Handwritten Mail For Real Estate Investors
How to win motivated seller deals with direct mail
10 years ago, the yellow letter was it.
It was the most talked-about method to finding motivated sellers.
But today things are different.
The MLS is crowded, so deals are slimmer. Seller inboxes (digitally and physically) are filled to the rim with tens of “I buy houses” messages. And investors aren’t just fighting other flippers, but realtors too, who now flip themselves.
But even though just about every metro market is bursting with wholesalers and flippers, it’s still a good time to be in this business. The demand for good real estate deals is at an all-time high with thousands of hedge funds, retail buyers, and investors all buying houses from wholesalers, flippers, and agents. ..We just have to figure out how to break through the crowded barrier.
So, how do you breakthrough and win in this “war of attention”?
That’s where this article comes in…
We want to show you how handwritten mail for real estate investors is an underused, but valuable, marketing tool that real estate investors can use to dramatically boost their results and ROI on their marketing campaign. And I’m not talking about letters with printer font that looks like handwriting. I’m talking about…
Real, authentic handwritten mailers, designed specifically for real estate investors.
I’m talking about envelopes that are hand addressed (rather than printed), and they look like a personal letter sent in the mail. Then the message on the insert letter/card/note is also handwritten with a real pen.
This can be done in a couple of ways.
Either you are physically handwriting all your mail— but I suspect your unconditioned hand will literally fall off after one day of work—or you employ people (but this will cost an arm and hand).
Or you use a print shop that owns several robot AI that uses robotic arms and hands that physically grab a blue pen and handwrite just like a real human hand; Much like what this mailing company does for real estate investors.
How to bypass the crowded real estate market
Before I talk about handwritten mail and its reasons for working well today… I want to boost your confidence a bit about today’s competitive real estate investing market.
You see, the volume of deals hasn’t shrunk.
There are still people who need to sell fast, as-is, and hassle-free. The problem is that the “only” roads that investors use to reach motivated sellers are now “freeway parking lots” (they’re as congested as metro-city highways during peak rush hour).
Just like you, hundreds of other real estate investors are waiting for their lucky chance that a motivated seller doesn’t ignore their plain postcard, yellow letter, or cold text message that everyone else is sending, and opens yours instead.
But the “open” is only half the battle.
Once they find out that inside the text or the letter is exactly the same as last week’s junk mail… they vehemently throw your plain-jane printer letter in the trash with no pity.
It’s no wonder that response rates are dropping.
It’s no wonder that people are screaming:
But I have (very) good news for you. We can actually bypass that traffic jam. We can take the “unbeaten” road that few people know about (or are too scared and cheap to take).
That road I’m of course talking about are these undervalued handwritten mailers for real estate investors.
While everyone else is sending cheap junk mail… real authentic handwritten mailers (designed by real estate investors for real estate investors) have been gaining amazing open rates and responses even in the most competitive markets; even double the response rates that typical yellow letters give.
Why is that?
Here are a few reasons why handwritten mailers for real estate investors have been earning hot responses lately…
Why it works?
1. It’s a less crowded mailer
Most real estate investors are too cheap to send these. They are one of the most expensive template letters to send (apart from Fed Ex envelopes, lumpy mail, and bulky mailing packages). Handwritten mail for real estate investors is priced anywhere from $1.10-$2.00 depending on the print shop, style, and design. But, the ROI and response rates more than makeup for the cost.
The majority of investors (especially brand new ones), don’t see past the price; they don’t look at the ROI. Instead, they pin expensive hand-written mail against cheap-looking junk mail. But that’s like comparing apples to watermelons. Because the majority of investors don’t look at marketing ROI or are too fearful of paying the extra investment… the result is that the majority of investors send the cheapest mail they can find.
That’s good for you.
Because it means less friction for a motivated seller to pick up and open your authentic, handwritten “birthday-invitation-style” mailer; Your unique, authentic hand-written mailer stands out in an ocean of junk mail.
