Monday, March 30, 2009

Hey, How Do You Follow Up With Your Clients?

Believe it or not, this simple line is the best way to approach a business person about SendOutCards. Everybody has, or should have, some form of regular contact with their clients, business partners or prospects. But also, most people do not do as well as they should or could.

Here's some statistics:

48% of sales people never follow up with a prospect.
25% never make a 2nd contact.
12% only make 3 contacts.
ONLY 10% of all sales people make more than 3 contacts!!

2% of sales are made on the 1st contact.
3% are made on the 2nd.
5% are made on the 3rd.
10% are made on the 4th.
80% of all sales are made on the 5th to 12th contact.

So where do you fall in this?

I know that I am all over the map and I'm sure that you are too. I stay in contact with some clients and prospects better than others. But I also know that very few people, whether in my mortgage practice or SendOutCards, make the decision to do business with me on the 1st contact.

The Dilemma:

I have a lot of technology and systems.
  • I have several websites that attract prospects to me
  • I use the phone and talk in person or leave a voice message.
  • I send emails and have access to 4 different e-newsletter providers, as well as 4-5 different email platforms to send email blasts or campaigns.
  • I use several social media platforms that I use to inform and attract.
  • I have a program that can send a custom letter out to a prospect and tell him/her how much of a loan they would qualify for and then send mass mailers out via USPS AND
  • I have SendOutCards.

I don't mention to brag. In fact it's overkill and ineffective. Voice mails are rarely returned unless I have an established relationship. Emails often don't get past the SPAM filters and most correspondence from a mortgage company gets thrown away.

The Solution:

For me, SendOutCards is often an icebreaker, or door opener. Let's look at a couple of examples.

I spoke with a prospect today for my mortgage practice. They are looking at purchasing a home.
  1. They found me on the Internet at, and filled out a contact form.
  2. They immediately received a email via auto-responder and I received a text message alerting me that someone had filled out the form.
  3. He was immediately enrolled in my website's monthly e-newsletter .
  4. I immediately sent another email much more personal and asked when a good time to call would be.
  5. We talked soon after and he went back online to complete the application.
  6. I also sent out a Thank You card via SendOutCards.
  7. We talked again today and will most likely again tomorrow.

So, in the course of a couple of days, I had 6 unique touches via 4 different ways and he will receive my e-newsletter in a couple of weeks. In this situation, SendOutCards is more of a Nice Touch that will help to differentiate me from the next guy.

Here's another example:

I have a twitter account: and (follow me). When someone follows me I send out a canned response with a compelling question. Those who respond with a personal answer get a card if I can find an address and a tweet letting them know that they should watch their mail. I follow up with a phone call to a prospect who has been somewhat warmed up.

I just started this approach, so we'll see how it works, but I know it's far better than a blind phone call from some dude trying to sell cards.

Is SendOutCards necessary? Of course not. But it does something that none of my other touches can do. It bypasses most SPAM and JUNK MAIL filters. It gets opened. It catches people's attention. It is as creative as I want it to be.

Give it a try. What have you got to lose? Fill out the email request and give me your address. Let's see if it works.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Creative Baby Cards

Did you know that with SendOutCards you can create a custom Baby card easily from your computer?

Here's what I did.

A couple who are friends of mine recently had a baby. They posted the little darling on facebook so we could all marvel at how cute she is...and she really is.

I wanted to send a Congrats card, but also wanted it to be special. I looked through the SendOutCards catalog and found several that I liked, but still not what I was looking for.

After a few minutes of agonizing, I decided to create a card just for them. I went back to facebook and right-clicked on the most adorable picture that they had posted and saved it to my computer.

I opened up my SendOutCards account and went to the PicturesPlus section. From here I was able to create a custom Congrats card with their day old baby on it. Two days later, it was in their hands.

If you would like to learn how you can create custom cards for your special occasion, let me know. Larry @

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Is Seth Godin Right? Social Media Networking is a Time Waster.

Seth Godin, in a recent interview, gave his opinion on the validity of the size of your social media network. In his opinion, it's pretty meaningless if all you do is get friends/followers/associates/links or whatever.

A friend of mine, Ed Bisquera, who seems to be doing the Social Media thing right, posted the above link. While I don't respond to all links, this one caught my eye.
  • It was from Ed, (a friend)
  • It was about Seth Godin (an expert) and
  • The Title was controversial. (There's a marketing lesson for you right there.)
In the video, Seth likens Social Media to a giant cocktail party. There's a lot of people who are in the same place, who have a few things in common, but only a few would really go to bat for you. In his opinion, and I would have to agree, it's not about how many friends you have on FaceBook or twitter, or associates on LinkedIn or ActiveRain, but about the relationships that you have with those people.

Liken it to the real world. I have thousands of people who I know and would call my friend or associate, but a much smaller number who I would really call a good friend, and only a handful who I could go to in a time of crisis, need or emergency.

That said, we shouldn't just throw Social Media Networking out as a waste of time. There is value if done right. If not, it can be a complete time waster.

I see Social Media Networking as:

  • A way to let my existing friends know what's going on in my personal and business life in a fairly non-obtrusive way.
  • A way to attract new, potential friends, clients or business partners.

But to use it to just sell products can be risky. You need to bring something of value to the table. That is either a slamming good deal, free product or advice, or you need to reach out and connect on a personal level.

I'm going to focus on the reaching out and connecting, as that is more fun and ultimately more meaningful.

