How to Send Blind Offers with Umar and Offers2Owners.com (LA 1100)
Steven Butala: Steve Butala here. Welcome to the Land Academy Show, entertaining land investment talk. I’m Steven Jack Butala, broadcasting from sunny Southern California. Today, I talk about Umar… All right. I’m sorry. I talk with Umar, the manager of one of our companies called offers2owners.com and he’s hopefully going to share some stories of our Land Academy members, sending out their offer campaigns by the ton. Hello, Umar.
Umar Awar: Hi.
Steven Butala: What’s new today with you?
Umar Awar: Nothing much. The [inaudible 00:00:31] are rolling in. We’re going to be working on a lot of that. We also have some exciting news coming up for next week, which we’re going to share and just talk about some of our members, how they’re doing.
Steven Butala: Excellent. Every single morning, every single morning, the first thing that’s on my calendar, real early is to take a look at how all of our companies are doing. How they’re doing from a volume standpoint, from a dollars collected standpoint, and all that stuff. And obviously, Offers 2 Owners is one of those that I look at. What I’ve noticed is that… and this is just me at the tip top, I’d love to hear your opinion, it consistently grows. And it doesn’t grow… it’s not because of our sales efforts. In fact, I don’t even think there’s a marketing, but I know there’s not a marketing budget for O2O at all. What can you attribute that almost double digit monthly percentage growth to? What can you attribute that to?
Umar Awar: I think a lot of it has to do with… people finally understanding that it works. That, and mixed with the results that they saw from the first few campaigns. Why would you stop if you know it works?
Steven Butala: That’s a great point. It’s all repeat business, a small percentage of it. I can see how many new people are joining O2O and it’s not a tremendous number. So the vast majority of the growth is existing people. I want you to correct me if I’m wrong, my perception is that the growth in the company is internal repeat customers. It’s not new people that are joining.
Umar Awar: It’s definitely… it’s more so that than anything else, but there is actually a lot of new clientele that we get as well. And, whether these people are members, since Offers 2 Owners is open to nonmembers as well, we get people from other programs all the time.
Steven Butala: Do they make comments?
Umar Awar: Oh, absolutely. I actually had a really good one yesterday. One of our new… he actually joined, but he had gone through two other programs before ours and he told me I could say his first name, so I’m just going to go ahead and say Daniel. He said that he’d gone through a bunch of these templates with these other programs and the reason for why he joined and stuck with us and said we had to offer is because of the first line of our letter where it says, “We would to buy your property.” He said a lot of other people were just beating around the bush, not really getting to the point. And, just right off the bat, this is what this letter is about. You can read it, or we cannot.
Steven Butala: I think the whole first sentence of the letter is we would like to buy your property located here at x for $4,321 and 48 cents.
Umar Awar: Exactly.
Steven Butala: I wrote that sentence in 1999 and it’s still working for us.
Umar Awar: Oh, absolutely.
Steven Butala: That’s amazing. And for all of our members, or many of our members. So, this growth is just fascinating to me because when somebody like me, half puts together a company, or an offshoot company is what it is, at the request of our members and then has somebody implement it like you and take it to the point where it is… my gut reaction is, and most entrepreneurs hopefully will understand this, is how do I duplicate it? Or how do I duplicate the same thing for another audience? And so, do you have any thoughts on that? Actually this is like a meeting between you and me now in front of a camera.
Umar Awar: I know. Duplicating it for the same audience…
Steven Butala: I know that… or duplicating it for another audience. I know that House Academy, or one of the sister companies we have. Do you have a lot of House Academy people that are running through letters and having the same good experience?
Umar Awar: I do.
Steven Butala: Okay. All right. That’s great. That’s my point. So if we can do it for Land Academy, we can do it for House Academy and it works. What else can we do it for? That’s kind of the rule I have.
Umar Awar: Oh, absolutely. Well, there’s a couple of things that we’re adding that are in the works, upcoming new things that I’m not supposed to be talking about.
Steven Butala: So talk about it for sure now.
Umar Awar: We’re adding a couple different templates that are going to essentially effect marketing for your properties. It’ll go hand in hand with the… if you’ve had a property for two months, month, two months and a half, and it’s not moving, we’ll have a template available for it.
Steven Butala: Like a neighbor template?
Umar Awar: Exactly.
Steven Butala: Okay. Well, just to explain to everyone, a very popular way to sell a property for us, we first send out all the offers to owners, some of them come back. We end up buying a very predictable number of their properties. It turns out, if we send an offer to all the… not an offer, but if you send a letter to the people that are very close to… people who own property that’s very close to the one that you bought saying, “Look, we’ve got this soft market property. You really should take a look at it and consider it.” There’s a very high percentage of response to that. We call it around the office, a neighbor letter. So people are requesting a template for that?
Umar Awar: Right, right. And-
Steven Butala: I guess we are talking about it, aren’t we today.
Umar Awar: Exactly. So people have been requesting a template for it. There’s a couple of glitches that need to be figured out within the template because merge fields for these letters work just a tad differently than they do our regular letter template.
Steven Butala: They’re different fields, right?
Umar Awar: Right. And, whereas some of the information regarding… the only information that’s the same in there is the property that you’re trying to move. Apart from that, everything is always different. Just working on finishing up the template for that. Like I said, we do have something pretty big to announce at the end of the show.
