Leaflet Sourcing Secrets

Today I’d like to share with you the secrets to sourcing BMV deals. 

There are many direct to owner deal sourcing strategies and leafleting is by far the best performing. It gives you the best return on your time invested. 

It’s also one of the easiest strategies to get started with. 

However! 

There are people that think it’s so easy that there is nothing that they can learn. Nothing could be further from the truth. 

Yes this is a simple strategy. Yes this is quick to get started with. Yes there are some common mistakes that investors make that you will want to avoid. 

So in the next 5 minutes we’re going to cover

  1. Ugly vs Pretty

  2. Location

  3. Copywriting Secrets

  4. Speed Of Response

  5. Frequency

  6. Outsourcing

Lets address each of these in tern:

#1. Ugly vs Pretty 

What do you want your leaflet to look like? 

Do you want it to be a work of art that you can show your friends? 

Or do you want something that is simple and makes the phone ring? 

Before we start this debate. Can we please agree on what we are trying to achieve? 

The only thing we want is for the phone to ring! 

Many property investors forget about response when their name is on a leaflet. Suddenly they start talking about branding and want to create something that looks like a Coca-Cola ad. 

Believe it or not, ugly marketing has been proven to get a better response than pretty marketing. 

So why don’t you see ugly marketing from big brands such as Coke?

Because they are doing brand marketing. The purpose of brand marketing is not to elicit a response. It is to create “awareness”. Awareness can’t be measured, which is a great place to be if you’re the marketing director or designer because you can’t be blamed if sales do not go up. This is terrible if you’re the business owner.

You want to know how many calls you got from every pound spent. You can only do this by entering the secret world of direct response marketing.

It’s a world where designers have fled because it doesn’t allow them to be artists.

It’s the world where entrepreneurs and savvy business owners live it because it gets quick results. This is the type of marketing that pays.

Please do not be put off by the unpolished look and feel of what I’m about to show you. This will give you the best return on both your time and money invested. 

#2. Location

You only want to drop your leaflets in the areas where you want to buy.

This might sound really obvious and please forgive me if you think I’m teaching you to suck eggs. The reason why I’m saying it so simply is that when I hear leafleting horror stories the most common problem is that the investor has carpet-bombed the entire town. 

Even if you had the money to buy all of those properties you wouldn’t want to. Why? Because you only want to buy in the areas that are going to be good for buy-to-let. 

That means looking for 2 or 3 bed terraced houses in the more run down part of town. 

If you’re leafleting where you live then you’re very unlikely to get a response. Unless you wanted to convert it into an HMO it’s not the ideal property to buy or trade.

So pick out the specific streets or areas where you want to buy houses. I’m sure you’ll know where they are. If you don’t then please let me know as I’ll write a specific blog post on how to find your investment area. 

#3. Copywriting Secrets

There’s an old advertising acronym that everyone uses – AIDA.

This stands for Attention – Interest – Desire – Action

These are the stages that you need to take a vendor through if you are going to persuade them to pick up the phone 

You might be thinking. That’s great Arsh but how do I apply this concept to leaflets?

The easiest way to show you is to start with a blank piece of paper and to construct a leaflet with you. That way you’ll have something that you can copy. You’ll also know how to create variations, if you want to.

So the first thing to do is to get attention.

The easiest way to do this is with a Yellow piece of paper.

Blank

We are getting the vendors attention with the leaflet colour and by pushing it through their door. 

Now we have to immediately show them how we will help them. If not, the leaflet goes straight in the bin.

The best way to do this is with a headline.

In an ideal world you would put their name in the headline. Just think when you are in a noisy room. You can always hear your name above the din. Similarly if you wrote their name it would immediately grab their attention.

You won’t have this, so you need to write about what’s on their mind. This can be as simple as asking them a question such as

  • Need to sell your house fast?

  • Are you struggling to sell your house?

