Diary of an Ad Man

September 18, 2013

Database Marketing for Beginners.

Filed under: Business — linwoodaustin @ 11:08 pm

Database Marketing for Beginners.

I had a client years ago who bought and sold houses. He had plenty of competitors. But he was making money hand over fist. How did he beat his competitors? He used “database” marketing.

What is database marketing? It’s all about finding prospects who are just about ready to become buyers.

This client of mine operated out of Houston, Texas. He did not buy just any house. But only houses in a certain section of town. He called that section of town “the rust belt”.

The houses he bought he knew he could sell fast. He bought the houses at a decent price and would flip the house in exactly 91 days. Why 91 days? Because there was some law made to hamper “house flippers”.

He had two or three crews to go in and remodel the house using the same pattern. New, black-and-white linoleum in this room. Chandeliers in that room. Paint the house white. Black shudders.

He had his whole operation systematized.

But his biggest element of success was his “database” marketing. He would mail his letters offering to buy the house to a file of likely sellers. One of his database points was to find the names of home owners who had just inherited the house and were “reluctant homeowners”. They had parents who just passed away… and they lived in another city and did not want to be landlords.

He bought and sold some 100 houses each year… until the real estate bubble popped. I don’t know what he’s doing today. But I bet what ever business he’s in… he is using DATABASE marketing to insure his success.

By using this database marketing technique he kept his marketing costs (selling costs) down. That means he did not mail to people who were unlikely to sell the house. And by keeping his selling costs down… it enabled him to sell the remodeled home at a lower cost and thus increase his profit and volume.

Database marketing is using data points to find easy buyers.

I had another client, who years ago, sold a copy of the newspaper to anyone who as born on that day… 50 years ago. He discovered that when a guy turns 50, something changes in him… he turns nostalgic… or something. But it make him more willing to buy things. Plus by age 50 he generally has more discretionary income.

Database marketing is essential in any business. Business to business. And Business to consumers.

You must look for data points that indicate your target market is pre-warmed up… and almost ready to buy.

You can’t sell what they are not buying. But when you discover what they are buying… or ready to buy… you’ve eliminated tons of buying resistance. And you’re almost ready to make plenty of money.

Database marketing might include keeping note of the birthdays of your customers… and then offering them a “special deal” in honor of their birthday.

Database marketing might include … I think you get the point.

What data points do you need to succeed?






Recently lost their job?

Stuck in a higher interest rate?

Recent change in laws forcing a life-changing decision?

Class action lawsuit victims?

Weather related buying decisions?

Ford owners?

20 pounds overweight?

Database marketing is marketing using your brain to determine where you’d get the best response.

Need help thinking about your situation? Perhaps I can help. I’ve been doing this type of marketing for twenty-five years. Pick up the phone and let’s talk. If we hit it off, perhaps we can work together. It doesn’t cost anything to explore your marketing situation.

Here’s my number: 801-895-9598

Linwood Austin

Database Marketing Guy.


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