Every real estate professional has their favorite lead sources, but if one of them isn’t the open house, then it’s high time to make this lead generation treasure your preferred (and best) tool!
Open houses can be a great source of buyer leads, but it can also get frustrating very quickly when most of your guests say they are already working with another agent….but are they really?
It’s just like when you go to a store and a salesperson comes to ask if they can help you, and you respond with “I’m just browsing” because you just want to look around in peace. This is the same thing. Over the years, buyers going to open houses have learned to say they are already working with another agent, even though it isn’t true. In fact, I would suggest you assume that it isn’t true (even if it is).
Treating Every Guest Like a Potential Client
Even if your guest says they are already working with another agent, take them through the home just like you would if they weren’t. It’s about building rapport by having conversations with them about who they are, and what kind of plans they have. You can also build on this by sharing one of the value pieces or guides from the Power Program®. These high-quality pieces help communicate the level of service you offer, as well as the value in having you as their agent.
The trick here is to not give them larger pieces, like the Buyer’s Guide to Real Estate, at the Open House itself, but offer to send it to them via email. You can say something like, “This is something that we have for buyers, and I’d be happy to send it to you. By the way, can I get your email address?” Now, they may have already put it on the sign-in sheet, but it often happens that people don’t give you the right email address out of the assumption they will be “hassled”. When they realize that they want the value piece you are offering, they will give you the correct one.
TIP: Check out this related article, “12 Top Agent Tips for Hosting Open Houses”
This is where we really begin to qualify the leads that you got from the open house. When you follow up with them later by sending that value piece, you can say, “Here is that guide/report. By the way, I have some other houses that I think might be of interest to you.” You can go into the conversation, treating the buyer like they don’t have another agent and gauging their receptivity.
TIP: This article from Ring Central goes over some suggestions for follow-up calls and how to touch base with the guests.
You may learn that they really are working with another agent, or they aren’t interested because they were really there to see the inside of their neighbor’s house. Those that do seem interested are who you continue to work with, and when you reach the point of scheduling a meeting with them to show them other properties, you ask again, “Are you working with another agent?” It’s at this point they will actually be honest with you and tell you whether or not they are actually working with another agent, regardless of what they told you at the open house. The greater the rapport you have with them, the more honest they will be with you.
The Psychology of a Buyer
Most people who come to open houses operate under the assumption that if they seem too interested or too friendly, that will be an invitation for real estate professionals to call them with mind-numbing frequency. So, to avoid that, they become guarded, and can be standoffish when they first meet you. As you work and build on that relationship through the tour of the home, and then by email, text, and phone calls, the trust builds and they will begin letting down their guard and will be more honest with you.
Why do they do this? It’s because they assume you, the real estate agent, are just there to “sell” and “close” them. You are desperate for business and will call them constantly. This is why it’s so important to build that trust, so we can show that we are about serving and coaching, not selling and closing. Like the adage says, “They don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”
Turning This Customer into a Client
Do not start taking them out to look at homes until you are very clear on whether or not they are working with another agent. As agents of integrity, we don’t ever want to steal clients from another agent, but we often need to build on a relationship before the client will really be honest about their situation.
Once you are confident they are not with another agent, you can proceed with developing this relationship and turning this open house guest into a new client that you can help!
TIP: For Agents that are working with buyers that want to develop trust and spare your buyers from agents pursuing your clients as leads, use the Certification in the Buyers Tab of the Classroom for them to show your information to Agents hosting Open Houses.
Are you ready to start taking things to the Next Level®? If you don’t already know what you need to do to get to your next level, we can help!
Power Agents®, for value pieces to use in your Open Houses, and strategies and tools for talking with buyers, check out the amazing content in the Buyers tab in the Classroom. Whether you need a boost of confidence or brilliant dialogues, we are here to help you get the skills you need to be the go-to agent for the buyers and sellers alike in your farm area.
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