Hey, Mr. Postman. Deliver my message to families tasked with settling an estate
From our experience, direct mail is a love/hate relationship with real estate agents. Either they swear by it or are totally opposed to it, with little middle ground.
This gaffe, in our view, is owed to the list that is used. Admittedly, the national average of direct mail response is abysmal - it's less than one percent. Blanket mailings do not work.
If you are in the camp against direct mail, perhaps you've taken the shotgun approach, or you have worked a saturated list of FSBO's, absentee owners, expired listings and the like. This type of data is overworked, particularly in highly competitive markets. By the time the property owner opens their mailbox, they have letters and postcards spilling out into the street.
Yet a probate list seems to defy this trend, simply because a lot of agents shy away from it. Ironically, while probated properties are low hanging fruit, they are overlooked by the masses of REALTORS® that do not know how to approach this delicate subject.
One of the reasons is fear of appearing as an "ambulance chaser". Our hard-won experience, however, has shown that concern to be misplaced. Nearly always, the heirs don't want the house - they want the cash in the house. Thus, your help to liquidate the estate home is timely and fulfills a genuine need.
Mailing to a list of probates, then, other things being equal, will yield a higher response than other direct mail campaigns. A targeted list of motivated sellers, coupled with decreased competition, translates to a higher ROI.
Although postcards are cheap to print, cheap to mail and there are no barriers to entry - they stare the recipient in the face - we advise sending a letter. Our reasoning and more insights on delivering your message will be explored in future posts.