It’s finally happened. That listing that you wish you had your name on is now expired. Now is your chance to reach out to the owner to turn the previous agent’s failure into their (and your) victory.
However, marketing to expired listings is a lot like courtship. You have to be aggressive, but you shouldn’t do anything that makes you seem pushy and unbecoming. It is all about using a combination of push and pull to get you to the results you want.
The market for expired listings is quite a competitive one. At the start, you will be going up against the titans in your area. However, you should know that this competition will eventually go down to a trickle as time goes on.
It is up to you to be as persistent and creative as possible to beat out the competition. Once you can withstand the barrage that comes at the start, you will have the opportunity to use the most effective methods possible to get the expired listings and build your brand as a real estate expert.
What are Expired Listings?
As a real estate agent, you already know that an expired listing is simply a property that has reached the end of its listing contract without being sold. The owner now has the option of going with another agent, meaning that the sharks can start circling the water to get that contract.
As a real estate expert, it means that you are now in the game to get this listing for yourself. With the right marketing strategies, you can outcompete your fellow agents to land this listing. In fact, the best real estate agents already have systems in place to ensure that they are first on the scene for expired listings.
Why It Matters To You As a Real Estate Agent
Expired listings can become the lifeblood of your real estate business. With a solid real estate marketing strategy, you can improve your bottom line by successfully listing and selling listings that expired.
One thing to note here is that it allows you to sell more emotionally with your potential customer. It is a lot easier to convert them by showing proof of a successful sale after another realtor has scorned them.
A good real estate marketing agency can also help you develop strategies that they think will also work. By working together, you can finally get the results you are looking for in this industry.
Offline vs Online
One thing to note is that you have two options for marketing to expired real estate listings. You can do it online or offline. Almost everything is done online in today’s world, and it might be an excellent option for you with expired listings. However, online is easier and more prone to getting drowned out in the sea of competition taking the easy way.
The more challenging and more rewarding way is to market offline to the listing. There are some great options for you, like expired postcards. Expired listing postcards are postcards that have been designed for marketing to the people who have just had their listing expire.
It utilizes the expertise of a real estate marketing agency that is experienced in doing this type of work. With an agency like Wise Pelican, you also benefit from having many affordable options to help you save time and money. On top of that, you get modern conveniences with your offline method.
The main benefit of online marketing is that it allows you to track responses using some of the best technology we have ever created. If you are willing to put in the effort to set up tracking, you can get some of the most detailed analytics possible.
Many people opt for online marketing because these analytics options are available. However, online is almost always more contested, and you are putting yourself at risk for massive failure. If you are willing to put the time and effort into getting things going offline, it maximizes your chances of successfully converting that expired listing to your agency.
Why Offline Methods Are Better
The Internet has made marketing easier than ever. However, the downside to that is now you are competing with people from all over the world. In real estate, even agents from faraway places can market to expired listings in your area. It means that the online space is easy but competitive.
Offline methods are a lot better because they give you exceptional results without making you compete with the entire world. The reality is that the majority of people will take the easy path when given the option. It is no different with expired listing marketing.
Most real estate agents are not willing to go through the pain and suffering required to market offline. Many will play it safe and stay behind the computer screen. Online methods can be good, but they will never beat the many offline methods available to you as an agent.
On top of that, offline methods are getting better with time. Methods like sending REALTOR postcards can be effective because you can track them the same way you do your online marketing campaigns. It allows you to have the same level of insight into the results you are getting. If you are a clever marketer, you can get a lot better results by going offline. The competition is also a lot less when you go offline. That means you will be mainly competing with yourself to get the best customers possible.
One of the most effective offline marketing methods you can use to market to expired listings is a postcard. Expired listing postcards should form the basis of your offline marketing methods.
They can be customized with your marketing message, and you can do a lot of testing and tracking to get the right message across to potential homeowners. These real estate postcards are also quite affordable.
It means you have the opportunity to get exceptional results without having to spend a lot of time and money. This marketing method is the type of method you can use to get much better results than the effort you are putting in.
Expired listing postcards are also a lot more novel than other methods. It means that people will be more receptive to them than alternatives. Many people have thousands of emails sitting in their inboxes, but they only get a few pieces of physical mail every day.
Farming for expired listing leads isn’t much different than standard real estate farming; the main difference is while normal real estate farming consists of a target region, expired listing farming focuses on a specific type of home seller.
Use a Turnkey System to Mail Postcards
One thing you can count on is a Turnkey system to help you mail out your real estate postcards. This turnkey system should have excellent analytics capabilities to ensure that you can test and tweak your mailings. Additionally, they should provide a variety of real estate postcard templates to choose from for any occasion.
