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5 Unconventional Methods for Mastering Lead Conversion

May 11 2021

Real estate agents are taught that lead conversion is a methodical process to follow, but what if the process of converting leads is not a process at all and rather a carefully mastered people skill? Would it change how you approached your conversations?

The Problem with How Agents Handle Lead Conversion

ylopo unconventional lead conversionImagine that you just finished a long, exhausting day of work and you're finally home and about to sit down and have dinner, when your phone rings. It's a number you don't know, so you let it go to voicemail. The caller doesn't leave a message. Not 60 seconds later, your phone rings again. It's the same number and the caller doesn't leave a message—again. Suddenly, you get a text message from the unknown caller asking if you're you. Instantly, you experience a wave of nervousness and you think about all of the wild possibilities for the cryptic calls and messages. Your curiosity quickly gets the best of you and you decide to respond to the text confirming that they have reached the right person and you ask them to identify themselves. Your phone rings again and this time you immediately pick up only to discover that the cryptic caller is some random real estate agent who got your information from an ad you inadvertently clicked while scrolling through Facebook earlier that afternoon. You can probably guess how well this particular conversation went for the real estate agent.

The real estate agent in this all-too-common scenario is following a regularly practiced step-by-step process that many real estate agents are taught in order to most efficiently handle the initial phase of lead conversion—getting the lead on the phone. The problem with this "process" is it fails to address the human aspects of dealing with real people. People have varying emotions, circumstances, schedules, personalities and habits that all impact how they react to and handle different situations. If the real estate agent in the aforementioned scenario had treated the "lead" like an actual person instead of using a clever process to essentially trick them into getting on the phone, they might have stood a chance at building genuine rapport instead of destroying any possibility of establishing a professional relationship based on trust.

Where Do You Go From Here?

So now what? If you've been handling lead conversion like this, do you throw everything you've learned out the window? Not entirely, but there are some things you can do to improve your strategy and ultimately your results, but the methods might seem a bit unconventional. Try to keep an open mind and let's dive in!

Method 1: Shift Your Mindset

The first thing you need to do to improve your rate of lead conversion is to shift your mindset from a sales-based mindset to a value-based mindset. This may sound counterproductive, but when you switch to a value-based mindset, you're allowing yourself to focus on selling the actual service you're providing instead of physically making a real estate sale.

Ditching your scripts is something that will really help you move to a value-based mindset. Scripts are the enemy of authenticity. Your goal when reaching out to prospective clients should be to establish trust and show your value as the absolute best source of real estate information.

Being genuine and human is the first step to building up trust. When you're running scripts on someone, you don't come across as either of those things. To add insult to injury, they've probably already heard all of your scripts from the last real estate agent they spoke with, so why not take advantage of the unique opportunity to set yourself apart by learning how to control your instincts of trying to push, sell, and get them to sign on the dotted line when they're likely not ready to do so?

Method 2: Reframe the Conversation

If you've ever gotten on the phone with potential clients and you can instantly tell that they have their guard up from the moment you said "hello," you might need to work on reframing the conversation.

What does it mean to reframe the conversation?

When you start a conversation with a lead, you might be inclined to ask them something like, "What kind of home are you looking for?" Instead of asking such a direct transactional question you should ask, "What are you trying to accomplish with your move?"

Can you feel the difference?

When you ask someone what they are trying to accomplish with their move, you're asking them something personal about themselves and their motivations. This question immediately drops their guard and you create the opportunity for them to open up about all kinds of things, specifically about what things are influencing them to make decisions.

Some simple reframing of how you're asking your questions can immediately increase your value and will allow your conversations to go more smoothly by showing the lead that you actually care about them and their situation, ultimately rewarding you with their loyalty.

Method 3: Digging Deeper (Mastering Conversion)

The most successful real estate agents know that it's the motives and emotions that really sell, not the surface statements or facts. But still the majority of agents are afraid of digging deeper and having a really prolonged conversation with the lead in fear of inconveniencing them or keeping them too long on the phone.

You need to let this kind of thinking go.

To really provide someone with the most value and the best service, you need to be confident enough to dig deep and learn about what is really motivating them at the heart. Knowing someone's motivations and personal situations allows you to do your job to the best of your ability and on a timeline that is ideal for your client. Without knowing what is influencing someone, you might as well be throwing darts at a wall blindfolded, hoping to eventually hit the bullseye.

Method 4: Challenging Their Thinking

Even the most experienced and successful real estate agents asking the best possible questions are still going to encounter objections. This is a very normal and expected part of being a real estate agent—or any salesperson, for that matter. There are many ways skillful salespeople can overcome objections by challenging the opposition's thinking, but one of the best ways is to master the psychological technique called "shifting the spotlight."

Here an example of what it means to shift the spotlight:

Method 5: Mirroring and Matching

The last thing you should consider doing to improve your lead conversion is to become more likeable.

I know what you're thinking, "Easier said than done."

You'll be happy to know that being naturally likeable is not a gift that a few lucky people were born with and that it's actually a carefully mastered skill called mirroring and matching.

Mirroring and matching is a technique that you can use to subtly key into your prospect's interest level and personality type. It's so effective in building rapport, earning trust and increasing overall likeability that FBI lead negotiators use it on the job.

In a nutshell, people like other people who are similar to them, so to implement mirroring and matching successfully, you simply need to mirror the behavior and speech patterns of the person you're talking to and match their tone and level of interest in order to increase their overall engagement and satisfaction with you.

Putting It All Together

At the end of the day, the one thing that will make the biggest difference in your lead conversion is to actually care about the human being you're speaking to. Stop treating them like a lead and really humanize them. Empathize with their situation, try to understand what things are influencing them, and provide them with true value.

Throw out your step-by-step lead conversion process and embrace the mindset that you're in the business of dealing with people first, not just selling real estate.

Taking These Methods to the Next Level

There are so many other ways you can work to shift your mindset, handle resistance, and avoid uncomfortable conversations with your prospective clients. All of these techniques can even be repurposed to better communicate with your family and friends, not just leads.

To get more in-depth training, you can complete the six-lesson Lead Conversion Masterclass with instructors Robby Tefethren and Barry Jenkins and fully master the art of better communication, understanding people and lead conversion. The entire course is available for free enrollment here.