While most businesses profit from direct mail, real estate is perhaps the biggest beneficiary of this type of marketing tool. Real estate direct mail is one of the most effective, fast, and inexpensive ways to gain visibility and reach a wide section of existing and potential clients. Property experts say most businesses can generate leads, list opportunities, and close deals in the shortest time possible using direct mail. Let’s also say that through it, both buyers and sellers can quickly identify each other and transact a wide range of business.
Why Real Estate Direct Mail Works
Direct mail primarily targets specific geographical areas and demographic groups. So all you need to do is define your audience and destination points for your mail delivery. Real estate direct mail is super specific, enabling you to market only to the right buyer persona. In this case, you can also tailor your message to these people for maximum conversion effect.
Meanwhile, it is also easy to track your direct mail campaign and see how effective it is. In addition, tracking enables you to work with client feedback. For example, are they happy with the product? If not, what improvement can you factor in to attract and even expand your client base?
A trackable marketing tool as direct mail permits you to know the exact product that got higher listings. It also provides info with which you can bait in as many buyers as you can.
But how do you track in the first place? There are various ways. For example, do you send reply cards or provide coupons? You can know from the responses if you are making headway. Highly functional landing pages can also give you a quick glimpse of how you are doing with your direct mail campaign efforts.
Real Estate Direct Mail Tips
Real estate is one of the most crowded marketplaces I have ever seen. The only way you can make it with direct mail campaign effort is to stand out by making things classier. You might also have to engage more appealing strategies and tactics in the direct mail to get proper responses. Here are some real estate direct mail tips to help propel your business to even higher echelons.
1. Find the Right Audience for Your Message
Do you know, if you do not have a target audience, then your direct mail efforts could be in vain? This advert tool works best with messages that target only people who can convert. And so, the first thing would be to find who your real estate direct mail recipients are. If I were you, I would start with any available house sellers/ buyers in a specific geographical area.
You can also decide to go by economic status, say, high or low-income housing, determining the exact problem you want to solve. It could be vacant housing, and hence, your message should state so. Tax default and pre-foreclosure issues should also have their proper messages.
2. Create a Mail Inventory Highlighting Target Properties
A mail inventory is a written mailing list that has prospective buyers/sellers’ contacts. This method helps you to create a zip code inventory, too. You can also know the exact neighborhoods your mail adverts are headed.
A mail list also helps gather additional info concerning any of the properties on which you have your sights. For example, you can get details on foreclosure or high equity status. If there are any deceased property owners, you can also use this info to customize any of the messages in your direct mail.
3. Get Hold of the Correct Addresses
I often insist your real estate direct mail list has to have only people who are likely to convert, not just anyone out there. Once you target the right people, you can expect rapid responses within the shortest time possible, which is good for your ROI.
But where can you get these addresses, especially if you are new in the business? Some of the places you can peruse are public records. You can also search from the list of brokers and other available resources both in/offline.
4. Time Your Message for Effectiveness
Like most businesses, real estate also has its high and low seasons. If you have been in business for a while, you already know how predictable the seasons are. For example, records of annual housing sales show November through January of every year to be slow. But starting March onwards, sales soar, reaching their peak around June. I would urge you to use this particular curve to your most significant advantage by using lots of real estate direct mail to reach your target audience.
5. Adapt the Right Frequency
Only the right frequency of sending your real estate direct mail can draw the proper response. Remember, too many messages can be both distracting and annoying. People might think you are bugging them too much. On the other hand, too little direct mail might not produce the desired impact.
So how can you skillfully navigate this course? I suggest you send it monthly during the inactive seasons. On the other hand, the high season can also be your game-changer, and it would be wise to enhance the mail sending frequency. A weekly to bi-weekly mail can suffice. As you move onto the winter months’ low selling season, you can tactfully make your messages scarcer.
6. Compose Unique and Eye-Catching Messages
More than any other marketplace, real estate is busy and flooded. Your voice can quickly get muffled if you use that standard, boring and predictable messages. You now have to stand out by how you design your postcard, flyer, or brochure.
Let the message be memorable, making people glance at your advert a second and even a third time. But standing out should not stop here. If you are erecting a poster, do so strategically for your clients to immediately see. Generally, the geographical area you target should also be a high-traffic area for this particular purpose.
7. Provide Custom Solutions for Your Clients
Each homeowner disposing of their property often has a unique need, separate from the next property owner. Their problems are different, and so should be the solutions. Hence, your real estate direct mail should reflect this, such that a brochure or postcard explicitly addresses your client’s needs. A customized mail piece coupled with a compelling CTA (Call-to-Action) can instantly prompt your prospective buyer into making a decision.
8. Do a Trial Run for Your Direct Mail Campaign
Never assume that your advert can suddenly attract the attention it needs. So, the first thing after that printout is to test the waters to see if it works. In this case, you can start with priority mail. I suggest you only proceed with the entire campaign once you get, say, a 5 % response. Anything below this figure should take you back to the drawing board for a few consultations and improvements.
