Friday, December 15, 2017

Attention All Shoppers! 

This year we wanted to go all out with BIG holiday savings now through Cyber Monday (December 1st) at Midnight!  Order any Holiday Postcard or Holiday Photocard between now and Monday and take 50% off your order (excluding postage)!  Just use the promo codes below to get started!

There are LOTS of styles and sizes to choose from – and plenty of time to get yours out so you are one of the first to greet your sphere or farm this holiday season! Please do remember though, Standard Class options of postcards do take 2-3 weeks for the post office to deliver.

pp photo card

pp christmas new year

Use these PROMO CODES to save 50% on YOUR order!

Photocards

PHOTO50- to take 50% off any standard-size postcard order (excluding postage)
PHOTO50J – to take 50% off any jumbo-sized first-class postcard order (excluding postage)
PHOTO50S – to take 50% off any standard-size postcard order, shipped to you
PHOTO50JS – to take 50% off any jumbo-sized postcard (standard class mail, excluding postage)
PHOTO50PSS – to take 50% off any jumbo-sized postcard order, shipped to you
PHOTO50P – to take 50% off all panoramic postcards mailed first class (excluding postage)
PHOTO50PS- to take 50% off all panoramic postcards mailed standard class (excluding postage)

Holiday postcards

HOLIDAY50- to take 50% off any standard-size postcard order (excluding postage)
HOLIDAY50J – to take 50% off any jumbo-sized first-class postcard order (excluding postage)
HOLIDAY50S – to take 50% off any standard-size postcard order, shipped to you
HOLIDAY50JS – to take 50% off any jumbo-sized postcard (standard class mail, excluding postage)
HOLIDAY50PSS – to take 50% off any jumbo-sized postcard order, shipped to you
HOLIDAY50P – to take 50% off all panoramic postcards mailed first class (excluding postage)
HOLIDAY50PS- to take 50% off all panoramic postcards mailed standard class (excluding postage)

Get started now, choose any Holiday Postcard or Holiday Photocard between now and Monday and take 50% off your order (excluding postage)!  Need help?  Call our team 866.405.3638 today!  Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving and an amazing holiday season! 

8 Ways to Mix Your Message Mediums to Attract More Business

Mixed messages

By Julie Escobar

How Shaking Up Your Marketing Helps Open New Doors

by Julie Escobar

While coaches, experts, trainers, top agents, and our own marketing team will all tell you that CONSISTENCY in your message is KEY to staying top of mind and a consistent pipeline of referrals – most will also share that is not only fine to mix up the mediums – it’s a smart strategy for success.  Why?  Because let’s face it – we’re all DIFFERENT.  (Which is a good thing!  Makes life WAY less boring – don’t you think?)

So because we’re all different – the way we view, absorb and react to marketing messages is different too.  Using email, direct mail, social media, video, audio, visuals, phone calls, personal visits and everything in between will help you reach the folks in your sphere or farm in the ways that make the most sense for them.

First let’s start with the obvious—NAR tells us that more than 90% of home buyers and sellers START their search for their new home or REALTOR online, which is great news for you if you’re busily building an online presence…right? There’s just a little hitch — according to a study of Broker Website Effectiveness conducted by the WAV Group 69% of visitors to broker websites type the address directly into the browser, 20% use search engine – but with keywords such as agent or brokerage name, which means that more than 85% of all traffic to the brokers’ websites were coming from people who ALREADY knew them. This is good in terms of retention of customers – but not so good news in terms of driving NEW eyes to your website, blog or social media channels.

So if NEW traffic’s your goal, then you’ve got to find some ways to get consumers in YOUR MARKET who are looking for information about buying or selling a house and they start to type something into that search bar….They know YOUR NAME & Company name!

