Saturday, August 19, 2017

How to Stay Top of Mind All Season Long

By Julie Escobar

UPDATE: There’s just about a month left to order your football schedule cards BEFORE the first official game of the season, and time is running out on our St. Jude promotion. From now until September 15th, we’ll donate 10% of every football schedule postcard order (excluding tax and shipping charges) to the kids and families of St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

Why should you order? Legions of fans from coast to coast are gearing up for the famous battle cry – “Are you ready for some FOOTBALL?”  Even if you’re not a fan, you have to appreciate their enthusiasm-right?  You also should appreciate the excellent opportunity to get your name, contact information and offer into the hands (and on the refrigerators) of local fans in your market ALL SEASON LONG with fun, game-changing football schedule cards!

These handy handouts are an agent favorite this time of year. Why?  Because they are TIMELY and results producing – and most importantly, consumers keep them, share them and sometimes even ask for more!  They are a great way to be remembered and considered a resource.  And that is a winning combination in today’s competitive market.

AWESOME AGENT IDEA:  Love this idea from one of our customers, Michael Fraga, who shared the strategy he used: “I ordered 200 of the football magnets to place in the community, and boy was the response overwhelmingly positive. I was reached out to by phone, text, and email, thanking me for the magnet, which I’m positive went on their fridge, and needless to say, this is going to be an annual mailer! Plus, I downloaded the PDF and put it on my Real Estate Facebook page, offering to mail one to anyone who didn’t receive one and would like to be added to my mailing list. I receive 8 requests in two days, 5 of which I don’t even know, and I also had two customers ask for cards and marketing material to send me referrals from their client base!”  Awesome idea Michael!

Here are three ways agents are using these terrific football schedule postcard tools:

  1. They’re mailing them to their sphere and geographic farm area.  That keeps them top of mind with the clients and prospects that they are most focused on gaining business and referrals from.
  2. They’re ordering MAGNETIC versions of them.  Then either hand-delivering them to their sphere and farm areas or placing in envelopes with a note to their top customers.
  3. They’re using them as give-aways.  The magnetic versions of these are best – but a printed shell postcard does the trick as well for great give-aways at open houses, local coffee shops, community events and even local businesses that you’re networked in.  It’s a win-win! If you are ordering the magnet postcards use promo code SUN10M to save 10% off your order (excluding postage). 

Affordable, timely and simple-to-order, you’re certain to score big with those in your market area with these football-friendly tools!  So if you’re ready for some football – and some referrals – click here to see the wide spectrum of game-day team schedules!

REMEMBER — From now until September 15th, we will donate 10% of EVERY football series postcard order to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital!  Help us help the kids — and stay top of mind all season long! 

And if you need help with these or any of our marketing products – just call our terrific customer care team at 866.405.3638.  They’re happy to help! 

A Guest Blog About Every Door Direct Mail 

by Brian Fox. VP Business Development, Benutech

Okay, so you probably know about the value and benefit of mailing postcards via Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) by the United State Postal Service (USPS)… They are plentiful.  The postage rate for delivery is attractive (17 cents a door).  The residences are all in a close, neat geographical location.  This allows you acquire the best postage rates for your mail marketing and when it’s time to walk your farm to meet homeowners – the residences are all in a neat geographical location for easy walking and knocking.

The challenge is… How do you find the “right” EDDM Group to deliver to?  Well, that’s a bit tricky – but not only is there hope, there are real data solutions to solve this tricky challenge.

Let’s break the moves down step by step for you.   There are 4 very important steps in choosing the correct EDDM location(s) to farm and here they are:

  1. Locate EDDM Groups within a zip code or city by finding the EDDM Groups with the highest turnover rates available. In other words, the higher the ratio of homeowners that move annually, the higher the chance of finding more sellers within those areas in the future. Why?  Every real estate coach in the U.S. teaches their paying clients to find areas of “high turnover” defined as 7% turnover rate or higher.  Statistically, they have shown that finding areas where homes are selling provides agents with areas that will continue to sell at high rates.  This will help make your marketing more efficient.
  2. Once you have the EDDM Groups ranked from highest to lowest turnover rate – Locate the EDDM groups that have “Sales Price Points” that interest you. In other words, if two EDDM groups have similar turnover rates, but different home price selling points – it’s much better to sell a home that sells for $600K vs. $350K, right?
  3. Now, this is important: Compare the number of “owned homes” in the EDDM Group against what the USPS will deliver to in the same EDDM group.  Keep in mind – EDDM via USPS delivers to every resident (homeowners, apartment renters) within the EDDM group. Most agents don’t want to mail to renters – Agents mail market to find potential sellers.  So, you wouldn’t want to mail to 500 residences via EDDM if only 300 of them are “owned” properties.  If you did, you would be employing the USPS to deliver to 200 apartment renters in that EDDM Group that can’t be sellers because they are renting.   Look for EDDM Groups on the USPS Website that have a similar number of “delivery” vs. “properties owned within the EDDM group” – See the examples provided for zip code 98006 in Bellevue, a suburb of Seattle, WA.  Two EDDM Groups with similar turnover rates 7.95% and 7.84% – but the 7.84% group (Carrier Route C037) has 536 owned properties within the EDDM Group of 543 units that the USPS will deliver to. Therefore, Carrier Route C037 has a much higher “ownership deliver rate” than Carrier Route C028 – providing a better value for you as a paying customer.
  4. As a last step – look to see what the “average years owned” is for the EDDM group you select. Average home ownership rates in the 7-10 year range seem to indicate areas that folks purchase into and then sell rather quickly – possibly to upgrade to a larger home or to a home in a more desirable location – which results in higher sales rates annually.  Also, look to see what the Non-Owner occupancy rate is for the EDDM group.  Much of the time, Non-Owners will sell property more frequently than Owner Occupants, so high Non-Owner Occupancy rates could help facilitate more sales, more often.

