Saturday, May 27, 2017

Is EDDM is Right for You?

By Julie Escobar

Our webinar last month showed us just how eager agents are to really understand what Every Door Direct Mail is – and what it isn’t so they can best determine whether they should make it part of their overall marketing strategy for the year ahead.  There’s no doubt there are lots of confusion out there but for the people who have figured it out…it’s become an essential element in their marketing.

Here are some do’s & don’ts to get you started:

Do – Take your time.  Carefully choosing your carrier routes is usually the first place people find themselves in trouble? Why?  Snap decisions and not enough investigation won’t get you the exposure or the results that you’re looking for.

Do – Get some advice.  Loved our customer Maggie Dokic’s tossed her tip into the contest ring this week on our Facebook page (if you haven’t entered to win the iPad Mini – click here now!) about EDDM.  She shared, The best tip I can give anyone wanting to maximize their marketing dollars is to use Every Door Direct Mail. For the same cost as traditional mail, you get to hit THREE times the household! I was able to bump up my mailings from roughly 300 pieces up to 1,000 by using EDDM instead of a mailing list. I sat down and picked out my routes. I even chose routes to add to those initial ones once I start seeing results (I want to reinvest as soon as I can!). I started out with 1,002 households for a mailing cost of about $146 plus the postcards and have my plan in place to add carrier routes systematically, until I am touching roughly 12,000 households in my chosen area. Yes, we know consumers are online and we have all that covered. But they also get their mail daily and we want them to see us there too. ProspectsPLUS! and EDDM both ROCK!”  (Thanks Maggie!)

Our team of marketing experts are happy to help walk you through how to best match your carrier route choices to your marketing goals and budget.  You can reach them at 866.405.3638.  They’re happy to help answer any of your questions.

Do – Decide what you want to accomplish before creating your message.  Most EDDM-GAWIENCZUK-FRONTagents are using Every Door Direct as a tool to either market a particular listing (usually a higher end property) or saturate a market to establish themselves as the neighborhood specialist.  Your marketing goals are the key to making sure your creative works the way you want it to.  For luxury properties, a dynamite flyer or full color brochure spotlighting the property and your successes is terrific.  As the neighborhood specialist, many agents are EDDM-ARMSTRONG-FRONTchoosing to use done for you newsletters once a month or once a quarter with terrific success.  Here are a few samples of what agents have been sending out recently that’s working.  Again, call our team at 866.405.3638 and they’ll be happy to share with you what you need to consider when choosing the right marketing piece for your area.

Don’t – try to match carrier routes before really analyzing what you want to accomplish.  Just like any marketing tool – EDDM works when it’s done CONSISTENTLY.  So choose a route that is not only manageable budget wise for more than one mailing, but also an area where you’d really like to make an impact.

 

Don’t have your message or mail piece try to be all things to all people.  Yes, you’ll get in EVERY door – but that doesn’t mean you want every person in that area.  Trying to create a marketing piece that is everything in one – newsletter, bio, feature flyer and the works will be too busy to make the right statement or get results.  We’ve got some great templates that can help you get going in the right direction and our team can help guide you in your choices.

Don’t – Just send one mailing.  As with ANY marketing, be it direct mail, phone calls or email – once just doesn’t cut it.  It takes at least three times for people to really start to notice your name.  Consistency is key.  So carefully weigh out your budget for ALL of your marketing for at least the first quarter and create a strategy where all your marketing efforts are fueling each other and you’re getting the most from your money by consistently branding yourself in an area.

We’ve got you covered!  If you missed the recent webinar – you can review it by clicking here.  If you have questions or would like some guidance in setting up your own Every Door Direct campaign, call our office at 866.405.3638 today.

Oh and if you haven’t heard about our contest to win an iPad Mini yet – click here to get the details and Follow Us on Facebook!

EDDM® Webinar on Demand with Julie Escobar and Ramona Williams

What a wonderful audience we had this week on our webinar!  With important questions coming in from all around North America and a first hand look at how to choose the carrier routes that are right for you, the real costs involved and who should and shouldn’t really be using Every Door Direct in their marketing — we covered a lot of bases in our time together.