Not only does Wise Pelican offer all of the above, but there are also no minimum order requirements. It means you can spend a lot of time and effort testing and tracking without having to spend a lot of money.
You can mail out to a small and simple list before trying your hand at mass mailing to a lot more people. The results you get from postcards should be a lot better than from all other expired listings marketing methods.
Facebook ads are an excellent way of marketing to people as well. The best thing about Facebook is that it offers massive data sets to allow you to target almost anyone you want. You can dive deep into the demographic information available, and you will be able to precisely target the people you are looking for.
Facebook advertising is also quite affordable when compared to the competition. It means you have the best possibility of reaching the expired listings you want using this method.
The key to Facebook advertising is to remember that the images you use are key. Many people will focus on the images you use before they read a single word of your marketing message.
You can optimize for this fact by creating eye-catching images that will appeal to your target audience. The data available to you also means you will be able to create targeted marketing messages for whoever you are trying to reach.
Instagram goes hand-in-hand with Facebook as an excellent place to attract great expired listings. It offers the same level of targeting, and it is even more affordable than Facebook.
You can also build a good brand on Instagram by posting eye-catching closing details to reel in homeowners that you think fit your demographic. The people who have expired listings are usually sad and are looking for someone to make them hopeful again. Your Instagram marketing message needs to focus on this fact.
Media Buys On a Website
If you are an advanced real estate marketer, media buys can be a great way for you to get exceptional results without spending a lot of money. A media buy is when you go directly to a website and place ads on there without going through an intermediary like Google or Microsoft Bing.
This method is a lot more difficult, as the website owner may not have the level of sophistication that Google would have. Google has spent many years developing analytics tools to help get accurate demographic information, and this helps its users when advertising. You won’t have access to this information when advertising, so it will be like taking shots in the dark.
However, the main reason to go with this method is that it is a lot cheaper than advertising using one of those methods.
Media buying also requires you to spend time putting in your own infrastructure. You will need your own ad server, which can be difficult if you are not technically inclined. You might also need an ad tracker to ensure that you understand why you are getting the results you are getting.
Finally, you can get exceptional results if you know which websites to target. You might target websites that have many homeowners, as it increases the probability that some of them are expired listings. Many savvy marketers go with this method because of the pricing and lack of competition. It is like finding your own gold mine inside a cave.
Retargeting is one of the best online advertising methods known to man. It involves advertising to people who have taken some action in the pipeline already. You are essentially targeting them over again. For example, you can use retargeting to advertise to people who have been to a certain listing website.
You can even do the same thing for people who have gone to your website. It makes it a lot easier for you to reach people who are more likely to want to use your services. It makes it a more attractive prospect for them, which will put you above your competition.
You can use retargeting on both Google and Bing. In fact, most major advertising networks offer retargeting as a feature. It might be challenging to wrap your head around, but it is worth your time to learn.
Once you have mastered the art of retargeting, your online advertising results will shoot up. You will get a much better conversion rate while also putting in the same level of effort.
Manually Build a List By Searching On Social Media
Social media is one of the most powerful marketing methods available on the Internet. People often post their entire life history on social media platforms, which means you have a treasure trove of information to look through. One thing to note is that this method might be more time-consuming than others.
The main reason for this is that you will have to dig deep and find these people individually. There are public records you can look at to show you which listings have expired. You will then have to cross-reference those listings to people’s social media profiles.
The next step is to try to build a relationship on the social media platform. The main advantage of this method is it is more personalized. Your success rate will be a lot higher than sending generic messages to people.
The relationships you build can also help you in the future when they do eventually want to make another move in the market. It is all about managing various relationships to ensure that you are well-placed to take advantage of any opportunities in the market.
Direct Mail Them Information
Expired postcards are a great way of marketing, but you might not want to mail them out instantly. You might want to start by providing valuable information that will get them to trust your brand. By building these relationships, they are much more likely to respond when you eventually show them a variety of real estate postcards.
It is also a great way for you to improve your brand image among these people. Sending real estate mailers will ensure that you are in a much better place with people who have expired listings. You can also mail them something like an I Have a Buyer letter, which let’s them know you have one half of the home-sale process covered. If they list their home again (with you as the listing agent), you know that the opportunity to list their expired listing with a buyer already in tow.
Direct mail is also great because the competition is a lot less than email. You’re also able to customize your mail to stand out from the crowd. Certain tactics like using handwriting instead of typing messages to make things seem more personalized. You don’t want to seem like the generic real estate agent trying to get their business without understanding them. They need to think that you are treating them like a unique individual to gain their trust.