1. Make direct mail your friend. Don’t start yelling at me and saying direct mail is dead – before you consider a few facts. According to a survey conducted by the Direct Marketing Association nearly 70% of consumers prefer to receive announcements and information from companies they are familiar with via conventional mail, versus less than 20% who prefer e-mail pitches.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of email marketing, but I have agents asking me week after week – “How do I get email addresses?” And that’s where I believe direct mail postcards can really compliment an agent’s marketing plan. They’re affordable, fast, don’t have to be opened first, quick to make an impression and done right – a great way to brand yourself, get your name TOP OF MIND for area consumers and drive people looking for real estate answers or information – Straight to your website!

We even developed a great line of postcards to help you develop a social media following! So on the webwhether you’re posting, pinning, blogging, tweeting, linking, or a combo platter – we’ve got you covered – they’re called our On-the-Web postcards and they’re really helping drive traffic to your social media sites.
Check them out: On the Web Templates!

Need help finding addresses to mail to?  Check out our MapMyMail feature.  It allows you to identify addresses in the geo farms where you’re looking to brand yourself.

And now with the addition of Every Door Direct Mail – you can send larger pieces like newsletters and flyers for a fraction of the cost (and make sure you are literally getting in EVERY door.)  This is great news – especially if you’re marketing luxury homes and you want to saturate a high end market with larger Just Listed/Just Sold brochures.  In fact our Dominator System is really taking things to an even higher level – it allows you to send a 12 x 15 poster-size piece with done-for-you, direct response content for $1 (or less) a piece!  Learn more…

And one of the BEST things you can do in today’s market is to share your STATS.  Let people know what you are listing and selling.  Here’s a great way to showcase your success stories…

2. Next, add QR codes to all of your printed materials. Postcards, business cards, flyers – even sign riders! Point those QR (Quick Response) codes to your Facebook Fanpage, your lead capture forms on your website, your single property websites or just about anywhere on the web you want to drive new customer attention.  I’ve even seen them on car magnets!

Here are a couple of QR Code Generators for you to try:
http://delivr.com/qr-code-generator
http://www.beqrious.com/generator (love the name of that one!)

If you don’t like either of those just Google “QR Code Generator” and you’ll find a bunch! I’d look for ones that have analytics attached so that you can track your results.

3. Add your social media addresses to everything just like your QR codes! Your business cards, email signatures, newsletters, printed materials, websites, blogs, the works. Make sure everything has got all the myriad of ways people can find you (and create some great backlinks for your different sites at the same time!) And please don’t make the mistake that I see many businesses make where they simply say “follow us on Facebook” – you have to go the extra step. Tell them HOW! For example – Follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/prospectsplus. (A shameless plug – but a good example!) I see business signs, cards, brochures etc. that just have the icons for social media and blogs but not the actual address. Make it EASY for folks to find you!

4. Join the online conversation. Don’t expect immediate results, but also don’t discount the power of the internet to help establish and fuel new relationships. I was just on a webinar with an agent who is terrifically engaged in social media and can attribute THIRTY SIX referrals in the last year to her online networking.  36!  With a commission value of over $1 million.  Talk about what’s going on in your market, but don’t make your social media posts all about you or all about real estate. If you’ve got a niche your passionate about-talk, post or tweet about that! Let your personality shine.  Connect with agents from all over the world.  ENGAGE them honestly with the VISION you have for your life and your business.  Like attracts like.  Ask questions. Invite the neighbors in your farm area to join a neighborhood fan page where you’ll help to keep them posted on all things that pertain to their area. Like to work with seniors? Blog or post about the things that interest them. First time home buyers your gig? Make sure you include information on how to save for a down payment, how to protect their interests, etc.  School events coming up?  Neighborhood changes?  Thank agents for referrals in big ways.  You’ll be surprised at the connections you can make.

Another great strategy is to interview area business owners. If you’re tweeting or facebooking about them, there’s a good chance they’ll do the same for you! Ask an area roofer how what are the signs of a roof that needs to be replaced. Ask a plumber about winter pipe maintenance. Ask a local restaurateur about new menu items and promotions they might be having. Start conversing and connecting! Ask a local pediatrician about school vaccinations or seasonal allergies.  Ask a new shop owner what brings them to the area.  (You get the idea!)