We recorded it on demand for you to share with your team or colleagues.  Watch it here:
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To learn more about this valuable service – call our team at 866.405.3638 today or visit our site at www.prospectsplus.com/eddm2.

A Powerful Interview with Talented Agent Maggie Dokic

By Julie Escobar

I love success stories don’t you? Especially when they spotlight someone who was brave enough to take calculated risks, savvy enough to look to new strategies, and generous enough to share what is working in a challenging market. One of our clients Maggie Dokic is just that kind of agent and I appreciated the opportunity to have her share her story with us!

If you’re an agent who has struggled (or still struggles) to find your footing in today’s market –you’ll appreciate this insightful interview.

Q: Maggie – when we first connected you were just really getting started and realizing what a tough road it can sometimes be in this business and now you’re gaining traction! How exciting. Can you tell me a little bit about that and what you think you’re doing differently that others can learn from?

A: I’m not out of the woods yet Julie. I’m not ashamed to say I had a couple of really tough years. But it’s exciting to know that I can see the light and am headed in the right direction. I never gave up and there’s a sense of satisfaction that comes from that. As for what I’m doing differently, I started reigning in my enthusiasm for chasing everything that glitters and got back to basics. I have a hard time with that. Every email that gets past my spam blockers seems to garner ‘ooohs and aaahs’ from me as THE answer to all my real estate woes. Instead, I put my focus back on where it belongs. Basics like knowing our market, time blocking, tracking our numbers, reaching out to our sphere and growing it (love this one!), having systems in place, generating business so we can count on regular closings. This isn’t rocket science and we oftentimes get in our own way. I am still a technology fan girl and do allow myself the time to research new things when I hear a buzz. But I have to limit myself to only certain times and they’re on my schedule. Otherwise I’d be on Facebook too long to get any work done. They don’t call it social media for nothing.

Q: I love that you’re thinking outside the box and that you’ve just tried Every Door Direct Mail™ for the first time – what made you make that decision?

A: Well as they say Julie, “Mama didn’t raise no fool!” The cost of EDDM made me realize I’d BE a fool for not trying it. Knowing that I could reach about three times the number of people for the same cost was a no brainer. We mailed to 1,002 homes last month and are preparing our 2nd mailing right now. The very next day after the mailers were delivered I received my first call from a homeowner considering selling. We took that as an omen that EDDM will work for us. We are mailing high quality pieces that stand out and set us apart from the rest. We’re also targeting a specific market and making sure our market knowledge is reflected in our mailings. We’re committed to mailing for a year so those home owners get to know us and our brand. Also in our plans is to grow our reach so we’re in 6,000 mailboxes by the 12th mailing.

Q: That’s awesome! And one of the calls you got was for a TOP DOLLAR Listing too you said! Congratulations! You’ve recently formed a team – how has that made an impact on your business?

A: I always knew I wanted a team. Keller Williams supports that so it was a natural for me to pursue it when I came to KW a year ago. I have to explain that my “team” is still in its infancy. It’s me, an assistant, a virtual assistant, plus buyer agents who are not on my team but I refer business to. It’s working for me right now as it helps me to leverage my time. I want to focus on listings. If I’m doing everything I can’t focus on anything. The goal is to hire a buyer agent as soon as the numbers allow. It all starts with the vision. I created my logo and started branding my team before it even existed. And anyone who has a broker, an office receptionist, and office staff can do the same. They are your team. Start thinking of it that way and the next step is a natural one.

Q: Great advice Maggie – and you’re absolutely right to have the mindset to look at your business AS a business and treat it as such! As a ProspectsPLUS! software user, we’ve often talked about how you like the wide spectrum of marketing tools it offers. As we begin to move our newer pieces online for more functionality and flexibility – do you think that’s something that will make it even easier for your team to use?

A: Heck yes! We love our ProspectsPLUS! software! Every time I open up one of your pieces, I am awed again by what a marketing genius you are! There are a gazillion systems in Prospects Plus and that actually makes it difficult the first time you use it because you want to use all of it but of course have to start with just one. OK, so I exaggerated about the gazillion, but it sure seems like it. So once you get past the fact that you have to limit your attention to one piece and how you’re going to use it, the rest is easy. Seriously, your marketing pieces are so well written that just making a list of the ones you want to use and then chipping away at that list is a great strategy for any real estate professional. And having them available online eventually will simply be icing on the cake.

