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5 important facts you need to know about response time

Lead response management is one of the most important elements of lead generation. If you are not able to find the perfect discipline to respond to inquiries generated from your marketing efforts, potential clients will not feel they are receiving information in a timely manner. This means you could lose someone that was ready to hire you. Your lead response management strategy must be set to allow you to continually respond to all enquiries in a timely fashion so you optimize your efforts and never miss out on a lead. Here are five facts you need to know about the importance of prompt response times.

1. Lead Generation versus Complaint Generation

If you started your social media pages as part of your lead generation strategy, you have to be prepared to respond to any comments your posts might generate. According to a survey by Convince and Convert, 42% of customers who post a complaint to a social media page expect an answer within 30 minutes of their post. Hopefully you are not getting complaints but instead comments that can start a conversation. However, the numbers do speak to expectations and how customers view using social media as a point of contact with you. And remember, even a lead generation email form on a website can receive complaints and these emails should also be answered promptly.

2. Response Rates for Real Estate

According to Sprout Social, in the final quarter of 2015, the statistics related to social media response times and real estate were as follows:

  • Average Response Rate: 11.2%

  • Average Hours to Respond: 11

  • Average Percent of Comments requiring a response: 52.8%

  • Average Post per Reply: 8.7

In general, the number of comments posted by customers that require a response has risen dramatically from 2013 to the final quarter of 2015 from 14% to over 43%. That means that more consumers are looking at social media as a logical place to make inquiries and complaints about a brand.

3. Day of the Week

Although prompt response time is always important, you might be interested to know that the day of the week you choose to make a call based on a lead can affect your success rate. According to, those who make a call to contact a lead on Thursday see a 49.7% improvement in reaction to those who called on Tuesday, the worst day of the week. Wednesdays are a close second for success. Interestingly, our research has shown that the best day to send an eflyer campaign is also Thursdays with Wednesdays as a close second.

Chart courtesy of

4. Time of Day

The time of day seemed to have a big impact on success for contacting a lead as well. Calling between 4pm to 6pm had a 114% better result than calling at the worst time of day (during business hours) 11am to 12pm.

Chart courtesy of

5. Response Time

Of course the time it takes to get back to someone is really the make or break factor you need to consider the most. Here are the numbers according to

  • Your odds decrease by over 10 times when waiting an hour to call a lead versus calling within the first five minutes.

  • The odds of qualifying a lead in 5 minutes versus 30 minutes drop 21 times.

  • The odds of qualifying a lead from 5 minutes to 10 minutes decrease 4 times.

Chart courtesy of

It is not surprising that every message you leave after 20 hours actually hurts your ability to make contact. By this time chances are the lead has reached out to someone else who can handle their needs right away and the more messages you leave, the more desperate you might appear.

Of course everything is relative and there are often extenuating circumstances that will affect your ability to respond promptly, from the time of day the lead reaches out to you, to the frequency with which you check emails. Realistically, you will have a number of marketing campaigns and other lead generation tools at work for you. From virtual tours and social media to eflyers, you have to ensure you are ready to respond as quickly as possible.

When it comes to real estate, your response time could be the basis your lead is using as a deciding factor on whether or not you can handle their needs. Throw into the mix the fact that most people will hire the first agent they contact, the more responsive you are and the better your response time, the more likely you are to have them stick with you as their real estate agent.

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