Other lists besides Listsource?

52 Replies

Hi @Nathan Brooks  - are you using the right code? I just tested it out and the code worked  fine for me (note: I'm using Google Chrome as my browser - not sure if that makes any difference). Try it again - CFGRSH

Also, regarding the realtor license number - I just went through the sign up form and entered "investor" in this field and I was able to get through with no problems.

Hi @Joel Peng,

Not sure if you are still with ListSource as the thread you posted in about this is a year old, but I just wanted your opinion (and anyone else's) about the accuracy of ListSource's information. Last week I bought a list for around $250, and after crosschecking some of the information with town assessment records noticed that approximately half of the information is wrong. I was looking for absentee owners (with other criteria) and the list came back with several properties that were owner occupied, and failed to include homes that were actually non-owner occupied (including the house I currently rent).

Has anyone else had issues like this? And ListSource address it with you? They don't seem like they want to admit that their info can be wrong, and everyone I have spoken with at ListSource has directed me to someone else at ListSource.

You're not alone @Jay Groleau  - and ListSource isn't the only provider with this problem (I've seen it with AgentPro247 and others too).

The problem isn't so much with the provider, but with the public records that are being pulled. Some states and counties have very old and/or bad information that they make available to the public (I've found that this tends to happen in counties that are VERY rural, probably because they don’t have enough tax revenue to keep an up-to-date public records system). 

When a county doesn't provide good data, this means that the data available from services like AgentPro247 or ListSource won't be any better (so while it kinda is, it mostly isn't their fault...   they aren't the ones keeping terrible public records - they're just showing you what the county is making available publicly). 

Like you've probably discovered - when your data isn't current or accurate, it usually translates into a much lower response rate on your direct mail campaign and/or lots of returned mail (because at the end of the day, you just don't have the right information to reach these people). And given how expensive direct mail can be, it's definitely a problem to have bad information.

For this reason – it's not a bad idea to do a "test run" whenever you're sending mail to an uncharted territory that you're not familiar with. If you’re trying to break into a new market, try sending out 100 – 200 mail pieces in that new area and see what kind of response rate you get (and do this BEFORE you blast out thousands of mailers). 

If your response rate is terrible, you should be able to quickly determine that the information from ListSource isn't reliable (nor will it be reliable from any other source other than the county itself). I know -  it stinks to find this out, but the point is to learn about the problem before you've dumped hundreds or thousands into a direct mail campaign that is destined to fail.

Thanks @Seth Williams  for your response. That was very helpful. It is pretty disappointing to pay for this information without any sort of a disclaimer from them. The three properties I know for sure met the criteria I used weren't included in my list, and the info is correct with the town, and has been since 1987. 

I definitely understand that their system is not perfect. What's worse in my opinion is that they haven't responded to any of my inquiries to their customer service department. If I didn't spend $300 on the list, I might not care so much. 

Well, live and learn! Thanks again for taking the time to respond. 

Yeah - that sounds pretty bad @Jay Groleau , though not entirely outside the realm of possibility. I'd be willing to bet that any list service like this has a disclaimer of sorts hidden somewhere in the fine print...   not that most of us will ever see it (myself included) - but I'm sure it's there.

The customer service thing is another issue entirely - I'm not sure there's any excuse for that. Like you said though, there are lessons to be learned in all of this.

@Seth Williams  , thanks so much for the tip on AgentPro247, I signed up and have already discovered it's value in the property profiles you can pull and farming lists.  I'm getting ready to send a test campaign of about 270 pieces, we'll see what happens.  In order to limit my expenses, I'm thinking of just creating printed letters instead of hand written yellow letters - do you think it's worth the cost saving or am I better off spending a little more on yellow letters or postcards and hopefully get a better response?

Hi @Sergey Tkachev  - I'm not sure what you mean by "printed letters" and "hand written yellow letters" (because these things mean different things to different people). Personally, I use postcards because they're cheap, effective and (if you know how to write good copy), it's easy to make them eye-catching and impossible to ignore.

I've also found that it's hard to beat the value that Click2Mail offers. Not only will they print, stamp and mail everything for you (which can literally save you DAYS of time), but you'll also pay postage rates and production costs that are significantly less expensive than if you were to print, stamp and mail all of this mail from the "comfort of home".

The cost of postage for one postcard on Click2Mail is less than 30 cents (meaning, you’ll save 6.2¢ compared to the $0.34 cost of a postcard stamp).

