Skip to content

One way to fix agent responsiveness

by Greg Robertson on February 10th, 2014

Charlie_Bucket_(Willy_Wonka_and_the_Chocolate_Factory)To me one of the biggest challenges that faces online real estate today is the issue of agent responsiveness. How do you get agents to respond to leads, whether an email or a phone call? A recent survey done by the California Association of REALTORS shows that 45% of consumers want a response “instantly”, a total of 85% on consumers wanted a response within the hour.

I’ve helped launch a couple national real estate portals and I can say the response rates from agents is super, super low.

So here’s the idea. I call it the “Golden Ticket Powerball”:

1. Every week, you either send an email, or make a phone call to a random agent who is part of your company’s lead network. If that agent responds in 10 minutes (what I would realistically call, “instantly”) they win $1,000.

2. If the lead you send out goes unanswered then the $1,000 rolls in to next week, making the prize $2,000 for the next lucky agent. Of course you make a big deal about this to your agent clients when the prize money goes up.

You could tweak this model out. Maybe if the agent responds in an hour they get $500. Or you up the prize money. At $1,000 per week that $52,000. Imagine if you went to Trulia/Zillow/ and said “I can raise your agent response rate from 23% to 67% for only $200,000 per year.” I think it would be money well spent.

  1. Troy permalink

    Interesting idea from an ‘appeal’ standpoint. Ultimately, by not answering nor following up on the lead, that same $1,000 multiplied by XX is NOT going into the pockets of those agents. Basically the other side of the same coin.

  2. Russ Bergeron permalink

    Next – figure out how to better qualify the leads. Even though they might be poor at response, some of those “leads” might not deserve a response.

    Zillow claims 70 million visits a month, yet we only sell 5 million homes a year – so that means 835 million of those annual visits were not qualified leads.

  3. I like the idea of using a carrot to motivate, until automatic response become habitual (The Willy Wonka Golden Ticket). And Russ makes a great point about the percentage of leads that may not be leads at all, if we are using the reported traffic of the portals as a gauge.

  4. Greg Stiger permalink

    “these are the leads, the Glengarry leads”

    And isn’t that the problem-the inquiring consumer doesn’t realize that most of the industry looks at them as ” a longshot lead”..not a legit opportunity. Perhaps NAR could use some of the $70 a year “public awareness fee” to educate the public to “not be a lead”, but to become “a client”. Despite the efficiencies that should have come about with the web-the consumer is LESS likely to get an informed response to a query, than in the days when most “leads” were sign calls, newspaper ads.

  5. Kevin Greene permalink

    I’ve seen this done in another industry and it works very well (and they started at $100).

Comments are closed.