Steve Watson
17 minutes read
Oct 24 2021

How to Get Your Leads to Call You Back

 Improving Real Estate Call Back Rates

Working on leads and building what you feel is a viable list is one of the most time-consuming parts of running a business. This is especially true when it comes to real estate. Anyone who has been working in the field for any length of time has had to learn how to endure rejections. It’s part of the business. However, after you spend all that time setting up new leads that you think will work out, it can feel like a major waste of time when they don’t contact you.

It can be frustrating trying to figure out why they aren’t getting back in touch with you after all that work and why your calls and emails are not being answered. This is sometimes even more difficult than getting clients in the first place.

Fortunately, there are things you can do that will increase the number of leads that you get taking your calls and getting in touch. Below, we’ll be looking at ways that you can improve your success and get your calls returned.

Main Reasons They Don’t Call You Back and How to Get Them to Change Their Mind

When you understand the reasons that they aren’t calling you back, you can make changes to the way you do business and present yourself to future leads. Below are some of the biggest reasons that you may be losing clients.

Waiting Too Long to Follow Up

Sometimes, you wait too long to return those initial calls that come from the seller. If they get in touch with you and leave a message, they expect to be called back as soon as possible. Waiting a day or more is far too long. Ideally, you will call them back within half an hour to touch base and get more information from them.

When a potential client takes the time to call you and you don’t answer, they might not be available to take your call later. Like you, they typically have a limited window where they could take a return call. They might be on their lunch break, meeting with their children’s school, or doing any number of other things that will prevent them from taking a call later in the day. You don’t know their schedule.

If you can’t call them back relatively quickly after you get that message from them, you may have lost that buyer or seller. They may feel, whether it’s inaccurate or not, that you aren’t going to be able to provide them with the attention and help they need if you can’t answer their calls or call them back within a reasonable amount of time.

Of course, it’s impossible to be there for clients around the clock. You might be with other clients when the client calls, making it impossible to call them back right away. However, you should strive to make sure you get back to them as soon as possible.

Consider Automation Tools

One of the best things you can do is to start using some automation tools that can help to ensure you are getting back to the leads right away. You can use automatic email responses, widgets on your website, chatbots, and more. Have the return message let them know that you are currently busy with another client and that you will get back to them as soon as you can.

Make sure you are checking all your incoming messages and that you actually respond as soon as possible. The customer relationship management tools you use should have outreach options that will make it easier to create follow-up messages, which can help to strengthen relationships with clients even when you aren’t able to answer their calls.

Having these types of tools can be a fantastic way to help retain more of your potential leads. However, you still need to call them back and talk to them in person as soon as you can. Remember, you have a limited time before they start looking at other agents. They may already be talking with other agents and are determining who to use. Not getting in touch with them will ensure that they don’t choose you.

Not Sounding Confident

Even agents who have been in the business for years may have days where they aren’t feeling as confident and it comes across in the way they present themselves to the leads. You might have something else weighing on your mind that makes it hard for you to concentrate on the clients that are in front of you. You might be feeling under the weather. Other times, agents are still getting started in the field, and they haven’t developed their style and confidence yet.

Regardless, if you don’t appear competent and confident, you can be sure that clients will be hesitant to want to work with you. They may feel that you aren’t capable of representing them because of what they perceive as being a lack of confidence. If you aren’t confident with them, they reason that there’s no way you’ll be able to represent them and negotiate on their behalf during the sale.

What Can You Do?

If you feel that you might not have come across as confident when you first spoke with the lead, it can be hard to gain back their trust in your abilities. You will want to follow up with them with a strong email, and perhaps a phone call to touch base. However, it can be difficult. It’s often better to try to avoid clients getting this perception of you in the first place. Here are some tips that will help.

Most people aren’t born to sell and aren’t great speakers naturally. This comes with time and practice. Keep in mind that you have plenty of areas in your life where you can practice speaking and become more confident. Every time that you talk with someone is an opportunity to practice, and you should. You’ll learn how to speak clearly, how to connect with people, and how to exude confidence.

You should also recite your script out loud in the mirror before you call potential clients. You don’t want to stumble over your words or sound as if you don’t know what you’re talking about. Know what you want to say, know answers to the types of questions that clients will commonly ask, and practice. Speaking out loud and practicing might feel silly, but it really can help quite a bit.

When you are on the phone with clients, consider standing up rather than sitting down. Sitting causes your diaphragm to compress, making it harder to project your voice. Standing and even pacing can help many people to feel more confident.

Know Your Stuff

One of the main reasons that some agents lack confidence is because they don’t know what they are doing. They might be new and are trying to take on clients that they might not be ready for. This can cause them to become nervous when they are speaking to the leads and are trying to get them to convert.

