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49 Powerful Real Estate Lead Generation Ideas For 2021

Looking for real estate lead generation ideas besides cold calling and door knocking? Generating quality leads is how every real estate agent sustains their business, and it requires constant effort. In this post, I’ll share 49 powerful lead generation ideas that you can use to find great leads for your real estate business.


49. Use Predictive Analytics

Use a predictive analytics tool to find a potential client before they reach out to you. For example, these tools can interpret data from around the internet and MLS to predict which property owners will likely sell their homes this year. Then you can target these people rather than the entire community. Check out Quantarium, House Canary, and REX Real Estate Exchange.

48. Create Virtual Home Tour Videos

Virtual home tours are more convenient for your audience and can save you a significant amount of time and money. They also save you from dealing with buyers who are just casually browsing. Only serious buyers will actually reach out to you to see the home in person. You can use tools like EyeSpy360 to easily create a virtual tour or home staging.

47. Start a Blog

Just like a YouTube channel, a real estate blog is a great way to draw traffic to your website. Creating original content that is SEO optimized and tailored to rank for a specific keyword will help you rank higher on Google, attract leads to your website, and present yourself as a thought-leader in the industry.

46. Start a Podcast

Another form of content marketing that draws in leads and gives you authority in the industry is podcasts. To save time, you can easily turn your YouTube videos into podcast format using tools like Auphonic and then publish them with Libsyn.

45. Email Marketing

Email marketing has long been a staple of lead generation for businesses, and it’s not going anywhere. Use email in your content marketing strategy to promote new blog posts or videos, create a newsletter for your sphere of influence, advertise listings, or let people know of upcoming events.

44. Live Video

Live videos on social media are an increasingly popular way of generating leads. The best way to use them is at open houses. This way, people who can’t attend the open house in person can still do so online. In addition, you can stream to Facebook and YouTube at the same time and then leave those videos up on both platforms so they can continue to gain views.

43. Learn SEO Backlinking Techniques

SEO has long been a proven technique to spread brand awareness, boost traffic, and convert more leads. Specifically, a technique called backlinking can help draw in more leads to your real estate business.

Backlinking essentially occurs when you get other sites to link back to your own. Try to get links from sites that are related to your business and have good reputations. Over time, this will increase your ranking on Google.

The craigslist home page.

42. Use Craigslist

Craigslist might seem like an untrustworthy source of leads, but it can actually be a great place to post listings. You may take more time to properly vet Craigslist leads, but if you know what to look for you can have a good chance of finding your next qualified lead on the site.

41. Use Zillow Premier Agent or Connections Plus

Join a paid leads program like Zillow’s Premier Agent or’s Connections Plus. With these programs, you pay a certain amount each month for a percentage of leads in your market and premium ad placements. While this strategy will require more upfront investment, it can be worth it, especially if you already have a strong reputation on either of these sites. You can learn more about Zillow vs. leads in this post.

40. Use Automated Text Messaging

A fast speed to lead time is crucial as a real estate agent. But how can you engage leads in those moments when you’re too busy to answer your phone or email? Automated text messaging services can help keep your leads engaged until you have the time to pick up the phone and call them.

These leads will appreciate receiving a fast response rather than having to wait to hear back from you. In addition, text messages tend to have a much better open rate than emails. You can find automated text functionality included with most CRM systems.

Check out Agent Legend to put create drip text message campaigns.


39. Partner With Local Businesses

Create relationships with local businesses, contractors, or handymen in your area. When you partner with these people, they can give you referrals, and you can return the favor to them. For example, when you have a buyer client looking for a good plumber, you can recommend them one you’ve partnered with.

38. Host a Q&A Event for First Time Home Buyers in Your Community

Events for the first-time homebuyer market are always popular because this group is actively searching for guidance. You can share the answers to common questions most first-time homebuyers have and walk them through a step-by-step guide to purchasing their first home. In addition, try to answer some questions that you don’t see asked very often. This will help to set you apart from similar events from your competition.

