This practice can wipe some of the myopia off the lens through which we evaluate our advertising. It can also lead us to dismantle how we build our media and become more intentional with our creative processes—with both large, conceptual decisions and seemingly-small choices. The ensuing conclusions might not lead us to the best practices; but they should, at least, lead us to more self-aware and purposeful marketing.
For asset or auction promotion, we need to know that if someone isn’t interested in the headline attributes of an asset, they don’t need to know any more. We need to know that if someone isn’t motivated enough to go to our website for unabbreviated terms, room dimensions, or serial numbers, they probably aren’t motivated enough to attend a property inspection, register for the auction, or participate in bidding.
Consumers don’t care how long you’ve been in business. At least it’s not a priority to them. Buyers want to know that you have what they want when they want it. Sellers want to know you’ve got a lot of recent experience marketing this exact type of asset in current market conditions. Whether you’ve been in business eight years or 80 years only matters as a tie-breaker, if all other considerations are equal.
Don’t take it from me. Take it from one of the most successful auction marketers in the country, a vice president of an auction company that regularly posts sales above $100 million per year. We were talking about his company’s direct mail strategy, and he hit me with one of the most important pair of sentences I’ve heard during my 15-year career.
Asking enough questions and asking the right questions will take a lot of the guesswork out of the prospecting process. Some of these questions you can answer on your own after some personal reflection or staff conversations. Some of these questions, though, will require you to interview your past and current sellers. All of these questions will give you insight into how to most efficiently maintain and even grow your client base.
The same desire is true for a large portion of auction sellers—at least those with assets big enough to warrant a proposal or earn a company brochure. They want to know the auction marketer pitching to them will understand their situation, study their asset, and create a custom plan to make the best outcome possible. They want to hear, “There is no routine auction.”
Now, printing five or ten folders takes only hours. Prices vary according to quantity but are very affordable for most campaigns, especially compared to the old production method’s costs. You can have a custom folder for a proposal, for an auction bidder’s packet, for a settlement folder. You could even use variable data so that different recipients’ names and/or different photos are shown on their respective pieces.