Sending out real estate prospecting letters to your farming area can be an exercise in frustration if you do not do everything possible to maximize two things:
- Your “open rate” and
- Your response rate.
Appearances Are Everything (Almost)
The percentage of prospects who open your envelopes and pay attention to the message inside can be disappointingly low if your marketing letter looks like a typical mass mailing — especially one that does not appear to offer the recipient any benefits or value. Although the curiosity factor can sometimes cause people to open your letter, many may dismiss it, right away, if it looks like a sales pitch or advertisement.
If you stop and think about the overwhelming number of marketing messages we are all inundated with, every day, it’s no wonder that your real estate prospects (and you and I) automatically filter out the vast majority of them.
Overcome The First Hurdle Of Prospecting Letters
One solution to marketing letters that don’t get read is to enclose something of value inside the envelope and, if possible, make reference to it on the outside of the envelope.
Here are a few examples and ideas:
- A small calendar with your photo and contact information
- A packet of imprinted garden seeds
- An informative article or flyer containing helpful tips for homeowners on saving money, enhancing home security, home staging, reducing energy bills, lowering grocery bills, property maintenance, landscaping tips, or an invitation to a complimentary real estate seminar. (By the way, if you need ready-made content for your direct mail campaigns or real estate newsletters, you can get 260 professionally written real estate-oriented articles* on topics that grab the attention of home owners, house hunters, and property sellers. It’s part of a marketing kit for real estate agents and Realtors that can help put you two steps ahead of the competition. Get the details, here. [As a side note, I'm available to write unique, customized content for your blog, real estate newsletter, or website. Contact me for more details.]
- A free news letter about real estate trends, real estate resources for home buyers and sellers, news about real estate market conditions, and so on. You can also include “just listed” or “just sold” properties in your real estate news letter.
Increasing your marketing letter’s “open rate” can depend on a lot of factors, but it helps if you can give your prospects a reason to look inside. A short blurb on the outside of the envelope about there being valuable information inside, a free gift, the latest real estate news, or money-saving tips for homeowners can often be the “nudge” that’s needed to get your marketing message seen by more prospective clients. And since real estate marketing is essentially a “numbers game,” the more prospects you successfully make contact with, the better your chances for making more sales and commissions.
Ingredients of an Effective Prospecting Letter
Remembering that most people have short attention spans, so it’s a good idea to make sure your real estate prospecting letter is well organized, visually appealing, and engaging. One way to make it visually appealing is break up the text with a lot of paragraphs (white space) and “bullet points,” like in the list below.
Here are a few ideas for engaging prospects who receive your real estate farming letters:
- Introduction to Letter: Start your letter with a compelling question, statistic, or problem that you can solve.
- Unique Selling Proposition (USP): While there’s a thin line between bragging and proactively marketing yourself, it is important to distinguish yourself from other real estate agents and Realtors in your area. In other words, your prospecting letter will have more impact if it includes a few sentences or bullet points about your qualifications, your successful track record, your experience, specialized training, credentials, connection to the area, familiarity with your farming area, and — last, but not least — your commitment to being available, results oriented, and responsive to client needs and priorities.
- Contact Information: Give your prospects a lot of options for contacting you. Different people have different communication preferences. Some may prefer to talk to you directly, while others feel more comfortable using email, text messaging, or a website inquiry form. Cater to people’s individual communication styles and comfort zones by offering choices for reaching out to you and/or learning more about your services.
- Top Of Mind Awareness: Invite your prospects to follow up or learn more about your services by subscribing to your monthly real estate newsletter … visiting your website to peruse your newest listings and video tours … or check out your latest blog post on home staging tips, how to reduce household expenses, tips on family safety, increasing the value of your prospects’ home, strategies for keeping their basement dry, and other topics of interest to your target groups.
- And by the way: Include a “P.S.” at the end because it catches people’s attention and is frequently read.
Other factors that can help make real estate prospecting letters more effective include a clear “call to action,” an offer of a free comparative analysis of their home, and a followup letter or postcard within the next month. As you know, it’s often necessary to contact prospects a few times before they seriously consider doing business with you. But as a wise man once said: “Persistence breaks down resistance!” (unless, of course, you’re trying to sell ice to an Eskimo.)
Real Estate Marketing Tools to Consider*
- Real estate prospecting letter templates: Visit this site* to download or learn more about a real estate marketing kit consisting of the following time-saving and lead-generating tools: 320 proven real estate marketing letters for farming a neighborhood, approaching FSBO sellers, offering your services to expired listing prospects, generating referrals, approaching first-time home buyers, and positioning yourself as a a trustworthy real estate advisor and credible source of real estate information. This marketing kit* also provides you with 260 relevant articles for homeowners, house hunters, and house sellers that you can use in your own real estate newsletter, real estate blog, email marketing campaigns, or real estate farming letters. The website also contains a free example of an expired listing prospecting letter that you can adapt to your own marketing needs.
- Real estate flyer templates: Easily create professional-looking real estate flyers* for new listings, open houses, and marketing campaigns. Get access to 53 Templates that you can customize, print, and distribute in minutes. You can also download a free sample of an easy-to-use, professionally designed real estate marketing flyer.
- Email Marketing Software*: Flutter Mail empowers you to email everyone on your list with the push of a button. Take advantage of their 30-day trial offer for $1.00 !*
Articles on Real Estate Marketing
The following articles on various aspects of real estate marketing will provide you with actionable ideas for increasing engagement with your target audience, expanding name recognition, maintaining Top of Mind Awareness in your farm area, generating leads, and converting more prospects into real estate clients.
- Social Media Marketing Tactics for Real Estate Agents
- Seven Reasons Your Listing is Still on The Market (and what to do about it)!
- Dozens of Powerful Marketing Strategies For Generating More Business
Thanks for checking out my latest blog post on how to get the most mileage out of your real estate prospecting letters, farming letters, real estate newsletters, and marketing campaigns.
Stay tuned for more real estate marketing tips in the near future!
Feel free to contact me if you need help developing a real estate blog to increase engagement, rank higher in the search engines, and attract more prospective clients to your website. (I can provide you with original content to help keep your blog relevant, fresh, and “search engine friendly”!)
Best of luck in all your real estate marketing endeavors
Freelance writer, business blogger, marketing consultant
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*Disclaimer: I am a compensated affiliate for the real estate marketing tools, Web-based email marketing software, and informational products featured in this blog.