Marketing can be a hard nut to crack for many real estate agents and so a lot of realtors take a whambham approach to it. There are many new, flashy ways to skin the cat, but just listed and just sold postcards, when used with other guerilla marketing tactics like cold calling, are still very effective when you’re looking to build local real estate brand awareness. While there are a number of companies that can handle the design and mailing, the tricky part is: wording a just listed postcard in a way that helps you get more out of your marketing dollars. This article would show you how to do it and also present a few examples of the best just listed postcards and what you can learn from them. In the end, you should be able to create just listed postcards that help promote your brand and wins you more business.

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Do Just listed postcards work?

According to direct marketing statistics, businesses which get the majority of their clients from within a 3-mile radius of their office are:  REALTORS®, mortgage brokers, insurance agents, dentists, chiropractors. Just listed postcards when done right could help you create a “market expert” impression in your local market. Plus they are relatively cost-effective. According to ProspectsPlus, “you can literally send up to 5,000 pieces each day (to be delivered to EVERY SINGLE mailbox on your chosen carrier route) and still pay no more than 18.3 cents in postage per piece.” 

However, the problem is that the typical Just listed and just sold postcard has a 90% chance of getting thrown in the trash without a second thought. This is because the designs and wordings are generic.

They can only appeal to desperate buyers and sellers. 

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The goal of a successful just listed postcard would be to catch attention and create intrigue. It usually shouldn’t focus explicitly on the realtor but on the seller’s home and why the viewer should care. Hence, the graphic and colors should catch attention while the wording should create intrigue. Beautiful designs win every time. While this article isn’t going to focus on how to design just listed postcards, here are some ideas to help you create catchy just listed postcard wording.

What do you say on a just listed postcard?

Before writing the wording for your postcard, you need to understand the goal. With a just listed postcard, the goal is to create awareness about a new listing. Awareness is transient as people move on to the next best thing in seconds. The goal is to create recall. That means your logo should be top-notch, images should be engaging and messaging voice should be consistent yet relatable. 

While many just listed postcards might end up in the trash, this one won’t.

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Although it employs a misleading preview, it gets the viewer to open the next page. You might want to dial it down, yet there are some notable ideas to take note of as regards just listed postcard wording. The example above tries to tell the reader that one of their neighbors just listed their home for sale. It then offers the reader something for taking action. 

Since you’re trying to build awareness, your just listed postcard should capture why the reader should pay attention, where the house is located and who you are.

1. Why should I pay attention? 

Like most advertising, the first thing you need to do is speak to the right audience. Next, lead your prospect through a slippery slope that compels them to take action. At the surface level, a catchy headline should connect the readers with an offer, which leads them to your CTA. This is why most expert copywriters always start with the offer.  

A. OFFER

Gary Bencivenga, one of the most successful copywriters in modern times said “A gifted product is mightier than a gifted pen.”

You want to use the 40-40-20 rule of direct marketing.

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This shows that the offer is 2x more important than wording and design. Your just listed postcard wording and design should simply help put the offer in good light.

So how do you craft a good offer?

1. Only offer one listing per just listed postcard. 

2. Be creative. “Come let’s have a cook-out” presents a better offer than a generic open house invitation. Another way to present an offer is anchoring. For example; slash the price and print a new, reduced price below it. Another example could invite people to sign up for a webinar (home showing) and get a chance to win free gifts (state the prize). Also, you can use scarcity to drive folks to take action, for example “homes are selling within 12 days in …, Tx”

3. Show them what they’re getting. The listing in itself is your main offer. You want to present it in its best light with great pictures.

B. CTA 

Use a CTA that actually compels action. Instead of a “call now” CTA, experiment with an imperative CTA based on what the viewer might be inclined to do after seeing your postcard. Use Joana Wiebe’s formula, “I want to…”. The answer would be your CTA. That is, what’s your prospect inclined to do? Probably “view more listings”. It’s always a smart idea to put up your website or a QR code along with your number on your just listed postcard.

C. HEADLINE

There are lots of Just listed postcards with generic “just listed” headlines. People get these all the time and they probably throw them in the trash every time too. You want to be creative with your headlines i.e think up ways to grab attention. Study billboard signs, any marketing paraphernalia that catches your attention to get some ideas.

Using some headline templates I found here, a couple ideas:

“Just Listed: This can be your new home within the next 14 days” 

“City Island Homeowners: How much could this home be worth?”

2. Who are you?

The majority of people viewing your postcard aren’t going to call you right then. However, they might think your postcard is good enough to keep. Most times, your design has a lot to do with this. Ensure they get a basic idea of who you are by going through your postcard. 

3. Where is the property located?

While you don’t want to fill your postcard with wordy descriptions like “a house located on a picturesque hill… and on and on”, the goal is to encourage readers to find out more about the listing. Hence, having the property address on your postcard is a no-brainer.

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Examples of the best just listed postcards

Predicting whether a postcard will be successful is like playing a bet. There are many things that can go wrong. This is why you want to put your best foot forward and hope your just listed postcard doesn’t end up in the trash. While your design helps get your foot in the door, your just listed postcard wording could influence your response rates. Here are some examples of just listed postcards that work.

1. The simplistic design features the best images of the property taking more real estate (instead of the real estate agent’s headshot). The postcard also opens with a catchy headline that makes the reader interested. Yet, there is no explicit offer and the fonts used for the home’s details are too small. But overall, this just listed postcard works.

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2. Aside the great pictures of the home and the nice postcard design, the testimonial adds social proof.

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3. Although it seems wordy, this postcard works because it focuses the description on the main elements of the home. “Five bedrooms, four bathrooms with dual master suites” – anyone interested in these features would want to check the property out.

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4. This postcard (not a just listed postcard) wants to use urgency to drive action. And it does this especially well with its headline.

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5. This postcard does a nice job with its headline.

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6. This postcard stands out for its minimal design. The description also creates enough intrigue to lead the reader to check the back for the agent’s or company details.

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Conclusion

I hope this article has given you a few ideas on how to use just listed postcards to gain more local real estate brand awareness. However, you don’t want to take a scattershot approach to direct mail. Keep the 3-7-27 rule in mind.  It takes 3 impressions for someone to recognize your name, 7 impressions to put your name with your business, and 27 to become a ‘top of mind’ brand name in someone’s head.

Disclaimer: This guest article was written by Agnes A Gaddis. Agnes A Gaddis is a writer for Inman News, Influencive, and the TSAHC (Texas State Affordable Housing Corporation). She has over 7 years experience writing for the real estate industry. Connect with her on Twitter @Alanagaddis

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