In the example provided for Zip Code 98006 in Bellevue, WA – the perfect EDDM Group was found utilizing Benutech’s “Title Toolbox” data.  Carrier Route C037 had a high turnover rate (7.84%), it had 536 owned units within a 543 unit EDDM Group, it had one of the highest sales price points in Bellevue at $1.3M, and had an average years owned of 8.6% – indicating that this area could be an area where folks purchase and sell rather frequently. If you are farming in Bellevue, this would be the place to farm!

Okay, yes… This may seem like a lot… and it is… so just do this:  Contact ProspectsPLUS! and have them help you with this process.  They are direct mail marketing experts, and by utilizing Benutech data and their technology – they can complete these steps for you and place you in the perfect EDDM group to start your successful farming campaigns.

Oh, but please realize, you are not done once you find that perfect EDDM Group to market to! Now it’s time to make you known to the homeowners within the EDDM Group.  Let’s go back to those Real Estate Coaches… Their expensive advice is to market monthly.  You have just located the perfect farming location – so FARM it!

Step One:  Get the mail marketing pieces out to this EDDM Group once per month.  ProspectsPLUS! will help you select the perfect mail pieces.

Step two: Once the mail is out… You need to get out.  Homeowners are not going to hire you to sell their
home unless they get to KNOW YOU. It’s that simple.  Having homes in EDDM Groups allow you to easily walk and talk to the homeowners within the EDDM groups.  Don’t rely just on the mail… You are way more powerful than a postcard… Meet the folks in the EDDM Group so that they can hire you when it comes time to sell.  Seize the day, meet some folks – and take new listings!

About: Brian Fox, VP Business Development, Benutech, Inc. Benutech, Inc. is a real estate data company out of Costa Mesa, CA and is the creator of “ReboGateway” (for Real Estate Agents and Investors) and “Title Toolbox” (for Title Companies and other property related business). To contact Brian Fox:  Brian@benutech.com or 714-580-8099.

Need help choosing the right EDDM piece for you? Contact the ProspectsPLUS! customer care team at 866.405.3638 today! 

From the Master Marketing Schedule

by Julie Escobar

Build your collateral collection. Choose four or five of your favorite Content Cards, and have 25 of each shipped to you. There are more than sixty to choose from on a wide variety of consumer-friendly information. These panoramic-size postcards are perfect for helping you stand out as a resource that home sellers and buyers can turn to in your market.

Where can you use them?

  • Open houses
  • Add to your pre-listing packages
  • Collateral for buyer or seller workshop
  • Client pop-bys
  • Geo farming hand outs
  • Ask if local offices or car dealerships will let you leave some behind in waiting rooms

For any ship-to-you postcards (other than EDDM), this month use promo code AUG10SH to save 10% off your order, excluding postage.

While you’re on the site – peruse the free reports that are easily downloadable as pdfs for your site and social media content you might like to share!  Find them all here. 

Collateral tools such as free reports and content cards provide great visuals when presenting and as objection handlers. When working with consumers, often you’ll have both analytical customers as well as those who respond to visuals. The content gives you the analytic information you need, and the tangible piece gives you the visual. Both go a long way towards lending authority to you as a sales professional.

Oh — and as a reminder… As long as you’re ordering shipped-to-you material, you might want to get your hands on some Football Schedules with magnetic backs. They are a hot-ticket item this time of year, and right now they are helping us help the kids and families of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital!

From now until September 15th, we will donate 10% of EVERY football series postcard order to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital!  Help us help the kids — and stay top of mind all season long! Click the banner below to get started!st jude fb

 

Good luck this month and happy listing! We’re here if you need us. Call our marketing team at 866.405.3638 if we can assist you in any way! 

Working the Renter Niche

by Julie Escobar

When I talk to top agents, I find that most focus their business marketing in three important areas:  their sphere of influence (those people who already know them, like them, and trust them to do business with), their geographic farm (a market area or neighborhood where another agent does NOT already have more than 10-15% market share, that is in a price range that makes good business sense for commission values, and that has some market turnover), and a niche market.

