Texas Eviction Specialist
Founded Dallas Evictions which does non-payment of rent eviction services throughout the Texas area. We are not paper servers, but true negotiators in getting tenants out of residential properties.
We've been doing evictions since 1986.
If you are on a budget and you are wanting to save real money considering using a mobile app maker like GoodBarber or Shoutem. There are many services out there with really cool templates to get you going for a very low price. Once income starts coming into your company then you may consider redoing or having the big app companies customize it to fit your needs.
Keep in mind that 95% of all businesses fail so saving as much money up front could be the key to lasting longer.
I noticed that your question may have not been answered. Correct me if I am wrong, but you ask, "HOW DO I RESEARCH" which way is best to reach out to people.
I consider what you are doing full-blown real estate advertising myself and the bottom line is you can never list in too many places.
The way you research is by asking every single prospect "How did you here about us?". This simple question is done with your original phone call or email.
I will get a call and someone will ask what is the price or is this a two bedroom etc. and I turn the question around and automatically pull out my lead card and say, "Thanks for calling and I can answer that or those questions, but help me out a little here, please. How did you hear about our service, our property, the fully furnished unit etc? On my lead card, there will be all the places I advertise. Mark what they say. The results will be your research. You might be surprised at the results.
There are many ways to advertise and what you have listed are great, but until you know what impact you are having with these specific companies it may be smart to keep them in your rotation of ads.
I'd also suggest another option in advertising your units. You must have a searchable domain versus a brandable domain. Let me explain. A brandable domain is Geico, McDonalds etc. We know what they are selling. A searchable domain would be www.shorttermhouseingdallas.com, corporatehousing4u.com, furnishedapartmentsdallas.com. A searchable domain is one that includes the terms that someone would search for on google. They are normally pretty long, but I've had excellent results in my business doing this type of websites with domains like this.
I've actually made a business out of it and I create domains for people in specific locations at an affordable price. We then take the domains and make Wordpress based website because Google indexes blog type websites faster than regular php, html websites. I tested this theory for many years and currently run over 40 websites just for my real estate activities. I get ALL of my leads this way and it has given me more time to do other things.
I'd add a housing quote button to the web page that allows them to input what the need, when they need it and then a form is sent to you once they submit it. Your website will give plenty of pictures and information all under the searchable domain.
Just think of the terms someone would use when searching for a place that you have. If it's in Dallas someone may put in the search bar, "best short stay hotels in Dallas", The key word here is short stay. Your domain must have that word. What if they type best temporary housing in Dallas. Key phrase is temporary housing. Then you play with it in may ways. Write down 20 versions and then start the process of elimination. Once you have your top five produce the website. Find a student to instlal wordpress if you don't know how and pay them under $100. You might be able to find someone for $20. Learn about wordpress because it's super easy to navigate and get started. Learn about different plugins as well.
Last and final suggestion is consider contacting apartment locators in your area if they exist. You will pay them a fee for the assistance, but you will keep your properties full.
Just for the records I've managed over 1 billion dollars in properties since 1986. I've personal owned and rented out corporate units in Dallas in the late 1980's and early 1990's. I understand that business very well.
Once you do your "Research" focus on the top ten places to advertise. I don't know if this was mentioned or not, but you can also advertise on backpage.com, zillow, hotpads and many others. Some are sydicated so you input in one and they post in others. Postlets as well is another source. I could literally spend another hour writing on this subject because it's my world, but if you do have questions let's talk. Cheers.
Not trying to be negative, but the majority of contractors are not even incorporated so trying to convince them they need a facebook page or even a website may be a hard sell unless they are very established and use other services like attornies or accounting firms. Contractors in general, are usually have less than five employees or less. The larger the company the better the chance for success in what you are trying to accomplish. If the contractor doesn't just run the business and actually does the jobs himself I think you are going to be surprised that you will get turned down probably 90% of the time.
Many contractors live paycheck to paycheck and don't have additional funds to try another platform.
