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How to Crack Real Estate Lead Generation

How to Crack Real Estate Lead Generation

Guide to Real Estate Lead Generation

To succeed as a realtor, you must have many potential clients in the real estate pipeline, regardless of your experience level. However, neglecting your lead generation practices can be easy when everything is sunny. When interest rates are low, property opportunities are coming in thick and fast, and you feel great about your work. This is the perfect time to consider real estate agent jobs to expand your career.

But what about when your pipeline runs dry? Is there a special real estate lead generator button we can push? Your current leads might have changed their situation or backed out of once-interesting deals due to an unstable market. So, what can you do to keep the lead generation channels strong, whatever the financial weather?

The question of how to get more real estate clients is fundamental, but it can be answered with some forward-thinking, keen organizational skills and adopting a few handy tools. You may be a traditionalist or someone keen to embrace the technological world in your endeavors. Still, either way, you can employ a whole host of tactics to reach meaningful connections and show people you are here to make them—and, of course, you—a hearty profit.

In this article, we will talk you through the types of lead generation as well as the best strategies for generating real estate leads.

What is Real Estate Lead Generation?

Real estate lead generation refers to the process of finding and attracting potential clients or customers in the real estate industry. It is a crucial aspect of maintaining a thriving real estate business, as leads are the lifeblood that keeps the industry dynamic and prosperous.

Generating real estate leads involves various strategies and techniques. One approach is to leverage existing connections and networks, engaging in professional networking and investing in targeted lists and insider information. Building an online presence and utilizing digital marketing tactics can also be effective in attracting leads. Additionally, actively seeking out new connections by physically scouting properties or areas (known as “driving for dollars“) can uncover potential leads.

Regardless of the specific methods employed, it is essential to prioritize lead generation as it directly impacts the success and livelihood of real estate professionals. By understanding the different types of leads and identifying the most suitable lead generation approaches, real estate professionals can ensure a consistent flow of quality leads to drive their business forward.

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Quality Real Estate Lead Generation is the Fundamental Way to get off the Starting Block

Types of Real Estate Leads

Before we get to the specific practical steps you can take to generate a meaningful real estate lead, let’s take a look at the main types of lead generation and what you’ll need to be able to use them effectively.


this is where the great work you’ve already done will pay off. After a great deal with a client, where you reacted quickly, went above and beyond and got everyone the deal they wanted, then they will surely recommend you to other people. Heck, why not return to those people now and send them a quick ‘hey! Hope you’re well’ message, and keep those relationships strong and positive. For non-organic referrals, you can join networks, such as Referral Exchange and Opcity, and you can even get bank referrals through programs such as USAA Mover’s Advantage.


The ‘organic’ here means attracting new leads naturally, but only because you have done some great self-promotion in the first place (they aren’t mind readers!). Investing in a solid Search Engine Optimization (SEO) service, regularly posting interesting stuff on social and blog accounts, or creating an email marketing campaign are all ways to generate organic leads in a very targeted way. Ensure you track your campaigns and employ a retargeting strategy for those who have already engaged with you.

Pay Per Click (PPC)

Many of you already have a Google Ads campaign or similar for your website, and you can use this function to specifically target groups of people you want to reach. Be prepared to pay a chunk of money on this, and if you aren’t already, make sure you experiment with your tactics. Track successes and failures, and get as pinpoint-focused as possible with your campaigns—this is not the time to be general.

Social media

Paid social media, done well, can be one of the most lucrative ways to reach your intended audience. Compared to PPC, it can be pretty cheap, but remember, you will be meeting people in their downtime, so make sure you tailor your language to be friendly, non-pressured, and helpful. And, as with any online campaign, track your campaigns and retarget those who have shown an interest in you from the first posting—Facebook, for example, has all the tools you need to see this info.


Property leads from portals can be very fruitful. The benefit of joining these online venues, such as Zillow, is that their pulling power generates hot leads, i.e. people who are most definitely looking for homes to buy or are selling their homes. However, you do have to be extremely quick, determined, and savvy to reach these leads, as they are open to being snapped up by anyone and everyone!

Direct Mailing Lists

Going back to basics, here, you can target lists of potential contacts through direct mail. Before you sigh and say, ‘no way!’ to this seemingly old-fashioned method of contacting folk, remember that almost all marketing is done online these days, so you have more chance of standing out when you hit their doormats—and who doesn’t love receiving mail? Specifically, the lists you can target include anything from USPS’s amazing Every Door Direct Mail system, where you can target whole mail routes with your snazzy postcards, or AI smart lists like SmartZip, which actually use technology to predict who is most likely to want to move home soon. Neat, huh?

