their social media profile into my CRM. When I am viewing their contact record in my CRM, I just click one button and their social media profile page will pull up so I can send them a DM, or click one button to send a text, email, and so on. This is so important and makes a massive difference in your follow-up success.

#6: You Don’t Know What To Say

Look, I get it -- like most Realtors (including myself), you don’t want to come off as a pushy, high-pressured salesperson. The solution is simple: don’t be that person. Understand that every lead is a human being. They are a Mother, Father, Daughter, Son, Grandma, Grandpa, etc. When I follow up with a lead, I treat and speak to them the same way I would want someone speaking to one of my kids. I am not trying to “sell”, but instead “serve”. Focus on building rapport, developing a connection, being fully interested in them, finding out what their goals are, what is important to them, and why it is important to them. Then I do everything I can to make sure they know that I am here to serve and support them in any way I can. I always make sure to communicate to them that I am not only here to be their Realtor, but also a resource and a friend.

With that being said, we are all here to do business. I am focused on getting the information I need from them to have the highest chance of us doing business together, but I do it in a way that ensures they feel comfortable.

You 100% can (and should) get the information you need about their real estate needs, goals, and timelines. At the same time build rapport, develop a connection, and make them feel comfortable with you. Your job is not to sell them a house (or sell their house), your job is to sell them on you and help them believe that you are the BEST Realtor to help them with their real estate goals.

The best way to do this is to focus 80% of your time on building rapport and a strong connection with them and 20% of your time on business matters. I lead off every call by asking about them, their family, and their life, and take detailed notes inside my Perfect Storm CRM. When my CRM tasks me to do a follow-up call with them, I go into their profile, review all the notes, and then transition into the real estate business stuff.

Let me quickly show you the difference. Most Realtors handle their follow-up in this way:

“Hey (lead’s name), this is (Realtor’s name) with XYZ Real Estate, I wanted to follow up and see if you have any real estate needs I can assist with at this time?”

Here’s the way that I prefer to handle my follow-up:

*“Hey (leads name), this is Joshua Smith at XYZ Real Estate Group. I hope you are having an amazing day! The last time we spoke you and your family were getting ready to head to Hawaii on vacation. How was the trip? What was your favorite part?...”. *

Again, I get to the real estate stuff, but first I am showing an interest in them.

#7: You Sell Yourself and NOT The Appointment

The sole purpose of lead follow-up is to set an appointment (a buyer consultation and/or listing presentation/consultation). Most Realtors try to sell themselves over the phone, and this is a huge mistake and it’s not the time or place to do this. You sell yourself during the initial buyer/listing consult. Everything before that is selling the value of the appointment.

Why would a lead take time out of their busy day to meet with you? This is the question you must ask yourself and develop your appointment-setting script around, so they know how and why the appointment is beneficial to them. Clearly state what the reason for the appointment is, what will be taking place, why it is the next most important step, and the value they will get out of it.

BONUS TIP: This tip was a HUGE game changer for me and I highly recommend it. Adopt a “100% Zero Pressure Policy”. The reality is that people want to get the information they need to make their best-informed decision, but they don’t want to be sold. I make sure I am always communicating this (especially when setting that initial appointment) and it has made a big difference.

After I have clearly stated the things I just mentioned above, I then lead into: “... and just so you know, I have a very strict 100% Zero Pressure Policy, so you never have to worry about being pressured, pushed, or sold. The sole purpose of this appointment is to give you all the information you need to make your best decision. You may decide now is the time to buy (or sell), you may decide you want to wait, you may decide that you never want to buy (or sell) and you may decide that I am not the best Realtor for you. Whatever your decision is, it is OK and I am here to fully support you with that decision.”

The more you can make sure they understand that this is a safe and comfortable place for them to get the information they want and need, without having the fear of dealing with a pushy salesperson, the more appointments you will set.

#8: You Don’t Know The Overall Real Estate Sales Process

This is really important to understand, but unfortunately, most do not. Think of the real estate sales process as a funnel. With all funnels, they start wider at the top and get more narrow as they go down. Just like using an oil funnel when adding oil into a car, you pour the oil into the top of the funnel. In our real estate business, instead of oil, it is lead generation activities. We are doing consistent activities that exist to add people to our funnel. Let's break the entire sales funnel down further:

Perfect Storm Funnel-1

  • Activities exist to Generate Leads
  • Leads exist to set Appointments
  • Appointments set/made exist so we can Conduct the Appointments
  • Appointment Conductions exist to turn the Lead into a Signed Client
  • Clients exist to get them Under Contract
  • Under Contracts exist to turn into Closings
  • Closings earn us a commission check and more importantly create a “Past Client”, and Past Clients are by far our #1 Lead Source
  • Then the process repeats!

This might sound basic, but the reality is that most Realtors don’t truly understand this process, and therefore don’t know how to build their real estate business.

Active Steps You Can Take To Grow Your Real Estate Business Today

#1: Make sure you are extremely intentional. Every lead generation activity you perform is done to maximize the number of leads you get. A lead is someone we have given something of value in exchange for their contact info, we now can put them into our Real Estate CRM and start our follow-up.

#2: Make sure you dial in your lead follow-up process. Every lead exists for you to set an appointment. I can’t stress enough the importance of having a great CRM to ensure your follow-up happens and things don’t get missed.

#3: Make sure you are selling the value of the appointment and that you have an effective appointment confirmation process, as the only way for you to conduct an appointment is for them to first show up.

#4: Make sure you have a proven world-class listing presentation and buyer consultation/presentation in place to ensure you are converting your appointment into clients.

#5: Make sure you have a process to lead your clients effectively. From being a client, to getting under contract, and then getting them to the finish line to close the sale. Again, I know this might sound basic, but most Agents don’t have an effective process for this, which leads to chaos (for the Realtor and the client). Things will get missed and consequently, the client experience is diminished.

#5: Past clients are gold. They are our #1 lead source. If we deliver a great experience and continue to follow up and maintain a strong relationship with them long-term, they will not only do repeat business with us but also will send you referrals. Make sure you have a long-term follow-up process with them that continues to grow the relationship and establishes you as their “Realtor for life”.

You now know the top reasons why Realtors struggle with converting leads into appointments, but you also know the important things you must do to convert those appointments into clients, nurture the clients into closings, and continue to grow and scale your real estate business.

Implementing a Real Estate CRM for Maximum Success

Full disclosure: in addition to being a Realtor/Team Leader, I am also a part owner in Perfect Storm. The reason I co-founded Perfect Storm was due to my large frustration of the lack of great Website/CRM systems that existed in our industry. I got so fed up to the point where I decided to start my own, that was built by a top producing realtor/team leader for top producing realtors and those wanting to become top producing realtors. The Perfect Storm CRM has the functions, features, tools and support that truly impact our real estate businesses and truly allow us to be as effective and efficient as possible in our day to day lives.

The most important system inside your real estate business is your CRM. By implementing a great CRM, your tasks will be easier to manage, things won’t get missed, and you can stay on track to massively growing your real estate business. Perfect Storm is a complete all-in-one website and CRM system. It provides a highly effective website for branding and lead generation, and includes a robust CRM designed specifically for Realtors. If you are unhappy with your current system, or simply don’t have a system, schedule a discovery demo today.

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