Email Etiquette Maximize your e-mail marketing with these tips.
It’s still possible to build a successful real estate business without being tech savvy, but today’s technology can make it much easier. And, e-mail marketing has taken off as a cost-effective means of getting your message out, says Randy Eagar, founder and president of Computer Camp, based in Salt Lake City. But, there are subtle ways you may be sabotaging your e-marketing efforts.
Most sales associates use real estate–specific software to manage and customize large databases of clients, customers and contacts. Eagar likes two software programs for that purpose: an application called Respond that’s tailored to work with Microsoft Outlook, and a program that’s part of a software suite called Top Producer.
Whatever program you use, look out for common mistakes in bulk e-mail management. “A lot of people will just put a whole bunch of names in the ‘To’ and ‘Cc’ fields,” says Eagar. “The recipients of those e-mails absolutely hate to see all those names in the fields. And the other no-no is putting all the names in the ‘Bcc’ field for blind copies, because it shows up as ‘From Dick Smith, To Dick Smith.’
Both programs, Respond and Top Producer, allow a user to send personalized bulk e-mail, so each message appears to have been sent only to the recipient. As an alternative, Eagar says, you may subscribe to a third-party service that will send out customized e-mails for you.
Then, there’s the matter of the message itself. Eagar says it must not be seen as self-serving. “There’s a real fine line between spamming somebody and sending something of value to somebody.”
If an agent e-mails a past client and simply seeks a referral, Eagar warns, the recipient may interpret that as spam. But if the sender passes along a link to a relevant article about the local real estate market, or even provides a coupon for a meal in a local restaurant, it adds value to the message.
“People love to get that kind of stuff. What you’ve got to do is figure out what is in it for the buyer. If you can please them, it’s not going to be construed as spam.”
The common message from a variety of real estate experts is, that customers want to feel that they’re special and their time is respected. If you keep those factors in mind and embrace technology to accomplish them, you can move ahead in a marketplace crowded with others who don’t.