Many contractors do not know how to automate their business in general by using services like paypal or a credit card company.
Many don't even have a facebook account and find it daunting to even get on the computer.
All hope is not gone though. Here is a list of things to consider when pursuing contractors.
1) Find trade shows where they advertise. If they advertise in any way and it's consistent that's someone that understands the value of additional services. For instance, in my industry we have the Apartment Association i.e. Texas Apartment Association with branches throughout the state. Become a member and you will have a list of all the contractors in that industry.
2) Angie's List has contractors with ratings. It will show the volume of their reviews which could help you determine how well they do financially.
3) Buy contractors list
4) Start a business network on LinkedIn. I started a property management group a couple years back and now it has over 4200 people with very little effort.
4) Have a landing page targeted to contractors where they can get information by providing an online submit form. Show them benefits of why your service is good or great and then ask them specific questions to see if they are good candidates for your service.
5) Provide a free service or free consultation to get your foot in the door.
At the end of the day you have to be creative in your approach. As far as results that will depend on your approach, the market you work and what services you provide.
There is no easy way to run a business or to attract business. Once you find your niche stick with it and tweak it from time to time to get the best results.
I've learned that if I get one customer the best way to get more is to provide that paying customer with the best experience possible and then ask for a referral. Don't you think other contractors know other contractors? That's your secret to your success right there. Provide outstanding service at a reasonable price and then ask for the referrals. It works so well for me I don't do advertising.
Be extremely careful in making claims for SEO that you can get them at the top of the search and you own website(s) don't show up at all.
SEO will mean nothing to most contractors and if they do trust you to get better results you had better deliver or your reputation will be ruined very fast. Especially true if you are working a primary city and not nationwide.
Last and final thing to look at is to see what your competition is doing to get business. Find a way to better your service and outshine them in the area for amazing results.
Lot's of great ideas from everyone that has posted. Here are my two cents.
1) I am a firm believer in multiple domains talking about one specific service. The reason I believe in this concept is I have been doing it for more than 15 years now and I have not spent one dime on advertising. My niche markets are unique so it may not apply to what you are doing, but for me I turn business down. When people have twenty services on one website I believe they can get confused. If they see you specialize in just one thing or that website is specific to one thing they can't be distracted as much.
2) There are two types of domains. Brandable and searchable. Geico or Nike is a brandable name and a searchable name would be bestinsurance4u.com or bestshoes.com. I've always done searchable domains and had the best luck. The traffic I get off of these searchable domains are so much more than my brand name that I VERY SELDOM US MY BRAND NAME.
3) I see you have different types of services that require different types of qualifications. I strongly recommend that you do an online quote. I started doing this around five years ago and my business tripled within that first year. My quote form had specific questions geared to my business. I was able to stop 1-hour phone conversations and get an online quote to them within 3 to 5 minutes of my time. 90% of my business is now computer generated and automated so that I very seldom even talk to anyone on the phone.
4) Short story. I am a real estate broker. Most would advertise how good they are at selling properties. I do evictions to get my foot in the door. It's a service that most people don't want to do so they hire someone. Once I evict them I have already established a relationship with that owner so now I can renovate their property, lease their property, or sell their property. Consider doing the same thing in your business. Figure out how to get your foot in the door and then tell them about other services. My average client uses me three times for some service. One is the eviction process and then it can be as simple as running a credit report or typing a lease. All generating income at a consistent rate.
5) I've owed over 1000 domain names and have figured out how to get my websites ranked on google without paying. Content is key and multiple domains about the same service will get you more leads. In 1990 I started my buisness. The internet was not popular or being used so we relied on the yellow pages. I created a company then that started with the letter A. Allstar Leasing. I then purchased another business ad and phone and did Bemis Realty. What people would do is shop around and call the first one and then twenty minutes later call the second one. I said I have more so you can keep calling, but you are going to get us again. We had literally 7 names. Fast forward. Now ranking is how they find you. The other day A guy called me (rare event lol). Talked to him for 30 minutes. Five minutes later I get an online quote and it's him. I immediately emailed him back and said I just got off the phone with you and You filled out my online submission form. Just so you know I have 40 websites and chances are you are going to get me on most of them. He said he kinda figured that since the questions asked on the online submission form were what I asked him on the phone.
