A lot of people will tell you that direct mail and print marketing is dead, but it isn’t; far from it.
Sure, it’s 100% possible as an agent to build a big business without doing direct mail at all and focusing on other avenues (we know a lot of agents that succeed that way).
That doesn’t mean, though, that you can’t get business incorporating direct mail into your marketing strategy.
Simply put, it just doesn’t make a lot of sense to put all of your marketing eggs in one basket.
As a real estate agent, and a marketer, you wouldn’t only run Facebooks ads, or only use Instagram, or only send email marketing campaigns; to be successful, you have to spread your marketing strategy around several different platforms.
Direct mail is one of those platforms that’s worth exploring. Direct mail can, and perhaps should, have a place within your overall marketing strategy (even if your focus is on digital).
When you’re sending direct mail, there are 2 ways to do it:
- As part of your overall marketing campaign, where you’re sending out direct marketing with a consistent message on a regular basis
- When you’re sending direct mail as part of an individual marketing campaign
★ You can learn a little bit more about marketing strategy versus marketing campaigns by clicking right here.
Direct mail pieces need to be beautiful and strategic, with an emphasis on strategic.
A lot of agents send the same postcard out every week or 2 to the same addresses. While there are certainly different approaches to take, the key piece that makes a direct mail strategy work is the consistency of it.
The idea is that sending the same piece, to the same people, at the same consistent time, will create brand awareness, and it does.
But another strategy is to create several different direct mail pieces and send those out throughout the month. For example:
- Week 1: A piece focused on the number of properties you’ve sold in the area in a map format.
- Week 2: A piece focused on testimonials and success stories.
- Week 3: A piece focused on showcasing your expertise in the area.
- Week 4: A piece focused on them downloading or signing up for something of value.
When you mix in direct mail campaigns about your coming soon listings, open houses, or recently sold in the area, that’s a lot of brand recognition and touch-points to a consistent audience each month.
The key here is that each piece focuses on a different message, but still showcases your brand front and center to create the brand recognition that direct mail is known to achieve.
By embracing a strategy like this, you’re more likely to cover all of your bases around what the people receiving it will respond to and still focus on getting your brand in front of as many people as possible to make it recognizable.
A lot of direct mail doesn’t clearly focus on a CTA or offering; they’re simply informational pieces about who the real estate agent is or what they’ve done, but this has it’s own problems as it doesn’t highlight what you actually want the people receiving your direct mail to do.
That’s pretty important. Your direct mail pieces need to clearly have an action that you want the people receiving it to take.
A lot of agents also aren’t sure if their direct mail campaigns are working and generating results.
They’ll often say, I’ve been sending out direct mail for years, but I have no idea if I get any business from it.
That said, there are a number of ways to determine if your direct mail is working or not:
- Use a dedicated phone number for texting or calling on your postcards that’s different from the main number you’d normally use. For this, I’d recommend Salesmsg. It allows you to get a new local number, send/receive text messages via an app on your phone, and forward incoming calls to that number to your personal phone number. There’s a lot of applications you can use to do this, but I really like Salesmsg, and I use it daily myself.
- Use a unique URL. By creating a new URL for your postcard campaigns, you can see if anyone has come to your website via the referral traffic from that URL.
- Push people to a landing page, not your main website. On your direct mail pieces, you’ll have something you want them to do, so you should push them to a landing page to do that action. If that landing page has its own unique form submission or phone number, you’ll be able to see who has contacted you from that page and from your direct mail piece.
By making all of your information and CTAs on your direct mail pieces outside of the CTAs you’d normally use, you’re more likely to be able to measure the results and determine if your direct mail is working and generating results.
When it comes to launching digital campaigns and advertising strategies, the fact that you can narrow your demographic so tightly and specifically is really appealing to people, and for good reason: you need the right people to see your ads at the right time.
Direct mail providers, like UPS or Canada Post, have a lot of ways you can target your direct mail campaigns as well, including zip/postal code, age range, average household size, average household income, and more.
The demographics of controlling who receives your direct mail pieces is getting more sophisticated and targeted all the time.
There’s only 2 reasons not to include direct mail as part of your overall marketing campaign:
- Cost: Direct mail requires your mailing pieces to be designed, physically printed, and then mailed out. That can translate to a lot of money. So, it’s important you weigh the negatives and positives to see if direct mail is the right approach for you to take as part of your overall marketing strategy
- Target Audience: If the people you want to work with, and the people you’re trying to target, won’t respond to direct mail, then it doesn’t make sense to include it.
Print and direct mail isn’t dead. Depending on your target audience, goals, and overall marketing strategy, there’s a big opportunity to make it successful.
Want to drive traffic, build your brand, and engage your target audience? Download our eBook: ‘The Ultimate Guide to Real Estate Marketing’. It’s a collection of some of our best marketing articles, tips, and tricks that we’ve collected over the years.