advertising dollars

Maybe this should be in the marketing section but not as many people read the sub-sections

I got a call from a guy that was selling ad space on the inside of folders he was GIVING to Re/max for all their clients. He makes money by selling 8 spaces for $399.00 each. He guaranteed distribution of at least 5000 folders to the local office. I checked with Re/max to see if it was legit. seems like a good deal. no other home inspector ad can be purchased. each business must be exclusive and unique. Re/max is one of the local offices I haven’t had much luck or exposure with. I’m in. Anyone else ever try this?

How are the folders used?
Are they given to potential clients by the agents, or are they only used by the agents.
Will the 5000 be dumped at the office all at once or distributed throughout the year?
What type of folder is it?
What kind of companies will you be associated with in the folder?

I have a hard time turning loose of money. Seems like everyone in the world wants to help me spend my money in marketing.

I did it once with Re-Max. Never got one inspection. They called the next year, raised the price, and I told them that if I got a guarantee of at least 50 inspections, I would pay for the ad again. They hung up. I think most of these so-called folders go to the trash.

Save your money for something useful.

I look at these things as “building the brand”. You may not get tangible evidence that this is where your clients are coming from, but its all part of getting your name out there so that when someone thinks of Home Inspectors, your name is the one they think of. I have seen some of my clients come to the inspection holding onto one of those folders. If its in their hand and my name is on it I consider it a good thing.

Take the $399, and have your own folders printed, ask alarm, pest control, handymen, contractors, etc to advertise in your folders, and then offer them for free to the agents.

Okay, here is the deal. This is an old ploy to get others to pay for the folders. These folders are used by the agents to package up all the loose papers for the clients “after” the deal is done. Chances of the client seeing your name is about as slim a chance of a chicken in a hobo camp surviving the night. This was tried a few years ago, sounds real sweet but if you step back think about it for about 20 seconds you will see the gaping hole or flaw in this thinking. Each agent will have their own set of folders, which their “preferred” vendors advertised on the INSIDE or the BACK. Think about how many customers each agent sees or gets this far into during the year. This ranks right up there with the plastic phone book covers. Everyone is eager to see their name in print on something. Contact one of your local Realtors Association. Most of them have a printed monthly newsletter unless they have gone completely paperless. The locals ones here will allow you to put your flyers inside (used to be $25 a month) and these get distributed to every office. You can have a ****load of flyers printed for $400.
I hate rules of thumb but in this case it applies; if anyone calls YOU, they are not looking out for your business. They want your money and will tell you anything to get some of it. Most of the time they are marketers and do not know their butt from apple butter about the Home Inspection business, Real Estate or anything to do with either. YOU are better at marketing than most of them, you just need to think things through, find the areas where you are not getting seen or heard. The best advertising you can buy are business cards and cover the earth with them.

We’ve had very poor experience with that type of advertising. It sounds really good, but don’t waste your money.

Mine was about $350 and over the year I got 2 inspections from it.

Try approaching a mortgage company and dropping the idea to do a folder to be placed by numerous Realty offices during the agents open houses or in Real Estate offices to promote the Realtors services. These folders contain a page on the Realtor, the mortgage company, the inspector, info for first time home buyers, and FHA info. I was approached by a mortgage person and they covered all of the costs and included me as the only inspector. I have done over 30 inspections from this marketing idea in about 7 months. It has worked for me.

Robert, I would not do it. This type of advertising only works if your home inspection company name is brandable. Yours is not.

Don’t waste your time or money. These companies do this so the real estate co pays zero for the folders etc. I paid $499 to have my company printed on 25000 flyers for one of the top Realtors in Remax. I called the realtor (about 20 times before she would take my call) and asked if we could get together so we could get to know each other since we were advertising with her. She was very honest with me and told me not to bother she will not use my services because she already has a home inspector.
Put your money to better use, don’t waste it paying for Remax’s advertising.

Did it with Remax about 6 or 7 years ago and for us it worked out great! Today I would not do it however…man how the times have changed…