Direct Marketing – Dennis van Lawick

In Issue 08 of Elite Agent we had six experts provide their top tips for 2016 in our special feature 30 top business boosting ideas. Here are the top five from Dennis van Lawick of Printforce.

    If you aren’t able to articulate why your service or skills are better than the competition, then it is likely that your competition won’t be able to explain it either! Find reasons for potential vendors to list with you rather than another office offering the same service at a similar price point. Is it the personal attention you provide? Do you attend every home open personally and make the follow-up phone calls yourself instead of using marketing assistants?Is it your marketing strategy? Do you have structured marketing plans across several media channels based on various budgets with proven results?Is the quality of the marketing products you use reflecting the quality of the vendors home when presenting it to the market? Signboards and open-home flyers are often the first and second impressions you make, not just for that home for sale but potential future listings. Embrace and adapt to technology changes, such as the advent of solar and backlit signboards, and smart-phone applications which offer buyers instant access to relevant information.
    There is no point doing great work and then not promoting it. Shout your successes to the market and let potential vendors know that if they want it sold quickly and for the highest price you’re the agent to choose. Obviously, you need to back up your claims, either statistically or graphically; however, a concerted and prolonged campaign in this regard can elicit a direct and/or subliminal response from people who may be looking to sell down the track. Make sure your name is top of mind when they want an agent to turn to.Testimonials are a fantastic way to put real faces and names to sold properties. Word-of-mouth endorsements are often the most powerful, so always ensure that the selling experience is a pleasant one. Take advantage of every sold property by contacting the homes surrounding that listing and let them know that you’ve achieved the sale. A proven technique is a letterbox dropper with a simple ‘Sold’ message, a photo of the house and your branding proudly displayed.
    Information about the property market in your local area is readily available to those in the industry, but not always easily accessible for the average homeowner or tenant. By collating, summarising and distributing this information in easy to understand terms, either online or via letterbox dropping, you provide a market resource for potential vendors while promoting your local knowledge and building your local profile.Alternatively, it may not always be about providing statistics. Marketing products such as recipe cards, fridge calendars and newsletters featuring local news and events have a tangible and measurable utility that householders are often more willing to retain.
    When it comes to your promotional marketing, squeezing in too much information can actually be a disservice. Whether it’s a personal profile letterbox dropper or a signboard or brochure promoting a property for sale, keep it simple and to the point, both visually and in your wording.The most common mistake we see is agents trying to cram too much text onto a signboard or brochure, making it a tough read for the average person. A clear and concise message facilitates a higher retention rate. Arouse the interest of the audience, establish a line of communication and thereafter you can offer them all the information they want.When it comes to promoting yourself, focus on one or two key themes. Cramming multiple ideas onto one letterbox dropper, for example, may seem like a good idea and better value for money, but your audience may not be able to absorb all those ideas and will more than likely lose interest. Your audience should be able to sum up the theme of your promoter in just a few seconds.
    Ad-hoc approaches to marketing may be suitable in some circumstances but pay attention to how your brand messaging translates across all mediums.A consistent, periodical letterbox drop not only shows your audience that you are well established but also serves as a constant reminder about who you are, what you do and what your branding looks like. The best campaigns go hand in hand with current listings, meaning your signboards and property brochures should reflect the same corporate identity.Furthermore, consistency should also apply within an office. We often see agents from the same office insisting that they use differing templates from each other. This interrupts your overall corporate identity and you lose the benefit of having more reps with more properties promoting your brand.

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