What do you think of when someone says "referral marketing letters", in terms of marketing ideas? I'll bet you $100 you're guessing that I'm talking about testimonials and recommendations from past clients.

That's a wonderful marketing suggestion for Realtors too. But, what I'm getting at is collecting a stream of client referrals from other professionals such as mortgage brokers, landscapers, attorneys and contractors. The best part is that it'll only call for a individualized letter scripted by you, the coolest Realtor in the region.

In a nutshell, referral marketing letters for Realtors can be summed up like this: acquire a list of other professionals in your "farm area" that will have the type of clients and prospects you're searching for. Then you just write down a personal letter that sincerely shows off who you are and send it to this list in the regular mail (no email).

Make an effort to be creative in terms of the mailing package or envelope you utilize as well as including a out of the ordinary marketing piece with your letter. Be consistent about following up with each professional by phone, regular mail or email at least 1 occasion each month.

There's nothing dishonest with following the leader.

Initially, let's get a list of professionals that really have the clients you possibly could work with...

- Certified Public Accountants

- Lenders (obvious, correct?)

- Certified Financial Planners

- Real Estate Lawyers/Attorneys

- Building Contractors

- Home Stagers

- Appraisers

- Electricians (residential or maybe commercial, depending on your business)

- Plumbing Contractors

- Landscaping Companies

- Residential Roofers

- Tree Trimming Contractors

- Handyman Contractors

- Get the picture?...

Of course, there are numerous more professionals to add to the list but that'll have you going for today.

So how can you get a detailed list of all the professionals you'll desire to work with? Wonderful question, glad you asked. Depending on how many marketing dollars you have, there are a couple of options for you.

The online yellow pages is certainly an alternative for you. As a Realtor, you already have a "farm area" you operate in so you'll want to keep within those borders. With the yellow pages choice, the downside is that it can be time consuming.

You'll sift through to find the entire name, phone number and mailing address of each professional. Like I said, this might require a bit of time but it's at no cost.

Just purchasing a list of these professionals would be your other choice. Just as you're on a "Realtor list" out there someplace for sale, these professionals are on lists that the public can purchase as well.

Relax, these types of lists aren't immoral or unethical. When professionals, such as us Realtors and agents, sign up for random publications and associations, these lists are compiled and made available for sale to anyone.

A bit surprising, huh? See why all that Realtor junk mail and email somehow gets sent to you?

There are quite a few list companies out there to pick from. Rather than going to one list company for a list of attorneys and another company for financial planners, you ought choose a company that provides all the professions you need in one spot. I tell you, it'll cost you a few dollars for this list but it's going to salvage you hours of precious time!

So once you get this marketing list of professionals (however you choose to generate it), it's time to write down your highly personalized "referral letter". I don't have space here to instruct you about copywriting, regrettably. That's definitely a topic all on it's own.

Simply understand for now that you don't want your referral letter to be a "sales letter".

Even though you possibly could copy some or most of your referral marketing letter and send it to other professionals on your list, when these professionals get your letter, they ought to feel like they're the only one who received it.

It's all about penning the letter as if you were talking to the person face-to-face. Don't apply the same bland language that your bank does when they send you a dull letter in the mail. Attract their curiosity with your letter and talk to them as a genuine human being, not like a dull bank or credit card company.

By the way, this "personalization" goes for just about all your marketing pieces: postcards, flyers, ads, emails, etc.

What the essence of this letter needs to tell them is that you wish to refer business back and forth, not only take and take and take from them. You want to be their "go to" Realtor or agent for the rest of their career. Don't tick off these professionals by "selling" them, but instead, show them how they're going to benefit, okay?

You may happen to know something about the company one of these professionals operate for so feel free to drop that in your letter to make it more personal. If you know of a client who's worked with them, drop that in there also. Unless you babble about their momma, for some reason, it's almost impossible for you to get excessively personal in your letter.

Writing this marketing letter yourself would be my huge, major suggestion. However, if there's no chance you'll even contemplate about writing your own referral letter, then go ahead and employ a freelance copywriter to take care of it for you.

Doing a search on Google will pull up various choices of independent writers and companies for you to pick from. On a few of them you can sift through independent writers from all throughout the country and world. You can see reviews on most of the writers, find their hourly rates, forward them "interview" questions, etc. In a few cases, posting a project you need written and letting freelance writers apply, is allowed. It's terrific.

Ok, so now that you have your marketing list and referral letter written, it's time to mail it out. Only whatever you do, please do not send your letter in a regular white envelope like we see everyday of our lives... Please.

Get another unique mailing package or envelope with a little color or size to it. You want that letter to stand out from all the other mail this guy or gal is receiving that day. I would also hand-pen the address and return address, as it'll give the impression of being more personalized to the recipient.

Simply consider how you opened your mail today. Right, letters that have hand-written addresses constantly have priority!

Next, you want to include a marketing piece, other than only your letter. This might be a video you create using Animoto that showcases who you are and why they should pay attention.

I have a friend who sold life insurance and had the superb plan to send out tiny poker chips with his information printed on them. This buddy of mine printed "Do not gamble with your life" on all the poker chips.

Genius! If you wish to be a top producing Realtor like the "big boys", that's the kind of thought you need to come up with, or at least know where to get them!

Getting back to this referral letter, I'd suggest that you point them not only to your phone number but also your site or blog. It's important to offer them the choice of how to reach you. Certain Individuals would rather call you and others would rather look over your website first.

The last step we'll cover is absolutely vital. Repetition is king when it comes to marketing. Marketing industry stats prove a consumer needs to see your message or hear from you at least 7 times before they get familiar enough with you to act.

Following up with this marketing list of professionals is key to getting the highest response rate that you can. After your initial mailing, I'd urge you to follow up with them by telephone or another letter about 1 time a month. Emailing them would be an option too, if you have it.

As it is with dating, you want to be careful to not smother and bother them or else you can count on never receiving referrals from them, ever. It's a fine line but you need to tell them why you should be their "go-to" Realtor without coming across in a rude or annoying manner.

One last tip, if you want to save yourself a pant load of time, pay your teen to stuff these envelopes and mailers. Your college kid or teenager can stuff all the envelopes and address them but I'd still advise for you to write the referral letter yourself.

This kind of hired-hand will be about as inexpensive as you can get and you'll salvage so much time that you won't understand what to do with yourself.

In the end, I feel this is one of the better marketing tips for Realtors to ensure a long, successful career without a million-dollar marketing budget. In the long-run, you can find yourself with a constant flood of customer referrals from these professionals, as long as you devote yourself to forming these relationships.

Trust me, the funds will come as long as you focus on serving them as much as you need them to help you!

Author's Bio: 

Shiloh Street University is an online marketing school for Realtors, dedicated to “Creating Wealthy Agents through World-Class Marketing” by providing step-by-step video lead-generation tutorials, real estate prospecting tips and recommendations.

Get your "FREE 5 Day Sneak Peek" at http://www.ShilohStreetUniversity.com