We all know how painful cold calling is, but these are the top things that really show it's also outdated.
The average success in cold calling is 1% and the very best is only 3%. There are other ways to be much more efficient.
1. You can't easily automate or systematize cold calling.
Cold calling always requires you to be there. If you have a system or a funnel that produces leads then you won't fall off track when life gets in the way.
People get sick
, and you need to spend time with your family. You can't spend your life pounding away on the phones.
And, what happens if you're busy working on a sale?
This is why you should create a system that produces leads and doesn't require you showing up and being a rock star every day to work.
For example, if you mail letters, postcards, books, or do something that doesn't include you physically being there or being perfectly on your game (like cold calling requires) you can get good results systematically.
2. Cold calling requires you to be at the top of your game.
This is the only way you can get good results. If this is the backbone of your lead sources and you have an off day, it's going to set you back.
If you depend on warm leads or material that does the legwork for you, your business won't live or die on how your one day goes.
3. Cold calling hurts your positioning.
This does nothing to position you as an expert or even just a decent agent. The person who answers has very little reason to have respect for you and your business.
No matter what you say on the phone, they have no way to verify it, unless they immediately look it up online.
How do you want clients to view you? I'm not saying that cold calling or door knocking doesn't work. I just don't think it's the best method and not where someone should start if they aren't trying other methods first.
Today’s consumers don’t want to deal with faceless calls and question marks.
There are ways to get leads that don't test your patience every day.
4. You can burn up good leads by cold calling.
I remember when I first got into real estate. I started cold calling to generate business and get listings. My first few listings actually came from cold calling.
However, over time I only had so many leads that I could call per day. My goal was to call for up to 4-6 hours a day. I would call through all of my leads within 30-60 minutes and then call some of the ones I had called the previous few days.
The script I used (I'd say something like "when are you going to hire the right agent for the job of selling your home") offended some people. I got hung up on often.
I remember one lady saying to her husband "it's that same annoying realtor again", over her shoulder, right before hanging up on me. Yes, I got some business from doing this but over time I converted less of my leads into business then using other methods, like mail or mail and calling them with a less offensive script.
Some leads that I knew I could have converted had I used other methods. Over time I didn't like burning bridges and wrecking good opportunities.
5. You don’t like receiving cold calls, neither do they.
When was the last time you were ecstatic about buying from someone who chased you down for months? Maybe Comcast or AT&T and they started calling you, then showing up at your door.
I had a Comcast salesperson show up at my door the other day pushing to upgrade my plan. It's annoying.
I viewed them as "an annoying pest" versus "a welcome guest."
If Comcast had mailed me a sales letter telling me about their additional services I may read it and maybe even consider it. No one is in your face or ear about it.
On the other hand, when they knocked on my door right as I was leaving the house I didn't want to talk to them regardless of how good their offer was.
If you call someone up and are pushy, maybe even annoying, it really hurts your positioning and how the customer "views" you.
You may end up getting the appointment. But it changes how they think of you when you do your listing presentation.
6. Dealing with rude people will test your patience.
Just like the story I just talked about, no-one enjoys being called up and sold something. Especially if they aren't selling right then.
Have 10 people in a few hours telling you to "to go F*** off" is going to wear on you. It would wear down anyone.
After you get a call like that, it's going to affect your demeanor going into the next call. Then you won't be on the top of your game.
How are you going to look forward to doing this for hours each day?
7. It does nothing to separate yourself from the competition.
How can you stand out over the phone?
You'll stand out when you send out helpful information that benefits them.
On the phone, you're just another faceless agent. You can say you are the expert in an area, but that's not showing them or making them believe it.
Plus, cold calling is something that almost every agent does. If this is an expired or FSBO, they probably have had calls from a few realtors.
There's no way to differentiate yourself from those agents on the phone.
8. Connections are what matters.
You're not going to make a good enough cnnection over the phone. Even if you get the listing appointment, your chances will pale in comparison to a lead you've connected with.
What we do at Smart Agents is try and get valuable material into the hands of these owners. When I target FSBOs, I'll give them guides that help sell your house alone.
I'm demonstrating my value.
That's a connection right there. If you can do this, the listing presentation will go much smoother.
9. You're are hurting your chances at referrals.
Imagine getting a listing after calling them 3 or 4 times. The owner finally succumbs to you.
How likely are they to refer you to someone?
"Hey work with this realtor I used. I don't know how he got my phone number and he kept calling me, but at least he sold my house eventually."
That'll never happen. Referrals are a giant part of everyone's business.
It’s much easier to create advocates for you and your brand when you attract them and take them through a process that is pleasurable for all parties involved.
Then they can become an advocate for your business.
10. You're missing out on the niches that need to sell now.
I'm talking about vacant, inherited and divorced homes.
If you are cold calling a list of leads it is probably people interested in selling, FSBOs or expireds. Divorced homes have to sell, and really need help most of the time.
Same with people who own a vacant home, or inherited a home.
Plus, these are niches that aren't as competitive. You’ve got to find new places to look. It’s the only way to stand out from the crowd.
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One of the best marketing tools we use at Smart Agents to separate yourself is books. Books have a huge perceived value. They don’t get thrown away. They can get tucked away somewhere, but most people aren’t going to toss them in the trash. They’re worth something, and they’re worth something to the author’s name.
Mailing these out or dropping them off with leads and leaving is much more efficient than cold calling or door knocking.
Do this and you will position yourself as the authority in your market. When you give away your book, it will separate you from your competition. That’s how a smart agent thinks!
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