The Invention of Direct Marketing

William Wrigley Jr. is credited to the invention of direct marketing with his first mass mailing of Wrigley’s chewing gum. The story is intriguing in its own right, and it can provide valuable information that is still relevant today.

Seizing an Idea

Wrigley didn’t start out thinking about gum, as his first idea was soap. William Wrigley Jr.’s father had a company that made scouring soaps where he worked. He started off as a production worker later moving on to a salesman. The profit margins were low and Wrigley included free items to entice merchants to buy, such as baking powder. His sales went well, but he moved on from soap to baking powder.

Now that Wrigley was selling baking powder, he decided to add a freebie to it as well. This time it was two packs of chewing gum for every purchase of baking powder. Soon he completely moved away from baking powder and focused entirely on chewing gum. He developed his own brand and developed the idea of selling the gum beside the checkout counter as he recognized it was an impulse buy.

Change in Strategy

With an economical crisis at the turn of the century. Chewing gum was viewed as a non-necessity, luxury item. Wrigley didn’t give up though. Instead, he bought more advertising and touted his gum as an after-dinner product to help clean teeth and soothe the throat. He also used the strategy that if someone could afford to have a telephone, they could buy a pack of gum.

Once Wrigley hit upon this idea, he mailed a pack of his gum to every home listed in the phone directory at that time – the first direct mailing campaign. He continued to follow this plan and ended up mailing the gum to around seven million homes.

His motto was simple: Keep looking for ideas and “tell ‘em quick and tell ‘em often.” His answer to a magazine who asked about his secret is still as relevant today for marketers. 

The Future of Mass Text Messaging

Have you ever gotten one of those texts telling you about some product or service? Maybe you signed up for a rewards program and now you get texts about special offers and deals. As an investor, you may have thought, “Hey, why don’t I try marketing with text messages?” This is a great option, but you should always make sure the laws and regulations in your market allow it.

Limits Imposed on Text Messages

Text messaging is going to be a regulated industry for businesses and other organizations. With new stipulations in place, companies won’t be able to send text messages without registering their phone numbers. They must be approved before they can use this option for marketing. Even if you’re approved, you must stay up to date on any changes to the rules of text messaging for marketing. If you fail to maintain compliance, the cost of fines will also go up. Remember this is not a cost per message but per recipient. So, if you send out a text message that isn’t compliant to 100 people, you pay the fine times 100. That can add up to a lot of money.

Not as Powerful as You Think

Text messaging has held some appeal as marketers look at it as the “next new thing.” However, it’s more powerful when used in conjunction with other marketing methods. You’re limited on your message and even the look of the message. Compare a plain text message to a direct mailing campaign and you’ll quickly see how much more you can do with direct mail. However, it can be a partner with direct mailings to add that extra touch.

Direct mail may seem old-school, but it’s stuck around for this long for one simple reason – It works! With the modern tools available, you have more options to customize it for your needs and audience.

If your direct mail campaign is looking a little tired, instead of looking for other options, let Open Letter Marketing help you revitalize your campaign with new ideas. Contact us today at 978-269-0245.

The State of the Economy and Your Marketing

The United States is in a unique position, one that hasn’t been seen for decades. Lumber has nearly tripled in price while inventory for buyers is almost nonexistent. As with any situation, change is coming. Real estate investors must be ready and begin building their brand in anticipation of change.

Where Things Stand Now

Inventory for new homes is at the lowest it has ever been recorded in history. Contractors are swamped with new builds, which means anyone looking to build now may need to wait for months before they can even find an available contractor.

Lumber is nearly triple in price while other materials for building can’t even be found. The cost of building a house has gone up significantly. The contractor isn’t making more money; they are just trying to recoup from the increase in expenses.

The Future of the Real Estate Economy

Right now, evictions and foreclosures have been suspended across the nation. However, that will change at some point. Places are opening back up, and the world is starting to look like it once did, pre covid, and once evictions and foreclosures are allowed, there are an estimated 11 million people in that situation.

For now, landlords are stuck with tenants who aren’t paying. They still have a mortgage to pay even with no income.

Even with the unpredictability of the real estate market right now, real estate investors can place themselves in a position to benefit from the changes. They must begin building their brand ahead of time, getting their name out there when people need to call on a cash house buyer.

Statistics have shown in the past that it takes up to five times of seeing an ad campaign or name of a company for it to register. Our Multi-touch campaigns address this issue by creating multiple points of contact. To begin or revamp your direct mail marketing, check out the products from Open Letter Marketing. Give us a call and let us help you develop your brand in this unprecedented time. 

The Importance of Excel Data Columns for Your Marketing

Data is critical to the success of your real estate direct mail marketing efforts. When you have incorrect data, your marketing efforts will fail. Here are a few strategies to apply with Excel data columns to improve your success rate.

Create Multiple Address Columns

Make sure you keep the street address separate from the city and state. For the street address, you must include the numbers and street name together. City should have its own column as well as state and zip code. Why is this important? When you separate the data into equal but unique columns, systems that use your data will read the information more accurately and make fewer errors.