This does 2 things. It will attract the people that want to sell their house and it will make everyone else throw the leaflet away. Which is fine, because you don’t want calls from everyone. Only those that are struggling to sell their house.

The only thing you need to make sure of, is that the headline is the first thing they see. There can be no missing it. Even with a half glance!

Blank 1  

Now that we’ve captured both their attention and interest. They are likely to at least read the rest of the leaflet. So how do we keep them reading? By telling describing the situation that they are in and then showing your solution. 

So why might someone want to move quickly?

 Blank2

Are there other reasons? Sure there are, things like:

  • Divorce

  • Debt

  • Repossession

  • Stuck in a chain

You could put all of these on the leaflet or you could create 2 leaflets and test what works best in your area.

My suggestion is to not go overboard with the pain points.

So we’ve shown the vendor that we know something about them. Now we need to show them how we can help.

 Blank3

 Now that they know exactly how you can help them you need to tell them what to do next. The more specific you can be in your description the better the response.

Blank4 

The fewer options you give them, the better the response.

This might sound counter intuitive and let me give you an example to explain why.

If I throw you a ball you may catch it. If I throw you 2 balls you are likely to drop them both.

Similarly if you have someone that needs and wants your solution they will do the one action that you tell them to, if you make it really simple.

In this case it’s said in a conversational way.

Why use a woman’s name?

Because it’s been proven to give a higher response than a man’s name.

So what do I do?

For years I put my wife’s name and number on the leaflets. Now it’s a member of my team.

#4 Speed Of Response

If you drop the leaflets on a Sunday morning then you are likely to receive some calls that afternoon.

You will receive fewer calls during the week and after 7 days you are unlikely to receive any calls.

This is not to say that you won’t but I wouldn’t expect any.

#5. Frequency

How many times do you have to ask your kids to go to bed before they do it?

Or if you’ve got older kids… How many times do you have to ask them to do their homework before they do it?

I’m guessing it’s more than once.

So why do we expect homeowners who might be desperate to sell their house to call us the first time we push a leaflet through their door.

This is without doubt the biggest mistake that uninformed investors make. Doing a leaflet drop once, getting a few calls and no deals and then saying that leaflets don’t work.

Remember, just like your kids, vendors don’t want to be told what to do. Even if you are helping them.

You also have to remember that if they are in debt, they are likely to be sailing down the river called DeNile! Unfortunately this is not a river in Egypt.

It may take them 3 or 4 times of seeing the same message before they summon up the courage to pick up the phone.

Pick a small area (1,000 houses) and make sure you do a leaflet drop once a month for the next 5 months.

#6. Outsourcing

I fully understand that no one wants to spend their Sunday mornings pushing leaflets through doors.

This delight is perhaps (depending on your pain threshold) the reason why leafleting only happens once or twice before the print is left in your garage to gather dust and your deal sourcing machine grinds to a holt.

So how can you make sure that the wheels keep turning?

You pay someone to do it for you.

So what are your alternatives?

Your printer is likely to know someone who delivers leaflets. And they are likely to be surprisingly cheap. Even a tight fisted investor like me was pleasantly surprised.

However there is often a caveat to their price. You will have to give up control over exactly where and when they will drop your leaflets. To top it all off… they will drop your leaflet with a handful of others.

Do you think this will hurt your response? You better believe it.

So you could post an ad on Gumtree or Facebook and hope to get lucky finding someone reliable and honest.

What other alternatives do you have?

Hire the Royal Mail. Yes they will charge you more than your other options. In my opinion it is money well spent because you take back control. They will post them on the specific streets you ask, at the time you ask.

So there’s your system.

Copy the leaflet above, or create your own variation. As you have seen this is not a complex process.

You do the drop the first time and write down the street names as you do it.

Then you pass this to the post office with the rest of your leaflets and tell them when you would like them to be delivered.

All you need to do is be ready when the phone rings.

To your success

Arsh Ellahi