To really succeed as an investor, you’ve got to have a real estate investing marketing plan that generates good leads on great deals. Otherwise, you could end up spinning your wheels on strategies that don’t help you realize the kind of returns you want—or need—to grow your business.
If you’ve started a real estate investing company and it’s not taking off as you’d hoped despite giving it all you’ve got, it’s likely due to a lead generation method that is simply falling short. Luckily, that can be fixed. And, as a long-time investor who has tried just about every trick in the book, I’ve got several tips on how you can do it. I’m certain you’ll find at least one idea you haven’t tried before.
Tips to Revamp Your Real Estate Investing Marketing Plan
Deciding to start a career in real estate investing is a big deal, especially if you’ve grown accustomed to sitting at a desk and earning a steady paycheck over the years. But, it can start to feel like a big mistake if you’re not making a living doing the work you love. I’ve watched a few investors bail from the business early for this reason. Unfortunately, I’ve also witnessed others take to some fairly unscrupulous tactics in an attempt to drum up more business. You don’t want to fall into either one of these categories. And, I don’t want you to, either.
By applying the right amount of elbow grease, and tweaking your real estate investing marketing plan, you can succeed—even if you’re trying to build your real estate investment business in a competitive city. I can’t help you with the former, but here are my ideas for helping with the latter:
1) Buy Customized Lead Lists
You may already be using lead lists since it is one of the most common methods for generating leads on investment property. Still, I include them here because I continually come across investors who fail to utilize these lists to their full potential. Long gone are the days when you have to purchase lead lists from a real estate agent and sift through an endless number of properties that may, or may not, fit your criteria.
You can now buy lead lists from third-party vendors that allow you to filter for one or multiple circumstances that indicate a good deal may be at hand. So, whether abandoned properties or expired listings are your thing, there is a filter for that. You can even customize the lists to look for divorce filings, recent deaths, and other distressing situations that move homeowners to sell fast. And, if you find that one particular filter isn’t yielding enough leads, you can simply change it up to try another.
As a word of caution, however, while the customization of lead lists has taken off in recent years, you may still run into the same problems that the old lists caused. Distressed homeowners are rarely happy to learn that their private lives have landed on a public list. And, the ongoing calls from investors who want their homes don’t help matters much. Plus, the lists tend to not update as quickly as a homeowner’s circumstances may change. So, assuming you can get a homeowner on the line who isn’t done with investors by the time you call, their payments could be current or the house already sold.
2) Go Online
If you haven’t considered going online to find leads on investment property, it might be high time that you did. We live in an age when almost everything is online and, if you know where to look, that includes homes you can buy, renovate, and sell. I’m not just talking about the website for your local Multiple Listing Service (MLS) or popular real estate listings sites like Redfin and Zillow, either.
There’s a multitude of online opportunities. You can find auction listings online, schedules for local Sheriff’s Sales, and bank-owned inventory on lenders’ websites. You can also take your search a step further by using social media for real estate lead generation. Place a targeted ad on Facebook or Instagram, set up Twitter’s advanced search function to look for homeowners who post about selling, and check Craigslist for ads from homeowners trying to sell their houses themselves. Then, make an offer to buy.
Unfortunately, while using the internet is supposed to make our lives easier, trying to find investment property online can make your search take even longer. For one thing, the sheer number of sites to master and monitor alone can make you feel overwhelmed— whether or not they produce any results. Of course, you’ll need to put in the time to find out for sure.
But, that time will likely feel wasted since so few homes listed online ultimately sell for a price you should pay. And, that can include the houses that homeowners try to offload themselves. After all, it’s not just local investors who’ll be your competition. It’s everyone with access to a computer and some cash.
3) Pound the Pavement
Still used by some investors, while ignored by others, the old-school method of pounding the pavement isn’t a bad idea for finding a few good deals. In fact, by making strides to connect with homeowners face-to-face, you may get a leg up on other investors who sit in front of their laptops all day.
But, to ensure you don’t waste time knocking on the doors of homes whose owners have no plans to sell, you’ve got to streamline your efforts to better your odds. Your best bets are going to be older, smaller, ugly houses in transitioning neighborhoods. Since these homes may be owned by people who can’t afford the upkeep because of financial distress, they might be happy to sell to you for the right price.
But, you’ll still have to knock on a whole lot of doors just to increase the opportunities for buying a few deals. Not every distressed-looking house is occupied by a homeowner who is desperate to get out. And, for those that are vacant or occupied by tenants, locating the owner to find out for sure may take more work than it proves to be worth, especially if your search doesn’t end with a sale.
If the homeowners are in distress and have missed their loan payments or can’t perform repairs because of other bills, you can almost bet they’ve landed on a lead list, too. That means your knock won’t likely be the first—and that the house could already be sold. To last in this business, your chances of converting distressed homeowners leads into sales have got to be better.
4) Pay for Advertising
Advertising on the radio, television, billboards, and through direct mail is still one of the most effective ways to generate leads on potentially good deals. Less invasive than most other methods, advertising encourages distressed homeowners who need to sell their homes fast to contact you—and in their own time. And, by the time they’re ready to reach out for help, they’re usually hoping to keep a bad situation from getting worse. That makes converting the lead to a sale easier than if you’d knocked on their door in the middle of dinner.
Cost, of course, is the main issue with this method. Advertising is expensive. If you’re already struggling to make business ends meet, there may be no room for marketing—especially on TV. But, to create a household name and build trust with homeowners who need the most help, you’ve got to do all that you can to get your brand noticed over and over.
5) Team Up With a National Brand
The benefit of teaming up with a real estate investing franchise, like HomeVestors®, is that you gain immediate access to an existing brand that’s both well-known and highly respected all across the country. So, not only can you put away any worries about what to name your real estate investing business or how to build a competitive presence in the marketplace, but you can also shelve your concerns over whether homeowners will sell to you.
By leveraging the HomeVestors®’ nationally-recognized “We Buy Ugly Houses®” ad campaign as a part of your real estate investing marketing plan, you can get some of the best-qualified leads. With this kind of powerful lead generation, independently owned and operated HomeVestors® franchisees have bought more than 140,000 houses in 47 states and D.C. since 1996. That represents a lot of homeowners who believe in the brand. It also represents an opportunity for success you could achieve as a professional real estate investor backed by a strong national brand.
A Better Solution for Generating the Best Leads
It’s now been a couple of decades since I started buying, renovating, and selling properties and, admittedly, there were times I had trouble finding qualified leads—especially early in my career. And, I tried everything. But, nothing worked consistently at generating great leads and that made building a good business hard. Before throwing in the towel, however, I decided to adjust my real estate investing marketing plan one more time. And, this time, it included becoming an independently owned and operated HomeVestors® franchisee. I have to say that was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made because I started getting qualified leads right away—leads that had a high rate of converting to sales.
If you have a problem finding qualified leads on deals, becoming a HomeVestors® franchisee could be your best solution, too. Get in touch with HomeVestors® today to find out.
Each franchise office is independently owned and operated.