2. Motivated sellers are human beings, not numbers.
In commerce, people typically do business only with those they like and trust. This is especially true in the real estate market. When dealing with off-market properties, the value you (the wholesaler/flipper/agent) are bringing to the table is not in the offer price… it’s in the convenience, speed, and problem-solving solutions that sellers can’t get in a traditional sale.
Motivated sellers need help. They need a leader. And they will only go with the person they can trust.
“Trust” starts with your marketing and your message. What’s the initial message that real estate investors paint when they send their junk mail?
Their junk mail paints a cold, hard, “I-don’t-care-about-your-situation” message. The opposite of what motivated sellers need. They need someone who listens, cares, and is empathic. Not another investor who just treats them like a number. What you send (whether it be mail or text or FB ads) communicates your narrative; it communicates whether you’re a spammy vulture only looking for the best deals… or a friend who will help get the seller out of any situation.
A real pen-inked handwritten mailer with an inviting envelope (handwritten address), and a handwritten note inside, add a personal and caring touch that junk mail will never have.
It’s no wonder that our real estate investor clients who use our template handwritten mailer are regularly receiving comments from sellers that say:
“I called because your letter stood out!”
“I called you over the guy because your letter was handwritten!”
“I loved your letter!”
You don’t get responses like this using plain postcards, yellow letters, and cold text messaging.
3. Almost 100% open rates
While it’s hard to measure open rates, one can make a close-to-accurate assumption about open rates based on the response rate you get. When real estate investors send junk mail, they get about a .1%- .5% response rate (sometimes lower) depending on their market and list strategy. In that list, there are only so many motivated sellers. Your ideal goal is to have every motivated seller on that list (whether it be 1 or 100) open your letter. But, the measly response rates of junk mail show us that it just doesn’t happen that way. With a rate of .1% – .5% in a mailing list 2,000 contacts, you’ll only get 2-10 calls.
But with a handwritten mailer tailored for real estate investors, on average you’ll get a 1.5% response rate; That’s 30 calls compared to the measly 2-10 calls junk mail will get!
That means a lot more people are opening the mail.
Here’s another reason why open rates are so high for handwritten mail: According to the U.S. Postal Regulatory Commission, the average American receives only 10 pieces of personal mail a year. That means when you send a personal-looking handwritten envelope, you only have 10 other similar-looking letters a year to compete against.
This means more opens. More opens = more eyeballs on your message which = higher chances of motivated sellers seeing your marketing which equals more deals.
4. Hard work and quality get a hard-earned response
When it’s perceived by your seller that you put time and money into your mailing piece, they will call.
People don’t like cheap. And quality handwriting (real handwriting with a real pen, not printer font), is far from “cheap-looking”. Depending on which handwritten mailing company you use, the mailing piece will communicate quality, unlike junk mail. So it’s no wonder that when we use handwritten letters, we often get calls months or even a year later from sellers who saved our letter.
This explains why sellers say things like, “We called you over the other guy because you handwrote us a letter….”, or, “We loved your letter, so we kept it to call you when we needed to”.
The facts on handwritten mail for real estate investors
We’re real estate investors ourselves here at Ballpoint Marketing. So we put our money where our mouth is and tested many mailers. With the 500+ clients we send handwritten mailers for, and our own flipping and real estate holding companies, we’ve found that handwritten mailers outperform other mailers by 2-to-1.
Even in crowded real estate markets, we see anywhere from a 1%-4% (quality) response rate.
That varies going from market to market, but in certain markets where yellow letters might get you a .5% response rate, our handwritten “birthday-style-invitation” mailer will get you a 1%-1.5% response rate (using the same list strategy and marketing method).
This might not seem like a lot, but let’s break down the numbers to show you that junk-looking mail (like text postcards and yellow letters), can cost you double…
$164 per call V.S. $90 per call
If you were to use typical printer font #10 letters, with first-class, you’d spend .82¢ per letter.
In a mailing list of 2,000 contacts, you’ll spend a total of $1,640 with that letter.