Q: It’s great to see your spark when you talk about building your business and celebrating your client base. What advice would you give to other agents who are either just starting out or even RE-starting in this business?

A: First, focus on one thing at a time. People multi-tasking and being efficient is a myth. It’s been proven that we get a lot more done and do it better, when we’re not tasked with doing more than one thing at once. Second, don’t be a secret agent. This is Real Estate 101. Reach out to those who know you and like you, and let them know you’re in the business (or remind them you’re still in the business). People want to use someone knowledgeable when they hire anyone, yes. But all things being equal, they prefer to work with someone they know, like and trust and that’s where you gain the upper hand. Make sure your contacts know you are there for them. And be genuine in your approach. In my day to day routine, I enjoy nothing more than the hand written note cards with genuine sentiments and the phone calls made without having to beat them over the head for a referral. The monthly mailings remind them I’m in real estate. My phone calls, texts, Facebook posts and note cards are short, sweet, not about real estate and appreciated. When it’s time for their neighbor to put their home on the market I know they will remember I’m the real estate professional for them. And last, use Evernote. It really is all that and a side of fries. I can go on and on about this wonder app so I will just stop now.

Maggie – thank you so much for sharing your experience and top tips with us. You are an inspiration to agents just like you across North America. I still remember when you first got your software walking you through strategies and solutions and I’m thrilled that things are turning out in your favor and I wish you tremendous success in the future!

If you’d like to get a copy of our ProspectsPLUS! software to kick start your OWN production – click here!  Because we have begun to migrate our product online, we’ve just recently dropped the cost on this powerful tool that includes more than 600+ marketing pieces including postcards, brochures, free reports, flyers, feature property marketing tools, lead generators, presentation tools and so much more to an unbelievably low price of $195. 

If you’d like to, like Maggie, also learn more about the power of Every Door done for you real estate newsletters Direct Mail marketing – click here to see just how easy and affordable it can be. 

To follow Maggie find her on Facebook here and follow her blog as well!  While you’re online look us up too on Facebook and Twitter and even now on Pinterest!

 

 

ProspectsPLUS.com kicks off a new series of football postcards to help 
REALTORS® get into the marketing game by mailing team schedules to the legions of fans nationwide gearing up to answer the call, “Are you ready for some football?”

This simple web-to-print platform allows agents to choose their team, upload their list and within just minutes place their order.  This year’s postcards are ready to score big for agents with the ability to send just one postcard or to an entire database quickly. These full-color cards are printed, addressed, finished and mailed first class within 48 hours, to make staying ‘top-of-mind’ all season fast, effective and affordable!

Agents who need a targeted, geographic list for their mailings will find that option available as well on the company’s website www.prospectsplus.com/data. With just a few quick clicks of the mouse and a few moments of time, agents can customize a specialized mailing list with the variables and demographics that best work for them!  “With football season on the way, we wanted to be sure our clients had the opportunity to be first in the door for their prospects with this seasonal favorite.” says Julie Escobar, Director of Corporate Marketing for the group.

“Our football postcards are just another way we stay forward of our goal for ProspectsPLUS! which is to offer innovative solutions each month to help agents stay in touch with their sphere of influence and geographic farm areas,” continued Escobar. Agents can access the football series today by visiting www.prospectsplus.com/football.  For the non-sports fans in the crowd, www.prospectsplus.com offers a wide variety of postcard options such as Inspiration, Recipes, Holiday Series, Animal Series and even Recruiting postcards for the brokers in the crowd.  You can also find quick to order cards for Price Reductions, Open Houses, Contract Pendings and more!  he site also boasts a wide spectrum of FREE resources that can help agents effectively brand themselves and build their book of business in today’s market such as Free Consumer Reports, Webinars-on-Demand, the BusinessBASE™ system and more.

ProspectsPLUS! is even throwing in a pre-season bonus!  Order your postcards before August 30th and save 15% – use the PROMO CODE:  FOOTBALL — Enjoy the season!