6) I have been in business now for 25 years. I've learned the best thing anyone can do is make sure you have a system in place that is consistent. Your system will make or break you. Take fast food places. You must have a set presentation. Time it and refine it. Always look to decrease that process. The quicker you can do a service the more money you make. Organize your thoughts and make sure you follow through. I good app to organize things is Trello. I know there are many things out there, but I prefer this personally.
7) You can have all these great ideas but at the end of the day you need a good accountant, attorney and mentor. All cost by the way. You must make sure that what you are doing is legal and you should have all the proper documents to protect yourself from liability. You should always keep up with your profit and loss statements. You can't really build a business if you don't know what you are making or losing.
My final thoughts are this. People never plan to fail, but they do. What makes winners versus losers is how you treat your customers, the value of the service you offer and how well you deliver that service. It's better to charge more for a service and have less people than to charge less to get bulk and provide a poor service. I tripled my prices and increased my attention to detail. I work less and make more. Win win for both clients and myself.
I'd talk to a group of professionals. Start with an attorney, CPA and financial guru. The reason you talk to all is for all the ends and outs of what could happen with your money and the income received. Some things are tax-deferred, tax free and other hold liability that you may not have the stomach for long term.
Mix things up. Old saying that I will let you finish is "Don't put all your eggs......."
Since I am in real estate I am partial to multi-family properties and commercial for long-term appreciation as well as good income potential.
Start-up companies are high risk, but have big rewards.
Stock, bonds and mutual funds. You could add a little day trading for fun.
Do remember one thing when doing anything. If you own an asset it has to be maintained and constantly monitored. If you are not in a position to do that then hire a professional.
I believe less is more when it comes to investing. I'd rather have one or two big properties than 30 scattered all over town.
At the end of the day with 5 million you can pretty much do anything. If you like Jersey Mikes you could open your own franchise and eat there daily lol.
Buy a franchise that doesn't require owner participation, but has returns of 6% to 15%.
If you like the DFW area I can show you some good income producing properties that you will receive a good income as well as have good appreciation.
One final thing is to take a little of that money and enjoy a nice vacation to New Zealand for a full month. Just make sure you go in the summer which is reversed from the US. Consider investing there and other foreign countries to have assets in additional countries just in case the petro dollar drops at some time here.
I am a real estate broker and my first suggestion is lose the word "Pitch". How about using the word present as an alternative. That is from Tom Hopkins book by the way.
As a broker, I get so many "pitches" in my email account that most people have no clue that the email I advertise is really my junk email. So that being said it doesn't reach me. I delete them all.
A straight up phone call would be better than a sneaky email and your conversion rates will be much higher. Consider this. If you send emails out you will be lucky to get a 3% return call or response. I'd say it will be on the lines of 1% unless you have something that is so good it catches on real quick.
Your product must be able to solve a problem and save a ton of time in this industry or it's going to be overlooked.
Here are some brief things that get my attention IF I see an an email or if someone calls me.
1) Say on sentence that tells me if I am interested in what you have.
2) If that one sentence doesn't get a response like I am interested then GET OFF THE PHONE.
3) Send a thank you note for taking the call and give a little info on the what I call "call me cards". It's a postcard and not a letter you have to open. You can make cheap ones on your computer with stock online or get them at an office supply. Other options would be to order bulk online.
4) Consider you website and is it informative.
5) Make a video. Videos get more responses than typical websites because you don't have to read you listen.
6) I'd be careful emailing people just because of the spam laws. If they click through your provider that you are spamming you could easily get on spam list which would not be good for your company image.
7) Trade shows are awesome, but expensive. Figure 5k minimum.
