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How to boost real estate leads without cold calling

How top realtors generate business and drive leads without cold calling.


There are countless pages on the internet debating the state of cold calling in realty, and the general consensus is that it depends who you ask. A past study tested how the effectiveness of cold calling and found that of the 6,265 cold telephone calls made, only 28% (1,774) were even answered.

Already, we can  see that cold calling may not have the impact we’d like, with only just over 1 in 4 calls making it through to the potential lead in the first place, but even worse than that is that, of these 1,774 accepted calls, only 19 resulted in appointment bookings. So, all in all, cold calling has an effectiveness of about 0.3%.

But all is not lost - there are plenty of methods to maximise your pipeline that are mote effective than cold calling. Here, we've assembled our Top 5 Cold Calling alternatives so you can increase those statistics and sell more homes.

Direct mail

Now, I know we just said cold calling doesn't work, but personalized handwritten letters stand for something much more meaningful than a cold telephone call. They engage with more of the recipient’s senses and represent a much higher level of intimacy that the recipient rarely gets from other businesses.

Handwritten marketing feels more targeted - and often it is. Writing out a message by hand takes a lot longer, even if you're keeping it simple, but automating handwritten outreach is a great way to preserve the impact without spending too much time writing out by hand. Scribeless customers have overseen tremendous increases in customer engagement levels over a number of campaigns.

One such example involved targeting 15,000 homeowners in California, and compared the results of personalized handwritten marketing against traditional direct mail. The campaign resulted in an increase of engagement from 9% to 33%, almost quadrupling that of direct mail, with an overall ROI of 12x.

Using merge fields, you can even hyper-personalize your notes in a single campaign,  making your notes even more personal. Mentioning that you've had great success selling homes in a specific neighborhood, for example, is a great way to turn heads with a bit of extra personalization.


The first thing people do when looking for someone to help sell their home is type in a Google search. At this stage it's second nature to many of us, and Google is where many people will start their journey to sell their home.

Because of this, it's vital that you rank highly on Google for real estate agents in your area. Make sure if you're selling homes in Los Angeles that you're ranking for terms involving Los Angeles, LA, California, and any specific neighborhoods you're looking to target or specialize in.

A great way to do this is producing content for your website - Google is far more likely to rank you highly if you're producing regular content and your keywords are spread over a variety of pages, rather than cramming all your keywords onto.

Make sure you also have links to your social media pages - many people check these everyday, and they are often pretty informal, which is a great way to start your relationship at a conversational level.

Top of the funnel lead capture

Selling homes for people who know they're looking for a move is one thing, but you can maximize your pipeline by capturing leads before they are even looking to move.  This is done using top of the funnel content on your website, like 'how you can find a real estate agent', 'how to sell your house fast' or 'how to pick a realtor.'

"Okay," I hear you saying. "But how do I get people to have this kind of information on their radar before they're even thinking about moving? It's not exactly a tried and tested art, but sometimes all it takes is getting on their radar so if they are suddenly interested, the first name they think of is yours.

Keeping it informal at early stages is great too - your potential customers won't feel the pressure, and it's important to have an amicable relationship with them. Offering an informal chat about their current situation is a great way to get a foot in the door without being too heavy handed with your sales patter. Once you're talking, then you can work your magic!

Word of mouth

As a realtor, you should be confident and boast why you're the best option to sell for your customers, but the people whose praise means the most are your already satisfied customers. They will be more likely to spread the word to their friends and family if you've successfully helped them move and you've formed a meaningful relationship with them.

Personal recommendation is the best marketing you can get, and it doesn't involve any cost on your part, just a little bit of advertising from satisfied customers. There are a few things you can try to ensure your customers are wholly satisfied with you and your service.

Make sure you delight your customers in their post-purchase journey - send them a cards or gift congratulating them on their move and wishing them the best as they settle in (This is another great chance to give handwritten marketing a go!) It's a small gesture but it goes a long way,  and happy buyers are much more like to recommend your details to other potential home buyers.


This also plays into your word of mouth marketing! Build a network of agents, buyers and sellers to help each other out. You never know how a seemingly small favour may come back and improve your business - it could be someone realising how much they like working with you so they recommend you to their friends or family who are looking at moving house.

Moving can be a long sand stressful ordeal, so anything you can do to connect the right buyers, sellers and agents will be hugely appreciated by all parties. This can be especially effective if you establish yourself and your team as local authorities.

People love their realtors to be local experts and know the area well, and by creating a network you can monopolise your interests in a single area. A network built around 'X area's Number One Realtor' will become the first port of call for any and everyone looking to move in that area.

Conclusion: Communication is key

The key to making this work is obviously communication. The only way for your network and brand to be effective is if you keep in contact regularly, whether that's via newsletters, social media pages, or simply showing your face around the community.

Building your brand and network is super important so even people who aren't yet considering moving will think of you as soon as their interests change. As soon as the two parties are on board then you can begin the real estate process and who knows how many leads you'll generate from a single initial sale?

Finding new clients will be easier than ever before, and you can accomplish this easily without resorting to traditional cold calling.