2K to spend on direct mail...help me not waste it!

14 Replies

BP friends,

I need your advice and input please. I have set aside $2,000 dollars for a direct mail campaign (my first ever as an investor) and any guidance, things to look out for, cost cutting tips, etc, that you would be willing to share is much appreciated. Thanks!

Originally posted by @Templeton Walker :

BP friends,

I need your advice and input please. I have set aside $2,000 dollars for a direct mail campaign (my first ever as an investor) and any guidance, things to look out for, cost cutting tips, etc, that you would be willing to share is much appreciated. Thanks!

 A few things to consider....

List: make a highly targeted list that only includes records that you most interested in. Once you've built up your cash reserve and have mailed out a few times you'll be able to identify sub groups that you want to add to your current campaign. I would recommend a list size no less than 500 records but preferably 1,000+.

Mailing piece: Yellow Letters and postcards both work well. A combination of both throughout your campaign is a good idea. In terms of content, I've found short form Yellow Letters and image heavy postcards to generate the highest ROI. There are tons of examples of both on here and with most print vendors.

Campaign: You should plan for at least 6 months. Don't expect your phone to ring on the first mailing. Have systems in place to handle calls.

I hope it helps.

@Shaun Caldwell  I really appreciate you taking the time to help me out. I am excited to get going and will definitely put your advice to use. Thank you again and I will post about how it turns out! 

If 2k is the max you can spend I would do 500 a month as that should get you almost 4 months worth of letters. Keep in mind your list normally runs about $0.17 a name through somewhere such as list source. I would target high equity owners in areas with homes around 120k or less. In your area you should hit where investors typically go. That will get you the best success for wholesale/flips off of the amount of capital you have to use. Most yellow letters companies charge around 1.00 a letter or a bit more. Once you have more capital I would branch out to higher end areas. While the calls won't come in as often when you get a deal you make a good amount more. 

Ryan Dossey, Real Estate Agent in IN (#RB15001099)

@Templeton Walker  

With 2k, figure out the maximum amount of leads you can send to, while still hitting them at least 4-6 times. The best thing to do is alternate mail pieces, different leads will respond to different pieces. Yellow Letters, Zip Letters, Text Postcards (large and small), as well as Full Color postcards will all bring in different responses. You should be able to get about 4-5 touches as well as a list with your $2000.

@Cody Alexander  that is great advice man, i appreciate it a ton. I am looking forward to getting started. I will keep you posted on the response. Is there a typical response rate I might be able to expect? Or is that way to broad of a question?

@Templeton Walker  

Each piece will bring in a different response rate. We've mailed millions of pieces and I can tell you there are never any guarantees with direct mail, however I can share the typical response rates from our experience. Yellow Letters see about 8%, Zip Letters are around 1-3% and postcards average about 0.5%.

Yellow Letters - You will get a much higher call volume, however many of those will be tire kickers. Mostly just curious as to why you sent them a letter, or wondering what you have to offer with no real intent to sell. Once you weed these people out, you are still left with a few quality leads

Postcards - Call volume is very low, but the calls that do come in are a much better quality. Meaning, not all the tire kickers that Yellow Letters bring in.

Zip Letters - Bring in the same type of calls as postcards, meaning they are typically quality leads and not a lot of tire kickers. They cost a bit more than postcards but bring in a higher response rate as well

Looks like good advice above, but mostly about the type of mailer & response rates.  The other BIG issue is who you are sending these things to - makes a BIG difference on response rates and lead quality.

I'd take Ryan's advice and split it up and do $500 per month to make it last a few mailings.  Then I'd target Absentee Owners, 40% or higher equity, below median home value.

If you mail to general owner occupants (OO) bought from a typical mailing list vendor, or even OOs with high equity, be prepared to hear the crickets chirp. For OOs, you need to go after certain types, ages, situations, etc. to better zone in on motivation. That's why absentees work much better as a list; there is a much higher chance of finding motivation among landlords, heirs, and others in that list who do not live in the house.

Hope that helps - best of luck!

Originally posted by @Michael Quarles :

@Cody Alexander  

We can't ask people to contact us that directly... We have to be more covert... Something like we help thousands of investors with their direct mail marketing and are always looking for more investors to call friends. 

 You can't, but I think I can....

@Templeton Walker (hope you have keyword alerts set for your name, I should be able to tag you here but can't...)

Your marketing budget is precious and needs to be nurtured like any other asset. I'm pretty savvy financially, but I still use a Financial planner to help manage my accounts because that's what they do. All day everyday, they think about money and how to grow it. They have forgotten more than I will ever learn. They see things I miss. (and miss things I see when I get shiny object syndrome :-) )

Direct mail is by no means rocket science or brain surgery, but if you want to protect your investment, you will definitely benefit from using the services of a pro or at least consulting with one.

So by all means, contact Michael or Cody and let them put your capital to work for you. You don't want to be a marketer...that's their job. You want to be an investor, so start now. Nothing will go to waste and you'll be out there like @Ryan Dossey  making deals in no time. He's only been mailing a few months and has multiple deals under his belt.

I try to keep my @Jerry Puckett shout outs to only a few a week. I don't want people to start to think that he pays me! But yes I have had great success with Jerry Puckett. Feel free to pm me or heck just read some of my posts. He includes mentoring so if you are new to this that service is invaluable.... and FREE with leads. ;)

Ryan Dossey, Real Estate Agent in IN (#RB15001099)

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