The 3 Essential Elements of a Direct Response Ad
Anyone creating a direct mail campaign, and especially real estate investors, should make sure to cover all their bases. Omitting some of the important elements of a good mailer will probably reduce the response rate. Omitting or screwing up a few, critical elements may kill your response all together.
There is a decent list of things to think about when you are designing your mail campaign. We’ll dive into other elements further in other blog posts. Today we just want to cover three critical elements that could potentially destroy any chance for success in your mailings if you they are not correct. We will also expand on these three elements in other posts:
1. Your List – A famous copywriter was once asked “What is the most important thing you can have to sell hot dogs?”
His response was “A starving crowd”.
Seems pretty obvious, doesn’t it? Yet many advertisers and business owners overlook their list. They just pull a list from somewhere and mail to it.
Whether you buy the lists, hire someone to pull names, or hoof it on over to the courthouse steps, you want to make sure the people on your list will probably like what you’re selling. Selling extra petite clothing to professional wrestlers is not going to increase your sales numbers.
Spend a lot of time making sure you have the right list for what you are trying to sell. Try to find lists that:
- Include people who have actually purchased something similar to your product
- Have similar demographics to the majority of people who buy from you. For instance – if you have bought several properties from single moms, chances are they would be a higher percentage of success mailing to more single moms.
2. Your Offer – Think of your prospect when you make your offer. What pain are they feeling? How would you offer something that they consider much more valuable than the price they are paying?
Start noticing what offers you accept when you receive advertising. What made you buy? What did they promise? Start keeping a list that will help you create more compelling offers.
Here are some things to keep in mind about a good offer:
- It delivers much more value for the cost
- It creates a sense of urgency (“This offer only good for…”)
- It has a guarantee if the customer is not satisfied, lowering the risk of acceptance
- It has a definite call to action (“Call this number…”)
If you are looking for people to sell their home to you, don’t expect them to sell after one mailing. Your offer doesn’t always have to be “I will buy your house”. Try making the offer a phone call for advice, or a free evaluation of your home. The mailing is the start of a conversation.
3. Your Contact Information – Sounds crazy, but people do leave their contact information off their mailings sometimes. Make sure your contact information is on the ad, and that it is CORRECT.
Provide lots of ways for your prospects to contact you. There are still people in this day and age who do not do email, for whatever reason. There are other people who just don’t want to call a stranger on the phone. The more ways people have to contact you, the better. They can ignore the rest. Plus it looks more professional as an investor. You can add:
- Text (let them know your phone accepts texts)
- Mailing address
- Business location if different than mail address – ask them to stop by