Let’s face it. There are a lot of real estate investors out there. Generally after a little research, many of them will know about ‘the lists’ (foreclosures, probate, out-of-state owners etc.). They will find the lists and start mailing to them.
Many of those investors will mail postcards that say something like ‘We Buy Houses – For Cash’. Although these postcards do work, you can definitely do better. Here are some tips to make the desperate homeowner call you instead of your competition:
- Understand the motivated seller – Obviously a person who will sell you their home at a deep discount is in some trouble. When you talk to these homeowners, try to understand their fears, hopes and outlook on life. Then speak to them in your ads. Spend time thinking about what they’re thinking. Things to consider are:
a. They are tired from bill collector calls
b. They want to know how to put their financial issues behind them
c. What can they tell their kids?
d. How can they find a better paying job? Or a job at all?
- Don’t sell them your service, sell them on a transformation – There’s a saying in copy-writing – “People don’t buy drills, they buy holes”. Motivated seller’s #1 priority is not that you pay cash for homes. They want to see themselves living a normal life without financial worries. Explain to them in your ad that selling their home is a big step in moving towards that life.
- Be realistic –Cut the BS out. If your ad sounds too good to be true, it will most likely go in the trash. Don’t say you can close in a week if you can’t. People respond more to authentic ads, than claims that sound outrageous. Make sure you can absolutely back up everything you say in your ad.
- User other Ads as Inspiration – Become an ad detective. Save your junk mail – regardless of what they are selling. If you see an ad or letter coming to you over and over again, it probably means it works or they wouldn’t be able to pay to keep mailing it out. Study the ad for lessons. What appeals to you? Why is it working? How can you adapt it to your real estate business? Put the ads you like, or that are being mailed or sent repeatedly, on the internet in a file – known as a ‘swipe file’. Then refer to it when you write your letters to motivated sellers. If you want a large swipe file of very effective ads right away, check out co.
- Take a break from your writing – Don’t write and send out your letters all at one sitting. Write a letter and then put it aside. Sleep on it. Then come back to it the next day. It gives your subconscious a chance to digest it. Many times you will find when you’re in the shower or eating a meal that a new idea will come to you.
There are a lot of other techniques to becoming a top-notch copywriter which will increase your direct mail response rates. Your objective does not need to be to become the number one copywriter. Just by improving your copy with the tips above should help put your letters above your competition when it comes to increasing your response rate as a real estate investor.