How to Create a Real Estate Lead Generation Plan

real estate prospecting goals


One of the most common mistakes my coaching clients make is that they never take the time to create a diverse real estate lead generation plan that really works for them.

Instead, they jump from strategy to strategy and guru to guru and never really find the mix that generates enough leads and referrals.

Sound familiar?

The good news is that creating a lead generation plan that leverages your unique personality is easier that it sounds. Today I’m going to walk you through the steps to create a plan that not only fits your personality, but fills your pipeline with leads and referral opportunities.

5-Step Lead Generation Selection Formula Pyramid

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Getting Started: Not All Lead Generation Strategies Work for All Agents

With so many lead generation options to choose from, how can an agent decide which are the best for their business? The truth is there is no one strategy that is any better than another. The success of any strategy depends entirely on the agent. Most make the mistake of chasing one strategy then another, never mastering one.

Have you ever considered that there may be a lead generation strategy that aligns with your goals, past experiences, and personality? If this is true, do you believe you could actually enjoy lead generation more, be more successful, and overall be happier? That is exactly my experience.

This is why I created the 5-Step Lead Generation Selection Formula—to help real estate agents create a lead generation plan that gives them the right blend of strategies that leverages their unique personality.

The 5-Step Lead Generation Selection Formula

man writing a real estate contract

The 5-step Lead Generation Selection Formula is pretty straightforward, but if you want to make it work for you, it’s important to understand how it works. Here is a quick overview of the formula before we take a deep dive into making it work for you.

The Goal

The formula begins with what you want your lead generation efforts to accomplish. What is your goal? Do you want more buyer leads, seller leads, or referrals? Do you need closings ASAP or do you have time?

Figuring out exactly what you want to accomplish is foundational to deciding which lead generation

strategies to include in your plan. Every decision you will make about lead generation should be based on the goal you would like to achieve.

Personality

Once you have determined your goal, we then utilize a personality assessment to discover your natural strengths and weaknesses. This will help identify what lead generation strategies will be the most effective with your unique personality.

Resources

After the personality assessment, you need to review your current resources and compare them to the lead generation tactics they have available to them and identify where they may have a competitive advantage.

Options

Figuring out which lead generation tactics are truly available to you today is key to selecting the right mix of strategies for your plan. This will include budget concerns, your professional sphere, and your market concerns.

Plan

The final step is for the agent to select the lead generation strategies that are the best fit for them and create a lead generation plan.

I have personally used this proven formula to help hundreds of agents find the best mix of lead generation strategies—for them. In this article, I will walk you through my 5-Step Lead Generation Selection Formula to help you uncover the best lead generation plan for you.

Let’s take a look at each step in more detail:

1. Begin With Your Goal

Looking for Direction

When it comes to getting leads, a goal is simply a destination with a deadline. It defines specifically where you want to go and when you want to get there. All other decisions you make about your real estate business must be in alignment with your goals. If they aren’t, then you’re not going to get very far in this industry.

As a coach, I’ve found that when an agent is not achieving the results they desire, it is usually because they are out of alignment with their goal, or even worse, they don’t have concrete goals to orient their decisions against. They therefore find themselves jumping from idea to idea and from strategy to strategy with no real plan.

Over the years, I also discovered that no two agents have the exact same goals when it comes to getting leads. So why should agents use the same mix of strategies? If one agent has a goal to close 12 transactions this year and another agent’s goal is to increase their business from 25 transactions to 35 transactions, their lead generation strategies will look completely different.

All Lead Generation Strategies Are Not Equal

There are several considerations you must make when figuring out which lead generation strategies to use. The first and most important thing to consider is how long it will take before you will begin working with serious clients.

If you’re using long-term strategies and expecting to reach short-term goals, you’re going to have a problem. The chart below will help you select the correct strategy by listing lead generation tactics by the fastest time to convert to the longest.

Lead Generation & Time to Lead Conversion

Lead Generation and Time to Lead Conversion Table

How to Set Concrete Goals & Actually Get Results

Setting concrete goals is as simple as asking yourself three questions. Don’t skip this step! The answers to these questions will form a blueprint for picking which strategies you will use to get leads.

What do you want to achieve? Be specific.

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When do you want to achieve it?

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How long do you have before you must produce income?

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Now that you have revisited your goals, we can uncover your unique sales personality before we select the best mix of strategies for you.

2. Find Your Unique Sales Personality

What is your unique sales personality

Your unique personality should be a key consideration when choosing which strategies to add to your plan. After all, people with different personalities not only think about situations differently, they also solve problems and execute tasks differently. Taking a personality test will help you discover your unique sales personality.

Personality tests like Meyers-Briggs have been used for nearly a hundred years. They aren’t psychic, but they aren’t complete guesses, either. They use the answers you give and provide a report on how you may think of situations and may make decisions. For many people, this is insightful and creates clarity on why they excel in some situations and struggle in others.