If you’re lucky, you might bet a .5% response rate on that; which equals 10 calls… spending $164 per call ($1,640/10).
Now take handwritten mail (specifically designed for real estate investors), and you might spend $1.35 per letter… or… a whopping $2,700 on that same mailing list of 2,000 contacts—more than $1,000 compared to a yellow letter campaign! But the initial cost should be of little concern.
Instead… you should be asking:
“How many (quality) calls do I get?”
On average, these template letters produce a consistent 1.5% response rate. This means, with this mailing list of 2,000 contacts, you’ll produce 30 calls—spending $90 per call as opposed to $164 per call when using yellow letters!
Compared to the yellow letter campaign… that’s 20 calls more!
Not that might not seem much…. But it means a whole lot when you consider cost-per-deal.
When it comes to finding off-market deals, real estate investors need VOLUME of leads to close deals. If you have a close rate of 30 calls per deal… you’ll need to spend $4,920 (on average), per deal when using yellow letters. But with handwritten mailers, you’ll only spend $2,700—less than half the price of your yellow letter campaigns.
At the end of the day, what matters is your marketing ROI.
And, handwritten letters have been proven to have the best ROI in today’s market.
How to choose a handwritten mailing company for real estate investors
At this point, if you’re convinced that handwritten mail is the way to go to find motivated sellers… The next step is finding a good mailing company.
Because not all handwritten mailers are created equal.
Here’s a guideline to finding a good reputable handwritten mailing company:
1. Are they real estate investors?
You want to make sure that whoever you use, they’re also real estate investors themselves. If they are, it means they’re in touch with the market… they know the pain points of sellers. Many direct mail companies have no idea how to set up handwritten mail for real estate investors or have no clue what motivated sellers want.
Well, at Ballpoint Marketing, we actually have our own “in-house” acquisition company. We wholesale, we flip, we hold. We put our money where our mouth is…
2. Do they USE their mail?
Many direct mail companies don’t even use their letters and postcards; they’re not even investors themselves.
It would make sense, that a good direct mail company tests their own material. But many don’t.
In fact, you’ll see in our product catalog that we have very few options compared to others who are like “the Amazon of mail” with tens of different pieces to choose from. Why is that? Because we only use and sell what works. We don’t just put out products for the sake of sales. We want to make sure that whatever we sell, we not only use but test and verify that it works, as well
3. Do they have real positive customer reviews and case studies?
This is a no-brainer… but you’ll find with many DM companies that they don’t carry any reviews about their mail. This is marketing 101 for Pete’s sake! In a world full of spam and scams, real reviews are a must. Well, we do have case studies. In fact, we have videos, Google reviews, screenshots, and more of real customers showing you how they got their deals and how they’ve built their 7-figure real estate investing business using our mail.
You can check out what they say here: https://ballpointmarketing.com/reviews/
Direct mail will last... a looong time
More companies are abandoning their direct mail marketing and using digital marketing instead.
That may sound like a new trend… but it’s actually a blessing in disguise for those opportunity seekers.
While everyone is afraid to dip their toe into direct mail… and rather go digital because it’s “free” and “cheap”… all it means is they’re crowding the “digital mailboxes” of motivated sellers… and leaving the door wide open for physical mail.
That means fewer people in the mailbox, and more chance of motivated sellers opening our mail, And even more so when using handwritten mail.
So, we (our acquisition company), and our clients are happy to dive headfirst into this opportunity and use DM evermore. Because while others are too afraid and too cheap to try it, it leaves mailboxes less crowded for those real estate investors willing to take a chance.
The mailbox isn’t going away.
The post office will still deliver.
And people will (happily) receive mail.
So we might as well jump on the opportunity today, and use handwritten mail to slip under their radar and get extraordinary ROI on our marketing dollar.
To see our results-driven mail that has scored 1%-4% response rates across the nation… check out our template letter below:
(created by real estate investors, for real estate investors… and still used today to dominate markets)