9. Do Not Wait to Kickstart a Full Real Estate Direct Mail Campaign
Running the whole campaign immediately after a test campaign would be the way to go. At this point, you would have gained the confidence and reassurance that people are positively receptive to the advert. At the same time, you now have a clue about the number of emails you can send each week or month.
The info you keep gathering also helps in both the financial and logistics planning of your campaign. Any volume you keep from now onwards corresponds with the correct numbers of your prospects such that you are neither under/overwhelmed at any given time.
10. Evaluate All Campaign Outcomes
The only way you can know is if your real estate direct mail campaign successfully analyzes the results. Questions include if the results have met your initial expectations. You should also find out which demographic group or geographical area gave the best response and which segment did badly.
Again, see if your campaign has led to any sales or any positive trends towards sales. See if you also got more lead generation due to the postcard campaigns. These are just a few critical examinations, yet it is indicative about how effective the advert was. With the same analysis, you can decide on what improvement you can factor in the next design.
11. Promptly Respond to Customer Queries
An effective real estate direct mail will often have customers knocking and making inquiries. It is also something you have worked tirelessly for, and so you can never take chances with customer responses and questions. Yet again, your credibility is highly dependent on how fast you respond to all inquiries.
It is why you have to be on standby to provide valuable feedback to your prospective clients. While a standard CTA will often have complete contacts, you might still have to create a customer support system to receive and keep track of all incoming calls. Also, establish lead follow-up mechanisms to keep each potential client in the loop and close ready deals.
12. Pay Close Attention to Your Budget
As much as real estate direct mail ranks among the most affordable ways to advertise, you should still track your budget. For example, how much money can you spend before you find a client to close a deal? Also, determine the number of leads you need to have before the ultimate sale. Once you have facts and figures, you can know the approximate amounts to shelve for this type of marketing, and if it all, it is suitable for ROI.
13. Utilize Correct Spacing Techniques
Have you ever seen those postcards that seem overcrowded with messages, with no breathing space? Your real estate direct mail can be overwhelming to the reader. Of course, a typical postcard has limited space, and so the best thing would be to focus only on essential details. I suggest sticking to who you are, what you do and the CTA, or what the client can do about the message.
14. Provide Incentives to Your Clients
Even when times are tough, and all you could be hoping for is to close that single deal, a few enticements could draw the attention you need. Hence, don’t hold onto those coupons and discounts. Instead, dish them out. As for those postcards, design them to comprise freebies, and soon you could find that elusive client.
15. Remain Honest and Consistent at All Times
Most people are hesitant at the mention of real estate. Maybe they got scammed. Perhaps they got a raw deal or didn’t get the best customer support. But you can do things differently. It all starts by setting high standards and a good reputation for your brand by being reliable and honest. It would be best if you also were consistent in dealing with both existing and potential clients. By keeping your word and the lines of communication open, you become valuable.
Who Are the Perfect Candidates for Real Estate Direct Mail?
Real estate direct mail targets specific demographic groups who can boost your efforts via their responses and conversion. I would recommend you send your mail to the following recipients:
Landlords and investors
Most landlords are also absentee homeowners, ready to sell off their property. Assuming this land is an inheritance, maintaining the same can be challenging, so that the owner might want to sell it off.
Property under foreclosure
Foreclosure remains one of the most lucrative aspects of real estate. It is also easy to get info about any homes facing foreclosure. Most homeowners affected by foreclosure would do anything, including selling to avoid poor credit.
Empty rental properties
One of the reasons a rental property remains empty is because of evictions. The more they are unoccupied, the more maintenance becomes an issue, and it is why owners might want to sell.
Properties under probate
Real estate direct mail could also identify probate leads in a situation where a property owner has since died. Perhaps the family is motivated to sell it off fast to avoid repair and general maintenance issues.
Homeowners with tax issues
Local governments have been known to place a lien on properties due to nonpayment of taxes. It is why we have plenty of tax sales to settle all government back taxes. But often, a more brilliant property owner would want to sell even before a tax sale. Direct mail can be the push they need to sell. It is also easy to get hold of addresses for such properties, including a circulation newspaper or local publications.
Listings that have expired
Sometimes, properties on the market do not sell as fast, and the listing expires. You can use direct mail to relist the same property.
Real estate direct mail campaigns play a huge role in lead generation and conversions. You can also use direct mail to track results and make the necessary improvements. As one of the most affordable marketing tools, you can also save significant amounts of money and keep boosting other business areas.
However, real estate is one of those congested markets. And so, whichever marketing strategy you use, you must be innovative and miles ahead of your competitors. A great tip I often use is the lead-generating companies. They can track public records and give me the full details I need for direct mail. They will scour and provide info on probate and divorce court filings, foreclosure, and even tax delinquency for me to have the report.