Article | Business Relationships

3 Unexpected Ways Greeting Cards Develop Client Relationships in the Real Estate Industry

Abby Hill
Real Estate Article Hero Image
Real Estate Article Hero Image

“Location, location, location.” That’s what the adage claims is the most important factor when you buy a house. But in today’s real estate industry, transactions are driven by relationships. Where you are isn’t nearly as important as who you know.

Establishing long-term relationships is key to real estate success. So, the big question is: What’s the best way to build trust? With the help of Hallmark cards, you can develop strong customer relationships and nurture clients into becoming loyal supporters of your business.

Here are three unique ways Hallmark greeting cards can support real estate marketing goals.

STAYING TOP OF MIND

Unlike other industries where clients make regular transactions throughout the year, most people don’t seek out a real estate agent until they need one. Research shows that being the first person someone thinks of or the first name they’re recommended pays off.

In 2021, 77% of all sellers and 73% of all buyers contacted just one agent before selecting one to assist with their sale or purchase. To win those contracts, it’s important to stay present and visible to potential clients. However, you won’t stand out with just a postcard or email. To grow your business, you need to cut through the noise and ensure your marketing tactic doesn’t get recycled or deleted.

Enter greeting cards.

Cards from Hallmark are opened, read, understood and remembered more than any other direct mail format. Just think about it. When was the last time you didn’t open a Hallmark card you received?

STAT 64 percent

64% of people say greeting cards make them feel special (vs. 15% for emails and 5% for texts).

SOURCE: USPS mail data

Sending cards on important occasions like birthdays, Thanksgiving, the holidays, or New Year’s will give your distribution list some mail they actually look forward to reading and may even display on the mantle or hang on the fridge. The best way to strengthen emotional connections and stay top of mind is with cards full of care.

BUILDING TRUST

Moving is frequently cited as one of the most stressful events people experience, so it makes sense that homebuyers and sellers value having an agent with the expertise to guide them through the process.

For sellers, the most important factors when choosing a real estate agent are the agent’s reputation and their trustworthiness. These same qualities, in addition to experience, matter most to buyers as well. Demonstrating these traits requires more than business cards and bus bench ads.

Create a customer relationship management system by utilizing life event marketing. Personal outreach that is informed and relevant will show clients you understand how life events may affect their needs and that you can support them through a variety of circumstances. Greeting cards will bring you closer to clients and offer a highly individualized experience for customers.

STAT 75 percent

75% of card recipients report feeling more connected to a business that sends Hallmark cards.

SOURCE: Client-reported results

Cards to celebrate weddings, new babies and professional milestones like promotions or new jobs are wonderful opportunities to strengthen bonds with clients as they consider upsizing. You can similarly reach out to clients who may be retiring and contemplating downsizing or even relocating.

When markets fluctuate or clients experience hardships, offer your support by sending a heartfelt message of sympathy or care and concern. Clients will appreciate your compassion. And if their housing needs change, your guidance will help them navigate a difficult time. Align your marketing with client experiences to humanize your business and deepen connections.

GETTING REFERRALS

Buying or selling a home is one of the biggest financial commitments most people will ever make, and it’s not one made often. In 2021, the average seller had been in their home for eight years before moving again. Even with a stellar retention rate, referrals are necessary for real estate success when previous clients aren’t expected to move frequently.

The good news is that most buyers and sellers are willing to vouch for agents they’ve worked with previously. When surveyed, 74% of all sellers and 76% of all buyers said they would “definitely” use their real estate agent again or recommend them to others. However, that doesn’t mean agents should expect everyone to be brand advocates and take it for granted.

One way to encourage referrals is to send New Home cards after a closing to celebrate all the new memories a client will enjoy as they move into their new place. This is a great way to wrap up a deal, thank them for their business and remind them you are always available as a resource to them or anyone they know who may need an agent. You can also reach out on home anniversaries to see how clients have settled in.

PRO TIP: Offer clients “We’ve Moved” cards that feature a photo of them in their new home and include a subtle reference to the wonderful agent who helped them through the process. You’ll gain access to their circle of family and friends while they keep everyone’s address books up-to-date. It’s a win-win!

Showing gratitude for referrals is another great tactic for earning more word-of-mouth advertising. When friends, family, neighbors or previous clients take the time to promote your business on your behalf, don’t let it go unrecognized. A Referral Thank You card with a thoughtful message will show your appreciation and motivate repeat referrals and leads.

Let Hallmark cards help you stay connected with clients so you can continue growing your business.

GREETING CARDS FOR REALTORS