Researching Your Leads Will Help Your Conversion

coaching phil sexton sell more teams Aug 04, 2022

Public Tax Records Search


Welcome back to my series on How to Convert Real Estate Leads into Sales.

If I were to predict the future, you'll see an ebook that outlines the entirety of these lead conversion steps, but until then I'll be posting our sales strategies and real estate training videos here.

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Now back to lead conversion...

If you read How to Convert Real Estate Leads - Step 1 then you already know what STS stands for; those are your first 5 touch attempts. This article is going to pick up where that leaves off. Let's cover the best voicemail strategy we know and how to research the leads that come across your desk. 

The Most Effective Voicemail Strategy For Converting Web Leads

We refer to this vm strategy as the Promise / Deliver - check out this poor quality (sorry) 6 minute video, it'll explain it. Don't miss the post-script add-on at the end by Adam - it's mindset gold.

Mindset of the Salesperson

When it comes to converting real estate leads into appointments let's talk about the group of leads that don't pick up following STS, meaning you get through those initial 5 touches with nothing.

If they pick up on your 1st-5th attempt following the STS then you don't typically need convincing they are real. Jump to objection handling (logged in users only) - because you know they're coming.

The more I think about it, I research all leads whether they pick up or not - the more I BELIEVE them, the harder I work for them. If I think it's fake or spam or any form of not real, then I just don't chase it as hard. (Maybe you would - but if you run a team you'll find most team members need some encouragement that the leads are real.) 

Researching all buyer and seller inquiries is the cornerstone of believability. You have to BELIEVE they are real to:

  1. preview for them.
  2. spend any level of effort trying to connect with them.
  3. dangle their house to potential buyers.

In this article I'll cover the two main ways we determine if leads are worth our time, energy, and effort. First we'll go through the CRM engagement notices, then we'll cover our favorite internet researching hacks.

Does Your CRM Show You Engagements?

If you have all your leads in a google sheet or excel file, it might be time to invest in a more robust system. Our online lead conversion jumped 100% when we switched to a CRM that integrates with MLS data. When you (or more importantly your team members) can see the leads interacting with your website, then clearly the lead is real and more energy can be assigned to them. 

Google Search Tricks and Data Combo Ideas

Whether they are interacting online or not, we always search the web. My favorite search hack is to use quotation marks around the search phrase. It’s amazing what you can find with a simple google search. Using quotations tells google that you only want EXACT matches. Use it with a phone number for example, or an email address. It’s a game changer for the results - decluttering at its finest.

I use different combos of data too. I might try the phone number (surrounded by quotes) with the first or last name. Or the first and last name surrounded by quotes with the city that matches their area code. The point is to get creative with what you put into google so you get different options at the top of the search results.

You’ll quickly learn to hate the plethora of public search websites that try and get you to pay them to see the results. One of the best free ones I use is But what I’m actually looking for is a “real” website that has mentioned the person, like a work profile page, or a linkedin profile

If you get an email address with a custom domain name - like [email protected] - those are gold. In the google search box type the word site followed by a colon and the domain name. Like this: phil. Google only brings back that specific website with all the pages it can find the mention of the word Phil. If you click the link you can quickly find my last name is Sexton. Once I have confirmation that a lead is real, game on.

Search all leads in the public tax records system

Delivering Pre-Listing Packages is the best leading indicator we have to determine how many listing appointments we’re going to have in the future. Does your city/county/state have a public tax record search? Maybe ask your broker if you’re having trouble finding it. Become intimately aware of how it works. It usually has different search fields than the MLS but more importantly their wildcards tend to work differently, if they have them at all.

Let’s say the lead’s name is Babs Streisand. I’m searching that first. If nothing comes up, then I search Streisand and look through the results for indications that Babs makes sense, such as a first initial B or of course in this example the name Barbara. (That’s for you Bill.)

Now… if you’re at least 80% confident that you found a property your lead owns, pre-listing package dropped off on the doorstep. Pre-listing package is a fancy phrase for glorified thank you note...

“Thank you for emailing me through our website - we’re in your neighborhood all the time looking at properties. If you have any questions about the market or your property value please don’t hesitate to reach out.”

In conclusion

Researching a new inquiry should be a staple go-to in your lead follow-up process. Sometimes you come across better phone numbers, better emails, or other addresses of homes they own. As a sales person, all that is welcomed. 

Next, let's get into "I've had a conversation with them, now what?" Stay tuned for my next chapter. :)

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