Tip to generate more calls from buyers - Posted by Dan (NC)

Posted by Ronald * Starr on July 07, 2001 at 18:47:58:

Dan (NC) --------------

Thank you for the clarification. I will stop worrying about the local District Attorney giving you a call.

Good Investing and Good AdvertisingRon Starr

Tip to generate more calls from buyers - Posted by Dan (NC)

Posted by Dan (NC) on July 07, 2001 at 09:47:38:

The market in Raleigh has been a bit slow, at least for me. My “owner will finance, no banks” ad was pulling in 3-4 calls a week. Mostly deadbeats who couldn’t afford to supersize their happy meal. I left that ad in, but put a “Rent to Own” ad right next to it. Same description, same everything. In three days I’ve gotten about 25 calls for the RTO, zero calls for the “owner finance” ad. Most of the callers have the mindset that they are renters, not owners, and it’s a simple matter to convince them that they would really rather buy than rent. Funny thing - they seem to have more saved up for a deposit than the “buyers” generated from the other ad have for a downpayment. Just because you advertise “rent to own” doesn’t mean you have to do that - if you can steer the callers towards buying.

Interesting… - Posted by Tony-VA

Posted by Tony-VA on July 08, 2001 at 19:11:23:

Tweaking advertising is important, so long as we do it in such a manner that we can determine why one add works better than another. Are we getting the prospects we want? Are we simply getting more calls but less good prospects? Did we change too much in the add or medium that we do not know why it worked better or worse? I agree with Karl, inspection of the resulting leads is more important.

Changing adds and mediums should always be a work in progress.

I think your tweak is a good one. It should be easy to identify the volume change as well as the change in truely qualified leads it generates. For instance, Karl mentions his numbers went up but the actual deals closed and good prospects did not. We would rather have 3 or 4 good prospects call than 25 deadbeats. The higher volume can waste valuable time.

I prefer a goal of tweaking advertising so as to pre-screen buyers instead of them screening us. Lead generation advertising should qualify prospects in the add so as to screen out the deadbeats and filter qualified prospects through. Yes, volume may go down (it also may go up if you do a better job of reaching the correct market) but you also save valuable time showing homes or talking to people who cannot close the deal.

Great topic.

Tony Colella

Re: Tip to generate more calls from buyers - Posted by Karl (Oh)

Posted by Karl (Oh) on July 07, 2001 at 23:24:19:


I experimented with that same “rent to own” change to my ad a couple months ago. My call volume also increased considerably, but most of the callers were awful. There’s a lot of demand for rental mobile homes in my area because no one rents them. Most of the folks calling me just wanted to rent from me short term, and weren’t very interested in the prospect of owning their own home, even when the cost to them was about the same. The ones who did want to buy were worse than the typical callers I get. “Rent to own” seemed to appeal to the worst kind.

Although my “owner financing” ad generates less calls, they are from people who are tired of renting, but have some credit problems, and are anxious to find a way to own their own home. Exactly who I want.

I’m glad you’re having better luck with that ad than I did.

Karl Kleiner

Re: Tip to generate more calls from buyers - Posted by Ronald * Starr

Posted by Ronald * Starr on July 07, 2001 at 14:16:22:

Dan (NC)---------------------

Watch out. You may be in for a lawsuit for “bait and switch” tactics. You’d really better have a rent to own program available for those who do not want to go to immediate ownership.

Or you might consider modifying your ad to include something like “& low down” or “& other easy-buy plans” or “& other great plans.” Something to alert the caller that it is not just rent to own. So they will not feel you lured them in with one program and then switched them to a different program entirely.

Good Investing***************Ron Starr************

Re: Tip to generate more calls from buyers :wink: - Posted by Chuck (AZ)

Posted by Chuck (AZ) on July 07, 2001 at 10:33:08:

So if I RTO next week, instead of OWC tomorrow, how MUCH will it cost me today?

(sort of like Lonnie’s paint thing huh?)


I disagree… somewhat - Posted by David S

Posted by David S on July 08, 2001 at 23:47:15:

Hi Tony,

Another “friendly” disagreement here… I do agree with “tweaking” ads and also having a way to determine if the ads are working. Multiple phone lines are a must, one for each ad, unless you have months to wait for the results. I don’t. For this, I use a live answering service that allows me to have 4 numbers. I also agree with Dan; run at least 2 ads while tracking your results. Add one, pull one, tweak one, etc.

I seem to think that the reason for an ad, especially a lead generating ad, is to make the phone ring; to allow the “prospect” to hear your story. It’s a numbers game.

Now, that being said, like you - I don’t think it is a good idea to waste valuable time on the phone. I use a phone tree system that allows my pre-recorded message to “qualify” the prospective buyer/renter/etc. I just don’t have the time to give directions and/or descriptions of properties for sale, mobile or otherwise. This system has saved me countless headaches. The prospect calls the 800 number, listens to a greeting (my voice), then gets a description of the property and directions to get there. And yes, I even tell them to get a pen and paper. I repeat everything 2 times. That’s it. You can’t leave a message and I don’t give them a phone number or contact information of any kind.

When a prospect calls me, they have already seen the property, picked up a “take one” flyer (door or mailbox) that has everything they need to make an informed decision neatly printed on both sides. In the middle of the PS; my phone number.

Then and only then will I qualify them. And since they have already jumped through my “hoops”, guess who’s in total control.

This allows me much more time to work on marketing while others still answer the phones. And it is all about marketing.

David S

Re: Tip to generate more calls from buyers - Posted by Joe C.

Posted by Joe C. on July 08, 2001 at 23:23:38:

AND…Don’t forget that you may have a problem with the PM if you have to make it a “Rent to Own”.
Joe C.

Re: Tip to generate more calls from buyers - Posted by Dan (NC)

Posted by Dan (NC) on July 07, 2001 at 18:06:54:

You’re right, and we have and do offer RTO/lease option contracts if they want them (thanks, Bill Bronchick). But when we show them how much they can save by going straight into owner financing, and they realize they’re going to be putting up option consideration (which they may lose) or an equal amount for a downpayment, they usually are more interested in buying now. Those that aren’t are often just interested in renting, and when you mention the option consideration, they fairly quickly end the conversation.