For me, FaceBook is a relatively private portal. I only "friend" those I would invite into my house or life. It's a little more private. LinkedIn is professional and I will allow most anyone to be an associate. The same with Activerain, a Real Estate site. NAYMZ is mostly a place for me to bring it all together and get great SEO rankings. I also have a Reverse Mortgage marketing guru who has signed me up for a bunch more.

But let's look at twitter, since it's the rage right now.

I've been on twitter for about 1 month and have 634 followers. This is up about 50 from yesterday. Now many of these I have sought out as we have something in common, or I want to "draw them in" to promote my mortgage and SendOutCard businesses. I find it interesting., twitter is mostly about people talking and not listening. I reply to many tweets and am surprised at how few respond back. These people don't get it. They are making noise, and bringing relevant info to the table, but are missing out on a possible connection.

Depending on who you ask, it takes from 6 to 10 "touches" to turn a prospect into a client. If I respond to a tweet, I've responded to their 1st touch. If they respond back, that would be a 2nd touch. Each time we communicate we draw closer to having a meaningful relationship that could result in a sale, referral or just a friend.

Here's what I do. I use twitter as a fishing pond.

  • I am looking at building a large pond of followers.
  • I tweet relevant info (hopefully) about mortgage news, products or rates, as well as marketing through SendOutCards.
  • I do have an autorespond for those who follow, but it's not about me. I ask why they followed. Those who respond get a response back.
  • I reply to tweets that I feel are interesting. (Oh, I don't spend a lot of time reading tweets. Maybe 5-15 minutes a day.)
  • Those who respond will get a "connection" card from SendOutCards if I can find a mailing address for them.
  • That will most likely lead to a phone call and possibly a coffee meeting.
  • From there who knows. But I've taken that "giant cocktail party" and turned it into a connection.

Ever exchanged business cards or phone numbers? Same idea.

The same can be done with ActiveRain, Naymz and any other Social Media site.

So, if you respond and give me enough info to find you on the web, you'll get a card from me...

Better yet, call me, and let's get together to discuss how I can help you maximize your Social Media networking with a "Personal Touch".

Larry Morris

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Love Your Neighbor

Wow, talk about timing. Tonight at our church, Solid Rock, Jose Zayas spoke on the distractions that our sociaty and technology have created. We are more comfortable texting or emailing others then in actually speaking in person. Jose used Jesus words in Luke 10:25-37 to emphasize this. This is the story of the Good Samaritan, as well as Jesus word to Love God with your "all", and to love your neighbor as yourself.

Without my going into all of the theological and spiritual components involved, Jose found a way to marry technology and Jesus command to love our neighbor. He had us do a very simple and practical exercise to extend that love. We actually pulled out our cell phones in church and made a short phone call to whom ever God put on our hearts. Our task was to setup an appointment for a call later this evening.

I was sitting there in awe of what God was doing. Our congregation of who knows how many thousands in the course of 4 services made a lot of "touches" today. Who knows the results.

What amazed me the most was the timing of this message and my renewed involvement with SendOutCards. True, it could be easy to say that SendOutCards is just another way to avoid actually getting involved, but in reality, it is a perfect way to act upon those promptings that God gives us regarding others. A heartfelt card, followed up by a phone call several days later, can do wonders to fulfill that command to love our neigbor.

One heartfelt card sent at the right time, is worth more than a hundred casual emails or "hi's" in passing.

To me, SendOutCards is a wonderful way to start the day. I ask who I should send a card to today? Then I act upon that prompting.

My question to you? How are you going to respond to those promptings?

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Weclome to Nice Touch Marketing - SendOutCards

I was first attracted to SendOutCards for 2 reasons.

1) I was constantly forgetting to send Birthday cards to my extended family. It didn't matter if I had them in my calendar with a tickler, I would invariably get distracted and forget to go to the store. I've sent e-Cards, but have become leery of opening them due to computer viruses.

I saw SendOutCards as a great way to not only get a tickler, but also to be able to immediately go online and either select a personal card from their catalog, or create a custom one from scratch.

This year we sent our Christmas cards through SendOutCards. I love creating custom cards and this year was no different. But I really look forward to next year. My Christmas list is already entered. I just need to tweak it, create a new card and push send.

2) In my mortgage practice, I am always looking for ways to give that Personal Touch to my clients, prospects and business partners. I've sent emails and e-newsletters only to have them end up in the SPAM folder, or to have people change their emails. I've sent regular mail with little hope that it would actually get opened, let alone read.

I saw in SendOutCards a unique way to reach out and touch my clients, prospects and business partners. I am finding that most people open the cards I send because it doesn't look like SPAM or Junk Mail.

I send Thank You, Nice to Meet You, and Birthday cards. I've even got a few campaigns set up to remind me to stay in contact throughout the year. It's not about impersonal automation, but setting up systems to make it easier to build upon relationships.

While SendOutCards has done this for me, what I didn't expect was the joy of sending an unexpected card and being told how much it impacted the receiver.

I've had clients call to thank me for the card, loved ones tell me how much my card touched them in their crisis and even had my 50th Birthday Roast interrupted during a mountain lake vacation by a surprise Birthday card and gift for my little sister. That was fun...

The purpose of this blog is to introduce you to SendOutCards and how to make it work for you. Whether you are just looking for a convenient way to send an occasional card, a sophisticated system for contacting clients, prospects and business partners or a business opportunity with a great opportunity for income, you will find something here. Hopefully, at some point you will join me in this wonderful journey of touching people's lives with a heartfelt card.

Let me know how I can help.