Hunters and Trappers: Lead Generation Explained
When I am meeting with sellers and I explain why they will have the most activity in the first two weeks of their home hitting the market, I explain to them that it is like Hunters and Trappers. At first—when people decide they want to buy—they get pre-approved, then they go on the Hunt. After they have exhausted any inventory that suits their needs, they then set a Trap for any new properties that hit the market. This trap is usually some form of alert that either they or their agent sets for them to notify them of the new listing.
So while most of the flurry will be Trappers, the Hunters will steadily flow as well since they are in the hunt. But that is why the most amount of activity is in the first several weeks.
During one of my group coaching sessions, I said that we as agents are the same way in a sense. We need to continually Hunt for new business. That is the grinding activity. The Calls, Follow Ups and Networking. Those Hunting activities are vital to our longevity and success. But we are also Trappers. We are setting social and digital ads, farming, sending out post cards, etc.
Basically, it really comes down to passive and active lead generation. We need to do both for real success. The Trap works while you are Hunting. The thing is, we need to constantly check our traps. That means looking at the ad engagement, relevance rate and demographics and tracking our business from mailers and printed marketing.
Another thing that I discuss is that business really can be broken down to four quadrants:
- Circle Dialing
- SOI, Past Clients
- Events. Chamber, Charity, BNI, etc.
- Business Owners
- Power Circle
- Portal Leads
- Social and Digital
Farm and Print
As we heard Chris Heller say in a recent interview with LCA founders Nick Baldwin and Tristan Ahumada, you need to master one of them and be good at another. In essence, if you try to do everything then you will not master one.
Note: What I am about to say does not include marketing properties you listed. That is a strategy, of course, but I want to start from ground zero and having a listing is a unique advantage. But you do need a solid strategy to market your listings for more business.
What you will want to do is identify the methods that make sense for you and your situation. Meaning: if you are new, you have nothing but time and most likely limited funds. So calling is a solid strategy and you should do more calling than a busy agent. I heard Tim Heyl once say he had nothing but time so he just called all day. Same approach. Plus, the cost for this is less than a couple hundred bucks.
Door knocking is another mostly free activity. Mostly free because you will probably be printing something out.
Networking can be free or next to free, and then progress to more advanced strategies that cost money like private networking events, paid services, lunches and dinners or other events.
You can build an amazing online presence with community pages, blogs, live video, raffles, sweepstakes, etc. These options are inexpensive but take time. Or do what so many others do—throw a ton of money at online leads and social ads.
Whatever you decide, you need to build a strategy around it, time block and do it consistently. For example: if you are going to focus on calling, a solid strategy would look like this (I also added a networking component):
Monday – Friday
10:30-11:30 prep Circle Dialing
11:30-12:00 Clean Up emails
12:00-1:00 lunch with client, prospect, Power Circle member or networking partner
1-4:00 Circle Dial
4-5 relationship building
If you do not have any appointments, then you MUST lead generate. That is a high yield activity. I teach my students and I discuss it in my training books that you must identify High Yield and Low Yield activities. ONLY focus on High Yield Activities 8:30am-5:30 pm. Ads, flyers, open house stuff, social posting can all be done during the evening hours when the Bachelor is on.
Never give up your High Yield Time for Low Yield Activities.
The idea is to find what you like, what gets you results and perfect it. For me, networking was a huge piece to my business. As you continue to grow, a logical hire would be an ISA. I always had telemarketers. They would do the circle dialing, and I focused on Expireds and FSBO’s. This freed my afternoon up to plan and attend events. Take clients, prospects or potential network partners skiing, sailing or golfing. Yes, it was like I worked part time… but believe it or not, those activities are working because I received a ton of business from it.
I also spent time conducting my own or shared happy hour events. One event I had close to 100 people come to a local minor league baseball game. I greeted and talked to every single one of them. It was a great event and I received several referrals.
But it was part of the strategy. It did not JUST happen: it took a plan, implementation and action. Anyone of us can do it.
It all starts with being a Hunter and Trapper. You must hunt NOW and over time you will start to set traps and figure out which ones work and don’t. Eventually you will perfect one through the continual honing process.
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