Monday, March 17th, 2008
It’s no secret that everyone likes to see his or her name in black and white. Direct marketers have been personalizing printed material for years. The smart marketers are now doing the same with web sites.PURLs – Persistent Uniform Resource Locators – have been around for years, but have been steadily gaining popularity in real estate marketing. Imagine you are thumbing through your mail, and there in the stack is yet another real estate direct mail piece…only this one is asking you to visit your very own web site at YourName.RealEstateOffer.com. Even more compelling, this one has some spectacular golf imagery on it, and you as an avid golfer are even more intrigued.When you go to the site, it welcomes you by name. Again, you browse through the web pages and see some more golf imagery as you read about the great golf at the community. You click on contact to request more information, but this time, you don’t have to fill out a form. Everything is ready to be sent to you.Later, your next door your neighbor brings over a direct mailer that caught her eye. It has soothing spa images all over it and it directed her to YourNeighbor.RealEstateOffer.com. She tells you the same story about how the web site greeted her by name and it focused on health and wellness.The thing is, it was sent by the same community. Two totally different direct mailers and two totally different web sites. 1:1 marketing at it’s finest.Here’s how it worked. The community above purchased a prospect list that included lifestyle attributes (affinity to golf, spa, etc.). They gave everyone their own unique web site address, or PURL. They knew that you would respond well to golf messages, and your neighbor would respond better to spa messages. So, the PURL YourName.realestateoffer.com was then programmed to dynamically display golf messages and YourNeighbor.realestateoffer.com was programmed to display spa messages.The value of this should be obvious. What better way to market to someone than to personalize their message, giving them their own microsite with the information they want on it. It will inevitably increase the chances for prospect conversion.Here are a few quick statistics. According to the Direct Mail Association:
- nearly 33% of people respond to direct mail by going online
- campaigns that employ PURLs are reporting a 20 to 30% increase in response rates
- personalized direct mail can increase the response rate from the traditional 1% to a response rate of 5% or better.
Not only will using PURLs improve response rates, it allows you to gain key marketing insight on those who respond.What do I mean? Standard web traffic statistics are unable to track specific visitors to a site. Typically, you can only drill as deep as the ISP the visitor used to get to your site. However, when someone types in a PURL, we know exactly who they are, because we can match it back to the original list.So, we know each person who responded to our message. We know precisely what pages they viewed. We know how long they spent on the site. Imagine having this information at your fingertips to help build the relationship.So, to summarize, PURL campaigns will help you with the following:
- Increase response and ROI over conventional direct mail campaigns
- Enhance the user experience by delivering dynamic content based on preferences
- Boost opt-in behavior
- Improve conversion tracking
- Gather additional key consumer behavior in real time
- Bring 1:1 marketing within your reach
To increase your lead generation, PURLs are the way to go.