One niche that gets a lot of attention is the renter market. With rents on the rise across the nation, interest rates still historically low, and housing prices not yet scaling too quickly –it’s the perfect opportunity for renters to “kiss their landlord goodbye” – as it says in one of our most popular postcards for agents working this market.

As with any marketing campaign, consistency is key. Our First Time Buyer/Renter series has eight postcards, which is perfect for a 6-8 month campaign. Here’s what you do:

  • Choose some higher end rental properties or apartment complexes in your area and capture a mailing list.
  • Pick one postcard to start your campaign, I like this week’s Master Marketing Schedule tip which is to send the Kiss Your Landlord Goodbye postcard to 100 renters in your market.
  • On the reverse side of the postcard, make an offer for an item of value such as one of our free reports.
  • After each mailing has hit, be sure to follow up either by phone call or get out in the community and start meeting the people. Is there a Starbucks or coffee shop near the rental community? Let people know you’ll be there to answer questions one morning at a specific time. You can even use the back of the postcards as an invitation!
  • Repeat this process once a month for the next six months.

Good luck! Need help? Contact our marketing team at 866.405.3638 today. 

 

The Difference Between Calm & Commission Chasing

By Julie Escobar

One of the biggest challenges for people getting into the business of real estate is the fear of NOT knowing when they will get paid.  Commission only? Are you kidding me?  While that’s a genuine concern when you’re brand new and haven’t learned the ropes yet, what’s interesting is how many people are STILL unclear about when and where their next commission will come from though they’ve been in the business for years.  The common denominator for that dilemma lies in whether they take a proactive or reactive approach to their business.

First and foremost?  You are an independent contractor, and as such you are running a business entity, so treating it as such is more than common sense – it’s a must.  Proactive agents know where their leads are coming from because they are putting systems in place to ensure that they are marketing themselves in the areas that matter most such as:

  • Their sphere of influence: Those folks that already know them, like them, trust them and would do business with them. They know that if they stay in touch monthly, contact regularly, and make these VIPs a priority, they can expect a referral, listing or sale from one in twelve each year. (Marketing methods of choice: Newsletter, Holiday Postcards, Recipe Cards, Content Cards, Annual Customer Appreciation events, and a phone call or visit at LEAST twice per year.)
  • Their geo farm: The market area they most want to dominate. Smart agents choose a neighborhood that already has some turnover, does NOT have another agent with the substantial presence or market share, and has a price point that makes sense for them to invest in marketing. (Marketing methods of choice:  Market Dominator, Just Listed/Just Sold postcards, Open Houses, Neighborhood luxury cardsUpdate/Free Offer Series and farm canvassing at least three times per year.)
  • A niche: That tribe of people or customers you most like to work with.  Maybe it’s first time home buyers, or seniors, or medical professionals, or boaters. Whatever group you feel connected with – make yourself known as the go-to agent.  (Marketing Methods of choice, Newsletters, Lifestyle Interest Postcards and attending or sponsoring events specifically targeted to that niche.)
  • Lead generation: Continuously casting new nets for new business as well as constant prospecting the three segments above. (Marketing Methods of choice: Reaching out to local businesses for networking and referrals, partnering with local PTAs and sporting teams, using Every Door Direct Mail to market to blanket a new carrier route, Listing Inventory postcards.)

These agents aren’t shy about sharing their success rates either.  They use social media wisely, are active and visible in the communities they service and they broadcast their results via Just Listed/Just Sold postcards and online announcements.  Examples: Sold in TWO days!  Was on the market with another agent for six months. Now sold in just one week!

Reactive agents? Pretty much none of the above. They spend the bulk of their time working with buyers and usually only actively seek a new listing once the one or two they have in inventory sell.  I love what Darryl Davis shared in his last article with us.  “It’s no longer listings are the name of the game – it’s listing INVENTORY is the name of the game.”  He compares it to owning a shoe store and having no shoes left to sell.

Bottom line: When you are reactionary, as in, “I have no income coming in – let me go take a listing now,” your life is stressful. You worry about providing for yourself and your family.  You aren’t sure if you need to go “get a real job”.

When you are proactive, you make marketing and prospecting part of your daily routine.  You KNOW your numbers.  “I need to speak with X number of people each day to get X amount of appointments, to do X number of listings, X amount of sales, and X number of closings.”  You use time blocking to prioritize your time and activity. You use systems to automate your marketing or simplify the processes.

If you’re a brand new agent or are an agent that needs less stress, more business and are ready to get to the next level in your career – kick that reactive stuff to the curb and jump in with a proactive plan to build your business.

Need help working with your sphere, farm or niche? We’ve got everything you need to succeed at www.prospectsplus.com or call our team at 866.405.3638.