Monthly Budget For Direct Mail Need Guidance
I out of SoCal too. I a marketer by profession and I been responsible for lead generation at the corporate level.
Before you spend your 800 monthly budget on your direct mail campaign, you need to first id Swarovski entify your target audience which you already done with your 1500 absentee owner list.
Next you must understand that your list is not exclusive so other investors probably have your list too. So your communication needs to stand out or it going in the trash. I would suggest asking other users to see if they could share letters/postcards that worked for them
You must also plan the frequency of your campaign. In other words how often will you communicate to them.
And here is a very important thing you need to do. And that is test at a small scale. Pick out 200 names from your list at random. Send 100 of those one type of communication and 100 another type. Track your results and whichever one is most successful you will send to your remaining list.
And lastly be CONSISTENT. Consumers get hit by tons and tons of communications daily so you need to stay top of mind.
Since your local feel free to hit me up. I could help on the marketing side but only somewhat on the real estate side. I a re newbie. In other words I invested during the good times so my mistakes were covered up by the market. I want to learn the right way now during the leaner times. Good luck. Their letters go from 79 cents on up right?
I was trying this out last night and the results were not bad. I took a yellow paper notepad and copied verbatum in red ink a yellow letter sample that I found online just to test out leaving an empty space out for the address. I then photocopied the letter on my PIXMA printer and I then added the address in the empty space, What came out looked like it had been handwritten. It may be a solution for those that have a small budget.
I must disclose I am no marketing expert, and I am a bit more seat of your pants kind of guy. In other words I could do much better at testing and tracking. What I have learned in my two years of direct mail marketing is that different people react to different mai Swarovski l pieces. Now this is a general statement and certain lists may be better suited to the same type of letter over and over. Also, I like to tie each letter together.
The directions are very clear and easy to follow. I would suggest getting a nice big calendar when you pick up the other materials and plan out your strategy. Mail to each prospect every four to six weeks. Make each letter different but building on the one that came before. Be persistent and consistent.
Among all the other metrics you track, make sure that you also count the cost for your time. I am also happy to pay for a good service if it produces results. I currently use a call center for my contracting business instead of trying to hve a commision only sales rep doing cold calls. Thanks for the tips on DIY. BTW I enjoyed your podcast yesterday. I also checked out your site and services. You are on my list to talk to. Like I said I believe in working with experts. It is easy and cheap. These guys selling their services are great, but at your budget, all the other nonsense isn’t going to make much of a. any difference. Everyone always talks open rates, conversion rations, blah, blah, blah. The only thing that really matters, at the end of the day, is how profitable you are. I sent out 500 two pages letters. I don’t know what the cost was and I DON’T CARE. I got 1 phone call. Sounds crappy doesn’t it? I closed that seller, wholesaled the house and pocketed a $14,000 wholesale fee. Was my campaign successful? Bet your ass. I have almost zero overhead so that is $14,000 $625 ($1.25(rough guess) per letter x 500) = $13,375 profit.
Now, here is the big argument (said in some whiny psuedo marketer voice): If I got more people to call, I could have gotten more deals. Is that a fact? Sounds more like an opinion to me. I’ve done campaigns and had 50 calls with no closed deals. I did a post card campaign and sent out ov Swarovski er 2,000 post cards. I got less than 5 calls. I thought it was a total failure and decided to try a new marketing piece because I had been sending out this piece for almost a year and thought it had gone stale. Several months later a call came in from that campaign. I closed on that house and sold it for a $60K profit. Do I care about open rates, conversion rates, calls, blah, blah, blah No. That info is important if you are sending out hundreds of thousands of mailers, but not a few hundred a week to a list of 20,000 or less. Also, these psuedo marketers are confusing what they do with what the original mailing guys, like Robert Collier did. He mailed to millions of households selling books, suits, overcoats, etc. When your list is 5M names, you need to do small tests, split tests, etc. to see what gets the best response. We are mailing to get people to sell us a house. I don’t care what Dan Kennedy says, this business IS DIFFERENT. Is a person buyi Swarovski ng a $50 coat and selling a $100K house that possibly produces income the same? No. Not even close.
There is no magic envelope, special font, perfect color, right stamp, blah, blah, blah. And, if they are doing mail on behalf of others, I guarantee you there are HUGE margins of errors in any statistics they report.
There is a guy here in Socal who prints up generic post cards in full color. They say the typical “We buy houses, pay cash, no costs to you” copy. He prints out individual mailing address labels and sticks them on the cards. He’s been in business since 1981. I think he’d agree with me. Just mail. That is the most important. If you want to analyze every detail of your tiny campaign to pretend you have convinced yourself you know the magic formula to get the highest possible return, good luck. I think your time is better spent practicing your putting.
I’ve sent hundreds of thousands of letters, post cards, bank money bags, bulky mail, etc. in every color and size. We had specialty in house software that tracked every .001 of a cent and printed out these fancy reports with all the statistics a person could dream of. After a few years of that nonsense, I went back to good ol’ send it and forget it marketing and I’m still consistently doing the same number of deals with the same profit spreads.
So, my first batch, to open and honest, came from Vistaprint because they are already designed and ready to go, and you can order small amounts like 200 (not sure how many you are wanting to send). I would vote for them if you don’t posses creativity to make your own. I have since designed my own and plan to use click2print to send those out going forward.