This is geared toward Home inspection businesses but the methods are a proven success that can be applied to all businesses.
In the last couple of weeks I've had several request from inspectors on how I use sendoutcards.com to build my business so I'll elaborate here and show you some examples. Some of you are already using sendoutcards and some are not so I've posted a few public samples on google's picassa web . In the interest of full disclosure, I do get a referral fee if you sign up under my name which I would be grateful for but not my intention here. In fact I would incourage you not to sign up if you don't think you'll use it because it would be a waste. But the good news is you can try it and there is no obligation to buy or commit yourself.
I'm big on building referral business because those leads are basically sold and just need to be scheduled. So my primary use of SOC is birthday cards, thank you cards and keeping in touch cards. These go to agents, buyers and sellers I've done business with. Any referral I do get, I will send a thank you card to the referrer and include brownies, cookies or a gift card to express my appreciation. This all garners a lot of extra business for me. I have learned no matter how good you are or how much money you saved them, they forget you almost immediately. But if you keep in touch with a birthday card or thinking of you card they always remember you. It don't make sense to left brained people like home inspectors but let me tell you, it works. People love to be appreciated and it leaves an indelible make on their psyche. Each day after my inspections are complete I enter the names, addresses and birthdays of the agents, buyers and sellers into the data base. Birthdays are pretty easy to get these days off of facebook but usually I'll ask them straight out if they mind if I put them on my birthday card list and they always happily agree. Then I just get the month and day. Once I put that info in I assigne them to a 3 year birthday card campaign that I created. I'll also send the seller a funny "thank you for allowing us to invade your home card" because they are potential buyers. and I'll either send a "nice to meet you" or "thanks for the business" card to the sellers and buyers agents along with putting them on the birthday card campaign. Additionally all clients and agents get assigned to seasonal cards and holiday cards. But by far the birthday cards are most powerful. I think it's because you thought of them and associated yourself with their most important day of each year.
By the way, the cards I send cost 62c plus postage and they're good quality but most of all they do all the stuffing, stamping and mailing. It's insanely cheap and time effective.
For what i'll call "new work" or marketing I also use campaigns. First let me explain about campaigns. campaigns are simply a single card or a sequence of multiple cards that you create before hand and can assign to a contact in your database. I use the campaigns a lot because it's a huge timesaver. Even after you assigne a client to a campaign card you can still edit it with a special message if you want.
I use these campaigns for Fsbo's, Expireds and Builders anniversary inspections to get the pre listing inspections or the builders anniversary inspections. I get the names from a couple locations including MLS and tax records but that's a whole other post. The new construction names I import to the contact manager in January for the entire prior years sales and I assign them to monthly campaigns that go out in a two card sequence 6 weeks and 4 weeks prior to the expiration of their builders warrenty. I get approximately 3 direct inspection per 100 cards and several referral inspections once the neighboors start talking.
On the FSBO's and expireds I go for the pre-sale inspection campaign "selling your house fast with less aggravation" This campaign list some of the benefits and a special package deal I have exclusively for home sellers. All of my marketing type cards say "call from this card and I'll give you $25 dollar discount". None of my cards are slathered with logos or company stuff. They only contain the company name and contact information. Remember, it's very important to keep it personal. They can check out all your professional credentials online or when they call. But logos won't make the phone ring.
OK this is getting to long but I wanted to give you a better idea of how you can use personal cards to grow your business in a fast, affordable and friendly way. again, here are some examples:
Campains and individual client cards.
If you're interested in learning more, feel free to PM me. Or you can go road test it for free at sendoutcards.com
PS: if you have an account with SOC and want to use my campaigns I can "share" them over to you for your own use. If you don't have an account with SOC just start a free trial account and I can also share them to you so you can at least check them out.