One of the real estate industry’s best-kept secrets is that most agents never really learn how to get clients. It’s not for lack of trying, either. Most new agents I know work their fingers to the bone trying to land buyers and sellers. Their problem? They don’t use the simple, consistent, and scalable methods our team used to generate thousands of clients.
That’s why we decided to leverage our 40+ years of real estate sales and coaching experience to teach you the proven strategies we used to generate enough clients to build sustainable careers. The best part? You only need to be a little better than the competition to make these work.
So turn off your notifications, grab a cup of coffee, and learn our team’s best ways to get real estate clients in 2023:
1. Learn How to Buy (& Then Nurture) Leads
OK, I know what you’re thinking. If you’re a regular reader of The Close (and you should be), you probably expected us to start this list with a top-secret strategy that makes getting clients easier than ordering a pizza. Well, we actually care about your success, so we’re going to level with you here. Buying leads is the best way to fill your CRM with leads in 2023. Period.
Why? Simple. Buying leads works better than any other strategy we know to hit our three rules of effective client generation:
Simple: Unlike many lead generation strategies, buying leads doesn’t have a learning curve. That means you can hit the ground running. As long as you practice efficient speed to lead, you just need to learn how to nurture cold leads and start working warm leads.
Consistent: No way to get clients is perfect. You’ll get bad leads from lead generation services too. But, you will get leads. Every week. Like clockwork. There is no other strategy that can do this.
Scalable: While cold calling FSBOs is a deadly way to get seller clients, it’s extremely difficult to scale. If you try to cold call eight hours a day to scale the number of clients you get, you’ll burn out. But you can easily increase your budget with a lead generation company and get more right away.
Start by researching the best lead generation services in your farm area and then spend the next week doing nothing but learning how to nurture them. Check out our deep-dive strategy and buyer’s guides below to get started today.
2. Schedule Weekly Outreach to Get Referrals From Past Clients
According to statistics from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), a staggering 89% of buyers would use their agent again or recommend them to others. So if you’re not reaching out to former clients for referrals, you’re leaving money on the table. Period. Sure, a buyer who closed with you six months ago probably isn’t moving anytime soon, but there is a good chance someone they know will be.
One of the mistakes that new agents make is thinking their former clients will just automatically sing their praises from the rooftops and send them referrals for life. While this does happen sometimes, especially if you went above and beyond for them or made a personal connection, most of the time you’ll have to give them a little nudge to get them to refer you.
The key to actually generating referrals from those nudges is consistency. Schedule time every week to work your customer relationship manager (CRM) and reach out to former clients with pop-bys, phone check-ins, drip emails, and client appreciation events.
Want to 3x the referrals you get from former clients? Check out Jodie Cordell’s guide to generating referrals here:
7 Savvy Ways to Generate More Real Estate Referrals
3. Use a High-quality Website to Generate Exclusive Leads
When it comes to spending money on leads, not all methods are equal. Many companies will sell you non-exclusive leads on the cheap, but you need to be the first agent to contact them in order to stand a good chance at converting them. To get the biggest bang for your buck when it comes to paid leads, you need to own them. One way to do that is to build a lead-generating machine into your own website.
Just remember that you’ll need to create landing page campaigns for different audiences. House hunters and homeowners looking to sell are not going to respond to the same call to action. Learn more about crafting landing pages that actually convert here.
Partnering with a lead generation platform like Luxury Presence can help you do just that.
An award-winning, search-engine-optimized IDX website designed by Luxury Presence puts you head and shoulders above your competition. They’ll also create a custom marketing strategy that boosts you to the top of your market with an all-in-one platform that leverages technology the right way. Oh, and unlike other lead generation websites, Luxury Presence takes graphic design seriously. Instead of cookie-cutter templates, you get a sleek, polished website that also helps you land more clients.
Click below to schedule a demo to learn more about elevating your online presence and generating your own leads with Luxury Presence. Get $500 off by clicking the button below.
