Today, a lesson on just how valuable your hyperlocal website and the email list you build along with it can truly be.
In May, my sister and I were tasked with selling a house that we came to own together after our mother passed away last year.
In addition to the usual methods of putting a sign in the yard, placing an ad in the paper and throwing it up on Zillow, I figured hey, why not write about it and send a link out to my email subscribers?
You can see the post I wrote here: http://www.floridaforboomers.com/key-colony/
I sent about 4,000 emails to my list from FloridaforBoomers.com, and I also sent out to a list of about 6,000 from TheVillagesFloridaBook.com.
Even though the house I was selling is about 2 hours away from The Villages, I know that one thing people considering The Villages struggle with is that its so far away from the beach. My thinking was that this house would be a perfect weekend getaway for someone with a home in The Villages.
Here’s the text of the email I sent to my Villages list:
Fellow AP’er Tom Malcolm happens to be on my email list and he sent me a note after receiving this particular message complimenting my email copy. Thanks Tom!
But, turns out you can’t please everyone…I got some hate mail too:
Oh well…haters gonna hate
Right inbox at the right time?
I had a total of just 4 people fill out the form I placed at the bottom of that post seeking more information.
The fourth person to contact me happened to be the personal assistant to someone on my Villages list who got my email, lives in The Villages now, but “might be interested in a beach get-away.”
I set up a time for him to come see it, he shot a video of the house using his iPad, took it to the interested buyer (his boss), she liked it, made an offer and we accepted.
The buyer never even set foot in the house herself.
Awesome. I just sold a house through my hyperlocal website!
But wait, there’s more…
I was curious, where exactly did this person come from…how did she get on my list?
So I fired up aweber and searched using her email address, and here’s what I saw:
Holy cow…not only did I sell a house via my hyperlocal site, but this person joined my list from an ad on FACEBOOK back in July of 2012. I used Facebook ads for several months last year, and when someone clicked on my ad they would be taken to a specific landing page within facebook with my aweber form on it, and this is precisely how the buyer got on my email list.
After this experience, here are a few takeaways…
1. Don’t under estimate the power of what you are building with your hyperlocal site. I think you’ll be amazed what your site and resulting email list can accomplish for you. Yes, there is a sizeable time and monetary investment involved with getting it off the ground, but focus on the long game.
2. Focus on building your list. Your site exists to build your list. Without my list, this particular sale doesn’t happen.
3. Let’s hear it for Facebook ads. I turned them off for a few months last year for various reasons that aren’t important to cover here, but after this experience they are back on.