As the holiday season approaches, real estate agents everywhere prepare to reach out to the people in their spheres… but it seems like it gets harder and harder each year to come up with genuine and stand-out ways to stay in touch with your contacts. Many real estate agents send out “holiday mailings” to past clients, but few know how to create sincere mailings that bond people with them and really compel a response.
For most, the month of December brings overflowing mailboxes, inboxes, and an abundance of personal distractions. It’s nearly impossible to draw attention to yourself during this time, let alone drum up repeat and referral business – but the good news is, there are tons of opportunities for those who look for them early enough in the season.
#1 Most Read Topic on AIC
The strategy that I’m about to share with you is not a new one, and in-fact we’ve shared it on the AIC Blog many times. It’s not only one of the most-read topics among hundreds of articles on our blog, this strategy also gets remarkable positive feedback every single year from agents who annually generate transactions from it.
If you haven’t yet tried the following strategy as an AIC member, it’s my hope today that as you read through this article, you’ll think about incorporating some version of it into your relationship marketing plan going forward.
Gratitude Brings You Together
Recognition and appreciation is one of the most effective ways to develop meaningful relationships with clients. As such, you can imagine why Thanksgiving is the perfect time to reach out and share sentiments of gratitude, plus remind the people in your sphere that you are dedicated to serving their needs, and the needs of anyone they might refer to you.
Try sending out this special Thanksgiving Letter (or use it as an email) and watch people bond to you like “super glue” and send you referrals.
But Wait, There’s More To It!
The real trick to getting a response is making sure the letter gets opened and read. This is easier said than done, but I’ve put together a few Pro Tips below for direct mail that will ensure you get those higher engagement rates.
Tip 1: Focus on the Top Tier
Create a list of your clients, this could be your entire sphere-of-influence within your database (what we call your House List), or it could be your best clients who have sent you a referral or done a transaction with you in the past year. Focusing on those you’ve had an interaction with in the past year, makes it more likely they will remember your name and make the connection when they see your mailing.
Tip 2: Make It Personal-Looking
- Use a plain greeting card-sized envelope, or a full letter-sized envelope to help your mailing stand out from every other item in their mailbox.
- Don’t include your company name in the return address area, just your name and address.
- Hand addressing something almost guarantees it will get opened, but at the least you need to use a font that resembles handwriting (if mail-merging your client’s names onto the envelopes) **Don’t waste your time sending this if you’re going to use mailing labels – it’s not worth the open rates.
- Forego the time-savings of bulk postage and use first-class postage stamps (commemorative stamps boost open rates even more) – this is one of the simplest things you can do to stand out among all the junk mail!
Tip 3: What’s on the Inside Counts Too!
- You can print 2 of these letters per page, and cut them in half so use decorative paper or cardstock to make them special.
- Sign the letter in your own handwriting. You can then make a copy of the letter… but more points for signing each one!
Tip 4: If You’re Going Digital… Calling Helps!
You can also send this same message as an EMAIL, and use “Thank you” as the subject line.
BUT – if you’re going to remove all the genuine “personal” touches of the physical mailing, follow up is going to be your most important step. Make sure you contact each person on a PHONE CALL (or voicemail) or TEXT, bringing attention to your email and making the connection personal.
Make Them Feel Special
Everyone wants to feel special and this Thanksgiving message makes people feel like family, plus reminds them to keep sending you referrals!
What’s your favorite way to bond clients and stimulate referrals around the Thanksgiving Holiday? Tell us in the comments below!