Need more marketing ideas?  Stay in touch with us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/prospectsplus

Savvy Agents Choose the Right Continuity Program for Their Market

By Julie Escobar

One thing is a certainly a constant in our world – and that is that people are creatures of HABIT.  They want predictability, comfortable decisions and easy choices – especially when it comes to who they CHOOSE to do business with.  And with a market where competition is fierce and marketing dollars tightened, savvy agents are making smart choices of their own in terms of the continuity systems and tools they are using to engage their sphere of influence or geographic farm consistently, month-after-month.

Top-of-mind awareness doesn’t just happen-right?  (Wouldn’t THAT be fantastic?)  Instead, it’s something we have to work at.  But the truth is, top salespeople know that to make the most of their talents and skills and earn top dollar – they should be doing what THEY do BEST – listing and selling homes.  Getting face-to-face and voice-to-voice with buyers and sellers.  NOT necessarily writing and designing mailers, schlepping down to the post office themselves.  But the marketing HAS to be done.  The brand awareness has to be built and the influence has to be developed and earned in that sphere.

Why?  Statistics show that 90% of real estate buyers and sellers come from the following:

  • 48% choose someone they already know (the relationship has been built)
  • 24% choose an agent based on a referral or word of mouth
  • 12% from a listing call or for sale sign
  • 6% from open houses

So if you’re NOT building that relationship – you will be battling it out with the other agents for that leftover 10%.  (And that’s just no fun – and low rewards!)  So let’s look at a system that’s easy, manageable, doesn’t take a boatload of your time and gets your sphere or farm engaged – what do you say?

ProspectsPLUS! has been a leader in helping agents serve up the right messages to their right market segments at the right time – and that includes writing some of the best-read newsletters in the industry.   And this year – we’ve taken our newsletters and put them online so that agents just like you can, in just a matter of minutes, use these powerful continuity tools to stay in touch CONSISTENTLY with that VERY IMPORTANT 90%!

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F8K1JMHMJSk]

What makes our newsletters the tool of choice for so many agents?

  • They’re done for you.  While every newsletter is COMPLETELY EDITABLE – in other words – you can change anything you want in terms of copy.  You can add your own spin, market statistics, personal note or invoke your own personality but when time is of the essence and you just want to get it checked off the list – you’ve got a template that’s ready-made with everything you need to capture your customer’s attention.
  • They’re compelling.  We put in the time, effort, energy and RESEARCH to create newsletters that get READ.  Interesting headlines.  Topics that are timely.  Articles that enter the conversations going on in the minds and households of consumers today.  Fun facts people can share with friends or online in the social media platforms.  News they need to know.
  • They’re DIRECT RESPONSE.  Meaning all throughout the newsletters, you’re giving customers or potential customers persuasive reasons to contact YOU.  They offer items of VALUE.  Engage them with smart questions that invite people to call you for answers.
  • Space for sponsorship.  Many agents use the ‘editorial’ section on page two of their newsletters to feature a sponsor such as a title rep, mortgage lender or real estate attorney.  This allows them to spotlight a trusted resource – and either share in the cost of the monthly newsletter – or in many cases- get them paid for completely by the sponsor.  That’s a win-win-win for everyone.  The sponsor gets recognition and builds a relationship with a trusted REALTOR, the agent gets their marketing paid for and has the ability to CONSISTENTLY reach out to the sphere or farm and the consumers get information that’s engaging, timely and of interest!
  • They’re AFFORDABLE.  You’ll find all of ProspectsPLUS! tools and solutions always competitively priced and newsletters are no exception.  Sign up for your FREE account online and you can preview our pricing matrix based on quantity and shipping options.  Just visit newsletters.prospectsplus.com today.
  • They’re EASY.  Who has time for frustration in today’s world?  Once you’ve created an account, added your personal information and photos – the rest is a piece of cake.  With all the content already done for you – it couldn’t be simpler.  And if you’d like a helpful hand to walk you through the process or help you decide – contact our team at 866.405.3638 today. They’re always eager to assist!

If you’re in the market for a continuity program that makes your job easier, your production and market share INCREASE and that’s easy on your budget – check out newsletters.prospectsplus.com today.    We’ve even added a step-by-step video for you so you can see for yourself how easy it is!

Happy marketing and remember – we’re here if you need us!  Just call our team today at 866.405.3638.