How to Find and Land First-Time Home Buyer Leads

Buying a home can be a daunting experience for anyone — especially first-time home buyers. All of the steps and requirements involved in the process can easily overwhelm your clients, so it’s your job to put them at ease and guide them along the way.

Statistics show that the majority of current first-time home buyers are millennials. So what does this mean for you? It means it’s important to cater your marketing efforts toward this generation, who are, in most cases, highly tech savvy but also cautious about making major financial decisions.

If you want to gain the trust of first-time home buyers, you must offer advice and guidance the internet cannot provide. Don’t shy away from showing your skills and expertise. You should aim to become their go-to person for all things real estate.

TAKING ADVANTAGE OF SOCIAL MEDIA

Social media is a fast and easy way to find clients, advertise your skills and answer questions. When used properly, it can also help you build your client list. Aim for consistent branding across your social media platforms (Instagram, Facebook, etc.) and implement a posting schedule so you’ll stay consistently in front of your leads.

One of the best platforms to connect with this generation of home buyers is Instagram. It’s ideal for real estate marketing since it’s visual and will allow you to showcase listed properties, offer virtual tours, and highlight local happenings in your area. Plus, it has a huge user base, totalling more than 1 billion monthly active users. Since it’s owned by Facebook, you can post to Instagram and Facebook at the same time.

According to a recent study conducted by the National Association of Realtors®, social media has become an integral part of securing clients and closing deals.

These are the highlights of the the report:

  • 77% of Realtors actively use social media.
  • 47% of real estate businesses note that social media results in the highest-quality leads versus other sources.
  • 99% of millennials and 90% of baby boomers begin their home search online.

But just because social media is a quick and easy platform to engage with potential clients doesn’t mean you can rely purely on luck. In addition to posting your current listings and recent buyer purchases, it’s important to stay on top of current market trends, interest rates and popular content to relate to buyers. Create graphics to offer short, helpful home-buying tips, and aim to show your personality. First-time buyers want to work with someone who will help them enjoy the process, so it’s important to share personal updates and hobbies to show you’re a human being first.

BLOGGING YOUR EXPERTISE

Because most first-time home buyers go into the process with very little knowledge, blogging is a great way to connect with potential clients and position yourself as an expert. Publish content about the buying process, loan types, down payments, credit scores, FAQs, and other topics you’ve had to address with clients in the past. Sharing this information shows you know what you’re talking about and helps potential clients learn to trust you.

You can also use your published blogs to respond to questions from your clients after they’ve agreed to work with you. Direct them to your blog with in-depth, easy-to-digest content, which will save you time repeating the same information over and over and also allow your buyers to understand the process more thoroughly.

Do some research to find out which topics might interest first-time buyers in your market. Showcase your community and all of the reasons buyers should consider a home in your area. Write “Top 10” lists of places to visit and restaurants to try, and promote upcoming events.

Having a regularly published blog also improves your Google ranking, driving traffic to your site and expanding your potential reach. Be sure to include important and area-specific keywords to help people find you.

HOSTING FIRST-TIME BUYER SEMINARS

Since potential first-time buyers are often uneducated about the buying process and often have trepidation about getting started, seminars are a great place to educate them and show them you can guide them.

Create a Facebook event, and ask your friends, family and followers to share it. You can also post in community groups likely to engage first-time buyers or their parents. Make sure to advertise that the event is free, and offer an incentive like a free copy of your book or an entry into a drawing for a new TV, streaming service subscription, sporting event tickets or local restaurant gift card.

Use a visual aid like a Powerpoint presentation to introduce your attendees to the process, and encourage questions. Ask people to sign a check-in sheet or collect information on a tablet so you can nurture your leads after the seminar. Give out your business cards, and encourage people to contact you with any questions.

SENDING EMAILS/TEXTS

Another technique to effectively reach first-time buyers is to search recent marriage records and track down their contact info. Send out a text or email to break the ice, since most millennials prefer written communication. Follow up with a phone call if you don’t get a response.

If you don’t want to lead with a sales pitch, consider sending blog articles to potential clients via email on a consistent basis so they remember you and will contact you when they’re ready to buy.

You can also send new listings in the area that might pique their interest and get them to call you. Personalize these emails by giving your take on the property’s features and noting if you think the asking price is too high and you would be able to negotiate a lower price.

USING BOOKS TO BUILD TRUST

Your first-time buyer book is the perfect tool to reach buyers and gain their trust. It gives you authority and shows you’re an expert in handling home purchases.

Preview the First-Time Home Buyer Book here!

Bridgette Williams, an agent based out of Columbia, S.C., uses her Authorify books not only to reach leads, but also as an educational resource for her clients. 

She says her books are a helpful resource when her clients have questions.  

“Being able to still educate someone and have the foundation behind it in the form of a written document, legitimately showing the proof of strategies, has been pretty good for me.”

Bridgette says when you’re approaching prospects, you should lead with trying to be helpful, and that’s exactly what your book does. Your leads shouldn’t feel like you’re only approaching them because you want to market yourself.

Check out our full interview with Bridgette here!

FOLLOW-UP TACTICS TO SEAL THE DEAL

So once you’ve made initial contact with first-time buyer leads, how do you seal the deal? Here are some tips.

1. Plan a follow-up schedule.

You have to give clients enough time and space to consider hiring you, but you also don’t want them to forget about you. It helps to keep a database with your leads’ information, taking note of previous contacts and their responses

Place your leads into two different categories — active leads and passive leads.

  • Active leads are those who are ready to purchase a house and work with you.
  • Passive leads are those who need more time to make a decision and may not be ready to move forward just yet.

Active leads need to be contacted more frequently so you don’t miss out on the opportunity to work with them. Passive leads can be put into your CRM to receive blog emails and on a bi-weekly or monthly basis. You can always re-evaluate your leads and move them between the categories as needed.

2. Try using different communication methods.

It’s important to explore various communication types when doing follow-ups — text messages, phone calls, emails, and social media messages are all good. See which leads respond best to which forms of communication, and note this detail with their contact information. The goal is to appeal to your prospects in different ways to stay top of mind and stand out from your competition.

3. Always ask permission, and prioritize your clients’ preferences.

If your leads seem put off by the frequency of your communication, it’s OK to pull back a bit. To avoid running into this problem, focus on being helpful and building rapport rather than constantly pitching or selling them on your services. Your book is a great conversation piece to keep in touch. Bring up different chapters or topics and ask if they have any questions about the content.

Don’t be afraid to ask permission to follow up with any leads who tell you they aren’t quite ready to buy. By respectfully asking for permission to follow up, you actually lessen the odds of becoming a headache and gain a solid footing for a future relationship.

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