The Skill Every Agent Needs: Real Estate Cold Calling - Smart Sales Coaching
calendar April 2, 2024

Believe it or not, real estate cold calling is still a significant part of any agent’s job. Even if your marketing is bringing in a lot of inbound leads, you’re still going to want to go after expired and FSBO business. There are just too many dollars on the table to have yourself or your team completely ignore this lead source. And if you are going after FSBO and expired listings, then you’re going to have to cold call.

There’s no way around it.

The question is, how can you do real estate cold calling the right way? How can you make FSBOs and expireds viable lead sources? Let’s take a look at some strategies.

Why Real Estate Cold Calling Is Difficult

Let’s be honest here…cold calling in any industry is never fun. Even if the person you’re calling actually picks up the phone, you’re likely to run into awkward conversations and rejection. It’s just the way it is. After all, nowadays, people are very skeptical of strangers calling them. They assume every sales person is trying to scam them or screw them over in some way.

On top of that, when it comes to real estate cold calling specifically, the people you call have probably already been contacted by other agents and ISAs. So they’ve heard all the scripts, every agent’s spiel, and they are probably annoyed that yet another real estate agent they don’t know is reaching out to them.

So how do you overcome annoyance, disinterest, or even subtle hostility? We’ve got some strategies for you below.

Have a Real Conversation

We hammer this home in our lessons and in our blog posts. But it’s worth saying in every article we write. Scripts can be very valuable when trying to convert FSBO, expired, or any other lead over the phone. They provide you with a security blanket that you can fall back on if the conversation gets away from you. If you memorize a script, then you have easy access to tried and tested responses to common objections, potentially giving you more confidence on the call. But scripts can be abused.  Leads, especially leads who have been called by a million and one agents, can feel if you are just mindlessly repeating something you memorized. Don’t do that. Instead, use the script as a starting point to have an actual conversation. Respond to what the lead is telling you in a way that is tailored to and makes sense for their specific situation. Don’t just give a memorized response.

Build the Right Mindset

The truth of the matter is, you are going to get rejected a lot when real estate cold calling. It’s the nature of the business of going after FSBOs and expireds. A key skill that you have to develop is being able to pick the phone back up after a difficult conversation. When calling these types of leads you might get annoyed people, mad people, or disinterested people, and the conversations are going to be extremely difficult. You have to keep your overall goal in mind; remember that you are working for your business, for your team, and for yourself and your career. Don’t take it personally, and remember that every rejection makes you better able to deal with a future one.

Persistence Is King

At the end of the day, real estate cold calling and converting these types of leads takes a lot of time and effort. Follow up is a necessary part of prospecting for FSBO and expired listings and is often overlooked when agents face an initial difficult conversation or rejection. Create a database for these contacts and reach out to them multiple times. Sometimes, a challenging lead can actually get easier to talk to over time. The key thing is to just not give up! Keep picking up that phone. Give that tough lead a call back. Keep refining your messaging, your value statement, and your pitch. Push and push and don’t give up.

Look at Your Key Metrics

Don’t do real estate cold calling in a vacuum. Prospecting expired and FSBO listings (and any other lead type) is a numbers game. Rigorously track cold calling metrics so you can see where and what you can do better. If you miss a goal or aren’t converting like you think you should, then there are several steps you can take. You can look at the time of day you’re calling, how much you are sticking to a script or not, or if you’re hitting your contact goals.

Real estate cold calling is difficult, but it gets easier with practice and with the right direction. If you want to improve your conversation and sales skills and start converting more expired and FSBO leads, check out our training programs for teams and individual agents.


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