How to reach just outside your client base

How many people do you know who are ready to buy or sell a home? It's probably more than you think. According to the BMO Harris Bank Home Buying Report, 54 percent of Americans may buy a home in the next five years. While this is just a survey of those with home buying on their mind, it's an uplifting statistic. More than half of Americans see themselves buying a home in the very near future! So, now what?

While participants in the BMO survey might not be looking to buy right this moment, that shouldn't stop you from making connections with potential buyers. When the time is right, you want to be the professional they call. You're already farming neighborhoods and building your database. Keep up the great work and don't stop now. This is prime referral time. The clients in your database have their own network of friends, family, coworkers, and acquaintances. Each client is a powerful asset. Even if your clients aren't looking to buy right now, they likely know someone who is.

Every mailing, every follow-up text or call, and every intentional conversation you have with your past clients brings you closer to those on the inside of their circle. The mailings you send to your clients might end up on the fridge or coffee table and get noticed by their friends. When your past clients hear that a friend is looking for a new home, they'll remember your name by the relationship you've created through intentional follow-up. These conversation starters can lead to valuable referrals. Create countless opportunities for your client base to refer you by continually reaching out.

As always, we are here to help. Our Client Follow-Up Program is designed not only to keep in touch with the vast database of clients you already have, but also to make it easy for them to refer you to their own friends and family. Get started today by visiting

Want to speak with a living, breathing person about client follow-up or other marketing strategies? Call us at 800.458.8245.

The best way to use Just Listed and Just Sold postcards

Just Sold and Just Listed postcards are a staple of many real estate agents' marketing strategies. But many people are not using them effectively.

Just Listed, Just Sold postcards are in a league of their own.

Unlike other personalized postcards agents use to farm neighborhoods, Just Listed and Just Sold postcards require a different strategy.

Where seasonal cards, recipe cards or general interest cards appeal to large groups of people in virtually any neighborhood, Just Listed and Just Sold postcards should be more targeted.

Best practices:

  1. Make gathering the material a habit.
    The information needed for a Just Listed or Just Sold postcard includes: one or more photos of the home, the asking price (or the price the home sold for) and your contact information. Make it a habit to gather this information and digitize it for every home.
  2. Find your target audience.
    Target homeowners in the same neighborhood (or similar neighborhoods) and in homes with similar value to your listing. You want the audience to have an understanding of what their house could be worth and to consider putting it on the market. It's often more effective to send Just Listed postcards to motivate potential sellers than to attract buyers.
  3. Educate with Just Listed postcards promptly.
    When you list a property, send out Just Listed postcards as soon as possible. Markets change fast. You want the neighbors to have the latest information about homes in their area, so they can be prompted to consider listing their own home.
  4. Follow-up with Just Sold postcards.
    They've seen your face and contact information once. Now demonstrate you've successfully sold that home. Showcase the price you were able to secure, so they can get excited about the potential value of their own home.
  5. Integrate prospective clients into your broader marketing strategy.
    You've now put your smiling face and contact information in front of a targeted audience with two very powerful touch points. The postcards are designed to entice prospects to consider selling and to show them exactly who can make them successful. (You!) Now it's time to keep in touch. Add these prospective clients to your broader farming or follow-up strategy, so they regularly receive direct mail that reminds them you're always available. The fastest way to lose a prospect is to stop communicating that you're ready whenever they're ready. 
Order postcards from The Personal Marketing Company! It's an easy and quick process. Your cards will mail the next business day! To order, visit or call us at 800.458.8245.

Get creative with your “thank you”

People are weird. We can sing the alphabet, recite the Pledge of Allegiance, and probably even spout off several quotes from our favorite movies. But, we find it incredibly difficult to say two little words: thank you. It's not that we don't want to say thanks, we often have a hard time figuring out how to say it. How can we show the depth of our gratitude with two simple little words? If someone gives us a referral that leads to the sale of a home, how can a quick “thank you” suffice?

We know that finding the best way to say thanks can be hard. So, we've thought of a few ways to creatively and genuinely communicate your gratitude.