4. Use Our 9 Strategies to Find Hidden Listing Opportunities
If you want to get more clients in 2023, you need to think outside the box. Inventory is tight and interest rates are at historic highs. So while other agents are chasing the same old FSBOs and expireds, try something new. Real estate investors, preforeclosures, and vacant or abandoned homes are all fantastic opportunities to fill your pipeline that other agents overlook.
Sure, it’s more difficult to source the data, and you may face stronger resistance from these homeowners, but you won’t be competing with 20 other agents for the same listing. That gives you an edge.
Keep in mind when you are prospecting these leads that the quality is in quantity! That is, at least when you’re first starting out, you need as many leads as you can get. Use systems like Freedomsoft to help find the properties, source the contact information, and manage the leads.
9 Proven Strategies to Find Hidden Listing Inventory
5. Entertain, Educate & Engage on Social Media
If you’re tech-savvy, or at least willing to learn through trial and error, then engaging with people in your farm area directly on social media can be a great way to get more real estate clients this year. Building an audience that can get you from first click to closing on social media is easier than you think. You just need to consistently reach people who might transact with the right message, at the right time.
There are two rules you need to follow to start getting clients from social media:
1. Create a content calendar & post every day
Algorithms on platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook reward creators who post regularly. Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri himself said their algorithm will prioritize new content in a recent Reel. So why not take his advice and feed the algorithm to get more clients from social media this year? It’s easier than you think. Create a social media calendar and plan out your posts for the next few months. Then just keep posting! Want a free content calendar? Grab our marketing and holiday guide here.
2. Entertain, educate & engage with your audience—in that order
People don’t come to social media to learn about 1031 exchanges. So entertain them first, then educate and network second. Tell funny stories about deals that went south, post memes, or try making funny videos. Your social media calendar should be around 70% entertainment, 20% educational, and 10% posts designed for engagement.
It’s not too difficult to manage it all on your own, but if you’d like a little help, consider Coffee & Contracts. For less than you probably pay for coffee every day, these social media marketing experts offer a done-for-you content calendar each month that includes templates, scripts, and educational content, so you never have to guess about what to post.
6. Run Retargeting Ads on Facebook
As we mentioned above, the best ways to get real estate clients are simple, scalable, and consistent. While mastering the art and science of Facebook advertising might not be as simple as buying leads, it is one of the few ways to get clients that becomes more affordable as you scale. The key is to continually optimize your ads, placements, and targeting to lower your cost per lead.
Retargeting ads allow you to advertise directly to people who have already visited your website. You can even show them listings they favorited, bookmarked, or just spent a long time looking at.
That means instead of advertising properties you think your audience will like, you can show people listings you already know they like. You can set these up on your own using Facebook’s ad manager, or create them automatically using Facebook advertising tools that come with lead generation websites such as Real Geeks.
How to Create Real Estate Facebook Ads That Actually Generate Leads
7. Run Home Valuation Ads on Google
Home valuation ads are like catnip for homeowners. Who doesn’t want to know how much their home is really worth? Whether you run automated home valuation tools like Prime Seller Leads or just offer to email them a comparative market analysis, home valuation ads are a proven and cost effective way to get seller clients.
Why do home valuation ads work so well on Google? Simple. Unlike Facebook ads, where your potential clients are looking at cute cat pictures and might just click on your ad out of sheer curiosity, leads are actively searching Google for their home’s value. Potential real estate clients will click on your ad because it answers their question.
8. Send Targeted Prospecting Letters
Remember how we said you only need to be a little bit better than the competition to get clients? Well, prospecting letters are one proven strategy to get clients most real estate agents still ignore. It’s easy to see why. Writing letters can be time-consuming, and most Realtors would rather just pay to carpet-bomb their farm area with postcards. That means odds are better than average that sending even mediocre prospecting letters will give you an edge over the competition.
Even better, prospecting letters work well for one key demographic. Senior citizens. Since NAR statistics show the median age of homesellers in 2022 was 60 years old, guess who is more likely to open and read your letter than click on your Instagram feed?
