Why Most Real Estate Prospecting Letters Fail

Have you paid attention to the real estate prospecting letters you get in the mail?

Most of those real estate letters begin by breaking the #1 rule in copywriting: It isn’t about you.

Because those agents think the letters are about them, they begin the very first sentence with the word “I” or “We.”

As a result, a huge percentage of people begin reading the letter with a thought or feeling of “Why should I care about you?” or maybe “Yeah, so what? Who are you to me?”

The truth is, your prospects don’t give a hoot about you. They want to hear about themselves. The only reason they’ll read your letter is to see what benefit it holds for them.

You could say “My doctor says I’ll be dead by Tuesday unless you list your house with me,” and it wouldn’t budge them a bit. They’d think “Sorry, that’s not my problem.”

That’s a little extreme. But you get what I mean.

So there’s the first big mistake. And most of the time, from there it doesn’t get any better.

Those letters might go on to say how many listings an agent has or how many dollars worth of real estate he or she has sold. It might even mention their “alphabet soup” designations – which don’t mean a thing to most homeowners.

It’s all just more of the “me, me, me” message that doesn’t interest prospects in the least.

So what can you do instead?

You can write about their concerns and worries. You can show them that you recognize their problems, and then explain what you’ll do to help solve those problems.

Your approach will naturally be different if you’re writing to a “cold” group of homeowners in a specific neighborhood as opposed to say, a group of people with expired listings or a list of homeowners who have received a notice of default.

When you know what specific problems those homeowners have, it’s easier to show how you’ll solve them.

But even if you’re writing to a mixed farming area and don’t know what problems they need to solve, you can appeal to their curiosity and interest.

For instance, you can offer information about what’s been happening in that neighborhood. You can let them know how many homes are for sale or have sold in the past month or so. You can share average prices. You can tell them if prices are up or down from last month, or last quarter. And then you can offer to put them on your list for periodic updates.

Almost as an afterthought, you can let them know that you’d be happy to prepare a market analysis if they’re considering selling their home.

Today, successful marketing is all about giving something before you ask for anything. You have knowledge and advice. Give them freely.

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