Are you having a difficult time converting those “home value” leads?
If so, I can understand why.
You see, many people who complete those forms are just curious to see what the number will be. They may have no interest in selling. Nor do they know anything about you – so why should they take your call?
Have you ever had one of those “leads” tell you they’re not interested and don’t call back?
There is a better way to use content marketing for real estate lead generation.
In online marketing, anything you create, whether a home value report or an e-book, is called a lead magnet.
A well-designed lead magnet does three things. . .
- It promises to answer a question, or solve a problem, for the reader – and then fulfills that promise
- It establishes your credibility
- It sets the stage for the next step in the sales funnel, or process.
Creating an e-book is a great way to accomplish each of these goals and it’s really easy to do. Your e-book doesn’t have to be long. It just has to be useful, to educate your prospective clients about how they can sell their home with greater ease or get better results.
Let’s look at how you can create an ebook to generate well-qualified leads for your business;
Step 1: Answer a Question or Solve a Problem
When planning your e-book, think about the questions, or challenges, your clients have.
What questions do they ask?
What mistakes do you see them making?
What do you wish they knew about the process of selling their home that would make both their job, and yours, easier?
Whatever those questions are, you can be sure that if one or two clients are unsure about them, lots of other homeowners would like to know the same information.
Several examples of seller focused e-books include;
- Preparing for a Successful Sale – this topic could include how buyers evaluate homes, how to make your home stand out from the competition, what influences pricing – and what doesn’t, and how to select the right real estate agent.
- How to Price Your Home to Sell (Without Giving It Away) – This e-book could explain the nuances of pricing, the potential risks of listing with an agent just because he/she quotes a high price, the benefits of a pre-listing appraisal and more.
- Selling Your Property to a Builder – This e-book could be used to target older homes on prime lots, especially when you have strong demand from local builders for in-fill lots. The e-book could explain the benefits of selling to a builder, including not having to make repairs, no open houses or tours (great for elderly owners), and being able to stay in the home, after closing, while they shop for their next home.
Each of these topics answers a question, or provides insight, into ideas most homeowners would like to know more about. And they also do more to establish your reputation as a knowledgable real estate professional than simply offering an opinion of value.
Step 2: Outline and Write Your E-Book
The fastest way to create your e-book is to create an outline and then simply find, or write from experience, the content to complete the outline. But your e-book also needs to convert readers to prospective clients. One of the best ways to do that is to use a time-testing approach to writing sales material;
- Present the problem
- Agitate the problem
- Present the solution
For example, in the e-book Preparing for a Successful Sale, you could present the problem as most homeowners only sell a home every ten years or so. Because it’s not something they do regularly, they may not fully understand how the process works and how they can make it work to their benefit in terms of a faster sale, a higher price, better terms or some combination of those.
You could agitate the problem by suggesting that they may be leaving money on the table, taking longer than necessary to sell, having to interview and re-list with new agents – all things most seller would like to avoid.
Then you present your approach as the solution. You describe how to make their home stand out from the competition, how to price it effectively and how to interview and hire the right agent. You don’t present yourself as the right agent, but you do include testimonials throughout your e-book that state, from previous clients, how your advice helped them sell faster, for more money, etc.
The outline could include;
- The problems homeowners face when selling (limited experience, want top dollar, not sure about which repairs to make, etc.).
- The potential risks of not having a proven plan to prepare their home to sell (agitation).
- How buyers will evaluate the seller’s home and compare it to other homes in the area.
- Explain that there are only three things that will influence the sale of their home – marketing, price and condition.
- Explain that marketing is designed to increase awareness among potential buyers and their agents, driving traffic to the door.
- Explain that once the buyer is at the door, the job of marketing is over. Now the home must compete with other homes on it’s balance between price and condition.
- The benefits of a pre-listing appraisal and inspection.
- The benefits of staging.
- Explain how to interview real estate agents, including what questions to ask.
When writing your e-book, avoid real estate industry jargon and strive for clarity. Ask several friends to read your e-book before you make it available to the public. If they can understand its’ value in a few minutes of reading, you’re good to go!
Save your e-book as an Adobe .PDF file so that it can be shared easily without any changes to the formatting. Another benefit of using the .PDF format is that you can insert links within the document. If you have blog articles that expand on an area of your e-book, such as staging, you can insert a link to the article from within your .PDF document.
Step 3: Promoting Your New E-Book
Once you have completed your e-book, you have several options for promoting it to generate leads. Those include;
- Facebook – use the Power Editor in Facebook to target homeowners in your area who are likely to move.
- Email – create an email with a link to a landing page where your contacts can sign up to receive your offer.
- Open Houses – I created a sample report and printed “Agent Copy – Do Not Remove” on the cover. When visitors asked for a copy, I simply emailed them a link directly from my phone.
- Email Letterhead – Create a link in your email letterhead promoting the e-book.
- Direct Mail – Create postcards that promise to provide the solution to homeowners questions and direct them to a landing page where they can opt-in for your offer.
- Property Brochures – I found that many people looking at homes also had a home to sell. Use the property brochures for your listings to promote your e-book – and your expertise!
Generate better quality leads for less money.
The benefit of creating your own e-books is that you can create an e-book quickly, responding to the needs of homeowners in your market for relevant information. Suppose property taxes suddenly increase in your market; you can create an e-book providing instruction about how to challenge the new assessment and get hundreds of new email addresses. While those homeowners may not be ready to sell, you have established yourself as a credible source of information.
When you create your own lead magnets, you have the ability to tailor them to your audience, to test them and to track the results. You have complete control over your marketing message, your ad budget, who you promote the offers to and much more.