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Welcome to Target Market Insights. A podcast to help real estate investors navigate neighborhoods through the lens of local experts. In each episode, we speak to local specialists to learn about their market, useful tips, and the latest trends and developments. This show is designed to help you with the insights you need to win your target market.

Dec 20, 2019

Heading into 2020, the most effective marketing strategy to source off-market deals remains to be direct mail, according to Justin Silverio. He founded Open Letter Marketing in 2016 to help investors with better direct mail marketing solutions. 


An investor himself, he’s tried various strategies with direct mail for real estate to develop a system that delivers results. In this episode, we speak about the secrets to a successful direct mail campaign, pulling strong mailing lists, and tips for going direct to seller.  


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Key Insights

  • Had an accounting background but learned about construction from his father; they partnered together on the first deal
  • Started with a foundation in direct mail to control deal flow
  • Direct mail takes time, view it as a long-term campaign, not a one-off 
  • Consistency and a strong lead list are the two most important components to create an effective campaign
  • Direct mail is still the most effective marketing strategy to source off-market deals
  • Expect the first acquisition to take 6-8 months 
  • Pull different lead lists: absentee owner, equity owners, trust lists, tax liens, driving for dollars, code violations, fire list
  • SUPER LEADS: properties on multiple lists - spends the most time on high-quality leads
  • Response rate: 0.7 - 1% on direct mail
  • If hiring a company for direct mail, make sure you match yourself with a company that truly understands real estate investing
  • Typically, you select a template and send it to your lead list
  • When going direct-to-seller, get comfortable taking the calls and navigating the conversation
  • Use higher cost methods for commercial investments, more professional - use a FedEx delivery
  • Proactively address concerns - such as timing for a 1031 exchange


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Bull’s Eye Tips: 


Apparent Failure:

Understand where you went wrong and adjust. As an example, he hired a contractor, who forged his license and insurance. Now, Justin calls the insurance company to confirm they are covered.


Most Recommended Book:

Traction by Gino Wickman


Most Recommended Digital/Mobile Resource:



Daily Habit:

Prioritizes daily tasks


Wish I Knew Starting Out:

The path to a successful company is not a straight line


Wish I Knew 12 Months Ago:

Plan for 12 months down the road, not just the immediate future  


Current Curiosity:

Growth and Controlling Quality


Best Place to Grab a Bite in Boston:

Oysters in the North End


Connect with Justin:




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