Don’t forget to include apartment numbers or office suite numbers in their own column, making sure the direct mail piece reaches your intended recipient. These values should be in their own columns as well. By adding specific information for the unit, you ensure that the direct mail you send mail doesn’t get left at the front desk.

Review Your Information

One of the major benefits with OLM’s products, such as the large postcard, is that the data transfers quite easily from your spreadsheet. This feature reduces work on your part while getting the mailers out the door that much faster. However, the real estate investment mailings are only as good as the information provided. Take a few minutes to review your Excel columns before you submit an order for a product.

Make certain each column is completed and not left blank. It’s easy to overlook the two-digit state abbreviation, but it’s critical to getting your mail to the right place. Take the few minutes needed every time you make a purchase to check your investment spreadsheet and each column. It will save you a great deal of frustration if you later determine that data was missing.Find out more about OLM products and merging data when you contact us at 978-269-0245.

What You Should Know About Auto Pens

You’ve probably seen those handwritten letters, maybe even used them with your own leads. The letters use a handwritten font to send a personalized message to homeowners. Open Letter Marketing’s newest product takes this idea a step further to provide a unique touch to all your mailings.

What is the Auto Pen Letter?

The Auto Pen Letter is similar to the handwritten letter, only even more authentic. Unlike the handwritten letter, which uses a handwriting font, the auto pen letter uses a real pen and ink to write the letter. The pen works automatically to write out a message that has been designated ahead of time.

The handwritten letter looks personalized upon first glance with the distinct font. Upon closer inspection, you’ll notice that it is printed onto the paper. The Auto Pen Letter uses ink to create a distinct look.

What are the Features of the Auto Pen Letter?

You have the option to print or write your message in cursive. You can use your own logo and an envelope with a stamp. Choose from a variety of envelope styles to make the mailer stand out and to fit with your overall campaign.

As with other OLM products, you can upload your lead list as a .CSV file. Once your file is uploaded and you purchase the product, the letters will automatically be generated. You can select to have the envelopes unsealed, which allows you to add a business card before mailing. You create your own message, which adds to the personalization.

The goal behind this product is to create an authentic feel for your prospects. The appearance is high-quality, which is sure to impress. Details, such as the unique Forever Stamp, won’t go unnoticed.

You can contact us at 978-269-0245 to learn more. 

Separate Yourself from the Competition with OLM’s Unique Direct Mail Marketing Products

Think about how many pieces of mail go out each year to the same prospects. Yours isn’t the only message being sent to your intended audience. If you want to stand out from the crowd, and especially your competition, you’ve got to find a way to be unique. Fortunately, Open Letter Marketing offers some distinct real estate direct mail marketing products to showcase your message.

ROS Mailer

Cut through the endless advertising with the Rapid Offer System postcard or letter. This unique marketing tool gets to the heart of the matter with your audience. The ROS mailer provides an instant offer on the home or property that sellers can decide to accept. While everyone else is saying they are interested in buying, you’re the only one who puts a real offer out there right from the start. Save time and get ahead of the competition with this ROS mailer product.

Tri-Fold Flyer

Get the feel of a personalized letter without the added cost of an envelope. With the tri-fold flyer, you have the message and the recipient’s address on one sheet of paper. The design makes it feel personal with a handwritten font, real stamp, and parchment paper. You can use it as your initial contact or for follow-up anywhere in your multi-touch direct mail campaign.

Auto Pen Letters

Rather than a handwritten font, these letters use a real pen that automatically writes your intended message. This real estate marketing product is the ultimate in personalization to make the recipient more likely to respond. You have the option to use print or cursive and add your logo to be memorable.

While each of these products are unique, the one thing they all have in common is a way to get your intended audience’s attention. They help you stand out from your competitors who are using standard mass mailers.

If you are ready to try one of these products from OLM or want to know more, contact us today at 978-269-0245.

Learn More About Types of Lead Quality

Every lead is valuable, which is why you never want to dismiss any that are on your lead lists. However, some leads are more likely to convert – or at least sooner than others.

What Makes a High-Quality Lead?

A lead that is defined to be high-quality is one that is most likely to convert. This lead may be in a situation where they must sell. For instance, a home with a deceased owner must be resolved soon. Homes with code violations or evictions require the owner to have to sell. These leads are often open to your approach because they can benefit from your assistance.

Here are some examples of high-quality leads:

·         Vacant

·         Code violation

·         Deceased

·         Tax lien

·         Super lead

·         Probate

·         Eviction

·         Driving for dollars

What Makes a Low-Quality Lead?

On the other end of the spectrum is the low-quality lead. Leads labeled as Expired, Absentee, or Equity are considered to be low leads. They may be interested in selling, but there is no sense of urgency.

Some examples of low- to medium-quality leads include the following:

·         Expired

·         Senior

·         Trust

·         Equity

·         Divorce

Low-quality leads can still provide a wonderful deal but aren’t in the same rush or need to sell as the high-quality leads. Many of these leads could convert to high-quality at some point in the future.

The point of being aware of the different types of lead quality is to customize your marketing strategy to each type. For instance, you may need to entice someone who is a low-quality lead to think about selling. With a high-quality lead, your focus might be on showing them how you can help them out of their current situation.

