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I've been reading you guys for a couple of weeks and finally decided to jump in.
Where do you get your data on target market demographics? I know there are some things around--I see them every once in a while in trade mags--but i'm thinking there must be some sites that have things in a little more organized presentation. We are specialty remodelers doing primarily windows and siding.
Also, how much do you discriminate between salespeoples' anecdotal beliefs about who they're selling to, actual indsustry, paid-for surveys, and what data you've collected over the years. It seems like there are some technologically-savvy folks on this site, so how are you collecting the data about your customers and how much are you collecting?

Thanks

Pat
 

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I'm totally confused at what you are trying to do. How about making it simple. Do you want to start doing direct mail based on demographic information such as income, direct mail in regard to new homeowners, or age of home?

Personally I know the broad demographics the areas I do business in on a neighborhood by neighborhood basis so I could target those demographics just based on a geographic mailing. There are many ways to skin this cat, so just tell us what you want to do.
 

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Target Demographics

How about simply sending a questionnaire to your current customers and asking them. It is also a good opportunity to ask for referrals.

jamespwsullivan said:
I've been reading you guys for a couple of weeks and finally decided to jump in.
Where do you get your data on target market demographics? I know there are some things around--I see them every once in a while in trade mags--but i'm thinking there must be some sites that have things in a little more organized presentation. We are specialty remodelers doing primarily windows and siding.
Also, how much do you discriminate between salespeoples' anecdotal beliefs about who they're selling to, actual indsustry, paid-for surveys, and what data you've collected over the years. It seems like there are some technologically-savvy folks on this site, so how are you collecting the data about your customers and how much are you collecting?

Thanks

Pat
 

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Our paper lists home sales every week. Everybody who buys a home over $500K gets a letter from me and another one at 3 and 6 mos, I then drop back to one every 6 mos. Enough to stay in their face without being obnoxious. This is the only advertising that I do and all that I need.
 

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teetor,

First, thanks for all the info-- I've enjoyed your posts..

This sounds like a solid idea.. Would you mind sharing the gist of your letters? When and what kind of response do you get? Thanks again.
 

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trekr, I have several cover letters depending upon the location, obviously waterfront properties get the one that includes my marine business.
My letter stresses quality first, I make no reference to affordability. This is not an issue to most of these people, the WIFE wants what she wants. Notice the stress on that point.
I remodel and enhance, that is the wifes purvue and my marketing is directed towards her. Men are into roofing, garage doors,etc. and are basically cheap but they will spend a bundle to please the little woman. I enclose a glossy trifold to the .5-1M crowd and send a separate, full sized package to the 1M+ people. They both reflect the enhancements to homes in their price range, I list the pricing and date under each photo so that they have an idea of what they are getting into (cheap qualifing process).
Most responses are immediate, they just bought a new home and want it their way. Snowbirds may take a while.
Tip; Don't bother the very rich, this can work against you. Do your mailing, follow up in a week if they have a listed number (unlikely) and hit them again on schedule above but just send a letter or card. Don't forget major Holidays either, just a card, good one too. Stay in their face.
Always address your mailing to the Mrs. Many of the 1-6% have in home offices and secretaries who sort mail, sending it to Mr. is the same as sending it to the weedout factory and it will wind up in the circular file before the prospective client ever gets to see it.
Rich single guys generally open all of their mail.
This is really cheap and effective in my business. Oddly, response runs about 40% and I close most of them but my rep precedes me. Once you're in, you're in.
 

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Thanks for info! I think I'll do a little work on this and give it a try-- probably a little further down the affluence scale. In Okieland your demographic would only require about 1 letter every two weeks! Thanks again!
 

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Teetor - good info, and timely. New homeowner marketing is one of the marketing efforts I have on the radar. I am working on the materials now, so it is nice to hear some success stories. I might have to really pick your brain with some specifics as I get closer. I would love to see your marketing if it was possible.

The points about he/she marketing is great, I have rarely heard anybody look at it that specifically.

Have you ever looked into the list generating companies for the new homeowner lists to help automate it a bit for you? The one I am looking at now is really cheap.
 

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Mike, I have an advantage in that I work in one of the wealthiest counties in the state. They didn't even let Burt Reynolds onto Jupiter Island. If I were younger and hungry I would do things like pay for lists but as it is, I'm eyballing retirement and planning on winding things down over the next 6 or 7 years.
The he/she thing is just an observation that I made many years ago. If the wife is not happy, nobody's going to be happy.
Another he/she tidbit. A guy asks another guy on how his house is coming along and he says' OK, it's costing me an arm and leg but at least June is happy'. June goes to the CC for lunch with 8 of her friends and will give you a 20 minute sales pitch IF she is happy. This is a double edged sword. KEEP JUNE HAPPY!
I'd be happy to help you in any way that I can.
 

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Yeah, I just bought the yacht stabilizer business. I figure that I have a few years to build it up and then sell it, besides the deal was just too good. How many things can you buy that start turning a good profit in the first few months? The wife was a little PO'd because she thinks that I'm doing too much already. At least I can afford a heart attack. LOL
 
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