  • Make a phone call. Taking a few minutes of your time to make a phone call with no ulterior sales motive will encourage people to answer the phone when they see your number.
  • Write a personalized “thank you” letter and mail it to their home address.
  • Invite them to lunch or coffee and enjoy just catching up. No business talk allowed.
  • Offer to take care of a chore they may need help with, such as mowing the lawn, raking leaves or hanging up holiday lights.
  • Share inspirational books, music or podcasts with your friends that will brighten their day.
  • Prepare a meal and deliver to their door during a busy and/or stressful time. Make sure it's packaged to be frozen if they need to save it for a later date.
  • Build or craft something that they wouldn't expect, such as a personalized frame or wall hanging that you know fits their décor.
  • Book a massage to help them unwind.
  • Give a relaxing gift, such as a warm blanket, cozy socks or soft throw pillow. Don't forget the chamomile tea and eucalyptus candle.
  • Refer their business, products or services to your family and friends. Networking is a powerful way to express gratitude.

If you're still not sure, just tell your friends or loved ones how their actions made you feel. Whatever you do, be sure to acknowledge your thankfulness because as author G.B. Stern once said, “Silent gratitude isn't much use to anyone.”

3 Tech tools REALTORS® should consider

Technology is here to stay whether we know how to use it or not. Your past, present and future clients use social media platforms, smartphones and various other forms of technology to make their lives easier and more efficient.

So, don't get left in the dust! Check out these three tech tools that will put you ahead of the game by showcasing your skills and services to clients and by streamlining the way you do business.

  1. Matterport Pro2 3D Camera
    This camera makes virtual tours a breeze! With the Matterport Pro2 3D Camera, you can easily walk through a home and capture the 3D images to create a virtual tour for your clients. You can post the tour as an advertisement or use it as a tool to connect with buyers who are relocating and need a sneak peek. It's a great way for followers to check out your listings without leaving their screen.
  2. Evernote
    Forget lugging around a notebook, planner, portfolio, and pens. Evernote is a free note-taking tool that allows you to stay organized digitally, saving both time and money. Just download the app to your laptop and keep notes and information. You can take notes digitally, or easily convert your handwritten memos with a click of your camera. You'll love this space-saver! Plus, you won't have to deal with outdated Word documents anymore.
  3. CamScanner
    For the Realtor on-the-go, CamScanner is a great way to scan documents and email them quickly. This app allows you to take a picture of a document and turn it into a PDF that can be sent via email from your phone. You can easily send documents to clients who may be out-of-town, and you'll save time making trips back and forth between buyers and sellers.

5 Pro tips for farming your database

You've sold houses, built up your database, and have a large circle of connections. With a list of valid leads just sitting in a spreadsheet, it's time to start farming your database.

Usually when we talk about farming, we talk about consistently blitzing a neighborhood with marketing materials, so that homeowners come to know you as the real estate expert in that area. Farming your database is a little bit different. Instead of trying to turn up new leads from a potentially unreceptive neighborhood, you're nurturing relationships you've already built.

Here are a few tips and suggestions toward successfully farming your own database:

  1. Personalize your client's experience - As clichéd as it may seem, the phrase “it's the thought that counts” rings true here. Send newsletters in the mail or share articles over email and social media that appeal to your clients' personal tastes and interests. If a client loves to chat about the environment, email them the Living Green newsletter. If they love to entertain, forward them articles on how to throw the best backyard party, or drop them a recipe postcard.
  2. Follow Up - Go one step farther after you enroll clients in a newsletter program, and recontact them personally about the content they receive. Text or call them, and ask if they saw that particular article that you thought might be of interest. Just a personal note  can go a long way toward making your clients feel special, such as, “This feature about the best dog treats for your new puppy made me think of you! Hope you find it interesting!”
  3. Remember important dates - Keep track of important dates and anniversaries in your database. The date clients buy their home, family birthdays, marriage anniversaries, and holidays are all great opportunities to recontact your clients. Reach out to clients with a personal message on these special dates to let them know you care.
  4. Stay in touch regularly - Your clients had a great experience, but if you don't keep in touch, eventually they're going to forget your name and contact information. They may even wonder if you're still in business. Engaging with your client database will help you stay relevant and up-to-date on the latest happenings in their lives. Knowing how the people in your database are doing will give you an edge when they are ready for a change of address.
  5. Be a friend - Don't be the annoying, pushy salesperson. Check in at times when it makes sense in order to show you care about building a relationship. Pushing your new listings and badgering your clients could send them running. Know when to step back, but don't be afraid to engage in conversations that aren't centered around business. People want to feel you are genuine and trustworthy, so they can confidently recommend you to friends and loved ones.

