There’s a lot of fear when it comes to cold calling.
But, it can be one of the best lead generation sources when done consistently.
The event was a true masterclass for agents. If you haven’t watched the entire thing, make the time to sit down and take some notes:
Scripts, Lists and Dialers
Some questions that are often asked about cold calling have to do with the specific tools being used: What lists did you call? What script did you use? What dialer do you have?
At the beginning of the cold calling event, all three shared the tools they use. Take a look, and commit to whatever works best for you.
Three different callers with three different scripts. Here are the scripts Dan, Tom, and Byron use when making calls:
- A la carte: Over the years, Dan Oneil has developed his own script. He found the first house he ever bought using this script, and it’s one we outline below.
- Mike Ferry Script: Mike Ferry has been coaching since 1975. This is the script Tom Toole uses—a script that has stood the test of time and still works today.
- Tom Ferry Script: Byron uses a Tom Ferry Sales Edge Script. He mixes it up, changing the order of questions he asks based on how the conversation is going.
No matter what script you use, it’s essential to know it cold, so you can weave in and out of the conversation while building rapport and hitting all of the essential elements. Find one that you are comfortable with and practice daily to get the most out of it.
Take some notes, bet on yourself, and implement this in your business.
So, where do you find the phone numbers of people you can call? As always, you need to be sure you are following rules for your state and make sure you never dial a number on the “do not call” list.
Here are some platforms that allow you to filter lists based on whether you are calling expired listings, FSBOs, or doing circle prospecting:
If these types of tools aren’t in your budget yet, you have some options that involve a bit more sweat equity:
- MLS: Log in to your local MLS and search for recently expired properties.
- Zillow: Use Zillow to find and contact FSBOs.
A Script that Landed Three Appointments
Dan Oneil landed three appointments using the script he’s been working on for years.
Dan starts by letting the homeowner know that he’s a local agent and collects the sellers’ motivation:
“I’m a local agent in (Market). I noticed it’s at (location). How long have you been at the property? Why are you leaving?”
He then goes on to share more about his connection to the area, his own motivation to buy, and a soft ask for an appointment:
“Again, I’m a local agent. My office is located at (location), if you’re familiar with that area. I grew up in the area and recently sold a property at (location). I’m actually renting right now and I hate it. I’m looking for something with this beach vibe and at this price point. I’d love to set up a time to come see it.”
From there, Dan goes into details about the property that he has gathered from the online listing and asks for more information:
“There aren’t a ton of photos online. I’d love to see more and know what the taxes and beach association fees are.
“Is there a basement? How’s the garage?
“Any improvements you’ve made over the years?”
From there, Dan goes into a hard ask to land an appointment:
“I don’t want to take up too much of your time right now. Are you available Saturday at 11:00 for me to come take a look? I’ll send over all my business information beforehand.
“Great, I’ll see you Saturday morning, and I’ll text you all my info.”
Was Dan being deceptive?
During the live event, many people questioned Dan’s script and asked if he was being deceptive since he told sellers he was looking to buy a property.
But, like Tom Toole said, why not leverage your situation?
Dan is currently renting and looking for a home. Since Dan found and bought his first house using this script, he knows it works. The appointments he sets using this script allows him to make connections with homeowners, look at possible properties, and gain some new listings.
What can you leverage when making calls?
Key Moments to Watch: Dan Oneil
Dan’s natural conversational style (and incredible laugh) help him make an almost instant connection with the person on the other end of the line.
Here are a few moments of the event to hone in on and watch Dan work this script:
- 26:15 – Dan’s first call was when he spoke to another Realtor selling their home. This appointment has the potential to end with a listing—or it could turn into a partnership. Since the Realtor is moving, Dan may have the opportunity to buy their book of clients or get referrals.
- 39:22 – During this call, Dan realized he and the homeowner knew many of the same people. This helped him instantly create a connection and, in the end, land an appointment.
- 57:25 – Dan once again created a connection with the homeowner when he found out they both have ties to Florida.
Script for a Hard Close
Using a Tom Ferry script, Byron uses what many think of as a more traditional format when calling expireds. He was able to secure a true listing appointment, a follow-up call, and a coffee appointment during the live event. Here’s how he went for a hard close to land a listing appointment.
Byron started by introducing himself and getting right to the point—asking the homeowner if they still want to sell.
“Hi, this is (name) with (team or brokerage). I don’t want to take up too much of your time, but I’m looking at your property in (location) and I’m curious. It looks like it was on the market and no longer is. I’m calling to see if you still want to sell the property?”
At this point, Byron learned the homeowner planned to go back to renting the two-unit property. He asked some questions to learn more about their motivation.