8) Sponsor a free real estate seminar and have guest speakers. Then at that end tell about your product. You will have a captive audience.
9) Develop a brandable domain and a searchable domain. You can call me for more info on this.
10) Advertise in Realtor magazines.
11) Have a website where they can join as an affiliate. Once they join and place their code on your website they are paid referral fees through the link.
12) Automation online will be the key to your success in my opinion.
13) Use Linkedin.com today. Friend Realtors and then post things randomly so they see your post. Don't email them though.
Hope some of these ideas work for you.
Everyone that has answered your question just gave you years of experience and thousands of dollars in advice for free. Most business ventures like this don't get out the door, not because it's not a good idea, but you may see the vision, but getting others as excited as you is extremely difficult in most cases. I've been working on a project for more than ten years in my spare time (not good for venture capitalist lol) and I have had hundreds of road blocks and have spent more money than I care to tell you about. I've had several partners that all gave up. It's very hard to continue with a vision once obstacles start popping up everywhere. Whatever you do I suggest you get a NON-DISCLOSURE AGREEMENT with whomever you decide to reveal you concept. If it's a billion dollar idea like you say, then I am going to tell you this. If you are that confident sell everything, downsize your home, get rid of your car and box yourself into a room and finish the app. Don't you think the sacrifice now would be worth making a billion dollars? If that's not reasonable for the creator of the concept, just imagine how investors are going to look view the idea. Good Luck. B
Three great ways to increase traffic. 1) Start an affiliate program. By doing this your links will be on websites which tend to raise your page rank. The higher the commission the more advertisers of your product you will get. 2) Create FIVE new domains and do 1 page websites. These five new domains will be searchable domains versus brandable domains. Let me explain. Brandable is Geico.com. Most people know it's insurance, but you would never know that by it's name. A searchable domain would be BestLogoCreations.com. This may be an active domain, but it's an example. When people do their searching they tend to you the word BEST & LOGO in their search. So you job is you need FIVE searchable domains that capture that market. Here are a few examples of how I would do it. Keep in mind they may be taken, but you have to think outside the box. And before I list these domains off the top of my head my disclosure to you is this. I own close to 1000 doimains. My main business website received 90% LESS business than my searchable domains. Read that again. My main domain does not produce me my business. My searchable domains produce the most business and because they have the key words they are searching in the domain I tend to be on the first page within 1 to 3 days of starting the website. So here are some ideas. BestBusinessLogos.com, 123LogoCreations.com, Logos4U.com, BestLogos247.com, DallasTexasBusinessLogos.com (city specific), WeCreateLogos.com, FirstChoiceLogoDesign.com, LogoDesigner4u.com 3) Every time you do job you should post that logo to your website, you should always have the buyer of the logo give you feedback and post that feedback, ask them to like your facebook page, get a linkedin account. It's the facebook for the business world. I have a template based email I send to every customer. 90% respond and give a glowing report. The other 10% don't check their emails or hate using the internet. I know these numbers because I use bananatag to see if they are getting the emails and approximately 10% are not opened. I said three, but let me give you one more. Find every website that allows you to post your business on the net for free. MerchantCircle, Craigslist, BackPage, etc. Good Luck. B
There are two things you should never attempt to get a discount. 1) Legal advice 2) Accounting. Getting generals answers to questions on such an important subject could cost you long term. I understand not wanting to spend money and doing it for as little as possible, however if you entire business is built on a concept and you have overlooked one item it could cost you everything. Hiring proper legal counsel is worth every penny and it will give you the confidence you need to further the venture. You could introduce some of your questions to a website called avvo.com which allows you to post a question for free and get answers from a licensed attorney. Keep in mind that the city you put will be where you get attorneys responding. I'd suggest if you live in a small town to put a large city instead. Another options is to pick one of the top 10 biggest cities in the US to get more experienced attorneys. Just my personal rule of them, but I don't pick anyone that has less than ten years experience UNLESS they have tons of local awards and recognition. Good Luck! B