You can experiment with any of these kinds of leads, not only because you can see which generates the most leads but also because you can decide which one you find easiest to track the most effectively. Answering the question of how to get seller leads or find keen buyers may end up being a combination of two or more of these methods that you go for, but either way, choose carefully and don’t fire out thousands of lifelines only to have no idea how to follow them up in the future.

Best Strategies for Generating Real Estate Leads

real estate lead generation pipeline
Sales reps and managers analyze sales pipeline. Sales pipeline management, representation of sales prospects, customer prospects lifecycle concept. Pink coral blue vector isolated illustration

So, what actual steps can you take in order to turn a pipeline dribble into a pipeline torrent? Well, happily, there are many ways to do this, so let’s look at some of the most effective ways to get free leads for real estate as well as some ways that require a little investment from you.

Contact past clients

You’re already sitting on a pile of gold if you have past clients with whom you did a great deal or have a strong relationship. Contact them — we know they won’t mind at all — and ask them how things are going. Got any new opportunities coming up? Would you like to go for a coffee sometime? People are busy, and it doesn’t always occur to them to contact you, but if you reach out to them, you may just catch them at the start of a great new investment opportunity.


We covered this in our last section, but real estate referral leads are one of the number one ways to get new contracts. You will know when you meet a friend of a friend, and you both click right away because of your mutual pal. The same is true in business—network up and use your connections to your advantage.

Collect great reviews

It doesn’t pay to be too modest in this industry. If you have a stash of amazing reviews, make sure other people can see them—post them to your social channels, add your latest one to your email signature, and display them on your marketing materials. And if you don’t collect reviews regularly, now is the time to swallow your modesty a little and contact your past clients.

Buddy up

For free lead generation real estate deals, you can never go wrong by having more friends. Reach out to people who can help you and maintain connections with them—anyone from banks to cleaning companies, staging companies to insurance companies, and even candy companies who can provide a little sweetener to potential clients from time to time!

Visit open houses

Make sure to scour listings and advertisements for open houses in your area. Visit them to meet not only the owners but anyone else who is attending—everyone there will be interested in talking to you because, well, why would they be there otherwise?

Create video content

This is your free license to be creative. You might want to show a day in the life of your work to show others how sound a businessperson you are or film your properties to allow people to take virtual tours. Have fun, and always keep your intended audience in mind, bearing in mind that each video may be aimed at a different group.

Contact moving companies

These are the people who literally come face-to-face with your clients every day. They can give you the lowdown on the locations they get the most work at the moment, give you a little profile info about their clients, and maybe even give ideas of how lucrative the future looks. Be aware that it is illegal to pass on private information about clients without express permission, though, so don’t ask them for any personal information you wouldn’t want to be handed out about you.

Knock on wood

it’s a tried and tested method, but it works—door knocking and flier dropping can help you to directly target the areas you are interested in and strike up conversations with people. Be methodical, be polite, and keep track of your efforts.

Contribute answers on forums

one way of showing your prowess is by showing off your well-earned wisdom. Search for the hot questions that the market is asking right now and answer them using your own experience and knowledge—places like Quora are full of people looking for answers, or you can try regular social media channels or even one of the many social sites for the online real estate community.

The beauty of these methods is that, while they work well on their own, they are also the springboard to creating so many more ways for you to connect with others. If you employ solid, scientific ways of tracking your work, you can develop your own ideas to build partnerships in interesting and creative ways. Find the styles that work for you and use your imagination.

So, What Have We Learned?

We have seen that lead generation is the fundamental lifeblood of any real estate business—even when things are going well for us, we need to maintain a healthy flow of connections to draw on when the financial weather is a little gray.

There are six main types of real estate lead generation: referrals, organic, social media, Pay Per Click (PPC), portal, and lists. Each of them has its own benefits and varies in what is required of you to invest, i.e. your time, your money, or both. All of them require you to be organized and track your efforts closely, as you will begin to generate warm leads right away, which you don’t want to cool off at any time.

Specifically, when it comes to real estate lead generation ideas, there are many ways you can obtain free leads. These include contacting existing or past clients, making the most of referrals, gathering your best reviews, partnering with various other businesses in the industry, door-knocking, and online communications. You can even buy lists of contacts to send direct mail to, such as USPS’s Every Door Direct Mail system, where you can piggyback on an existing mail route.

Don’t let your pipeline run dry, and enjoy finding your own preferred method of commercial real estate lead generation—it can be fun and grow your profits at the same time!