Steven Butala: Okay. I’ll say that the technology behind what we do is not that secret. It’s all pulling assessor database from an aggregator like RealQuest, or DataTree, getting a universe, or a dataset of property that you believe owners are going to respond, pricing it, and then running a mail merge through the template that Umar’s talking about. So… there’s no magic behind this. It’s all really execution and working with somebody like Umar and that’s a big difference between O2O, I think. Then everybody else, they can get you on the phone. You do help them where they need help, within reason, and get the thing in the mail. And I think most other bulk mail slash commercial printers, I don’t think they offer that level of… we keep calling it service, but it’s not, it’s like consulting. It’s really specific talent. So, I don’t know any other commercial printer that only does this. This is all we do.
Umar Awar: And, that mixed with a lot of other companies want to charge separately for each and everything. So, you have to pay separate for the envelopes, separate for… it’s gotten to the point where they’re charging separate for an envelope tent. So, all that rolled into multiple price points mixed with this long invoice that they send you, is just absurd.
Steven Butala: We have a fixed price and that’s it.
Umar Awar: Exactly.
Steven Butala: Because we only do one thing.
Umar Awar: And it has everything included in it. Nobody ever has to ask if they have to pay for postage separately, or all of that.
Steven Butala: That’s all by design. I could have made this… I could have designed a big, huge catering list and then you wouldn’t even work here. You’d be like, this is dumb. I want to win not lose. So, we just got off this live event. And I heard from Aaron, the senior manager for Land Academy that all of you guys, because you were at the live event and you’re in a lot of the shots from the trailing video that we have out there, that you guys are experiencing some level of celebrity. Is that the case?
Umar Awar: A little bit.
Steven Butala: So what happens like, they’re like, “Wow. Umar, man. It’s so great to talk to you.” Is that what happens?
Umar Awar: Okay, so… a little bit and mixed with… we get a lot of… it’s actually a mixture of the podcasts and the live event.
Steven Butala: Okay.
Umar Awar: So, we all got to meet them in person. They got to meet us in person and we’ve spoken to them on the phone hundreds of times. So, they finally got to put a face to the voice. And, another thing is… people listen to these podcasts. We have five or six 020 members that at least have said something about it, is they listen to it, but 30 minutes after it’s put out the 020 podcast.
Steven Butala: So, within 30 minutes, they put an order in?
Umar Awar: No, no, no, no. I mean, they listen to the podcast within 30 minutes of it being posted.
Steven Butala: You mean like on a weekly cycle?
Umar Awar: Yep.
Steven Butala: Yeah. I’ll tell you, this show has almost a hundred thousand listeners and so, it’s all kind of on an automated… when an episode gets posted, people get notified if that’s how they have it set up. Whether it’s through iTunes, or now Spotify. Incidentally, Spotify, our presence on Spotify, not our presence, but Spotify itself is now larger than iTunes, which I think is just truly… iTunes used to be a force for podcasts and Spotify has passed it. So, that tells me that our listening audience is younger and so… but that’s always in the back of my mind. I try to make stuff so that everybody can understand it, regardless of age.
Umar Awar: Right.
Steven Butala: But anyway, that’s an offshoot. Yeah, I know what you mean. People listen fast.
Umar Awar: Right. And yeah, they’re just extremely excited about it. And, one of the members actually said that there’s a lot of helpful tips in here.
Steven Butala: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Good. Well, I continue to look forward to watching O2O grow and obviously, if there’s some content help… I personally send out a ton of offer letters, I mean, neighbor letters. So if there’s any way I can… and I think you and I have worked on this in the past. So, do you have a good idea of what that template should be both for houses and for land?
Umar Awar: Mm-hmm (affirmative). I have it all written out and then, there’s just a lot of little changes that need to be made. And then the merge field set up. That’s the only thing that’s really left in there.
Steven Butala: And I know there’s a bunch of templates, free templates on 020 now. You’re going to just make those free just like the rest of them probably, right?
Umar Awar: Yeah.
Steven Butala: Okay.
Umar Awar: Yeah. Plan on doing that. Once again, why would they have to come to us and ask for the template? Grab it, work on it, send it in, we’ll mail it out.
Steven Butala: It’s got to make your life a little easier too because it’s all out there and it’s usually the same, hopefully. Right?
Umar Awar: Right. Absolutely. And, so every, I want to say six months or so, we do make updates and that’s according to the response rates we get from some of these letters. And we try out a bunch of different products to see if our methods are still working and magically knocking on wood, they are.
Steven Butala: Well, Umar, it’s a pleasure to work with you and keep up the good work, pal. Seriously.
Umar Awar: Thank you so much.
Steven Butala: Join us next time for another interesting episode and we answer your questions posted on our online community, landinvestors.com. It’s free. You are not alone in your real estate ambition. So tell us the truth, are there girls calling you?
Umar Awar: No. None yet.
Steven Butala: None yet.
Umar Awar: Men only.
Steven Butala: This is such an interesting group. This Land Academy, O2O group. It’s just like 90% guys. Probably 90%, 95% men. And so, I don’t have any more else to say about that. That’s just the way it is.
Umar Awar: I think we should get some women in the group.
Steven Butala: That’s what I think too. The Land Academy Daily Show remains commercial free for you, our loyal listener. Wherever you are listening or watching, please subscribe, and rate us there. I’m Steve Butala. Thanks for listening.
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