37. Participate in Your Community During the Holidays

You’ll find great leads by interacting with your community regularly, getting to know people, and forming relationships with them. One great way to do this in your neighborhood is to participate during the holidays. For example, during the Fourth of July you can place flags in peoples’ yards. For Halloween you can leave small pumpkins on their doorsteps.

36. Network with Homebuilder’s and Sales Reps

Become a member of a homebuilder’s association so you can network and form relationships with people in the same industry as you. Partnering with homebuilders can be a mutually beneficial partnership where you provide each other with leads, advice, and industry news. You can even host open houses within new home communities if you don’t have any new listings of your own.

35. Attend Real Estate Investor Association Meetings

Real estate investors are an overlooked source of leads that many real estate agents don’t make an effort to target. You can find a great source of real estate leads, whether for residential or commercial real estate, by partnering with your local Real Estate Investor Association and attending their meetings.

34. Join Your Local Chamber of Commerce

The benefit to becoming a member of your local chamber of commerce is that you can get your name and business listed in newsletters, websites, earn more referrals, and form mutually beneficial relationships with other business owners in the area.

You can join both your town’s and county’s chamber of commerce as long as it’s somewhere that your business provides services to. This will also add an element of credibility to your business if you are a newer Realtor.

33. Sponsor a Pet Adoption Event

One unique way to generate leads is by getting involved in events around your local community. For example, you can sponsor a pet adoption event. Set up a pet-themed real estate table and give advice and answer peoples’ questions. Your community members will appreciate you for helping to sponsor the event, and you’ll likely find some leads who are interested in working with you.

32. Target Leads Getting a Divorce

A unique lead generation method is to target divorce leads. These leads are likely to be looking for a new property to buy or sell a property quickly. You can even get a professional distinction to help boost your reputation among these leads: RCS-D, or Real Estate Collaboration Specialist – Divorce. Consider partnering with divorce lawyers in your area to find these leads.

31. Target Owners of Distressed Homes

Another group you can target for new leads is owners of distressed homes. If a homeowner misses a mortgage, a lender will order a broker price opinion (BPO) on a property in the event that it needs to be foreclosed. If these homeowners end up needing to sell their homes quickly, you can be right there to help them and offer advice.

30. Network at Local Community Events

Creating relationships in your community is one of the best ways real estate lead generation ideas for finding leads. Join local events in your area or even just classes or places where your ideal client might hang out. For example, take a yoga or cooking class and meet people there. You’re bound to find someone who needs a real estate-related service.

However, be sure not to come across as salesy. Instead, just let the conversation naturally flow, and when you get to the point where you discuss what you do for a living, you can mention all the ways you can provide value as a Realtor.

29. Pitch Your Listings to Local News Media

Getting your listing picked up in a newspaper, whether local or national, can quickly draw in many interested leads. You’ll be taking advantage of the paper’s larger audience, and it can also act as a form of credibility for your business. In addition, paying for advertisements in local newspapers is also a great strategy to gain publicity.

28. Go After Older Expired Listings

Many real estate agents focus on newly expired listings, but it can be good to go after older ones that have been expired for some time. You can check in with the lead and see if anyone has ever followed up with them, and if not, what their current plans are. Then, offer them your help so they can successfully reach their goals.

A for sale by owner sign on a front lawn in front of a home. Pursuing FSBOs is one of the best real estate lead generation ideas.

27. Target FSBOs

Focusing on the FSBO niche can bring you a steady source of leads if you have the right approach and consistent follow-up. Don’t approach FSBOs as though you know better than them. Instead, make sure you listen to them, address any concerns they may have, and then describe how you can provide them with value.

26. Give Back to the Community

A more productive way to get involved in your community besides attending events and classes is to volunteer your time at a charity or non-profit. Besides helping out people and making a difference in your community, this will also benefit your brand because people will see that you want to give back.

Social Media

25. Start a Contest on Social Media

Keep your audience engaged and draw in more leads by offering them a chance to win a contest. This can be a photo contest, video contest, or hashtag contest, and the prize can be as simple as a gift card or something as big as a free house repair or decor.

24. Run Google Pay-Per-Click Ads

If you already have a website or landing page setup, you can simply run Google Ads. Targeting keywords like “home for sale in {your city, zip code, neighborhood} can be a great way of generating high-quality, ready, willing, and potentially able buyers.