Cold Call Them
Cold calling is one of the most effective sales methods because so few sales professionals are willing to do it. Many people have gotten complacent with the introduction of the Internet. They no longer feel the need to do the hard work required to cold-call people.
The main reason is that rejection is felt in the same way as physical pain inside your brain. People will do almost anything to avoid physical pain, which means that cold calling is one of the last methods they are willing to use. It is one of the many reasons why this method is so effective in today’s world. The Internet has made many since professionals soft, but this can be used to your advantage.
The only thing you need to cold call is your own script and a list of phone numbers to call. The script is easy, but the list might be difficult if you don’t have much experience in this industry.
There are several ways of acquiring that list, and the one you choose will depend on your financial resources. It is possible to purchase a list from reputable sources, or you can dig deep into various resources to build your own.
Get a List of Phone Numbers
As mentioned above, getting a list of phone numbers to call can be difficult for newcomers. The two major methods are building it yourself and buying a list. If you have connections to other agents, you might be able to rent their list as well. There are providers like RedX that can give you expired leads quite easily. It might be more expensive going this route, but it will save you a lot of time in the end. If your sales skills are exceptional, it might be worth it to go with this method.
The alternative method is to start digging deep through each individual expired listing to find personal information like phone numbers. Expired real estate listings are public records, so you will be able to see detailed information that you can then cross-reference to get the phone numbers required. It is a lot more expensive going this route, as your time could be spent on other things. Ultimately, your choice will depend on how much effort you are willing to put into gathering leads and the money you are willing to commit.
Compare Providers Similar to RedX
RedX isn’t the only provider in this industry, and you can find other competing expired leads providers. You have competitors like Vulcan7, espresso AGENT, and Mojo. The more providers you use, the better your chances are of converting that lead into a sale.
You must be aggressive in this endeavor, as you will be competing against many other agents who have access to the same lists and resources that you do. The key here is to have a good script that will convert people, and you will need to have a good way of handling objections. Selling is ultimately about persuading everyone that you can solve their problem.
You can also use multiple services to find out which one will give you the most accurate leads. It allows you to slowly test your systems to ensure that they can give you the conversion rate you aspire to achieve.
Use a Dialer to Call
A single, double, or triple line dialer can be an excellent option for your cold calling efforts. If you have a list of prospects that isn’t as good as you would like, you can quickly go through and weed out the bad ones. There are many dialing tools available in the market, and they will make your job a lot easier.
It will allow you to reach massive amounts of people that you could not before. Systems like the Mojo Dialer can call up to 300 people an hour. It gives you the ultimate flexibility in your marketing message.
You also have alternative tools like Five9, CallHub, ArchAgent, and Virtudial. Each software has its own benefits, but the most important thing is that it gives you great flexibility in how you approach expired listings.
Some of these tools even have integrated CRM technology to ensure you can track your effectiveness. These types of tools allow you to tailor your message to the specific person you are calling. It also allows you to see which psychological approaches work best for the people you are talking to.
Compare Various Dialers to Find the Best One
As you saw above, there are multiple dialers for you to choose from. It is crucial to spend time and effort testing each one to ensure it performs to your specifications. One of the mistakes that many real estate agents make is to jump into the first tool that they sign up for.
They don’t take the time to evaluate every option available, and they end up missing out on a lot of great benefits that they couldn’t get with the option they chose. Doing things this way ensures that you don’t make that mistake, and you are always confident with every decision you make.
Use SMS Marketing
You have a much better chance of getting a conversion when you market to expired leads on multiple channels. One of those channels is SMS marketing. It provides a very personal way of marketing, and it is relatively easy to do with today’s technology. You also have unlimited upside, which means you will be able to do a lot without having to put in a lot of time and effort. Marketing this way can put you over the top against the competition.
There are specific SMS marketing techniques you should use, as these tend to be more successful than others. For example, the time you text your expired listing could be the difference between success and failure. It is crucial to test and tweak the way you use SMS messaging to be successful.
You should also focus on providing valuable information before going after the sale. Marketing is like a relationship. It is all about building a good relationship that can stand the test of time.
Go Knock On Their Door
When other marketing methods fail, you should go and knock on their doors. Obviously, this will be the most time-consuming method, but it can also be the most successful. It may be a antiquated sales concept, but you shouldn’t worry about what others think about you if it gets the job done.