When it's OK to say "No"

Do you ever look at your calendar to find you've double-booked yourself? Is it hard to tell someone “no” because you hate disappointing people? Are you finding it difficult to find time to complete necessary tasks like laundry and sleeping because you're so busy? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, keep reading. We're going to help you learn to say “no” without guilt.

First, you have to stop associating the word “no” with the feeling of failure or letting someone down. Over-committing yourself means that you won't be able to give your best effort. You can schedule five client meetings and do them all half-heartedly, or you can commit to two and do them both well. We all have limited energy, and if you're spread too thin, you'll waste that precious energy just trying to get from point A to point B.

American poet Maya Angelou once said, “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” This is true about saying “no.” It's all about how you say it. Explaining why you can't help someone lets him or her know that you care enough to want to help, but you just aren't available. Most people are understanding and will appreciate that you took the time to explain. Keep in mind, people may follow up your explanation with other pleas aimed at changing your “no” to a “yes.”Be polite but firm with your answer.

Schedule time for yourself. You know what you have to do to be successful. Eating, sleeping, exercising, completing personal tasks/errands, and spending time with loved ones are all necessary. Write these on your calendar like you would a showing or an open house. Know that you cannot double-book these time slots because you are already busy. Providing yourself with the time you need to get things done helps avoid stress and gives you time to breathe.

Remember that you are just one person, and you won't ever be able to do it all. Do what you can with the time you have available, and don't worry about the rest of the tasks you can't tackle. Take solace in the fact that doing your best is enough.

Time to ditch expensive real estate websites

Have you signed up for real estate marketing websites to gain more listings, but feel like you're just paying the fees and never seeing results? You're not alone.

There are many problems with the various real estate websites out there that claim they can ramp up your sales if only you'll buy in. They promise your name will appear next to listings, but you have to pay extra to be the only name listed. The details of each membership option are often hazy and confusing, so you end up paying for services you're not even sure you want or need. You are forced to follow a formula that every other agent on the website is also paying to follow, so you aren't actually getting ahead of the marketing game. You're simply one name among your competitors.

The strategy isn't personalized or ideal, and the client feedback is even worse. With no control over the message put out by the real estate websites that you pay to market your name, you have no control over the message attached to your personal brand. Many of these websites provide false or unreliable information and have received poor user ratings. Do you really want to advertise on a website that receives complaints for giving false estimates? Of course not! You are a professional agent who offers clients personalized information that applies to their specific needs. You aren't simply one among many and you're certainly not unreliable.

You need personalized products and services that empower you to take control over your own marketing strategy with comfort and ease. You want to efficiently make connections and grow your client list. You don't want a marketing package plan that everyone else is using. You have specific marketing needs and you don't want to pay extra for fluff that won't get results. That's why The Personal Marketing Company is the right choice.

We can help you choose from among our variety of marketing products that will expand your client list. We aren't going to force you into a marketing strategy that doesn't make sense for you. We help market you in a way that your clients will respond to, and we enable you to provide clients with meaningful material they'll look forward to receiving. You have the personality and sales ability. We have the tools to help you market your professional expertise.

Check out what we offer at or talk to one of our marketing experts at 800.458.8245. We look forward to connecting and helping you reach your sales goals.

What NOT to do when you meet a new client

You've made a new connection and you've set a meeting time. You are on track to land new clients and start their home buying or selling journey. Here's what NOT to do if you want to build a positive and lasting relationship.

Don't be inauthentic. Clients can tell when you are putting on a show. Take off the salesperson persona and focus on the person or people in front of you, rather than focusing on completing a transaction.

Don't dominate the conversation. Give a two to three minute explanation of who you are and how you help your clients, and then let them explain their needs in detail. Ask questions and allow the relationship to grow naturally, without showing any canned PowerPoint presentations.

Don't forget to do your research. If you have any information about your potential clients, dig a bit deeper. You may know that they are hoping to buy a larger home because their family size is increasing, so talk about neighborhoods in strong school districts. If your new clients were referred by their friends who bought or sold a house with you, discuss how their housing needs may or may not be similar. Come to the meeting mentally prepared to help the clients in any way you can, and they will see you as a helpful and authentic person they can refer to someone else to in the future.

