How Cathy Got 3 Clients By Promoting Her Books on Postcards

Cathy Blight, an agent in Michigan, has been in real estate for over 20 years. 

She primarily works in a rural area outside of Detroit and specializes in lakefront properties, most of them high-end homes. 

Cathy’s primary marketing strategy is using postcards to farm her area.

“There are about a thousand postcards that I send out, not just to the lakefront homes, but to the neighborhoods behind — the lake access homes, we call them.

“So what I did this time was I refined it a little bit and I went into the records to see what were non-homestead properties. And non-homestead by Michigan tech standards is a home that you do not — that you don't live in. It's not your primary residence. It’s either a rental or a business or a second home, a cottage or a vacant lot. So I specifically wanted to make sure I got to them

“So by doing that, what I did was when I went into the deed record. Instead of asking them to send it to the address, I asked them to send it to the taxpayer's address. And that way I would get people who didn't actually live in that home. So that worked out pretty well. Then on the postcard, I put an offer about getting my free book, you know, on selling your property. And I got three responses.”

Cathy includes a cover of her book on the postcards she mails out to let people know how to get  a free copy. 

“I had a picture of a home I had recently sold and mentioned that it sold in a day for — I forget how much over list because it was a little while ago — and then I said, you know, ‘If you want to sell your house this quickly and you know — and I had call, text or email had all those options in there — to get my free book. And then the title of the book, ‘How to Sell Your Home Quickly for Top Dollar.’” 

The three responses Cathy received on her postcards were from different types of clients.

Client #1

“The first one was a woman whose father had died and believe it or not, his house was right down the street from me. And I knew he had passed away, but that was a couple of years ago. So I was kind of surprised when I got this offer. And she said, ‘Well, I'm settling my dad's estate.’ And she told me where the house was. And she said, ‘I went over to the house. We finally cleaned out all of his stuff, but there was still mail coming there. And I went through the mail and I found your postcard.’ So I actually ended up sending it to a deceased person and I didn't have a response. They were no longer with us. And so she wanted me to come right down, and she really liked the idea.”

When they met up, Cathy gave the seller her book. 

“And she didn't even live in this area. She lived about a 45-minute drive away. And she said, ‘Well, that was really great.’ I obviously knew what I was talking about. And she really wanted me to look because they needed to sell quickly this thing for a long time. They wanted it gone.”

Client #2

The second client was a landlord who didn’t live in the area herself but whose property fell in the area where she had mailed the cards. 

“And she called me and she said, ‘Well, you know, I wasn't interested in selling my rental. As a matter of fact, I want to hang on to it. It's a good rental; it's a good neighborhood. But I want to find a house for myself.’

Client #3

“The third one was a fellow who lives right down the road from me. And he has a vacant lot that he needed to sell. It belonged to him and his mother, and he needed to sell it now because she's now in assisted living and he needed some cash to help support that. 

“So I knew that the lot existed. I didn't realize that he needed to sell it now. So there was three totally different situations that these people were in.”

Future Business

Beyond those three deals from her postcards, Cathy also expects several more transactions to stem from those clients. 

“They referred me to other people when I started working with them because they liked what I did.”

Cathy also discovered there were a lot more rentals around her lake area than she previously realized. 

“It was easily 10% of the mailing was rentals and was going from an address as far away as Florida. But they were still holding onto the house up here. And then sometimes it isn't necessarily that it was a rental when it's non wholesale. They could be what we refer to here as snowbirds. Right? And live in Florida in the winter and come up during the summer. And that was their summer home.

“I sold one last year. After a while, they sometimes decide they don't want to be snowbirds anymore and they just want to stay in Florida. So it's always wise to send it to the taxpayer. Don't send it to the house.”

While Cathy has done mailings in the past, previously, she did more traditional “Just Sold!” postcards and didn’t have a real estate book to promote. 

“And they were all very impressed when I gave them the book. And then they went home and read it. They called me and he said, ‘Boy, you really know what you're talking about.’ 

“So in the book — what I did in my particular book — was I took the main subject matter of each chapter and left it there. But I went in and tweaked it a little bit to make it a little more customized for my particular area.

“And they were impressed right off the bat that I wrote a book. Their attitude was, ‘Oh, you must know what you're talking about. You wrote a book.”

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