How do you determine whether you should call or email your leads? At some point in the real estate lead prospecting process, you have to decide which tool would help you reach your contacts. But if you look beyond each particular instance, you already know that both tools are effective if used in the right context.
Here’s an agent’s guide to deciding which would be the best tool to use in some of the most common sales and prospecting scenarios. The best real estate CRMs have integrated phone and SMS communication, so you can do everything from one centralized place.
Real estate lead prospecting: call or email?
1. Take note of the time
Timing is one of the most important factors to consider. Research shows that people are more likely to connect via the phone in the middle/end of the day as well as in the middle/end of the week. The same goes for the voicemail.
When planning your real estate lead prospecting efforts, try scheduling your calls for midday and midweek and see how that goes.
At the same time, studies show that Tuesday is the best day to send an email, followed by Thursday and Wednesday. In turn, the best hours to send your emails are:
- 10 a.m.;
- 8 p.m.;
- 2 p.m.;
- 6 a.m.
2. Urgent vs. non-urgent sales request
The other thing to be mindful of is the importance of your sales message. The more important/urgent it is, the more sense it makes to call rather than email.
For example, if you want to book a listing presentation or a showing, consider calling your prospect. If you want to ask for a referral or send some additional info about the property, consider email.
A variety of situations can force agents to apologize: a buyer’s agent canceled a meeting minutes before a showing, you didn’t send the info you were supposed to send, you didn’t call back regarding some property feature, etc.
In a situation like this, consider calling to give a genuine and personal apology.
4. When you haven’t replied for a long time
Replying instantly is one of the most effective real estate lead prospecting techniques. Still, quick responses to each inquiry is something every agent struggles with.
Again, consider calling, although email might work well too. Ultimately, this depends on the nature of the inquiry you’ve abandoned. For example, you can send the bulk of info via email but still call the prospect to reconnect personally.
5. When the conversation is detail-rich
When you expect a lot of questions from your prospect, it makes sense to call and discuss everything personally. In many cases, you can solve a lot of things in one go and that saves time for both parties.
However, both you and your prospect might as well forget what you were talking about two hours later. It is a golden real estate lead prospecting rule to follow up with an email after a phone call and give a recap of the key things you have agreed upon.
6. Giving an update or report
In most cases, use email. This is probably not an urgent message and is best perceived in writing. Local market reports or updates on an exposure strategy for your sellers can all be done via email. An exception here is that we would recommend picking up the phone if you want to talk about very specific neighborhood updates with a hot lead.
7. Asking for a referral
Definitely email. From a client’s perspective, it’s not an urgent or very important message. Schedule a series of follow-up emails asking for a referral based on the best day and hour to get in touch from above. If you happen to be on the phone with a recent client or industry partner don’t be afraid to mention it though.
8. Scheduling an appointment
Both email and phone could work. If the meeting is time-sensitive, call, then confirm via email. If it’s not, you might resort to email only and call if you haven’t heard back from the client.
Divide all of your messages into important ones and the ones that can wait. Based on that distinction, use a phone in crucial situations, but whatever your message is, don’t forget to back up your communication with email.