We’ve talked about major mistakes agents are making with their newsletters (and how to fix them) recently here on Agent Inner Circle, and we’ve also talked about how to get a stellar testimonial to use in your business. Well, we’re following our own advice – and would like to welcome REALTOR, Broker, and Coach/Trainer Neil Mathweg as our guest author today. He’s a longtime user and strong supporter of our newsletter, Service For Life! Let’s see how Neil used a newsletter to increase his bottom line.
Since 2007, every year, I have added between 30-60 transactions, simply by consistently sending a monthly newsletter. So, I know first hand that this service positively impacts an agent’s bottom line, especially coming from someone who teaches agents to challenge the status quo, be different, and attract business instead of chasing business.
As an agent, I would consider myself forward-thinking, advanced in my ways, and even a pioneer in ways to generate leads and build a successful business. I mean I, did start a podcast called Onion Juice Podcast for real estate agents to challenge the status quo and help them become media companies that happen to sell real estate.
So with all this non-traditional forward thinking; why would I still be a raving fan of a newsletter? I mean, come on, newsletters are old-school. Mail is dead. This is what you hear, right? Well, I don’t think it can be further from the truth.
I not only built my business using newsletters, but have maintained a 10-20% return year after year. Meaning if I have 300 in my database, I would do 30-60 transactions a year from the people in my database or new clients that people in my database referred me to.
Let’s back up though. I started mailing newsletters in 2003.
My first issues were called Mathweg Minute – “it only takes a minute to read!” (Pretty cute, hey?) I mailed that for three straight years and in 2005-06 when my business was booming and quite frankly out of control, I found myself missing weeks. Consistency was missing (huge mistake). I realized after 2006 I had only mailed 7 of 12 newsletters that year. I missed 5! It was so hard to keep writing when I was so busy. That is when I found Service for Life! and joined the other agents who have used it to build their business over the past 2 decads. And guess what, I have been using it ever since.
Not only did it help me stay consistent but it also gave me a better return. A few things I found that worked the best was:
- The look – a lot of people cringe when they see it. It looks homemade, like something I put together in my office. Well, that is exactly why it works. A perfect, shiny, glossy, newsletter tells the reader that you bought it and slapped your name on it. I get one of those from my financial advisor every month. I know he didn’t do anything to put it together. With SFL looking homemade, my readers assume I built it myself. Also, I always say, “people can’t relate to your perfection”. With the newsletter not looking perfect, my readers can relate to me and the newsletter more.
- Client appreciation – This is a section of your newsletter where you personally name people who referred you within in the last month. These brings more referrals. People love to see their name in print!
- Power of mail – It has taught me the power of mail. Email is so noisy. My inbox is always full- probably just like yours. Google actually now separates my email, so 99% of newsletters sent to me end up in my promotional tab and I don’t even see it. However, I see every piece of mail. So does my wife (who doesn’t see any of my emails).
- Content – I also love that most of the content is not about real estate. Over my 15 years of being a REALTOR® I have learned that most people don’t care about real estate as much as we do. I love that there is just real estate sprinkled in throughout the newsletter but it doesn’t overdo it.
- The call-to-actions and special reports that come with the newsletter.
- Sponsorship – With so much space in the newsletter I am able to leave room for sponsorship. This helps cover my cost and give other local business a space to advertise. It’s become a win-win.
What I’ve also learned over the years is that newsletters works so well with other strategies. I created a program called RoundBox, where I coach real estate agents. I have created a three pillar process, which the first pillar is using your Service For Life! The second pillar is what you are going to do chase business, and third is – what you are going to do to attract business?
These strategies create a well-rounded plan that sets you up for strong growth while protecting you against burnout.
Once you have a clear plan, then it’s all about staying consistent. This is what was missing from my plan until I found Service For Life!
I believe that most agent have what I call “Shiny Object Syndrome” They try one thing one month, then they see something another agent is doing and they stop what they are doing and they go try something else. Or they add something to their plate and slowly fade away from doing things with excellence. Instead they just need to stay the course. I often say, “if you want to ruin a man’s vision, give him two.” It’s crucial to stay the course.
Want more information about Service For Life! ? Just click this link. You can read some of our testimonials and watch videos of agents who’ve been successful with the system. You can also download the free report from our home page, and attend a webinar that gives you all the background about why this powerful system works, and the 14 direct-response elements in every issue.
6 thoughts on “Making Money with your Newsletter”
Unfortunately I’ve not had the success that Neil claims.
I’ve used Service for life news letters for quite a few years and don’t think one transaction can be attributed to it other than using it as a way to stay in touch.
I send a combination of snail mail and email, about 25 percent unsubscribe from email and I have a hunch a greater percentage simply delete it. Why do I think people delete it? Because I do that consistently for “newsletters” that do not speak to me or when busy and don’t have time to read.
There are a handful of people who I do know read my newsletter.
If it wasn’t deductible as a tax write off I don’t know I would use it which may be the case coming up with the change in tax laws.
I believe it would be more valuable if it were about two pages rather than four just because people, unless retired and nothing to do won;t take the time to read through that many articles.
Thank you for taking the time to comment on our article. It’s true, every single agent can’t have amazing results like some of our stand-out agents. However, I’d be surprised if not one of your leads or sales has come from the newsletter. If you’ve sent it out consistently for a number of years, and you have a high-quality list of people who know you, those people are seeing your name and face each month- remembering you are a REALTOR and the services you offer! If you are getting referrals, and repeat business- it’s because you’re staying in touch. That’s why it’s SO important to touch bases with those quality people every month.
As far as people not reading- you might be surprised! The print newsletters hang around people’s homes, and are even given to friends. If you have enough content to read in more than one sitting, they’ll hang around even longer. Agreed on the email front- it’s a bonus to go with the cornerstone of the program- print. Most people don’t have time to read their email, which is why print is so much more valuable.
Ellis, I invite you to download and read this guide: https://www.serviceforlife.com/ultimate/
It’s a long read, but it may help you target your marketing to better advantage, and to read about some agents that were part of a study to see how/why print media works, and how it can help your business. Again, thank you- we appreciate hearing from you.
-Alex Camelio, CEO
I started using your newsletter 4 years ago and it truly revolutionized my business. I have become a household name in my town and I am so happy to spend what little time and money it takes to produce and get it in the snail mail.
That’s so great to hear Ronald! You must truly be a great agent, one people connect with- and you’re cementing your reliability and consistency in your clients’ subconscious minds by getting it out each month.
Thank you for taking the time to comment, and for being a longtime member.
I am currently researching newsletters and have seen 2 articles in REM Inbox recently…one was yours for SFL, and the other was David Greenspan’s KITSpak. What’s causing a lot of confusion and hesitation for me is that the KITSpak premise is the exact opposite of SFL. They say an agents’ newsletter should not look like something you made at home. And theirs is the shiny, glossy variety. And they also claim that their format and method has proven success in today’s market. Makes it kind of difficult to make a decision when you have two diametrically opposing schools of thought on a marketing product 🙂
Hi Sandy. We appreciate your comment- this type of marketing is pretty old-school with a lot of years behind it to prove it works. Think about what you do when you receive marketing material in the mail- most people sort it right over the recycle bin. Are you more likely to open something that looks like personal mail, or a glossy flyer trying to sell you something? Personal beats sales-y every time. You are welcome to try us and find out for yourself- why don’t you try both newsletters at the same time and measure results! We’ve got lots of testimonials on our site from people who have used Service For Life! with great success- the key is being consistent, giving it time to work, and having a great list who know your name and face. https://www.serviceforlife.com/comments/