January and February are shown to be the best months for purchasing a house or condo. So we’re starting off our new take on the Why Mail This Month? series featuring direct mail ideas, tips, and tricks from real estate professionals.

Why Mail in January? Happy New Year! The New Year is a time of new beginnings, fresh goals, and excitement for what the year may offer. Get your clients excited for 2014 with a special New Year offer (maybe a free home staging consultation for sellers) or “New Year, New Home!” greeting (for prospective buyers on your list).

Heather is a real estate agent who has been using direct mail marketing to advertise her services for many years. In fact, direct mail marketing is what made her famous and earned her the title “Hot Chocolate Heather”. When she first started her career as a real estate agent in Colorado, Heather had a hard time getting people out to her open houses in January in February because of the cold. She was losing business in what are supposed to be the greatest months to buy a home. Sitting at a coffee shop one cold morning she realized the only thing that got her out of the house was the hot cup of hot chocolate she was sipping on. So she decided to offer hot chocolate at her next open house to see if it increased attendance.

Using Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM), Heather sent out a 6.5″ x 9″ oversized postcard to all of the homes in her key buyer target areas. The postcard featured a map to the property, beautiful photos of the home, including a crackling fireplace, and the offer of a steaming cup of Belgian hot chocolate. Heather saw a huge increase in attendance from previous open houses in January and February and received 4 offers on the house. After that, she started serving hot chocolate at all of her winter open houses, and will be forever known as “Hot Chocolate Heather.”

A homebuilder in Phoenix, Arizona had very different, though equally effective take on the winter theme. The builder was hosting a grand opening party for its new master-planned community, built specifically to be family- and community-oriented. The builder wanted to reflect this unique quality, and because Phoenix does not get snow the builder thought it would be fun to create snow for families to play in. Using an occupant mailing list, the builder sent 5″ x 8″ postcards advertising the “snow day” to homes with children 13 and under and a different mailer to local real estate agents. Over 500 people came to the grand opening party; 5 signed contracts on houses that day, and 15 more came back later to purchase homes.

Joe, another real estate agent, had his first experience with direct mail marketing last year. He was looking for a positive way to stay top-of-mind with his clients and prospects without being too invasive or “salesy”. After talking to some of his colleagues, he decided to use Click2Mail to send a “Happy New Year” postcard to all of his current and previous clients. Using his own mailing list, Joe sent out over 100 4.25″ x 6″ postcards. He had such a positive response that this year he sent out almost 300 postcards.

Whether you are taking the opportunity to stay top-of-mind, promote an event, or advertise a new listing, direct mail has proven to be a highly effective and cost efficient marketing tool for real estate professionals. To learn about more ways Click2Mail helps real estate professionals use direct mail marketing, visit us anytime at Click2Mail.com.