You need to know what you are talking about, and as mentioned, you need to have the answers to the questions the leads ask. Not only do you need to have those answers, but you also must know why those answers are correct. Learn the ins and outs of your job, study the market and the area, and keep up with changes. When you have answers to the questions the clients ask, they will feel comfortable entrusting you with the sale of their home.

Locked Out by the Gatekeepers

While this doesn’t apply to all the leads you will encounter, it will apply to some. In certain cases, the lead will not provide you with their personal cell number or their home phone. Instead, they will provide you with a work number. This means that you will likely need to make it through the initial gatekeepers before you can even speak with the lead.

This can be difficult because you will be talking with assistants or receptionists rather than the lead. They likely won’t forward what is essentially a cold call to their boss. It’s their job to make sure things like that don’t reach the boss’s phone.

What Can You Do?

Remember that it’s important to be nice to the person who answers your call even if they aren’t the lead. Let them know who you are, why you are calling, and why it’s important to get a message to the lead. In some cases, you might also find success by sending a small gift that can be presented to the lead. This can help to get your foot further in the door, and the lead might then provide you with their personal number.

Some Younger Clients Might Not Like Phone Calls

Today, many buyers who are under 35 or 40 prefer texting to phone calls. They spend more time texting than being on the phone talking to people, and they often expect others to do the same. You want to understand how to communicate most effectively with each of the leads that you have and sometimes this means texting in addition to making calls. They may not answer the phone call, but they are more likely to respond to a text.

You should also make sure that your follow-ups include emails. It’s another easy way of communicating. Once you start to develop more of a rapport through email, text, and occasional calls, it will be easier to get them into your office.

There Is No Personal Connection

One of the best ways to sell is to create a good relationship with the leads as quickly as possible. You want to start building a relationship with them, but some real estate agents have trouble with this. They are so focused on the aspect of trying to sell themselves that they don’t put in the work to build a strong relationship with the client.

Keep in mind that this is important not just for the current purchase or sale of a property. When you work to build a good relationship with the clients, they will continue to use you in the future. If they want to buy or sell a property in the future, you will be the person they call if they feel you have a good relationship. They will also recommend you to their friends, family, and coworkers who might be looking for an agent.

Tips for Building Stronger Relationships Fast

Taking the time to build a strong relationship now is well worth it. Of course, it’s not always easy. You may not feel you always have the time, especially if you are meeting people at an open house. However, you can try. Here are some simple tips that could help.

Make sure you get peoples’ names and write them down along with their contact information whenever you are talking with a lead in person or on the phone. Be friendly and listen to what they are saying. Make note of their personality, personal information they might have told you, such as what they do for a living, mentions of their family, etc. You can later mention some of those things in your follow-up.

For example, if you have a lead that says their wife wasn’t able to make it to a showing because she was at a job interview, you could ask how the interview went the next time you talk to the lead. It shows that you are interested in more than just selling and can start to create a personal connection. These might seem like small things, but they can make a difference in how leads perceive you.

No Call to Action

One of the other reasons that people may not be getting back to you is that you haven’t put in any calls to action in your email or voicemail. They get the message, but they aren’t sure what they should do next. This is a major mistake, but it’s relatively easy to correct.

Simply add a call to action to the voicemail, email, or text. Your leads have to understand what they should do. They have to know how to respond and when they should reach out. The CTA doesn’t have to be complex. The simpler the better in most cases.

Just let the lead know why you contacted them and what they should do. Have you found a home that you feel might be right for them? Let them know that you’ve found a great property and that they should get back to you as soon as possible because you worry that it will sell fast.

Think about what the lead needs and what you can offer, and then craft the call to action around that.

Mispronouncing the Lead’s Name

This tends to happen to just about everyone at some point. Sometimes, the lead’s name might be difficult to pronounce if you’ve not heard it spoken before. There are times when the names from certain cultures might make it difficult to determine sex and gender, which means you could mistakenly ask for a mister when it’s actually a missus. There are plenty of ways that a name could be mispronounced—even relatively simple names.

Most of the time, people will not get too hung up on it if it happens once by mistake. However, once you know the person’s name and how to pronounce it correctly, you had better not make mistakes later. If it’s a particularly difficult name, write down the phonetic pronunciation next to the person’s name in your notes.

If you make a mistake when you are first talking with someone, try not to let it shake your confidence. It was just a mistake that’s easily correctable. If you continue doing it, though, you can be relatively sure that the lead will prefer working with a different real estate agent.

