In this age of social media, Tiktok videos and endless emails, one of the best marketing methods you can employ is a good old-fashioned letter in the post.
While it takes a lot more effort to create a letterbox drop than it does to post a sold-sign-selfie on Facebook, the payoff is worth the effort. Especially if you can maintain a consistent approach over an extended period of time.
How to build a following in real estate
To succeed in real estate you need two things. You need people to:
- Know who you are.
- Know that you are good at what you do.
If you don't have a large database already, the easiest way to get there is to keep in touch with homeowners in your target area. A direct mail real estate newsletter is a great way to do that (along with phone calls, open homes, and joining local clubs).
How often should you send a direct mail newsletter?
Ideally, homeowners in your farming area should receive something in their letterbox from you every month. 12 times a year. You might even want to step it up to fortnightly during the traditional busy listing periods (early Summer and early Spring in most areas).
A one-off campaign is unlikely to produce the results you want. Owners want to see that you are consistent, reliable and successful before they entrust you with the sale of their largest asset.
Focus on one area. Pick a number of houses you can manage and stick to it. You are better off sending a newsletter to 300 houses every single month than you are sending one to 1,000 houses every 6 months.
The other big mistake agents make is only sending letters around their current listings. That activity of its own is fine (and often worthwhile) but try to focus your efforts on sending info to people that will keep receiving info from you in future.
For example, drop your just listed cards in your target farming area, even if the new listing is outside that area. The goal of your just listed cards is not to sell that new listing, it's to show the owners in your farming area you are busy, successful and good at real estate.
What should my newsletter look like?
It should look as simple as you need it to be to make it easy to generate. Especially when you get busy.
You can build a newsletter using a fancy template on Canva.com. You could spend hours making it look pretty and picking the right photos. Or you could just send a good old-fashioned, well-formatted black and white letter, printed on your company letterhead. Throw in your business card and you are good to go.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with keeping it simple. In fact, it's preferable if that means you actually get something in those letterboxes.
Don't let perfection get in the way of progress.
Should it be personally addressed?
If you have the computer skills to export a list of homeowners from your property info portal to do a mail merge, then by all means go ahead. Personally addressed letters are more likely to be opened, read and kept.
But again, don't let that stop you from making progress. There is nothing wrong with addressing your letter in this way:
Leaving the street number off means you can just print however many you need for that street and drop them off. Simple is good!
The databasing tool I personally used to run mail-merge campaigns during my career was SalesPartner.
What to put in your newsletter / direct mail piece
Refer to last week's advice guide on key elements of an effective real estate newsletter:
Keep it positive, educational and simple. And remember, helpful beats pretty any day of the week :)
Agent Monday articles suited to direct mail campaigns
The following articles are perfect for a direct mail newsletter:
Nearly all of our articles start with a common question your local homeowner may be considering and end with a call to action that prompts them to get in touch with you when they need help.
What else to include in your direct mail campaign
Along with your Agent Monday feature article, you could also attach:
- Your 5 most recent sales (these could be properties your company has sold if you are only just getting started).
- A flyer for one of your current listings.
- A personal profile page with more information about you.
- Testimonials from past clients.
- Profile of a local business you support.
- Community news.
You certainly don't have to include any of those things though. A standard letter with an Agent Monday feature article will work just fine.
For more newsletter content ideas, check out this guide:
Got a question about direct mail campaigns?
Get in touch and let us know. We'll do our best to help.