According to the National Association of Realtors, “Effectively reaching your customers and prospecting clients is essential for a real estate career. To succeed, ensure your direct mail campaign competes against the mailers of top-producing agents and delivers an effective, targeted message.”
Direct marketing in real estate is incredibly important as people are inundated with more digital campaigns than ever. The term direct marketing refers to physical marketing material, often taking form as a postcard, flyer, or newsletter that is delivered directly to the prospective client.
While the belief exists that marketing has shifted to other media types like text messaging, digital ads, and email, print direct marketing is still very much alive and thriving. While we know that many leads need multiple touches to be effective, a direct marketing campaign can be a great source to touch base and stay relevant in your potential client’s mind.
Direct marketing shows an increase in response rate around the fourth or fifth touch — so much like other campaigns, it does require a campaign to be truly effective. Direct mail marketing in real estate is a real and rewarding option for communicating with future buyers and sellers!
Because of the ability to target a specific geographical location, the ability to automate the process, and have direct mail sequences, real estate direct mail marketing is an amazing tool to utilize today.
How to Improve Your Real Estate Direct Marketing Efforts
There are several ways that you can improve your efficiency of direct mail marketing in real estate. Here are a few tips to consider as you develop your campaign:
- Focus on prospects in specific local geographies.
This will ensure that your ROI is appropriate for your marketing investment. Additionally, the geography you select should have an appropriate level of potential with a turnover rate of at least 5 percent. You want to see that people are buying and selling in the neighborhoods you market to.
- Make your content relevant to a specific area.
If you have a general message that doesn’t apply to everyone, you are wasting your direct mail efforts as they will not resonate with the people you are mailing.
- Send visually appealing content.
The age-old saying that a picture speaks a thousand words is incredibly true. You want to provide something engaging enough to ruminate over for days or weeks.
- Consider automating your drip campaign to nurture prospects over a long period of time.
Buying and selling a home isn’t something that happens all the time. Your goal should be to stay top of mind when prospective clients are ready to buy or sell!
- Create an irresistible offer that is paired with a sense of urgency.
Perhaps you are showcasing a property that you recently sold in their area that sold for at or above the market price. Share with them that now is the time to consider selling while the market is favorable and competitive in that area. Create a quick and easy call to action with what they can do to get started as well.
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Create Your Direct Marketing Plan for Real Estate
To get started, you should create a direct marketing plan for your real estate endeavors. This plan should take into consideration frequency, cost, message, method of contact, and value to the prospective client.
Frequency is incredibly important. As discussed, it will take four to five direct mail touches to begin to see results with direct marketing. Whether postcards, flyers, etc — you should make sure to have a consistent plan of delivery that keeps you on the top of mind. The optimal frequency is every few weeks, with consistent messaging ongoing to keep you at the top of mind for all real estate needs that arise.
Because of frequency, you should also consider the cost involved with direct mail marketing in real estate. Knowing that one postcard isn’t going to cut it, you have to consider the cost of repetitive mailings. That means design, printing, and postage costs. If you are a new agent, cost can be a big factor.
The message you share is critical in determining the response rate you receive. Are you targeting potential sellers or buyers? Will you share recently sold properties in the neighborhood or a message about inventory being low and needing additional houses in their area?
This ties directly with the method of contact. If you are sharing a postcard with a few pictures of local properties, it’s likely going to catch their eye as it is directly relatable to them. Perhaps they drive by the house you’ve included every day. If you are using a flyer, it might give you the ability to add a few additional properties to the lineup.
Finally, consider the value to your prospective client. Are they going to learn about local houses in their market and learn about their own home value as a result? Will they find value in seeing marketing materials that are based on their own piece of the world? There are many ways that you can take the message of a direct mail marketing tool and make it relevant to a homeowner or potential buyer.
What Is the Ideal Direct Marketing Plan for Real Estate Agents?
An ideal real estate direct marketing plan begins with identifying key geographical locations that have an appropriate level of saturation – that is, people buying and selling homes in it. Once identified, you should configure a drip campaign with a varied frequency and messaging campaign. You want to include messaging that is relevant and useful, along with imaging that is compelling to potential clients.
The Small Business Administration encourages businesses to use direct mail because of its effectiveness in staying on customers’ minds longer than an email or digital ad. This is because direct mail more effectively creates an emotional impact than digital materials and commands a heavier influence on consumer decision-making.
A great message to share with real estate direct mail postcards is the number and diversity of sales you’ve achieved for other clients in the area that are at, or above, market value. Showing that you can command a significant return can catch the eye of other homeowners in the area who might capitalize on a strong market return.
There are key times during the year that direct mail marketing tends to be more efficient. This generally spikes in June through July, with a lull during the holiday months from December through February. Emphasizing your most important mailings at the right time can increase your response rates.
Start Direct Marketing Today with Tom Ferry
In real estate direct mail marketing, the key is in long-term relationship building. By investing in real estate direct mail, you can reach your prospective clients in a variety of different ways that will cause you to always be at the top of mind for their real estate needs.
Leverage your messaging, the time of the year you are sending your direct mailers, and create a sense of urgency that resounds with your potential clients. As is the case with any marketing campaign, tracking the success of your marketing efforts is essential. If you don’t see the results you desired, you can review your message, means of communication, and overall effectiveness of direct mailings in that specific geographical area. But remember, real estate direct marketing is a “long run” approach. One of the biggest mistakes agents make is pulling the plug too quickly, not giving their direct marketing campaign a legitimate shot at success.
At Tom Ferry, we’ve created a number of free resources and tools available for free download. One is the Million Dollar Strategies, which outlines some best practices and ways to attract, win, and close on amazing deals. If you find yourself in a situation where you’re at a loss with how to begin a direct mail marketing campaign, we have a team of experienced coaches that can guide you through developing a drip campaign.
Experienced coaches will listen to your ideas and current strategies and then provide you with insight on how to proceed and make the most of your marketing efforts. Because of the natural cost associated with direct mailings, you’ll want to make sure that your marketing campaign reaches as many prospective clients as efficiently as possible. Sign up for a free phone consultation today.