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The death of real estate cold calling

Cold calling was the marketing tactic of choice for decades, but they have run their course. Some will find marginal success with the method, but overall, consumers are annoyed because it’s 2013, not 1993.

phone addiction

cold calling

You are an idiot

Do you realize you are telling your prospective clients this? Did you know that you are losing business rather than gaining it?

Cold calling, the hero of business in the 60’s through the 90’s, continues even today to be a way to get business for some real estate people but most people on the receiving end dislike it.

Ask yourself – don’t you? Don’t you think it’s a major waste of time when Larry Dushball calls you in the middle o the day while you are working asking you if you sell homes in your area only to get into a rap about how his company is somehow married to Google, Bing, Apple and the Federal Government?

Yes, annoying. What do I do to these people? I play Beavis clips into the phone in order to amuse me and my staff. We love it and the tele-scum never call us back and waste our time (you can come up with anything that will make them go away, but I do recommend Cornholio clips).

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I digress, back to the client

Since the Do-Not-Call Implementation Act of 2003 list was passed because people were sick and tired of getting called and hassled, that should have been the pivot for you to understand that there are other ways.

One way that agents do it is with a form letter  Some of those letters have spelling mistakes, non-paragraphing and form-letteritis. Yes, maybe this works, but make it professional, intelligent and dynamic. Aren’t you asking to market their house? If you don’t show creativity, why send the letter? But, there is a Do Not Mail list too. Be very careful!

Then there are the door knockers. Really? With the NRA wanting everyone to be armed are you really going to blindly walk up to a door? They are sick of real estate agents at this point.

Get inside their brain

What do they want? Where have they been? Are they way overpriced and unrealistic? Are they on a street at a toxic waste site? Did they just have an agent that did not understand their property?

Take a condo. Did the agent they have not know that the place in unfinanceable? Get with your mortgage person and figure out how it can get it mortgaged.

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Be creative. Why? Because they want you to be and you’ll differentiate yourself and get the listings that you want!

Written By

Realty Reality! That describes Fred, a sharp witted and outspoken realist for the mortgage and real estate world who has appeared on CNBC and NPR's Marketplace along with being quoted in the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and other media outlets. Fred is the CEO of U S Spaces, Inc/Arrivva (a real estate brokerage firm in PA, NJ, DE and CA) and U S Loans Mortgage Inc (mortgage brokerage in PA, CA, FL and VA), and serves on the Board of Directors and is the Federal Legislative Director for the UpFront Mortgage Brokers. Fred is also the co-creator of real estate startup, a mathematically driven rental search engine. See everything Fred at



  1. VickiMoore

    May 31, 2013 at 2:29 pm

    We were just talking about door knocking yesterday. There has been a rash of burglaries in the area. They knock on the door, when no one answers, they go around the back and break in. Door knocking agents are being confronted by concerned neighbors.

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