In prospecting for new commercial real estate business, the direct letter process works very well. Today far too many agents take the easy solution of contact through email. The reality here is that many emails are simply deleted. Most property investors get tens if not hundreds of property related emails each week; do you really think that they will respond to your email?
When you send a prospecting letter, it will be seen by the prospect and it will be read at least in part. You should send the letters to introduce your call to be made in follow-up. On that basis you should only send the number of letters that you can follow-up.
Here are some rules to the process of using letters in your marketing efforts.
- Simple letters always work well. That is a letter of 3 paragraphs. Make it easy for the person to read the letter by keeping the paragraphs shorter and to the point. Use dot points to get a simple statement across. It is a known fact that most adults do not fully read correspondence unless they want to or have to.
- Regular letters work well with targeted people. That means sending different letters to qualified people at least once every 90 days. In this way you will build relevance. By the 3rd letter you are likely to be converting more letters to meetings.
- Follow up calls should always occur with all letters sent. In this way the cost of the letter is justified. If you do not follow up the letter, you are really wasting your money. Most prospects will not call you off a letter; it’s a simple fact of business.
- Target sending letters to the right people. That will mean knowing the right people and addressing the letter correctly. So many poorly researched letters are lost in the mail, never reach the person, or get ‘returned to sender’. If you do not have the right contact information or you have not checked the information, then do not send the letter.
- As a general rule, do not send bulky information with letters attached. That then sends the wrong message and the mail will hit the rubbish bin faster than you want. Only include a business card with your letter. In this way your contact is professional and connecting.
Many commercial real estate agents have built a solid market share with prospecting letters. If you decide to send and follow-up 5 letters per working day, the number of contacts made builds to 300 prospects over 90 days. That is a good prospecting model to start with.