No calls on my ad - Posted by Steve

Posted by Merle E Woolley on March 16, 2001 at 17:47:27:

Jordan …

You make some excellent points. An ad with “I pay top prices” still suggests a bargain hunter.

I agree that the more explicit your ad, the fewer wasted calls. That was one of my hardest problems to overcome. I wanted lots of calls. After all, those years of sitting in sales meetings and training seminars had me believing in the “law of averages.” The more calls you make, the more sales you make. Problem is that making all those calls consumes a lot of energy. I decided it would be better to work smarter, not necessarily harder.

When trying to sell a house, I only want to talk to one person … the buyer. All th rest of the callers can leave me alone.

But, with sellers, different story. We have bought very few houses where the seller called with a plan to sell to us at a reduced price. Had we not taken those calls, we would have missed some good opportunities.

Even when we don’t buy a house, we try to help the seller find a solution to their problem. Often, the house has been listed, but not sold. They need to sell. We attempt to educate them somewhat about different ways to sell their house. We do not L/O, we only buy for cash. Taking this time to help them pays off many times over. We’ve had a couple of sellers who we counseled come back later and buy from us. Can’t tell you how many of these sellers have sent buyers to us.

My wife will tell you … no one dislikes talking on the phone any more than I do … but, I will take time for a prospective seller. Let me clarify that … we usually call them back. Don’t like answering the phone if I am doing something else. Good answering machine takes care of that.


No calls on my ad - Posted by Steve

Posted by Steve on March 15, 2001 at 21:02:08:

Hey, I have had an ad in the local newspaper for 2 weeks now, and I’ve only recieved one phone call, and she wasn’t even motivated! :slight_smile: It was just some lady who wanted to know what her house was worth.
My ad reads: I BUY HOUSES (in large bold print) and then my phone number. Is my ad too simple? After reading through the archives, I came to the conclusion that I should keep it very simple, I guess my assumption was incorrect!

I have already passed out a bunch of business cards, but I have not put up any of those signs, since my area has a tendency to place heavy fines on people that do that. Any other ideas on marketing myself?


Internet leads - Posted by Sky

Posted by Sky on March 21, 2001 at 21:25:56:

I don’t know anything about this website but I signed up for their service and have received a few excellant leads from them so far. The service is free so you might check it out. The url is
Good Luck all!

Re: No calls on my ad - Posted by Robert(AL)

Posted by Robert(AL) on March 17, 2001 at 01:03:16:

Persistance is the KEY!! Keep your ad available to potential sellers at all times. I definitely agree with the other posts about the local pennysaver. I can run an ad for 6 weeks for just $30 in my local weekly, compared to about $22 for one day in the major daily paper. I get so much more response from the less expensive weekly than from the expensive daily.


The key is … - Posted by Monique

Posted by Monique on March 16, 2001 at 08:01:39:

… making it real easy for sellers to find you.

You want to market in as many different ways and places that you can.
In addition to “We Buy” ads in the newspaper, consider:

  • Calling on For Sale and For Rent by Owner ads
  • Letters to FSBOs and FRBOs
  • Letters to preforeclosures
  • Leave your business cards everywhere you go (restaurants, book store, gas station, your bills)
  • Flyers to your target neighborhoods
  • Flyers on the bulletin board of local supermarkets
  • Paying others to find you leads (bird dogs)
  • Letters to Expired Listings
  • Signs for only the weekends (less likely to be fined if there only out Fri evening to Sun evening)

There are MANY great ideas on marketing to find sellers in the “How-To Articles” on this website. Check out these for instance:

"25 Creative Real Estate Marketing Strategies"

"12 Ways to Find a Real Estate Bargain"

"How To Find The Motivated Sellers (Part 1)"

"How To Find The Motivated Sellers (Part 2)"

"The Ultimate Lease Option Strategy"

Don’t expect your ad or any of these marketing approaches to generate large immediate results. You need frequency and persistence in your marketing message. Multiple impressions over time.

