Converting expired listing and for sales by owner (FSBO) leads is tough. If we’re being honest, they are probably the two hardest leads to set appointments with. One reason for that is that both of these types of leads have probably gotten at least dozens of phone calls from a lot of agents who are most likely saying about the same thing that you are.
Besides competition, the other difficulty is that converting expired and FSBO leads means cold calling. Cold calling is never easy, and, to make matters worse, expired listing and for sale by owner leads are not the easiest people to talk to. For expireds, the house they are trying so hard to sell didn’t sell. For FSBOs, they are typically convinced that the best route to sell their home is doing it on their own.
The thing is, despite their difficulty, expired and FSBO lead sources can be very valuable. They may not be the low hanging fruit that inbound leads can be, but if you know how to talk to them, you can set a lot of appointments. We’ve put together a few tips to help you along the way.
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Have a Real Conversation – Scripts can be very valuable when trying to convert FSBO and expired leads. They give you something to fall back on if the conversation gets away from you, they can help you have tried and tested responses to common objections, and they can give you a greater sense of confidence on the call. However, scripts alone are not enough. Leads can sense when you are just mindlessly repeating something you memorized. Instead, use the script as a starting point but then have a real conversation. Respond to what the lead is telling you in a way that is tailored to and makes sense for their specific situation.
Track the Right Metrics – Prospecting expired listings (and any other lead type) is a numbers game. To keep score in this game you have to religiously track metrics so you can see where and what you can improve. If you miss a goal or aren’t converting like you think you should, you can look at the time of day you’re calling, how much you are sticking to a script or not, or if you’re hitting your contact goals.
Stick to a Daily Schedule – Along with keeping track of key metrics, you have to have a consistent schedule in order to produce consistent results. A clear daily schedule eliminates wasting time wondering what to do next and makes it harder for you to procrastinate and put off cold calling.
Mindset – The thing is, you are most likely going to get rejected a lot when going after expireds and FSBO leads. It’s the nature of the business. One of the most important skills to develop is being able to pick the phone back up after a difficult conversation. When calling these types of leads you might get annoyed people, mad people, or disinterested people and the conversations are going to be tough. The key is to keep your overall goal in mind, remember that you are working for your business, for your team, and for yourself and your career. Don’t take it personally, and remember that every rejection makes you better able to deal with a future one.
Persistence Is Everything – At the end of the day, converting these types of leads takes a lot of time and energy. Follow-up is a necessary part of prospecting for FSBO and expired listings and is often overlooked when agents face an initial difficult conversation or rejection. Create a database for these contacts and reach out to them multiple times. Sometimes, a challenging lead can actually get easier to talk to over time.
At the end of the day, the key to successfully closing expired and FSBO listings is understanding the situation from their perspective. This is true both when it comes to empathizing with them about their home not selling originally, overcoming any and all objections they throw at you, and getting at their true motivation. Focus on and follow these tips to increase your chances of converting these types of listings.