Pretty Sharp Marketing

Kimberly Zelena and Leigh Anne Losh at Help-U-Sell Direct Savings Real Estate in Verona, Virginia have definitely got their marketing hats on!  Like Mike Klein at Help-U-Sell Prescott Valley, they jumped on using QR codes.  Here’s a picture of their office Facebook page:

The QR code is that black and white box at the top/left.  If you get a QR code reading app on your smart phone (like Google Goggles . . . go ahead:  Google it), point your phone at the QR code and click it, the browser on your phone will take you to the Help-U-Sell Direct Savings website.  No need to fumble around with your fat thumbs typing in a URL on that tiny keyboard;  the QR code does it for you!   Hey:  why not get a QR code reader on your phone right now and make your first click on Kimberly’s QR code right here in the Set Fee Blog!  Go on; we’ll wait.

One of the things Mike Klein and Kimberly are doing is using QR codes with their listings.  They get a unique code for each listing then include it on property flyers so a customer can get more information instantly.  Kimberly told me she was going to start putting the code in a plastic sleeve and attaching it to the sign post.  Once buyers learn how to use this technology, they’ll be able to simply walk up to the sign and click their phones to get the details.

Next, notice the first post on the Help-U-Sell Direct Savings wall, the red thing.  Since the above is just a photo of the page, the link in it doesn’t work, but if you clicked it live on the actual Facebook page, you’d go HERE.  It’s basically an ETM:  pictures and descriptions of homes for sale, sold and saves, testimonials and a description of the seller offer.  Now the challenge is:  how to drive prospective sellers to that page and Facebook is a good start.

I know:  technology can be confusing and difficult, but sometimes it just makes things work better!  I’m glad we have sharp brokers in Help-U-Sell who see the possibilities and work to take advantage of them.

ETM Angst

Working with Jeanne on University today, we got into the marketing plan.  I explained that for the past several years, the Help-U-Sell ETM (Entire Target Market Mailer) had fallen from general use.  It was that M part that was causing pushback:  Mailer.  Mailing thousands of marketing pieces regularly enough for them to have impact was proving cost prohibitive in the down market.  Some altered the delivery method, replacing the stamp with a poly bag that could be hung on a door knob, but by-and-large, most just quit doing them.

I understand this.  One of the guiding principals of Help-U-Sell is that we constantly evaluate the cost of our marketing pieces against the leads they produce, and if the ETM was not producing leads and the cost was high, the right thing to do would be to move on to something else.  After all, there are market realities at play here:  John Powell told us if he did a blanket mailer in Tucson, a large portion of them would arrive at vacant houses; other brokers asserted that the ETM was not effective in a short sale market.

It all made sense until Jeanne responded to my statement.  ‘If most brokers are not doing ETMs ,’ she asked, ‘How is that message getting out there.’


She had reminded me that the ETM is not just a marketing piece.  It’s a message.  It’s our identity.  It’s one of the principle ways we differentiate ourselves in the marketplace.  We can’t simply abandon that without an effective and more efficient replacement.  To do so would drop us into the soup and mire of mere discounters!

Remember the message?

  1. We are HERE
  2. People use our service
  3. It works and they save money

Remember how we get that across in an ETM?

  • Pictures and descriptions of homes for sale
  • At least 1/3 of the listings feature a ‘Sold and Saved’ banner
  • At least 1 customer testimonial with photo
  • The Easy Way (probably on the back)
  • Our Guarantee

All of these elements work together to stake claim to a small piece of mental real estate between the ears of the consumers in your marketplace:  that we are different, that we get the job done, and we represent savings. 

I really want to hear from you:

Are you doing a regular ETM?  If so, how, how often, and what results are you getting?

Are you doing something similar but delivering it in an alternate way?

Do you have ideas about how we might adapt the ETM to today’s reality?

If you are not doing an ETM, how are you getting the message out there?

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