Here’s to your success!

Re: No calls on my ad - Posted by Merle E Woolley

Posted by Merle E Woolley on March 16, 2001 at 07:24:58:

Am I missing something? Why do so many of you run this type of ad? You might as well insert another line that says something like, “must be a bargain!”

I firmly believe you should be explicit in your ads to sell a house … avoid wasting a lot of time.

But, when buying, you have to remember that the sellers are concerned about getting the most for their property. In thier mond, that would come from the mythical buyer who just happens to fall in love with their house, has cash in hand, and is willing to pay whatever it takes to get the house.

An ad saying, “I buy houses” gives the exact opposite impression. Anyone who buys anything in that manner would be presumed to be looking for bargains. Perhaps some of them will become desperate enough, or curious enough, to call.

As I’ve posted before, we have used the “shopper” papers for 16 years. Our ads to buy read something like, “Wanted. Nice 2-3 BR home. Minor repairs OK. Cash or terms. Close quickly. 999-9999.” If we should want a specific area, we would insert that also.

Think about the differece in perception by the reader. If you wanted to sell, at the highest possible price, which advertiser sounds most likely to pay your price?

On the phone, you explain your method of buying. For those who want, we will disucss that at the round table in Atlanta.

Hope this helps,

Re: No calls on my ad - Posted by B.L.Renfrow

Posted by B.L.Renfrow on March 15, 2001 at 22:48:14:

I don’t think your ad is too simple. Simple is good. You need to give it more time; two weeks isn’t a fair test. I’ll often go two weeks with no calls…then get two or three in one day. It’s unpredictable like that.

Also, make sure you’re running it in the right medium. My sellers don’t read the large regional daily. Rather, they read the Pennysaver. So that’s where my ads go. It’s only once a week, and while not exactly cheap, it sure beats the dailies on price.

Another idea: try running it in the general or miscellaneous section, rather than under homes for sale (unless your paper is large enough to have a “homes wanted” section). Potential sellers don’t necessarily look under “homes for sale.”

If it’s in the right paper, in the right place, I’d give it at least 2-3 months before you make any changes.

Brian (NY)

Re: No calls on my ad - Posted by Nate

Posted by Nate on March 15, 2001 at 22:07:14:

2 weeks is hardly enough time to make a conclusion one way or the other. I would give it at least 3 months.


Atlanta - Posted by Ted

Posted by Ted on March 16, 2001 at 12:43:05:

Save me a seat at your table! I’m looking forward to meeting you and learning from your experiences.
See you there!

They both have pluses and minuses … - Posted by Jordan

Posted by Jordan on March 16, 2001 at 10:19:29:

The “I Buy Houses” ad draws little response but the sellers are more motivated. Less time wasted talking to people that won’t sell for less than full price.

An ad that says I pay top dollar draws more response but less motivated sellers. More time wasted talking to people that only want top dollar.

Which is best? This is the question.

I’ve used the “I Buy Houses” ad’s, with success, but it takes a loooong time. I’d switch to your style ad in a second if I thought it would increase my bottom line, but that’s not obvious to me.


Your answer is “Right On” - Posted by Jim

Posted by Jim on March 15, 2001 at 23:40:54:


Very precise answer to the post.

The market is really strange at times! Sometimes you can have your ads running, bandit signs out all over the place, flyers posted and “NOTHING” . Then out of what seems to be nowhere you get two or three calls in one day! IT HAPPENS! and it will happen to you to Steve, just you wait and see.

I also agree with Brian on running the ads in your local pennysaver or thrifty nickle. I have received more calls from my pennysaver ad than I have out of our local major newspaper!! The pennysaver is so much more economical and yet so much more effective.

Hey you go with works for your particular area.

Test the waters Steve, but whatever you do DON’T GIVE UP! .

Keep us posted.

Best of Success, (And whatever you do)… “DON’T EVER FORGET YOUR MAKER”!