Follow the Leads: Where Homebuilders are Failing Their Own CRMs.

The job of a website is to generate leads—to guide someone to walk through your door. What you and your sales team do with those leads is a different story. And if you don’t have and use a CRM, your lead nurturing has failed. And those builders who know how to more effectively cultivate a lead will get the sale that you basically gave away.

A successful builder has a process in place to manage leads. From the first inquiry to the point of closing, this process defines when and how to communicate with that new home prospect. How long do you want between contacts? How do you know when your customer doesn’t want to hear any more (I guarantee you that most sales people give up too soon)?

For the first 45 to 60 days, you should work that prospect with vigor. Use your online sales counselor to develop the relationship. Their job is to get and keep this customer engaged with your business. And a good OSC is enmeshed with the CRM. That’s how they keep all those prospects active, by using the prompts for follow-up, never allowing a crack to become a gaping hole where the prospect disappears. They have the email templates and scripts in the system, and they rely on the CRM to keep them on track.

Then what? The OSC turns the prospect over to the sales professional. How long do they commit to working with this customer? A month? Six? A year? If you know this homebuyer is going to make a commitment to some builder in the future, don’t abandon leads because you think too much time has passed.

Encourage your sales team to utilize the CRM. You will get groans about how cumbersome it is (which it isn’t if you stay on top). This precious vault of leads should be at the core of your sales strategy. It contains a treasure trove of potential homebuyers—people who have already made a connection with you. Do you ignore it and let those names become some other builder’s buyers?

Train your sales team to use the CRM. Give them weekly reminders. Encourage your OSC to keep them on track.

It may take a long time to turn a lead into a customer, but they will go elsewhere pretty darn fast.

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