Most people who enter the real estate investing arena make the huge mistake of not being as detailed as they should. It is without a doubt that no one who practices real estate investing closes 100% of all prospects. As a matter of fact, it’s nowhere near that. So, what does one do when he has dozens upon dozens of real estate investment leads that he can do nothing with? Keep a database of them. You will soon learn that all is not lost when you don’t immediately purchase a prospect’s property.
While most experienced real estate investors may already know that keeping a detailed database of all prospects is vital to business, most don’t utilize what they know for reasons that I cannot explain.
One software package that is pretty useful is Microsoft Excel. Using this software, or any similar spreadsheet, you can take down and maintain a lot of information about any one of your prospects. Some of the information you may want to hold in your spreadsheet would be:
1) The date the prospect responded to your advertising. This may be critical, as you may want to put your prospects in ascending order to see which ones are getting colder and which ones you should follow-up with more often.
2) A ranking of the prospect. This can be a dynamic scale, which tells you the chances of closing this prospect and maybe how interested they are in your services. You may have a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the hottest prospect. You will obviously talk differently to a hot prospect than to one who is on the fence.
3) Information about the prospect’s property. You may include the square footage of the property, number of bedrooms, and even its condition.
4) Your lead source for this particular prospect. You may also want to add a field that may tell you that this person was a referral or not.
It’s so important to at least follow up once per month. Personally, I follow up on a weekly basis because I would like to be the loudest person in my prospect’s ear. There are so many people begging for your prospect’s attention. And, there may come a time when the prospect decides that they want to jump the fence. If you’re calling more often than others and your services are similar, you may be just the one to get the business.
Don’t make your follow-up so robotic. Make sure that it is very natural and sincere. You don’t want to over bear the prospect and force them to become uncomfortable with you. Your follow-up will go a long way with most prospects. Don’t make a lame mistake of throwing your leads away. Your marketing efforts cost you money and you need to make sure that you capitalize on your efforts as much as possible.
Even if your prospects never become your customers, it is all too often that you get a referral from one of your prospects. Birds of a feather flock together. So, you tend to find that people with similar financial challenges befriending each other.
Don’t make this a onetime deal. Ensure that following up becomes a lifestyle for your real estate investment career and you would be sure to be one of the top leaders in the industry.