Check out Travis Thom at ElevatedREM for PPC management only. Or if you need an all-in-one solution, you can look into kvCORE.

23. Answer Questions on Quora

Quora is a question and answer platform where you can potentially discover a qualified lead. In addition, answering peoples’ questions with helpful advice and resources will increase brand awareness and help position you as an authority in the industry.

22. Paid Advertising on Facebook

Paid ads on Facebook are a good way to go if you’re looking for quality internet leads. Advertising on Facebook allows you to narrow down your advertising and target a specific audience in a certain location. And if you have a pixel installed on your real estate website, you can use it to create retargeting ads on Facebook.

21. Start a YouTube Channel

As the second most popular search engine after Google, YouTube should be a key part of your real estate video marketing strategy. Having a presence on the platform can get you organic traffic for your real estate business and increase brand awareness. Create videos answering common questions, providing advice, and giving area overviews of the different neighborhoods in your area. Check out my full post on how to get started with YouTube for real estate agents.

20. Join Real Estate-Related Facebook Groups

Joining groups on Facebook gives you a chance to demonstrate your real estate knowledge and act as an authority in the industry. You can answer peoples’ questions, create surveys, and provide resources and helpful content.

Simply commenting and interacting with potential leads across Facebook and other social media platforms is a great way to increase brand awareness and show people that you want to serve them.

19. Advertise on Facebook Messenger

Facebook Messenger isn’t typically the first place real estate agents think of when considering real estate lead generation ideas. However, this social media platform is a great source for responsive leads. Open rates on Facebook Messenger are much higher than email, and response rates are usually faster. Advertising on Messenger works the same as setting up a regular Facebook ad.

In Person

18. Call Your Sphere of Influence

Your best leads are often the ones you already know. People are constantly engaging in real estate-related activities, whether it’s renovating, buying, or selling. Make an effort to interact with your sphere of influence regularly not just to stay top of mind, but in case they need your services or advice. Aim to call at least one person from your sphere of influence per day.

A man on a phone sitting at a laptop

17. Old Fashioned Cold Calling

Cold calling has been a traditionally successful lead generation strategy for a reason. While it can be uncomfortable to call strangers and you’re bound to face rejection, you will also encounter many high-quality leads. In addition, real estate cold calling is a great way to develop your sales skills and a focused pitch. Still not into cold calling? Fortunately it’s possible to be successful without cold calling.

16. Old Fashioned Door Knocking

While door-knocking is not necessarily one of the most unique real estate lead generation ideas, it is a tried and true method of finding leads. Not only that, but you will make yourself known around your local neighborhood and members of the community.

And similar to cold calling, it’s a great way to hone your sales skills and elevator pitch. So even if you face rejection, you’ll still take away some valuable lessons.

15. Host Events For Your Top Sphere of Influence Members

Host your own events for the top members of your sphere of influence to stay top of mind and get referrals. Try to do this regularly, at least once per quarter. These can include holiday-themed events or just community get-togethers such as movie nights or potlucks.

14. Hand Out Business Cards During the Holidays

Another traditional method of gaining leads is handing out business cards. In this case, you can do this during the holidays and use it as an excuse to hand out free incentives to people. For example, you can hand out business cards attached to candy canes in the winter months. During the summer months, you can hand out free bottles of water.

13. Work During the Holidays

Perhaps one of the more unpopular real estate lead generation ideas is to spend your holidays working. People are always looking to buy, sell, or rent, and just because it’s the holidays doesn’t mean they don’t need the help of a real estate agent. So while your fellow agents take this time off, you can use it to your advantage to score new leads. But just because you’re working during the holidays doesn’t mean that you can’t have fun. This is a great opportunity to throw some holiday-themed events, such as holiday-themed open houses.

12. Leave Physical Handouts

Use door hangers, leaflets, and inserts to spread brand awareness of your real estate business. Leave these on homes in the neighborhoods you serve to stay top of mind and discover potential customers. Make sure these marketing materials have your logo, branding, color scheme, and contact information.