Don't dive too deep. The first meeting shouldn't come with an overwhelming amount of information. Buying and selling a home is a complex process that can intimidate many people. Make it easier for your potential clients by breaking down the process into smaller steps that are easy to follow. You never want clients to leave a meeting feeling confused or stressed out.

Meet in comfort. Ask your clients to meet you at a new coffee spot or doughnut shop. As long as you choose a meeting place where you can comfortably sit and talk, you can venture out to new spaces. If you know the area where your clients would like to live, suggest a meeting place in that community.

How to use targeted marketing postcards

Sometimes it's hard to know who may be on the cusp of deciding to sell their home. Other times, there are very clear signs that someone may need the services of a real estate agent. That sign might be an actual For-Sale-By-Owner sign in a front yard. Or it could be in the form of a home categorized as an “expired listing.”

The people in these two categories are or have recently been motivated to sell. One of them is testing the waters without a real estate agent, while the other may be disappointed that their home did not sell the first time around. Both may be open to help from an expert. That expert could be you, if you can get their attention.

That's where targeted marketing postcard campaigns come in. Here's how to run a successful postcard campaign to these specific homeowners:

  1. Keep updated records on the recent for-sale-by-owner properties, and the listings that have been allowed to expire. This is how you build your prospecting list.
  2. Schedule postcards to be sent every few days for one to two months. Like most print marketing, consistency is key. These homeowners may need to see your face several times before taking action.
  3. Put a very clear and concise message on a colorful, well-designed postcard that will catch their attention. Selling their house is already top-of-mind for these prospects. When your message is “I see you're trying to sell your house and here's what I can do for you,” that message will resonate.
Still not convinced that postcards work?
  • According to a USPS Household Diary Study, people are reading postcards at an increasing rate, with a 3.9 percent increase from year-to-year.
  • Young adults love getting mail. The 18-29 age group doubled their response rates to direct mail in 2016.
  • Direct mail is cost-effective. The American Catalog Mailers Association (ACMA) urged the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) to make direct mail more affordable, and it worked. The PRC has approved an increase in the break point for Standard Mail flats from 3.3 ounces to 4.0 ounces. This means sending targeted marketing postcards in bulk is even more affordable than before.
  • According to, consumer goods companies have been successful in sending targeted direct mail. Only 10 percent of customers of those companies said the ads did not fit their needs and seemed targeted toward a different demographic. The very definition of targeted marketing means you're staying relevant to your recipients.

To get a jump on your targeted marketing postcard campaign, check out our postcards and other marketing materials at or call 800.458. 8245 for assistance from our experts!

3 Steps to marketing success the Personal Marketing way

Marketing is hard. It takes time, money, more time, effort, and – did we mention – more time? It’s one of those aspects of your business that you know is important, but it consistently gets pushed to the back burner because more urgent matters demand your attention.

While you’ve been busy meeting with clients, selling houses and planning your business strategy, we’re continually defining and refining the perfect marketing formula for real estate agents.

Step 1: Make that first impression.
Business cards are a staple of the industry. They validate your credibility. They serve as the first touch point for many of your prospects and clients. Your cards need to present your name, face and contact information in an appealing, professional format. Never be caught without one. Great leads may cross your path when you least expect them.

Step 2: Build relationships.
Use postcards and newsletters to get your name and face in front of more prospects and clients. Colorful newsletters and postcards are high-impact mailings that stand out in a stack of mail. They provide value to the recipient that they weren’t expecting – like a seasonal recipe card, or tips on improving your home’s curb appeal. Our postcards and newsletters are most effective when used to consistently farm the same neighborhoods where you’re trying to cultivate new business.

Step 3: Sustain those relationships.
Congratulations, you’ve closed a sale! Now don’t let those clients lose track of you. Satisfied former clients are the most valuable people in your database. If they are happy with their experience, they will refer you to their friends and use you again when the time comes – but only if you stay in touch. Enroll each client in your Client Follow-Up program, and for the next five years we will continue to send them postcards along with Today's Living magazine, which is published twice a year. Each time one of your mailings lands in their mailbox, clients will see your smiling face – and your name will be branded on their brain as the only REALTOR they'll ever need.

And that’s it! Three steps is all you need. The best part? We can automate this whole process for you. You can trust us, because we’ve been doing this since 1978. Our method is simple, and it works.

We know that every agent has a unique market. We’d love to chat with you about your personal marketing strategy, and how we can help. Call us at 800.458.8245 and a real, live human will be ready to talk with you.