You know it and so do I — marketing today isn’t the same as 20 years ago.
Gone are the days of sticking a bandit sign in the ground and waiting for the phone to ring. But with so many trendy marketing tactics popping up, what’s actually worth your investment as an REI?
Over the years, we've seen closely witnessed marketing strategies evolve, and we've taken stock of what does and doesn't work for investors when it comes to integrating new methods with the ultimate REI marketing standby, direct mail.
So, here are the strategies that I think are worth a second glance from investors:
1. Retargeting — it can increase your marketing response by 400%
Ever notice this phenomenon? You visit a website and then for some reason, you leave without taking action.
Later, you see ads from that company popping up all over the internet on various other websites. You’ll even see these ads pop up in your Facebook and Instagram feeds — it’s like this company is suddenly everywhere!
This is called retargeting. Retargeting is how you re-advertise to people who’ve already expressed some interest in your business (like visiting your website), and it can increase your marketing response by 400%1.
So how do you do it? You run Google pay-per-click ads from the Google AdWords platform, and these ads will show up across hundreds and hundreds of websites in the Google network. I'm talking big, legitimate websites your prospects already use every day, such as:
- Popular mainstream news websites
- Consumer websites like Best Buy
- And so many more.
An investor in Austin, TX recently ran a campaign that automatically integrated Google ads, Facebook ads and Instagram ads with their yellow postcard campaign.
They started seeing exponentially more exposure and repetition within their target market (family homeowners 30+ days late on their mortgage). Here are the raw numbers from their campaign:
- 13,218 yellow postcards mailed
- 530,000 Google ad impressions
- 1,158 clicks on those Google ads — that is direct website traffic
- 27,900 social media ad impressions (Facebook and Instagram)
- 79 social media ad clicks
- 405 tracked phone calls
- 295 qualified leads total
That's more than enough leads to keep you busy.
2. Facebook — 68% of U.S adults (your prospects) use it daily
Yup, I’m talking about Facebook — love it or hate it, your prospects likely spend time on it! Not only do 68%2 of all U.S adults use Facebook (so, millions of people), but 51%3 of Facebook users log in several times per day.
Not entirely surprising, right? How many people do you know who don’t use Facebook? Even my 80-year old dad does!
That’s why running targeted ads from the Facebook Business Manager can't hurt. And because Facebook purchased Instagram in 2012, you can simultaneously run your Facebook ad on Instagram too, reaching prospects on this popular, visual mobile app.
Facebook retargeting ads (like I mentioned above) are an amazing option for affordable follow up and repetition, but Facebook's paid ad platform will give you even more flexibility to reach new prospects.
Granted, the targeting won't be what you're used to if you send direct mail often, but real estate-related content usually does pretty well on social media, since it's a topic that people are naturally curious about.
Enter Facebook's pay-to-play game with caution and set your budget well ahead of time — oh and be sure to TRACK so you know whether or not it's paying off for you.
3. Direct mail — the majority of Americans (81%) prefer it and the mailbox is almost empty
When it comes to generating qualified leads for your real estate investment business, marketing to people via direct mail flat-out works.
The fact that people like direct mail is just a bonus — 81%4 of people still pay attention to what’s in their mailbox.
For REIs, your mailing list is going to be the bread and butter of your campaign. Many REIs have success targeting these demographics with direct mail:
- Zip codes
- Income range
- Single-family dwelling unit (SDFU) vs. multi-unit dwelling unit
- Number of years someone’s resided in the house
- Married vs. single
- Credit score
- Recently divorced
- Homeowners vs. renters
You can build on direct mail's advantage (the mailing list) by running the coordinated retargeting ads I mentioned above. This will continue to increase your exposure at a fraction of the cost of continuing to reach these people by mail.
PLUS, and this is the real kicker:
According to data from the United States Postal Service, Americans only receive 2 direct mail pieces per day5.
Only 2 pieces of mail per day!!
That means your direct mail piece doesn’t have much competition to be noticed in your prospects’ mailboxes!
With numbers like that working in your favor, it's a no-brainer.