As with other marketing methods, timing is a crucial component for this one. If you knock at the wrong time, you could be wasting your entire day with people who aren’t even home. You can also be knocking at an inconvenient time, and they will be less likely to talk to you. It could be that you lose a sale because you went at the wrong time, and the person just wasn’t interested in talking to you.
If you use this method, you should have marketing materials ready to show to help people follow up after the conversation. A beautiful real estate brochure with all of the information will ensure that they remember to follow up. They are also less likely to throw out something so beautiful and decorative.
Be Data Driven and You’ll Succeed
The previous methods have all been direct marketing and advertising methods. However, the following methods will all be about a certain mindset and system that you should use when approaching expired listings.
Being data-driven is how you succeed when marketing in the modern world. Being data-driven ensures that you are always using a scientific approach when trying to get expired listings. It might not seem like it, but this approach will help you cut down the time you waste doing things that don’t actually get you any results.
Marketing using data is also a lot easier with the plethora of technology you have available to you. It helps you simplify your campaigns, and you don’t waste money shooting in the dark.
The best real estate expired listing marketers understand this concept very well. They spend their time and effort on methods that they know will deliver exceptional value at all times. The only way to know whether a method is delivering value or not is to collect data and do many tests.
Learn How to Motivate Yourself
Being a successful expired listings marketer starts on the inside. The majority of your efforts will result in failures. However, you need to keep yourself motivated to take advantage of what is available at all times. It might seem a bit more difficult than it actually is, but this is what separates the most successful marketers from the rest.
The most successful expired listings marketers know how to psych themselves up for every sales pitch. They understand that selling is a numbers game, and they just have to keep going. They understand that their state of mind and their attitude can have a massive impact on how potential customers perceive them.
Get As Much Information About Them As You Need to Connect On a Deeper Level
Research needs to be something you do every single day. There are a lot of places for you to get data about the people with expired listings. Data is becoming a currency in its own right, and you can use it to know exactly what marketing message you need to be successful.
When you find a compelling marketing message, you can then translate that to other marketing channels to achieve the same results. However, you won’t find that marketing message if you don’t research your customers. The information you discover during your research will allow you to connect to them on a deeper level.
Practice Your Sales Script By Yourself
Your sales script needs to be as well refined as it possibly can be. This is true for email marketing and cold calling. Both of these methods involve sending out information using a script.
You can also get friends to practice with, or rehearse your script by yourself in the mirror. The main thing is that your marketing message is being commented on before it ever gets heard by the customer. You want to know that you have ironed out all the kinks, and you have covered every possible objection that they might have.
Use a CRM Tool to Keep Track Of Your Marketing Efforts
Along with tracking, a CRM tool should be a key part of your marketing efforts. Your CRM tool will enable you to keep track of every potential lead in the pipeline. It will also help you gain perspective on how your marketing efforts are doing.
When you use it this way, it tends to give you a lot better results than if you go in blind. Many of the tools discussed have CRM capabilities built in. It means you don’t even need to get a separate tool for CRM. However, there are many great CRM tools out there that are specifically for real estate agents. They give you the functionality you need to have fantastic results without a difficult learning curve.
Steps to Take After the Listing Agreement is Signed
Congratulations, you just obtained an expired listing! Not only is this a great opportunity for your listing client who has already had a rough experience selling their home, but you will also be able to establish yourself as THE real estate expert in the area.
Once the listing agreement is official, the real work begins. As soon as you have a listing date set, you want to start aggressively marketing the property. In addition to a Coming Soon Sign in the front yard, you should send an email to your contacts letting them know the home will be hitting the market soon.
When your listing is Active, send out Just Listed postcards to the entire neighborhood, and some of the surrounding neighborhoods that have high turnover. Even if you get multiple offers on the first day or even before it hits the market, these postcards provide valuable information to homeowners in the area.
After you receive an accepted offer and the home goes Pending (also known as Under Contract), send another set of postcards to the same geographical area. A steady stream of REALTOR postcards will demonstrate that you are an active real estate agent in the community.
Lastly, once the home is sold, send out at least one (two would be better) Just Sold postcards to the same target area. With just one home listing, you will have sent 3-4 postcards, and if the area is one that sees a lot of home sales, don’t be surprised if your phone rings soon!
Marketing to expired listings can be difficult if you don’t have the advertising acumen needed. However, by following the methods above, you can put yourself in the top 1% of real estate agents. Moreover, you are more likely to discover additional methods that no one else knows about.
You will be able to make your messaging more precise and get the tools needed to be successful. The main thing to remember is that going offline with postcards will be a key component of your success. It should be the foundation of your entire marketing message, and you can use a service like Wise Pelican to automate almost every aspect of this process.