Prospecting Expireds: Does the Early Bird Get the Listing?

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Frank Morris (coaching member)
“Do you believe it’s important to be the first agent calling an expired listing?.”

It helps. The earlier the better.

Paul Tosello..was the early bird.

#1 They will remember you.

#2 They are more likely to answer the phone (after a few calls from agents many stop answering)

#3. They tend to be less resistant.

Full transcript

There is no time of day that you can call an expired listing that you don’t stand a decent chance of annoying them. Okay? It’s just, that’s the way it goes. Some are going to be annoyed, some aren’t.

I got a great question from one of my coaching members about expired listings, and here’s the question: Do you believe it’s important to be the first agent calling an expired listing?

So now the question is, you want to be one of those agents that’s up there bright and early and you’re annoying sellers by calling them before anybody else and calling them while it’s still dark, should you go knock on their door when it’s still dark and all that. So, does it help to be the first one calling the expired listing? Answer: It helps. There is no question about it.

Now you’re like, “Well, I’m afraid of calling them too early. It’s going to annoy them,” and so forth. Look, there is no time of day that you can call an expired listing that you don’t stand a decent chance of annoying them. Okay? It’s just, that’s the way it goes. Some are going to be annoyed, some aren’t. All right? But when you’re the first one that calls them, it gives you a major advantage.

Now, when I first started selling real estate, I religiously prospected for sale by owners and expired listings. Now, expireds, I always called them first because they’re more urgent. However, the way I set up my business was that for almost my entire career, I prospected from 9:00 AM until noon every day, and I was just a little stubborn. I had my morning routine. I dropped my girls off to school, then I came to the office, I role played, and then I got on the phone at 9:00, and I knew every single day that Paul Tosello was going to call expireds and get there before me.

Now, who is Paul Tosello? Well, Paul Tosello worked for Coldwell Banker in my market, and he was the early bird. He was the first agent every day, and I don’t know what time he started. I’m betting he started between 7:00, 7:30. He called early, and he would always be the first one, and in all the years that I had of prospecting expireds and going on listing appointments, he beat me more than any other agent ever.

And I believe without a shadow of a doubt that the reason he beat me was because he got there before me. In my experience and the experience of many of the agents that I’ve coached from the general psychology, human understanding and human behavior, when you’re the first agent that calls, there is an advantage. I know this is true with for sale by owners because like with expireds, I would sometimes not be the first because I wasn’t calling them until 9:00, he was calling them at 7:30, and there was other agents calling earlier and so forth.

With for sale by owners, a lot of agents wait until second day, the first week, or second week to call for sale by owners because they’re like, “What’s the point of calling them quick because they’re not going to hire an agent the first day?” But here’s what I discovered: The sooner you call them, the more they remember you.

Same with expireds. When you’re the first agent that calls them, there is an advantage for you. In fact, I think there’s three reasons that calling expireds early and being the first agent to talk to them is better. Why is it an advantage for you? The early bird gets the worm, or in this case, the early bird gets the listing, and here’s why.

1) They’re more likely to remember you. They’re more likely to remember you when you’re the first agent that calls, and it’s the first kiss principle. Do you remember your first kiss? And the answer is I bet you do. Do you remember your seventh kiss? I bet you don’t. Why? Because when we had that first kiss, that first romantic moment, that first kiss, you were nervous. Your palms were sweating, all the hormones and emotions were at their peak, your attention was there, and it was like this was a first time experience.

The first time we do something, we tend to remember it because of its novelty because it’s new to us, but by the time we’ve done it several times, it is no longer new. When you’re the first agent that’s called them, they’re like, “Oh, somebody’s calling me. Hello?” And then they’re like, “Ugh, I’m stuck with an agent,” but they’re talking to you, and they’re going to remember you because you were the first one. By the time you’re the seventh agent or the 10th agent, they’ve already talked to agents, and they all run together. It’s just like if you go look at one house, you remember that house. If you show a buyer 10 houses in a day, they don’t remember any of the houses. They may remember one or two things about one or two houses, but they get them all confused. First house, they never forget. First agent, people don’t forget.

2) They’re more likely to answer the phone. When you’re the first agent that calls, first agent that calls, their house is expired, sellers have no clue what’s coming, right? They don’t know their phone’s going to blow up that day. All of a sudden they get a call, it rings, and ask, “Okay, who’s this?” They answer it. “Hello?” And it’s a realtor. The expired ask, “Oh, my house expired? Oh, wow. I didn’t know that,” or whatever the conversation is. They’re going to talk to you, but after the third call they’re going like, “Oh, it’s another realtor,” and whether it shows the caller ID, their real estate office’s name or not, they’re going to go like, “You know what? I’m not even answering my phone anymore because obviously my listing expired, and now all the agents are interested in my house, so I’m not going to talk to anybody else.” The earlier you are, more likely you are to actually get a conversation because they’re going to talk to you; they’re going to answer the phone.

3) They tend to be less resistant. It simply means that there frustration escalates every time they talk to an agent, they’re going to get a little more resistant, and they’re going to perfect their script of how to get rid of you because if you’re the 10th agent that calls, they’ve already had nine agents ahead of you to practice on.

The first agent caught them off guard, they didn’t get to practice. After several phone calls they’re ready for you and they’re ready to knock you down, challenge you, and It’s just tougher to get the appointment.

So all of that is simply to say I know it’s a little higher risk, and it may feel that way. You may be like, “What if I’m calling too early, and I’m going to upset them because I’m calling. What if they’re still asleep?” Look, you can “What If” yourself to death. If you want results, these people need your help. If you’re a pro and you’re a great agent at getting them great results, they need your help. You’ve got to show up. And the earlier you show up, the better the chance that you’re going to be able to help these people get the result. In this case, yes, the early bird gets the listing.

If you have any thoughts on it, if you have questions on it, or maybe there’s another situation or scenario that you want to ask about, make sure you post your questions down in the comments below. If you liked this video, if it’s helpful for you, make sure you give it a thumbs up. Share it with other agents that you know. Make sure that you subscribe to this YouTube channel if you haven’t done that yet, and I look forward to seeing you on the next video.

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