You can use any of the OLM products to market to all of your leads. From handwritten letters to Tri-Fold Flyers, you can create the perfect message for any lead type. Some products, such as the ROS mailer, are geared more towards those who are ready to sell now.

Separate out your lead lists by quality type to create separate mailing campaigns. This allows you to personalize your interactions with prospects while minimizing the work.

Find out more about lead lists and lead quality when you contact us at 978-269-0245.

Continue Your Real Estate Direct Mail Marketing into 2021

2020 was an unprecedented year. Unfortunately, many of the problems of last year haven’t magically disappeared for 2021. You may wonder if you should continue your direct mail marketing efforts this year. Real estate is in a much different place than it was at the beginning of last year. Maybe you’re wondering where and how to spend your marketing dollars.

Maybe your issue is more about how to approach real estate investment marketing. You may see the potential for investments in the current situation. The question is how to appeal to your intended audience when everyone is operating in crisis mode.

Direct Marketing Never Goes Out of Style

No matter what other fads come and go, direct mail marketing is here to stay. Now is the prime time to target your audience who are stuck at home. Direct mail is like riding your bike. When you stop pedaling, you’ll fall off. The same thing happens when you stop pedaling with your marketing. You’ll fall off the minds of your audience as they look to your competition who are still targeting them.

Now is the perfect time to start a new real estate direct marketing campaign or to ramp up your current one. People are motivated to sell for many different reasons. Some may be unable to stay in their current home while others may be trying to downsize for a simpler, less expensive lifestyle.

You can help them out, but it only works if they know who you are and what you have to offer. Open Letter Marketing can help you out. We feature a variety of products and services to make your marketing campaigns more successful. We keep adding new products that we recognize as valuable for our customers, such as ROS mailers, Autopen Letters, or postcards.

With so many options, it can be overwhelming, trying to decide where to put your focus and marketing budget. Our Customer Success team is ready to help you. One call, and we can help you choose the products and services which are the best fit. It only takes a few minutes, and you can start seeing amazing response results from your first campaign. Contact us at 978-269-0245.

What is the ROS Mailer and Why Do I Need It?

As a real estate investor, you’re always in the market for new strategies to help you gain more clients and improve your leads. The ROS Product from Open Letter Marketing is another option to help make you successful. Here is how it can help you stand out from the competition.

What is the ROS Mailer?

The ROS mailer or Rapid Offer System, prints an instant cash offer directly on your postcard or letter. The ROS system will take your property address and using proprietary software,will print out a fair cash offer directly on your mailer. You then have the option to choose from 4 cash offer types ranging from aggressive to conservative.

This mailer can be customized with your logo, preferred colors and fonts and other features to fit your unique marketing strategy. 

How Does the ROS Product Benefit Investors?

The biggest benefit to using the ROS mailer is that it makes you stand out from the competition. Your leads are getting multiple pieces of mail from investors asking to buy their house. They receive postcards, letters, flyers and more. Most of them get tossed in the trash. Why would they look at yours? Because it skips that introductory mailing and goes right to what they want to see – an actual cash offer. 

When you use this product with Open Letter Marketing, you can customize it with your own wording and choice of letter or postcard. You can select from several standard postcard styles or letterhead styles, choose your own font and select your envelope. 

The Offer Meter is what makes this product stand out. It identifies a range of prices for your properties, allowing you to adjust to the level you prefer. Level 1 is a low offer while Level 4 is the most aggressive level. Most investors choose somewhere in between, but you have the opportunity to review the first 10 records to adjust to fit your goals. 

Open Letter Marketing makes it easy to upload your lead list and generate ROS mailers with little work from you. 

The ROS mailer can take your marketing to a whole new level with more engagement and results. To learn more about this product or to place an order, contact Open Letter Marketing today at 978-269-0245.

Proper Data Hygiene

Did you know that over 5.3 million homes were sold in 2019? That information is according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). An even more important question for you is how many of those homes were still on your lead lists in 2020?

Wasted Dollars

If you have set up a direct mail campaign for your lead list, you’re sending out hundreds or thousands of mailers. You have to pay for the mailer and the postage, which can add up over time, especially if you take advantage of the benefits of multi-mailing campaigns. However, you’re wasting money if those leads are out of date.

For others, you may have outdated contact information or just bad addresses that prevent your mailers from getting to the recipient. If you don’t want to waste money on leads that won’t go anywhere, you need to clean your lists.

Open Letter Marketing offers a solution for lists that need to be updated. You can have your lists scrubbed and get the latest data for the leads. Our system provides the latest information for leads with email addresses as well as physical addresses.

To make marketing even easier, you can use our all-in-one solution with OLM InvestorHub. This platform provides a comprehensive way to keep track of all your leads while cleaning up lists to ensure you’re saving money on mailings with the best and most accurate data.

InvestorHub also provides you with the best leads, allowing you to focus most of your time and money on quality leads. Use it to identify your best marketing segments for a more customized approach.

You can schedule a live consult to find out if InvestorHub is right for your company. Call our Customer Success team at 978-269-0245 to find out more about InvestorHub and proper data hygiene for your lead lists.