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It was a pleasure to attend your seminar in San Francisco on Thursday. You are a truly excellent speaker and by the time you were finished, I was excited about getting into residential real estate! You are doing good work in the world. Brian Tracy, Real Estate Speaker


The Front Yard Signs, Riders, and the Brochure Box April 5th, 2017 | Posted in General Real Estate, Other Interests, Real Estate

A major tool for obtaining more clients is having a sign in front of a desirable piece of property. That one (relatively) inexpensive placard — whether it is lit by solar-powered light, painted with reflective paint, barely hanging on for its life, even covered with graffiti — can go a long way in generating a new stable of buyers and even some sellers. During the hot markets of California, I could always depend upon four to ten buyers for every sign during the listing period.

Even during the rough markets, my signage kept my name on people’s minds; therefore, treat your signs seriously. Make them look as good as you can, and if possible, put more than one up. If you have the front of a house facing a neighborhood, it is wonderful to put a sign there, but how about that back fence that overlooks the freeway? How about that proverbial corner property where one sign on each street will do the trick? No need to be embarrassed! I had even installed specially-made signs with 20-foot posts that were easily seen from the freeway.

There have never been any studies about the size, shape, or visibility of a sign versus its success ratio in attracting a buyer, but this is where common sense prevails. The easier they are to read and find your name with a phone number and web address, the better the chance that phone calls are going to find their way to you. I would not wait for the post sign company to put up a sign, so I would install a stake sign when I left the home with my new listing. Three to five days later, the post sign would be installed. Nearly every time, I would leave up two signs.

The decision is always open as to whose phone number is on what sign. If you want your up-desk to handle your incoming phone calls, then obviously put the office phone number there. However, being connected to the public by a cell phone or text message is the ideal way, especially if you are good at responding promptly or have help in responding promptly.

You can even go as far as adding 1-800 Interactive Voice Recognition systems or web links so the client becomes fully aware of the property prior to you being in contact with them! However, being interrupted all day long can lead to nothing getting done! The real solution is having an assistant who is capable in getting answers to the buyer or seller questions and leaving a completed survey for you to use in your follow-up.

Sign riders always seem to be a big discussion. Do you add your name, the fact there is a pool, FHA/VA financing being offered, the fact that the seller will pay the points, whether there is a family room, and the myriad of other sign riders?

I have always been a believer that you give as much information as possible, not only to attract attention but also to inform the buyer that this may or may not be the correct property for them. Make sure that the buyer has enough information so that the phone calls would be minimized.

Many of you will groan at this; but with the inventory that I had and the buyer prospecting systems that I had, I really was only interested in talking to motivated, ready-to-go buyers. The ones I missed this time around would probably find their way to me through my other systems.

Attached to the sign should also be a brochure box. If they are impervious to weather and treated nicely, the brochures should last many years. Inside should be the flyer on the property. I know they can receive a text, call an IVR, or obtain it online; however, a flyer provides some “shelf life.” The question of whether or not you give them all the information or just pieces of the information will depend upon how many phone calls you want to receive.

I have always been a great believer in giving buyers all of my other listings, attached to the flyer that they take with them. The reason for this is that they are in the market for the inventory that I may have. I also want to present the illusion that I am everywhere. Your seller may be upset by the fact you have other listings listed in their brochure box, but all you will have to do to alleviate their fears is to let them know that their listing is in all of your other brochure boxes.

Also, attached to the flyer should be another flyer explaining why they should work with you as a real estate agent, which we’ll include in tomorrow’s blog for you. I stapled this flyer to the front of every brochure in the brochure box.

Rounding out the presentation is the financing sheet, prepared by my lender. In addition, I included a financing sheet that was, of course, prepared by my lender.

As you can see, one of the greatest point-of-sale promotions that was ever developed is the brochure box. I was successful in using these brochure boxes to snatch the buyers off the street and away from potential competition.

Attached to the package inside the brochure box was a business reply card which allowed people to easily contact me by mail. A copy of this business reply card is also in this section. I used to get a response from a buyer who took the brochure box package to their office or home with them and then tossed the postage paid card in the mail! It is getting to be an old idea, yet still the easiest way to get a call.


Our book Fast Lane Buyer Systems includes numerous forms, letters, and checklists to share with your clients and potential clients; also included are items to draw buyers (and sellers) to your website.

Check out the details here: Call 800.792.5837 and ask for the blog special to get this book for just $50.

2 Responses to “The Front Yard Signs, Riders, and the Brochure Box”

  1. Barry says:

    Walter, I like your thinking! Yard signs let potential buyers know for certain that they are at the right house. Btw what’s the best font type to have on the sign? Handwritten or bold/clear font?

  2. walter5 says:

    I think you’ve answered your question, Barry. A bold, clear font is the best way to go. Fancy script can sometimes be too fancy to even read.

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