11. Create Content About Historic Listings in Your Area

If you live in an area with historic homes or neighborhoods, you can attract leads by creating informational blog posts or videos about those homes. Post this content on your real estate website and and share it to social media to get organic traffic. As a local, you can provide visitors with unique knowledge and insight into these properties.

10. Create a Buyer Persona of Your Ideal Client

If you’re having trouble identifying your target audience, you should create a buyer persona. Buyer personas are a great way to narrow down your ideal client, their interests, and how they spend their time.

Once you have a clear picture of your ideal client, you can use this image to target them in both the online and physical locations they frequent. For example, if you know your ideal client is a first-time homebuyer, you might try paid advertising or content marketing on platforms that tend to have younger demographics, such as Instagram or TikTok for real estate agents.

9. Send Thank You Notes to Referral Sources

Referrals are valuable in the real estate industry. Whenever you get one, be sure to thank your referral source for their endorsement of your business. One meaningful way to show your appreciation is with a handwritten card and small gift or gift card.

A group of business people shaking hands

8. Interact Regularly With Your Sphere of Influence

Form relationships with your sphere of influence and interact with them regularly. Just like with any other friend, you should celebrate and congratulate them on key milestones in their lives. Be sure to reach out for occasions like birthdays, weddings, engagements, and pregnancies.

7. Always Answer Your Phone Immediately

Fast follow-up is essential when you’re a real estate agent. But what do you do when you’re in the middle of something and don’t have the time to have a conversation? Instead of ignoring the call, just answer and quickly schedule a time to call them back when you are free. The lead will appreciate you taking the time to answer the phone rather than just letting them go straight to voicemail.

6. Ask Your Clients For Referrals

One way to ensure you get referrals is simply to ask your clients for them. Some clients love your service but don’t think to give a referral. Let them know how much this would mean to your business and that you would appreciate it if they took the time to recommend you to their friends and family.

5. Focus on Getting Good Reviews

Good reviews are the best way to boost your businesses’ reputation and get more leads. Make sure you ask your clients to leave reviews on all the major platforms, such as your Google business page, Facebook business page, Zillow profile, and Yelp.

4. Host Open Houses

Hosting open houses is often overlooked as a source of lead generation, but it’s a great way to get people in front of you, where you can more easily convert them. To get the most amount of leads from your open houses, advertise them by sticking up signs around the neighborhood, making sure to put one on every cross street.

3. Wear Branded Clothing When You Go Out

Represent your brand or brokerage whenever you go out by wearing branded apparel. This way, people will take notice of what you do no matter where you go, and you may end up finding your next potential lead somewhere you don’t expect.

2. Send Out Seasonal Cards and Gifts to CRM Database

A great way to stay top of mind with your sphere of influence and increase your chance of a prospective client and referrals is to send them cards and gifts for holidays, birthdays, and their home anniversary purchase date. You can use SendOutCards to send cards with attached gifts.

1. Offer Free Real Estate Advice

Demonstrate your knowledge by offering free advice to people, whether online or in person. For example, if you’re doing work or meeting with clients in a cafe, you can set up a small sign advertising your services or real estate advice for free.

Final Thoughts on Real Estate Lead Generation Ideas

Focus on whatever real estate lead generation ideas work best for you and your business plan. Make sure you stick to the methods that you genuinely enjoy doing. That way, you’ll be able to keep up your efforts without getting overwhelmed or burned out.

What are your favorite real estate lead generation ideas? Have any that didn’t make it on the list? Let me know in the comments below!

Kyle Handy

Would You Like To Partner With Me?

Check out my Partner Page for details on the benefits of working with me at eXp Realty. I’ve helped hundreds of real estate agents, team leaders, & brokers all over the country, increase their business & build additional revenue streams. Together, we can make this year your best yet!

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  1. Hi Kyle!

    I joined eXp under Hoss Pratt and Brian Culhane. I don’t know if I’m in your organization. That said, is there a way we could work together to build our respective organizations? Thanks,

    Stephen Poletti
    Carmel, CA

  2. Wow! Thank you for sharing a long list of ideas. I really appreciate having so many other options that I can use. Keep on sharing.

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