LOS ANGELES – I recently came across an interesting article on the Los Angeles Times from Jason Hanson, the article stated many interesting facts on how the online marketing has been on the rise since the early 2000’s. Just like Mr. Hanson points out interesting facts there, here are some points that I have to strongly disagree with.
Here Are a Few Points Jason Pointed Out:
- The Internet produces crappy leads and not many deals compared to direct mail.
- The Internet is a waste of time for most real estate investors.
- Direct mail (not the Internet) is the best way to go out and buy single-family houses and become a successful real estate investor.
One of his final thoughts:
“If you really, truly want to be wealthy, you’d be much better off mailing 1,000 or 2,000 letters a month, instead of doing any Internet marketing.” ~ J. Hanson
What are we talking about here?
Are we talking about an advertising technique (direct mail) versus marketing on the Internet? or Are we talking about Offline Marketing (to include direct mail) versus Online (Internet) Marketing?
You see direct mail is an advertising method and only an element of marketing. It’s a way to get your message out there about what you do and how you can solve problems with your business as the solution. It’s heavily used in Offline Marketing.
Whether you refer to it as direct marketing, direct mail, or direct mail marketing, it is still a form of advertising and only an element of marketing as a whole.
Where am I going with all of this?
My question to Jason would be: How can you compare a single advertising element of Offline Marketing to the hundreds of advertising elements of Online (Internet) Marketing?
If you said direct mail marketing produces more deals than classified advertising, then it might have made more sense to me. However, you said Internet Marketing.
I’m not here to knock direct mail. It can definitely produce some great results. There is something about seeing a message in writing that really makes that personal connection. I remember when I was deployed overseas, my wife asked me why I didn’t finish writing her a letter yet, and I replied, “I sent you an email yesterday.” Needless to say, she wasn’t very pleased and a letter was in the mail that same week.
It’s simple. A written letter comes across more personal than a typed letter because it gives the undeniable perception that you put more time and thought into your message.
Jason used this principle as a way to present the case that a mail lead would be more motivated and produce a better response. He said that this is why you’d get more deals. Yeah that might be better than classified advertising, but Internet Marketing as a whole… I think not! My wife and kids loved it when I was able to get on the video Webcam and talk to them while I was deployed. I loved it too and although I could reflect on letters, I more so looked forward to the face-to-face aspect of connecting online.
Face-to-Face is great and the closest you’ll ever get to that (when doing internet marketing) is through Video. In my opinion, a Video Marketing Campaign would crush a direct mail letter campaign. Then again, this is just my opinion.
When I was deployed, I waited in line for 2 to 3 hours just to speak to my family for 15 minutes. Sometimes, they weren’t even home.
I wanted to hear their voice. Letters are great, but to hear their voice just made my day.
Hearing a real live voice can definitely add more of a personal effect. This is why I ask for a seller or buyer’s phone number when they send me an email. I’d rather talk to them, so they can hear my voice, listen to my tone, and be able to feel the authenticity of how I can help them. In my opinion, Audio Marketing would crush direct mail letters. Sometimes you’ll see signs that say “24 Hour Free Recorded Information Line” on listings. This is typical with offline marketing and from what I hear it works really well. I’m going to test it out soon. Audio Marketing can be done online as well, through podcasting or just simple web audio.
I also disagree with the statement that “The Internet produces crappy leads”
If tire kickers (crappy leads) can come through your phone or they can come into your office, surely they can come through the Internet.
It’s not the Internet that produces crappy leads; it’s a crappy marketing message that produces crappy leads. A solid marketing message can produce quality leads because most of the tire kickers will disqualify themselves. Your marketing message should speak to those who need to hear it (your target market), and not just focus on everyone. Sure you’ll still get some tire kickers; that comes with marketing in general, but the more tight and focused you are on your target market, the better your results will be because you’ll be going after people that need you.
It doesn’t matter if you use direct mail, Banner Ads, Flyers, Google Adwords, Newspapers, Craigslist, Email, etc. It all comes down to the message and your ability to show that your business is the solution.
Also, we need to look at leads as people and not just numbers. While numbers are extremely important, it’s the person behind that “lead” which determines its quality. It’s not the Internet. It’s not direct mail. It’s is all about the individual.
A “lead” can walk outside to check their mail and see a direct mail letter and say, “This is great. I can get my home sold.”
That same lead can hop on Google and do a search and find a website that delivers a good message and they can say, “This is great. I can get my home sold!”
Who they go with will depend on whom they see as more of a solution to their own personal issue. I doubt they’ll say, “Well this investor was nice enough to send me a letter in the mail, so I’ll go with him/her” It all comes down to the message and your ability to show your business as a solution.
Once you get to this point, you’re still only half way towards turning (converting) that lead into a DEAL. It comes down to whatever system you have in place in order to close the lead. I’ve certainly lost leads.
To learn more about real estate and Local Records Office go to http://www.LocalRecordsOffices.net