Don’t know what to write? No sweat, we’ve got you covered. Grab our 12 best prospecting letter templates here:
The 15 Best Real Estate Prospecting Letter Templates
9. Host Targeted Open Houses for Other Agents
As any experienced agent will tell you, the riches are in the niches. Agents who specialize in one demographic, farm area, or type of property tend to be more successful at getting real estate clients than those who don’t. The only problem is that lucrative niches like luxury homes are very difficult for new agents to break into. Luckily, there is a cheat code that smart new agents use to start working in lucrative niches right away: working open houses in niches they want to break into.
This is an especially helpful tactic for new agents with tight budgets. Instead of spending your mortgage payment on pricey leads you don’t have the experience to convert into clients, you can start schmoozing with buyers (and even some curious homeowners) in your niche this weekend. For free. It’s the perfect way to get your name out there in neighborhoods you want to work in.
33 Open House Ideas That Will Actually Get You Leads
10. Build & Leverage Your Personal Brand Online
These days, the competition for leads online is fierce. Smart agents are beginning to realize that a mediocre personal brand just won’t cut it anymore. The only problem is that hiring a good graphic designer to help build your brand and keep it consistent is very expensive.
VistaCreate is one way to start building a great personal brand without the hit to your wallet. It’s an easy-to-use marketing platform with hundreds of gorgeous and easy-to-edit templates for everything from social media posts to business cards. They make building your personal brand easy and affordable.
By the way, a lot of agents think they’re too new to start building a brand. Well, guess what? If you’re not actively building a brand, then in the eyes of your potential clients, your brand is basically “I’m an agent who doesn’t care.” Is that how you want to be seen in your market?
8 Real Estate Marketing Materials to Crush Your Personal Brand
11. Get Yourself Some Press
Getting your name on a real estate website or local newspaper is a great way to position yourself locally as a real estate expert and score more clients.
Even better, if you can offer insightful quotes and develop relationships with journalists, you may be able to get them to link to your website and refer to you as, say, “San Diego’s luxury real estate expert” rather than just “real estate agent.” Believe me, your clients are going to be impressed!
Stack up enough mentions and you can create a press page on your website to show off all the places you’ve been quoted. To start out, sign up for HARO (Help a Reporter Out) or, if you want to get quoted or even write a guest post or video for The Close, email us.
5 PR Strategies Any Agent Can Use to Get Free Press
12. Become a Real Estate Agent + _____________
Another great way to get clients is to try to integrate your personal life into your branding. Appeal to your audience’s fun side by highlighting hobbies or interests you might have in common.
For example, if you’re a dog lover, you might consider making a cute Instagram post with your dog at your new listing, or maybe go out and rate the local dog runs and post the videos on YouTube. Then you won’t just be another real estate agent. Instead, you’re the dog-loving real estate agent. Clients who are also dog lovers will be far more likely to choose you over someone with similar skills who doesn’t share their passion. Ryan Serhant reinforces this tactic in his course, Sell It Like Serhant. He argues that you should brand yourself Realtor + whatever it is that makes you special or interesting.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it hard to get clients as a Realtor?
It can be. Unlike many professions, luck plays an outsize role in the quantity and quality of clients you get. We’ve all heard stories about agents who stumble their way into seven-figure listings their first week on the job. For the most part, those stories are true. I’ve personally worked with agents who made well over six figures their first year as an agent, mostly due to good luck.
Of course, luck favors the prepared. Even if you have a rich aunt who lets you list her mansion, you won’t do a very good job unless you have the skills and experience to get her the best price. Instead of waiting for your luck to change, focus on building simple, consistent, and scalable systems to generate and nurture leads. The clients will come. Trust me.
I’m a brand-new Realtor. Will your strategies work for me?
Yes! Every strategy we outlined in this guide will work for new agents. The only caveat is that you will need to work a little harder and wait a little longer to see results. For example, any agent can run an open house, but it will be much easier for an experienced agent to turn a five-minute conversation with a nosy neighbor into a listing appointment.
What is the fastest way to get clients?
Unless you get lucky with a referral, buying leads is the fastest way to get clients. Here’s why: Lead generation companies have spent many years building and testing ways to generate leads in bulk, and at prices low enough to make a profit selling them to you.
Over to You
Have any strategies on how to get real estate clients that we haven’t covered in the article? Let us know in the comments!