5. Offer items of value on your website or blog. A great way to capture email addresses is to offer free reports and value items to your website in exchange for email addresses. People are information hungry these days and if you can satisfy that hunger with the right collateral pieces- they’ll share their contact information and their loyalty! We’ve got lots of free reports and handy tools that you can download for free – find them here: ProspectsPLUS.com Resource Page

6.  Event marketing.  People are thirsty for information – invite them to learn what you know by hosting workshops in your market on popular topics such as First Time Home Buying, Real Estate Investing, Real Estate and Today’s Seniors, What You Need to Know About Short Sales and Foreclosures.  PTAs and PTSA’s are always on the look out for local professionals that can speak for 15-20 minutes or more at their meetings to draw more attendance, libraries are another great place to host meetings, or talk to some of the HOAs in your area about community meetings that you can take part in.  All great ways to reach out to folks in your area.  Here is a link to some handy workshop invites!

7.  eMail is still viable:  eMail is tough in a lot of ways – spam blockers and just a saturation of inbox items can make it hard to get seen from the rest – but it is a good way to just touch base with your sphere – especially if there is something new in the market to talk about.  Stay in tuned with what’s going on in your area so that you have little sound bites to share with people for that kind of hyper-local touch that’s so important.  Things like school events, neighborhood block parties, community garage sales, new business openings, special offers and items of interest that people are happy to learn about and grateful to have a resource to remind them!

8.  Stop being camera shy.  Awesome GoPro and iPhone videos are becoming more and more a powerful marketing tool for agents who are stepping in front of the camera to share everything from market information tidbits to house tours to great news sound bites and featuring local businesses. They spotlight community attributes, share valuable content, are a great way to get seen, heard AND build SEO-friendly websites!  Be sure to have links to all of them on your website, drive people to your YouTube account and break out your inner movie star!  (Go ahead – it’s fun!)

So start mixing and matching and building both your email database as well as your book of business database so that you can whether whatever market storm comes your way. Good luck and remember we’re here when you need us!  Call our team at 866.405.3638 or visit www.prospectsplus.com/specials  if you need help with mastering any of your marketing needs or implementing any of the direct mail solutions we’ve spotlighted here!  
Google

Why Consumer Information Can Be Key in Direct Response Marketing

By Julie Escobar

Do you know one of the biggest reasons why so many real estate agents LEFT the business when
the going got tough?  And what was a key component in helping those that stayed in succeed, even thrive?  A database.  A strong, reliable, well-nurtured, up-to-date database.

The best ones start with a solid sphere of influence, and grow exponentially over years in the soi calculatorbusiness.  Adding niche markets, new geographic farms and new customers.  And what do the agents get in return?  A referral base they can count on without having to constantly chase new business.

Start with your sphere.  (Those people who know you, like you, and would trust you to do business with them.) And build from there.  If you don’t already have your sphere of influence or book of business in a solid database – don’t waste another month putting that together.  (There are plenty of college kids who could use the extra money inputting data for you this summer!)  Top agents tell us that 66% of their business comes from their sphere.  And that one in every twelve result in a transaction per year.

We can help you calculate how many people should be in your sphere to realize your goals – and help you identify top 150 people who should be in your sphere right now.  Click here to calculate your SOI.

Next add a geographic farm and a niche.  We can help you with that data as well.  Continue marketing to those folks until you connect and build a relationship with them as well.  Click here to see data options.

Then continue to grow your book of business – and your bottom line by taking care of the 20 Year Value of a Real Estate Customerfoundation of your business – your database of clients and customers.  Create touch points every 28-45 days using a multi-media method.  Send postcards or powerful newsletters for an easy touch once a month. Add email, face-to-face events, phone calls, and neighborhood canvassing.  And stick with it! Remember – most agents quit after the SECOND try, most transactions happen after the FIFTH.

As an organization that has developed top-of-the-line marketing tools for real estate agents for more than 20 years, we know the true value of a customer for all of our customers.  That’s why in terms of products, services and data—we leave nothing to chance.