They Already Have an Agent

Sometimes, you might get a lead that seems promising only to find out that they already have another agent. Because they are represented, the chance of them calling you back tends to be slim.

If you discover that they already have an agent, you do not want to come across as overly aggressive and trying to steal that client. This is not a good look for you, and it could end up backfiring in horrible ways.

Not only is the client not likely to respond positively to this type of action, but they will let their agent know. Since many people in the real estate community in an area know one another, you will start to get a bad reputation. Other agents will not trust you, and this can seriously damage your reputation.

Instead, when you find someone who already has an agent, thank them for their time and let them know that you are there if they decide that they need another opinion. You may not get the client, but you do not run the risk of being blackballed because you are trying to poach clients.

You Called at the Wrong Time

You aren’t psychic and you don’t know when it’s a good time to call your leads. All you can do is try your best. This means that you don’t want to call early in the morning or late at night. You probably don’t want to call in the middle of the day either since most people will be at work during that time and won’t be able to answer the phone.

You should talk with the client when you have your first meeting about the best times to get in touch with them. Everyone has different schedules, and this means that not everyone will be available at 5 p.m. or 1 p.m.

Let the leads tell you when you should contact them for calls and texts. Emails are a bit easier since people can view and answer them at their leisure. Knowing when to contact them will ensure that you aren’t trying to reach out when it would be disruptive for them.

If you are making initial contact with a phone call, and you aren’t sure, it’s best to err on the side of caution. Do not call after 7 p.m. or before 11 a.m. This leaves you a decent window, and even if they can’t get to the phone at that time, you can still leave a voicemail… which leads to the next reason that leads might not be calling you back.

You Didn’t Leave a Message

While it seems like common sense to leave a voicemail message when you don’t get ahold of someone on the phone, not all agents do. They get flustered when they realize that they are being sent to voicemail, sometimes forget exactly what they have to say, or don’t feel it will fit in a voicemail. They hang up.

What does this mean for the client? It means that they get a voicemail with a few seconds of breathing on it before the message ends. If they don’t recognize your number—or if they do—they might not call back. They might feel that you dialed their number by mistake.

Therefore, you should always be ready to leave a voicemail. You can make things easier on yourself by writing a simple voicemail script for the call just in case it does go to voicemail. Read the script, thank them, and remember to add that call to action discussed earlier.

You Don’t Have Social Proof

When someone receives a phone call from a real estate agent they don’t know, one of the first things they will do is try to find out more about you and your company. They are likely getting quite a few similar calls, and they want to be sure that you are a legitimate agent before they contact you.

If you don’t have enough social proof, they will not be able to find much information about you. If it’s hard to find information, their trust levels will drop. You need to make sure this doesn’t happen.

Get a Website and Get Social

First, make sure that you have a good website. You want to build a site that includes all the relevant information about you and that features your name. You have to rank the site for your business and name, which means having quality content that’s localized to the area where you work. The site needs to be easy to navigate, as well. It should look professional and have your photo and credentials.

You also need to make sure that you have a Zillow review page, as well as social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. The goal is to get your name and brand out there on the Internet, so when clients look you up, they have a wealth of information about you. Having social proof helps to engender trust from the clients, and they will be more willing to talk with you.

They’re Not the Right Leads

Even when you put in a lot of work trying to find the best leads, it doesn’t always pan out. Sometimes, you have leads that just won’t work for one reason or another. They won’t call you back no matter what you do. Often, it means that they were not serious about buying or selling in the first place.

This doesn’t mean that you can’t keep them on your list, at least for now. It may be a good idea to check in with them occasionally with emails to see if they are potentially interested. Instead of trying to get them to become clients right now, you might want to put them on the backburner.

Don’t forget about them but put them on a drip campaign as you nurture them over the years. You don’t have to put a lot of effort into them, but by keeping in contact with emails, your name will be the first they think of when it comes time to buy or sell a home.

Consider Working with a Company for Better Leads

These are some of the main reasons leads aren’t calling back. They aren’t the only reasons, of course, but they are some of the ones you are likely to run into as a real estate agent. Use the tips that are included above to help make sure that you can circumvent these issues. A little preparation will go a long way in making sure you have qualified leads that are ready to buy or sell and use you as their real estate agent.

Something that you might want to consider doing is working with a professional company like LeadOptix, which can provide you with high-quality leads and help with marketing campaigns. It can allow you to focus on the other aspects of the job and provide you with a pipeline of fantastic prospects that want to work with you.

They have a system that integrates with most third-party real estate tools, and all their plans are monthly subscriptions, so there are no long-term contracts to worry about with them. Get real-time, quality, exclusive leads. It’s a nice and easy way to build your success.