The first year of being a real estate agent is tough - the fees, the long hours, the constant search for leads.
According to McKissock's 2019-2020 Real Estate Income Report, the average real estate makes $15,000 in their first year - that's obviously not a living wage. Luckily, the report also mentions that the average real estate income DOUBLES after the first year... which is still not a living wage depending on where you live.
We gathered a list of creative lead generation ideas that go beyond paying thousands of dollars for Facebook ads or yard signs.
Here are 15 creative lead generation ideas for real estate agents:
- Sit an open house - and bring a sign in sheet so you can collect visitors' information for follow up!
- Reach out to your sphere - and let everyone know you're in real estate. Odds are you'll find a friend of a friend or an old high school teacher looking to buy/sell.
- Call expired listings and FSBOs - don't wait for clients to come to you!
- Contact listing agents and preview homes for sale. It's good exposure to how things are done, plus it helps you network with other agents in your area.
- Network with top producers in your area - title companies, lawyers, etc. You never know what kind of referrals you can get through real-estate-adjacent avenues!
- Visit new construction neighborhoods - make friends with build reps and leave your information with contractors.
- Themed direct mail - is direct mail creative? Not necessarily. But you can plan creative direct mail campaigns that are themed around holidays to add a more personal touch.
- Conduct "pop-bys" with small, playful gifts. You can make a lasting impression by stopping by the homes of your clients and prospects and reminding them who you are with a little gift. Think a bag of popcorn with a card that says "Popping by to update you on the real estate market." Sometimes the punnier, the better!
- Put fliers up at coffee shops, the post office, library, the gym, etc. that have your face, name, and contact info on them.
- Join Facebook groups for real estate agents in your area! There are groups created to trade referrals and groups for support and brainstorming. Being a real estate agent can be isolating and it's always beneficial to build a community for yourself.
- Network with in-person groups that align with your hobbies or interests - like a book club, Parent Teacher Organization, your kid's sports teams - and be sure to wear your real estate shirt if you have one!
- Learn to talk about your real estate work in everyday conversations. Practice talking to friends and family about what you do, and it will become second nature when you're in a conversation with an acquaintance or stranger.
- Consistently post videos and photos to your social media pages (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.) since the algorithms prioritize those over text. Create videos about you, new listings, market trends, neighborhood recommendations, and more!
- Utilize new tools such as Instagram Guides or Reels to get in front of new audiences and show off your neighborhood knowledge. Clubhouse is HUGE in the real estate industry, and there have already been MILLIONS of referrals passed between realtors.
- Join Showdigs! Agents conduct tours of rental properties and are encouraged to leave their contact information with any prospect who shows interest in buying or selling in the future. It’s an opportunity to meet people, get to know your neighborhood better, market yourself, and see if prospects know anyone looking to buy or sell. Click here to read about all the benefits of Showdigs for both you and your broker!
No matter which of these creative ideas you choose, it's important to stay consistent. Set a calendar reminder for each task weekly or monthly!
Even when you are busy with clients, be sure to continue with your routine. It might not feel like you get results from it at first, but as the years go by you will see how the "routine" pays off!