“You’re going back to renting? Are you getting good income from that? Do you enjoy the landlord process? It’s not easy.”
From there, he repeated back what the homeowner told him and asked about what it would take to sell.
“Ok, you had somebody interested, but the financials fell through. If you got that number—the number you had when it was under contract—would you have followed through and sold? Were you excited about the number?”
Byron then went on to ask the homeowner why they thought it didn’t sell.
“What do you think the problem was? Why do you think the finances fell through (or why didn’t it sell)?
After listening to the homeowner, he asked about what they would do if they knew they could fix the issue and actually sell.
“If you could get the home marketed to qualified buyers, who can follow through on their commitment to purchase the property—at your price—would you still sell the property?”
When the homeowner said yes, Byron shared what he can do to make it happen and made his first ask for an appointment.
“Great, I can get this exposed to more people than you did last time. Qualified buyers who can close on the deal. When can you meet to talk about it?”
After answering a couple of questions, Byron circled back to ask for an appointment.
“If I can get you a buyer who is actually qualified and committed to the closing, would you be open to a 15-minute conversation so I can show you exactly how me and my team can get this done for you?
“How about tomorrow after 1:00 or Friday after 1:00? Do either of those work for you?”
At this point, the homeowner told Byron they were getting calls from a lot of agents—a common objection. Byron empathized with the caller and again asked for an appointment.
“I’m not surprised you are getting a lot of calls. Agents are going to be coming out of the woodwork. But if I can just come by Thursday or Friday after 1:00, I can show you exactly how to get the price that you had locked in. We both agree, you like that number—and you deserve to get it.
“If I can show you exactly how to hit your number, would it be worth your time? I’d love to give you that time and earn the opportunity to work for you and get this job done for you.”
Once the homeowner agreed, Byron thanked them, gave some social proof, and went for a hard close:
“Thank you, I appreciate the opportunity to let you know who I am. I know a lot of agents are calling you and telling you they are number one—I’ll bring over the MLS sheet and show you how my team has sold more properties than anyone else in Connecticut.
“This is a great investment deal for someone, and it should already be closed. If you had gotten it in front of qualified buyers, it would be closed.
“If someone wants to buy this as a pure investment, they’re going to like that the property has two leases on it. If someone is going to buy as an owner-occupied, the good news is that the first floor is month-to-month. We’ll be able to negotiate that situation, on your behalf, to get the deal closed at your price.
“If you still want to lock in the price that you would have gotten if the deal didn’t fall through, let’s meet up and talk about it.”
In the end, Byron summed up what he wanted to do while reminding the homeowner of the pain points of being a landlord.
“My goal is to come over and show you how we can get you the price you want and earn the opportunity to work for you. That’s all I’m asking for—15 minutes to come over and show you exactly how we can earn this job working for you—and you net the amount you want, so you don’t have to worry about being a landlord moving forward.
“What’s better for you? Thursday or Friday?”
Byron finished up by confirming the appointment time and date, as well as the homeowner’s phone number and email address.
Key Moments to Watch: Byron Lazine
Byron went with a more traditional script as he spoke to three homeowners. Here are some key moments to take notes on:
- 17:04 – Byron’s first call ended with a follow-up call scheduled for the next day.
- 51:00 – In this call, the homeowner said they wanted to stick with the same Realtor. Byron asked questions until he found a commonality (they both have homes in Naples, FL) and secured a coffee appointment.
- 1:02:40 – During this call, Byron connected with a homeowner who is currently renting out the property. He used the above script to earn a listing appointment.
Some Days, You Strike Out
But even the best strike out sometimes. Tom dialed over 80 numbers, and while a couple picked up, none resulted in an appointment.
This is an important lesson for all: there will be off days. You will get hung up on. You will hear no. Don’t let that deter you. Instead, get right back to calling the next day.
This is a great example—it’s a numbers game. You have to do this every day. I can’t control who picks up the phone…I’m going to keep going.
Tom also reminded those who tuned in that these calls targeted new leads. It’s critical to split up your time between calling new leads and following up with prospects. Learn how to organize your lead generation time by reading Tom’s recent article here.
Key Moments to Watch: Tom Toole
Tom Toole is always dropping knowledge. Here are some key moments to watch:
- 13:25 – Tom’s first call ended with what he calls a polite hang-up. Learn how (and why) Tom would follow up with them.
- 34:45 – Here’s an example of what to do if the person who picks up bought the home, even though it was listed as expired in the MLS (along with body language while making calls).
- 1:23:35 – During this call, Tom talked with a homeowner whose son was their Realtor.
In 2023, it’s more important than ever to generate your own leads. So, come back to this post as often as you need, rewatch the full cold calling event, and start making calls.