It’s important to understand that your personality is important in selecting your strategy, but not the most important. Your goals may sometimes require you to do things that are outside of your personality preference.

We all have the ability to “flex” out of our personality preference for a period of time. However, when we stay out of preference for too long, we can become stressed, irritable, or possibly burnt out. This is one of the main reasons new agents fail so often. They spend too much of their time working outside their personality comfort zone and burn out.

The secret is to find lead generation strategies that are in alignment with your personality type and don’t require you to flex out of your comfort zone too often. When you do this, you may find that you enjoy your lead generation and can perform lead generation tasks for longer periods of time. This will lead to more appointments, and more appointments lead to more contracts. It really is that simple. This generates inspiration, excitement, and passion. I call this the Success Cycle.

The Success Cycle

The Success Cycle

You have entered the Success Cycle when things just seem to flow. You are showing up to complete your lead generation activities each day, your energy is high, your results are outstanding, and you are feeling happy and fulfilled. You hope this feeling lasts forever—but of course it doesn’t. Life, vacations, and other disruptions will get in the way. Your objective is not to permanently stay in the Success Cycle but to increase the duration of time that you are in it.

The key to staying in the Success Cycle longer is doing lead generation activities that you naturally enjoy. These are activities that are in sync with your unique personality.

How to Find Your Unique Sales Personality

The topic of how one’s personality affects their success in sales has become part of my life’s work—so much so that I committed a significant part of my career to researching, testing, and perfecting how to find lead generation tactics that are the best for real estate agents’ unique personality types.

Utilizing the Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator and the DiSC Assessment, I created the 16 Strategies for Sales Personality Assessment. This assessment is designed specifically for sales people like you to gain a deeper understanding of their sales personality and how to become more effective, successful, and happier at sales.

Where to Take the Test

Before you continue, take the free 16 Strategies Sales Assessment on my website, 16 Strategies.com. It should only take 10 minutes and is crucial to finishing your plan.

If you wish to deepen your understanding, I actually wrote a book on sales personalities, which is available on Amazon.

The next step to finding the best lead generation strategy for you will be to identify the unique resources you have available to you. After that, we’ll move on to talking about which lead generation options make sense for both your personality and your goals.

3. Identify Your Unique Resources

Team Meeting

Putting together the right lead generation plan requires you to look deeply at your resources. Every agent has unique backgrounds, experiences, and opportunities that are available to help them succeed in sales in their own way. These differences need to be accounted for when you’re selecting the right lead generation strategy for you.

Connections

Some agents have the advantage of having very wealthy people in their sphere. They can leverage these relationships to shorten the learning curve, allowing them to achieve their goal faster. A sales background is another resource advantage some agents have. The skills they had learned in their previous career can possibly translate to real estate.

Budget

If an agent is new to business, they may have little money to get their lead generation started compared to a seasoned agent with a larger marketing budget. Therefore, the money you have to spend on your lead generation must be a consideration in your lead generation plan.

Resources Your Brokerage Offers

Lastly, some real estate companies offer, at little or no cost, lead generation resources like lead management systems, FSBO and expired leads, advertising, and consumer apps.

Let’s take a closer look at how you can inventory the resources available to you today. There is a good chance there are some you are overlooking.

How to Identify Your Unique Resources

Begin by thinking about your history. Think of your family and friends who can help you by learning from their experiences. Ask yourself the following questions:

Who do I know who can help me reach my goal faster?

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Specifically, what can they provide or teach me?

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Next, consider your education and previous work experience. School and work provide both skills and knowledge that can help you achieve your goal. Ask yourself:

What from my educational experiences can give me an advantage to reach my real estate goals?

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What knowledge from my previous work experience can help me achieve my goals faster?

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What skills have I already developed from my previous experiences?

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What other experiences are a benefit to my real estate goals?

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Lastly, identify what lead generation opportunities you have available to you. These are tools, systems, and resources your company, association, or others make available to you. To identify these resources ask yourself:

What lead generation systems does my company provide?

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What lead generation education is available to me?

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What other resources can provide me lead generation systems, tools, and education?

____________________________________________________

Now that you have identified your unique resources, we can move to uncover the lead generation options that are available to you and how they work with your budget.

4. Uncover Your Lead Generation Options & Costs

colorful umbrellas

Since there are so many ways to get leads, choosing the right mix of strategies can be overwhelming. To make it easier to choose, I place them into two categories: active and passive.

Active Lead Generation Methods

Active lead generation methods are strategies that can control the result. For example, calling FSBOs to get a listing appointment is active because you can continue to call FSBOs until you find a seller that is open to meeting with you.

Passive Lead Generation Methods

The other category is passive. Passive lead generation is all strategies that for which you can’t control the result. For example, marketing is passive because you cannot control how many people contact you in a given day.