This may not sound like a big deal for one postcard – but when you’re mailing hundreds or thousands of postcards in one shot, this kind of savings is HUGE.

@Seth Williams  , thank you so much for the quick response and I apologize for the delayed reply, I just now saw your response.

Thanks for the clarification on the postcards, it does sound like a good option.  I read over my original question and realized that it was too vague, so just wanted to clarify - by yellow letters I mean hand written yellow letters by a real person who writes the letters, addresses the envelopes and mail them.  Another option is to type and print a regular letter on regular white paper (hence saving the costs of having to write the letters by hand) and just hand address the envelopes and mail.  The main difference is that one option has hand written yellow letters and the other is just a printed letter.  (and I understand that the best letter type depends on whether I'm targeting out of state, probate, etc owners - my list is focused on a specific area and will have varying prospects)

I'm doing a smaller test run of about 40 mailers where I'm paying someone to hand write the yellow letters, address envelopes and mail them - I'm curious to see what the cost will be and how it compares to the other options.  

And thanks again for the input regarding post cards, I wasn't considering that option mainly because I've been reading that yellow letters have a better response rate but you've convinced me to look into post cards as well.  I realize that they are more cost effective, I guess I'll have to figure out how to write a good copy that will create a good response.

@Sergey Tkachev  - I don't doubt that hand-written letters have a better open rate, but my personal opinion is that it's wiser to spend your time and money getting the right list and sending mail to the right people in the first place. 

If you're reaching out to the right people (the folks who really need what you're offering them) and conveying your message is a clear and concise way, you won't have to do much "convincing"...   they will respond if you're offering them the solution to problem that they're legitimately struggling with. 

Believe me - you can blow your whole budget on the prettiest letters money can buy...   but if you're not targeting the right recipients in the first place (i.e. - if the person doesn't actually need what you're offering), your letters will go in the trash. It's that simple.

This is one of those areas where it is VERY easy to get hung up on things that don't matter...   (probably because it's a lot easier to fiddle around with the message than it is to get the right information in the first place), but seriously - if you're sending mail to the right people, I think you'll find that you don't need to bend over backwards to make your mail piece look amazing.

Some of my best responses came from some ridiculously bland postcards. Why? Because I went to great lengths to make sure the right people were on my list. If you focus on getting the right lists and narrowing them down the right way, you'll be able to spend far less, reach more people and get better results in the long run.

@Seth Williams  , thanks again for your response and advice, that does make sense and gives me a good sense of direction regarding who I'm mailing to.  It really is easy to get hung up on all of the details and miss the main point.  Thanks again!   I'll be looking into the potential of postcards as well :)

Great comments. With agent pro. Can I get comparable sales on specific property or does it have to be in bulk?  Also will it look up cash buyers within a specific farm or zip code area or its it just based on seller leads?

Hey @Dante Nava , I just signed up for AgentPro247 and saw the same hurdle with the RE license.  I tried using the Partner ID "CFGRSH" a second time and it worked!  Then on a following page where you are asked to enter in additional information, the RE license line no longer has a mandatory *.  Hope the same trick works for you. Thanks @Seth Williams for the tip and the very informative website!  

Late to the post, but I tried the following:

  1. AgentPro247
  2. Rebo Gateway
  3. ListSource

@Seth Williams did some nice coverage for these in his YouTube channel which prompted me to give the monthly services a try.  It was a small fee to see how flexible and useful they are to me.

For me, ListSource wins.  

If you are trying to save money, the others may seem like a good deal.

AgentPro247 uses a subscription, but limits your area by counties.  By the time I added all the counties I wanted (3), I was paying a lot monthly for a list that has very little updates on a month to month basis. It did allow me to get into property details and equity percentages. I canceled after first month.

Rebo Gateway has bronze, gold, platinum levels that give you different access to info.  For example getting just homeownership was at the least expensive level, bronze I think. By the time I added equity percentage, it required platinum, which cost a lot more monthly.  Again, a list that has very little updates on a month to month basis. I also canceled after first month.

ListSource gives you access to all these features and charges based on how many leads you get and the options you put on them.  It seems more fair and you only pay once for a list instead of getting a list and paying monthly for that list.  Better yet, you can cross reference any list you purchase to remove leads which you have already paid for so you don't buy same lead twice.  This means if I want a monthly update, I only pay for new leads. Pretty efficient.

I might give give the others a whirl again when I go nationwide.

Hope this helps.

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