And that’s why we’ve done the research – and we deliver the very best data resources — Experian® — for those agents eager to market to:

Renters – including high-income renters who are candidates for home ownership. On our site, we use Experian® data to make it possible for agents to search by data selects such as renter, and income level.

Move-Up Market:  Not only can you select confirmed home owners, but you also can define your target market more specifically by considering a real estate lead’s estimated available equity or property characteristics such as year built and presence of a swimming pool.

• Potential Downsizing or Second Home Market:  One real estate trend is Baby boomers who are downsizing or investing in second homes right now. To target baby boomers, you can use the year of birth demographic selection available in our consumer database to narrow your pool of real estate leads to those born between 1946 and 1964.

• Potential Investors:  Targeting high-income earners as investors.

• Generational Niche Markets:  Target specific generational niches such as:generations

  • Silent Generation (1925-1945)
  • Baby Boomers (1946-1964)
  • Generation  X (1964-1976)
  • Generation Y (1976-2000)

How does Experian® get their data?  They are an original source compiler, which means they collect data directly from more than 3,500 original public and proprietary sources, including:

  • White pages
  • Census data
  • State and local public records
  • Product registrations and surveys (self-reported)
  • Property/Realty records such as property deeds
  • Mail-order transactions
  • Other proprietary sources

The data we receive is then tested and validated. It is cleansed and combined using Experian’s proprietary logic to create the most accurate and comprehensive repository of consumer marketing information available. This process sets them apart from other data suppliers who typically rely on secondary data sources. Since they acquire data directly from the original source, they have in-depth knowledge of the data.

So every time you choose to use our list service, whether you are choosing from data selects such as income and age, or even geographic – to market around current listings, know that you are getting the very best data on the market.  And those lists are yours to keep.  We tell our customers to add them to their marketing list and stay in touch, at least once every 28-45 days (a Direct Marketing Association recommendation).  Before long you’ll have taken those contacts from being a potential lead – to a contact that has come to know you as the brand name to call in real estate.

Need help understanding data and lists?  Call our marketing team today at 866.405.3638.  Good luck and happy listing!

 Google

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.  re news mayThey 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:re news april

  • 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 our newsletters are filled with timely information, eye-catching real estate infographics, fun facts to share, and engaging direct response offers —  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%!

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 – re news april dominatoryou 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 us online 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!
  • You have OPTIONS.  Our newsletters come with three different options.  First, our Done-for-you – which can be downloaded as a pdf and printed yourself, shipped to you, or mailed for you. Secondly, you could take advantage of the Every Door Direct Mail® version and save big on postal costs!  And lastly. for those eager to DOMINATE  a market, our Market Dominator System™.  Learn the difference between all three options here! 

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 our newsletters today.    We’ve even added a step-by-step video for you so you can see for yourself how easy it is!

Oh – and here’s a tip for ADDING to your sphere — ever work with investors?  Or in property management? It’s easy to find the names and addresses of non-owner occupied luxury properties. Simply use the MapMyMail system and choose the non-owner-occupied data select! Watch the video here.

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

Building Blocks for a Great Spring

By Julie Escobar

As we head into the spring market and commit to helping agents more successfully and consistently build a better book of business, let’s take a look at some powerful and productive ways to do that WITHOUT a lot of stress or hassle.

Strategy #1:  Commit to the list.  Whatever database system you’re using, inputting your customer information is step one.  Even if you don’t have EVERYTHING you need , or all the information you want, start somewhere.  I’ve talked to agents who never get around to marketing at all because they feel like they have to do everything at once.  If it seems overwhelming – start SOMEWHERE.  Pick 50 or 100 people to add and knock it out in a couple hours – even if you’re simply using excel to add name, address, phone, email.  Start somewhere.  Then pick another day and do the same thing so you can get your list to the 200 mark.   (Virtual assistants these days are very affordable as well – so that may be an option for some of you.  College students are always looking for some extra money too – so ask around!  Not sure who to add, refer back to the BusinessBASE on our Resource page that shares the 150 people who should be in your real estate sphere of influence.)