In the chart below, you can see a list of some real estate lead generation strategies separated into whether they are active and passive. We also organized active and passive lead generation strategies by cost, starting at the bottom with strategies that are no cost and working our way to the top to the highest cost. This allows you to focus on strategies that are in alignment with your budget.

Active & Passive Lead Generation Methods

Active and Passive Lead Generation Methods

Some strategies can be either active or passive depending on the activities of the sales person. For example, having a booth at a local bridal show is considered active if the agent is actively engaging the prospects. If they are just standing behind the booth and allowing the prospects to walk by, waiting for the prospects to come to the booth, it would be considered a passive strategy.

A well-rounded lead generation plan should include three to four strategies for producing consistent results. Each unique lead generation plan should include at least one active lead generation strategy and each lead generation plan should include managing the sphere of influence (SOI) database with contact, marketing, and events. We will cover this in more detail later.

Download the Full List of Lead Generation Tactics

It simply is not possible for me to cover every lead generation strategy available to agents in this article. But I can do one better. Here is a complete list of over 60 lead generation ideas, made specifically for you, the agent.

Prioritize Your Lead Generation Options

Begin by reviewing and ranking the lead generation strategies that fit your personality. Next, create a list of strategies by cost and lead conversion time. To help you with this, ask yourself these probing questions:

What lead generation strategies are already available to me?

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Do I have access to free or discounted lead generation strategies?

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What is my budget to spend on lead generation systems?

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Now let’s take a look at putting it all together and creating a blended lead generation plan that includes everything we just talked about.

5. Create Your Custom Lead Generation Plan

Do something great signage

Now that you have reviewed your goals, resources, options, and personality, it is finally time to select which strategies to include in your lead generation plan.

You will select at least three strategies—but no more than four—for your Real Estate Lead Generation Plan. Like the legs of a table, your business can’t stand on just one or two strategies. A table is stable with three legs, but is stronger with four.

Find Your Pillar Strategy

Of the strategies you select, at least one should be an active strategy. This ensures that you work on the skills that help you to generate leads when times get slow. This is what we call your Pillar Strategy. The Pillar strategy is the lead generation activity you hold yourself accountable to weekly or monthly.

Plan Your SOI Strategy

One of the other strategies should be managing your SOI database by contacting leads, following a marketing plan, and holding small events. Managing your SOI database, in the long run, will provide you with a consistent stream of repeat and referral clientele.

Choose Your Support Strategies

The final one or two strategies are your choice: Active or Passive. Remember to take into consideration your availability of resources and money as well as the time the strategy takes to convert leads from cold to motivated. The other two strategies work as support to your Pillar Strategy. We call them Support Strategies.

How I Developed the Lead Generation Plan That Transformed My Career

In my real estate career, I have had several different lead generation plans. My unique strength has always been to educate people, and my preferred method is speaking to groups. Writing and speaking both allow me to work within my strength while achieving my goals.

A few years back, I ran a real estate investment group and attended other larger investment groups as a guest speaker. Speaking and education was my Pillar Strategy. Other than managing my SOI database, my two other strategies were advertising investment properties on the internet and looking for business-to-business opportunities.

The advertising generated a significant amount of leads that all were invited to hear me speak about real estate investing. The customers generated through the speaking and advertising were presented as potential buyers to homebuilders and banks that had foreclosed properties they needed liquidated. In the four years I ran this lead generation plan, my team and I closed over 500 homes each year!

Now it is your turn to take the time to decide your Pillar Strategy and select one or two supporting strategies. Use the list of questions below to guide you to come up with your own unique lead generation plan.

What lead generation strategies are available at low or no cost to me?

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What lead generation strategies do I already have experience with?

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What lead generation strategies excite me?

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Which lead generation strategy is in alignment with my personality?

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What lead generation strategies have I already tried?

  • What did I enjoy?
  • What did I despise?

Lead Generation Plan Worksheet

TitleActivityActive or PassiveReturn on Investment
Pillar StrategyActiveFast
Support Strategy
Support Strategy
SOI DatabaseEmail, Mail, EventsPassive / ActiveSlow and Steady

Now that you know the step-by-step strategy, put it into action by downloading the lead generation plan worksheet and creating your own custom plan.

Get A Free Consultation

See How We Get You REAL Results.

SEM – Unlock massive amounts of traffic with Search Engine Marketing (SEM) using a combined SEO/PPC strategies with clear ROI. See REAL Results

SOCIAL / EMAIL – our team creates epic content that will get shared, get links, and attract traffic back to your website for lead generation.

CRM – Tie all of your marketing efforts together, track your contacts across all channels, automate follow-up, and measure REAL results.

Conclusion

Now you have a completed lead generation plan based on your personality, resources, options, and most important of all, your goals. You are now set up to accomplish something great! Just don’t forget to share some of your success secrets along the way.

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