Dustin and Mariya Oldfather purchased TigerLead in 2009, leveraging the tools it provided and the leads it generated to increase their business. Working in the second-home market of coastal Delaware, they’ve grown their team from just the two of them to twelve agents. We asked Dustin to share his TigerLead story with us, and he was happy to do so.
“Before I got TigerLead, I had been on the lookout for an IDX capture site for some time,” Dustin said. “Then I saw something about TigerLead at an event. It was really expensive relative to what we were used to spending, but I just felt confident in the team. I really felt like it was the right choice. At that point, it was just Mariya and myself. We started off at a really bleak time for real estate, but ultimately it was the right decision and we’re really happy with TigerLead.”
Dustin and Mariya’s success didn’t come overnight. They initially had difficulty handling all the leads they were receiving, which Dustin now attributes to their desire to get as many leads as possible. “One of the biggest struggles we had was the volume of leads and the amount of follow-up that was required. Looking back, we weren’t doing consistent and persistent follow-up, but we got a lot better as we went on. We were doing something that was new at that time… if I had to do it over again we would have worked the leads harder. We were trying to get the maximum number of leads we could, but that meant we were buried in the beginning because we hadn’t prepared.”
Still, as time went on, their system was coming together. Not only were they closing more and more of their TigerLead clients, but the lessons they learned and the procedures they created also carried over to the rest of their business. “Understanding the philosophy of internet follow-up has helped us with our other lead sources as well. What we’re great at is internet lead conversion – we take these leads and we pair them with our great agents and the best processes, and hopefully they’re happy and give us their business.”
And what philosophy is that? “It’s not about any fancy tricky sales thing, it’s about engaging the buyer on their home search. Just have a plan in place for your follow-up. That follow-up can seem overwhelming at first, unless you’ve got a plan. And then as you get busier, you add an assistant or an ISA to help you call the leads, and it grows from there.”
“For people who are new to TigerLead, you don’t have to do anything else – it’s a business model unto itself, and it’s real simple. Respond quickly, respond confidently, take care of the lead, don’t send a bunch of spam, just be a friend. At the end of the day, from the business you get from your online customers, you create happy customers and repeat business and referrals, and the business just grows and grows.”
Dustin’s business certainly has grown and grown. Back in 2009, he and Mariya did $7.5m in total volume. In 2013, that number had risen to $30.5m. “We’ve moved into the top ten in our market,” he explained. “Everyone else in the top ten has been in the business for over 20 years. We’re number six in units, number seven in volume, and we’ve only been in business for eight years. TigerLead has absolutely made that possible. Not that we didn’t put in our own investments and our own hard work, but this platform allowed us to do something that hasn’t been done before.”
In closing, Dustin left us with one final statement: “TigerLead is a license to print money. There’s a learning curve, but once you’ve got it, you’re set.”