Advice from a Direct Mail Junkie
According to 90% of Real Estate investors, marketing is a VERY COMPLEX science. It requires year of EXPENSIVE EDUCATION, experience and testing before a new investor can expect to see any type of return on their advertising dollar. It’s something BEST LEFT TO PROFESSIONALS.
That’s the bad news.
The good news is that 95% of all Real Estate investors never do a single deal. Even fewer market. The investors that do deal market. Most of them use direct mail. I am one of them.
Why Direct Mail?
Advertising can be broken into two separate groups – brand building and direct response.
Brand building is the type of marketing you see on TV, on billboards and hear over the radio. These advertisements are designed to consciously or subconsciously embed your mind with a certain idea about a product or company. When it’s time to purchase, the brand’s reputation influences your buying decision.This type of advertising is great if you’re Coke or Nike. It’s been around for over 100 years. It works. But its extremely expensive.
Alternatively, direct marketing is targeted to trigger a direct and immediate response. This type of advertising is used on many of the same outlets as that used by brand building. Infomercials from companies like Proactive and P90X generate hundreds of millions in revenue by encouraging viewers to take action – call NOW!
Direct response marketing does not need the high ticket price of mass distribution. The relative cost per client acquisition can be greatly reduced by targeting a very specific group of individuals. That’s where direct mail comes in.
Direct mail give us the opportunity to present a very targeted message requesting a immediate response from a very targeted group of people. For me, it’s the least expensive cost of advertising available.
Who to Target
Every Real Estate investor is going to be different. There are nuances in every market that only local investors are going to know. But here are three common factors that lead to a good list in any market:
- Problem Property – What to Say If the house had nuisance liens, violations, or is just run down, there’s an opportunity.
- Problem Situation – When a seller has a personal motivation that is greater than getting top dollar for their property, there’s opportunity in helping them get what they need. From divorce to financial distress, there is money to be made by solving difficult problem.
- Un-Earned Equity – People tend to appreciate money they’ve earned more than money they’re handed. Inherited properties open a door of opportunity.
Deciding what to say can be just as important as who you say it to. There are countless programs and options offering advice on what to say on a postcard. I have found the best results come from a personal message in my own voice. When you write your message, remember the following points:
- Make the message about them. They don’t care about you. So tell them how you can help them as quickly as possible.
- Be clear. If a seller is not sure what you want them to do, they’ll never call you.
- Match your message to your seller.
- Make your message short and sweet. In our fast paced world, people rarely read all their email. Unsolicited mail often hits the trash can. If you want your message to be heard, do it quickly.
- Use testimonials whenever you can, but be honest. Fake testimonials sound fake.
- There will ALWAYS be an offer. There is a reason some businesses always have a sale going on. It makes people feel like they’re getting a deal. Offer free stuff in your advertising so that sellers feel the need to act now.
- Send the same message multiple times to the same people. Do it in a few different delivery methods. Repetition is the key.
- Tell them what to do next. After they read your message, a motivated seller will be ready to take the next step. But if you don’t tell them very clearly what that step might be, they’re left guessing and they will never call.
Direct mail is my most cost effective form of marketing. It’s a simple and easy way to deliver your message to a targeted group of potential sellers. Here’s the best part:
- You don’t have to have an advanced degree in marketing.
- You don’t have to have years of experience.
- You don’t have to leave marketing to the professionals.
But if you’re planning on joining the top 5% of Real Estate investors you do need to get started on your direct mail campaign today!