If you’re reading this, you are either an online sales specialist who is digging into prospecting, a manager of an OSC or in marketing. The good news is that we all have the same goal and that is a sale! We’ve recently been saying, “Nothing happens until a sale happens.”
In a time of nervous buyers, high interest rates, high inventory, low incoming leads, and incentives, we are pulling out all the stops to get things moving! One of the best ways to attack this is through prospecting the leads that live in your database. BUT…. we HAVE to be tactical.
Let's talk about an action plan because now is not the time to spray and pray. We have to send targeted emails to our leads. Let’s be honest, people are getting borderline abused now that things have slowed down. Those who only focused on new leads are now bombarding inboxes and text messages of buyers who haven't heard from them in quite some time in a desperate attempt to drum up business. Again, prospecting is important, but it needs to make sense.
With the extra time we have, we should get micro in our segmentation. Meaning, the message can have the same “meat and potatoes,” but the details should be targeted to a specific audience (examples include: rating, area, community, floor plan, price point, amenities, etc.). This might take an extra 20% of your time, but it will have a higher open rate AND it will groom them to continue to look for emails from you in the future. If they continue to get emails that are not relevant to them, they will continue to ignore or opt out. The quickest way to be flagged as spam by email carriers is to send an email to the masses including those with incorrect email addresses, no email addresses or those who have opted out. Talk about a high bounce rate! The last thing we want is to not end up in the potential buyer’s inbox at all.
Send Targeted Emails
Let’s break through the clutter and digital pollution by providing VALUE to our customers. When we help the customer better understand something, provide next steps, or even give an option to no longer receive your emails, we are helping our customers feel less threatened. They’ll look at us as the expert, and we’ll demonstrate that we’re truly interested in their wants and needs.
Follow Through/ Piggyback
We can’t just send an email once per month and expect stellar results. We have to have a variety of communication channels. We have to connect the dots for the customer. Think about it… “Oh, I’ve seen ___insert OSC name here____ on the website before. Now, I just received an email from them. Oh, now I just got a voicemail from them. They’re a real person after all! Wow, now they’ve sent me a text in case it’s more convenient for me.” The customer almost has a sense of urgency to communicate back to us because they can tell that we CARE! We have to do this consistently - I mean every month! Put it on your calendar as a reminder at the beginning of the month and use the rest of the month to follow through/piggyback on what you sent!
Something that I’ve seen more recently is marketing digging into the online leads and sending inventory blasts, community events, newsletters, etc. Those things are great, but they need to be coming from a marketing-specific email. The OSC email is to be thought of as a one-to-one hotline to a specialist who can help. As soon as they start getting marketing emails from that address, the threat and fear creep back in. So, be sure those come from a marketing email address. Then, the OSC can piggyback on that email and land in the buyer’s email a second time without seeming spammy. That's a win-win! Also, knowing of new releases/phases, new floor plans, incentives, offerings, etc. gives the OSC something to talk about in their outreach that benefits the customer and promotes engagement.
We want our prospecting to pay off not only for our customers but for our company. So, be sure to do specific segmentation, send targeted emails that provide a piece of value and have a call to action for the customer to take action, follow through with next steps for consistency and make sure that you are in communication with your marketing team so that you can use their messaging to your advantage and piggyback off of what they are sending.
We don’t want to come across as desperate; we want to come across as helpful. That’s the value of this job after all!