Strategy #2:  Opt-ins & social media.  We’ve got some other powerful tools in our resource section.  Terrific free reports that are a perfect addition to your website as an opt-in piece.  Here’s a creative multi-use way to use these tools to help you build your list, feed your social media stream and entice your customers and prospects to continually return to your site for more resources!  You’ll become the go-to agent for information!  Simply click here to go to our resource section and download the free reports that will work best for you and your market.  Download as many as you like and bookmark this page because we add new ones all the time.  These are going to now become part of the campaign you’re about to kick off!  Now, take one per week or one per month and break the contents down into bite sized pieces to share on your social media and on the backs of your postcards.

I’ll give you an example:  Take the How to Save for a Down Payment free report.  It has seven tips for saving for a down payment.  A fun strategy would be to kick off your Facebook posts on a Monday with a post something along these lines:

As a professional Realtor, it’s a privilege to help people invest in their future and find the home of their dreams.  Often times, it is the down payment that can be a sticking point.  This week I’ll share with you seven powerful ways you can save!  Tip #1:  1. Get in the know. Like any good budget or savings plan, the first place to start is to determine where you are NOW in relation to your credit score, your monthly bills and assets. Contact me or a trusted mortgage professional to see how much home you qualify for and how much you’ll need to save to purchase your home. We can help you take a look at things like credit scores, loan requirements and interest rates now so you can be simultaneously doing ALL the things right during this savings period to ensure the most favorable rate and terms.

Say you made this your “Free report for March or April” in your business plan.  When setting up your postcard campaign on Prospectsplus.com – choose the alternate back and add a little verbiage to that fact.  Here is an example:

Happy Spring! As a professional Realtor who specializes in helping people find the home of their dreams, I’m always eager to share resources that can help consumers just like you make the best financial decisions for their family!  Please visit my site today at www.yoursitehere.com and download a copy of my new free report:  How to Save for a Down Payment.  No cost or obligation and please share with friends!  Call me if you have questions at xxx-xxx-xxxx!

Then do the same for month two and three of your campaign.  This way your social media and your postcard marketing are all working in tandem.  Keep copies of each report on hand so you can mail or email them out easily.  (I would make a file on your desktop specifically to house all these reports to make finding them easier!)

Strategy #3:  Commit to a campaign.  Even if you’re not sure which campaign is right for you – choose one to use for the next three months.  Breaking projects down into bite-size pieces makes the process less stressful and more manageable for most people.  I love the idea of a three month campaign because you can add your list, choose your card campaign and let that run for three months.  Then make whatever revisions are necessary to your list once a quarter such change an address, add a new customer or referral, change an email, etc.  This makes your database management less time-consuming as well.  By breaking your campaigns down into quarterly increments – you also have the flexibility to try a new campaign on for size. We’ve got lots of results-producing Sphere of Influence postcard campaigns to choose from! See them all here or contact our marketing team at 866.405.3638 for help choosing the campaign that’s right for you!

Strategy #4:  Add a niche.  One of the fastest ways to grow your sphere is to take what you’re passionate about, the people you like working with the MOST and create a niche for yourself.  I’ve always said it’s tough to be #1 in a geographic market – but not in a smaller niche that you are excited about.  From traditional (first time home buyers, fsbo’s, expireds) to out of the box (Harley riders, health and wellness seekers, boaters, fishermen) – find something you love, then get out there and meet THOSE people and start putting them into your list.  The secret ingredient in a sphere of influence is INFLUENCE.  Taking people from being “on a list” to knowing, trusting and liking you enough to want to do business with you.  That process happens fastest when you’re working with a group of people that you like and know about in return!

Now you’re ready to get STARTED!  Head into the spring market excited, eager and ready to take on the CHALLENGE!  And don’t forget – our inside account management team is here to help you make some of these decisions and walk you through the processes.   You can reach them at 866.405.3638.

Have a great week!  Get started today!