Different marketing channels suit different personalities. And in today’s episode, we’ll be talking about TV as a marketing channel. Marketing through TV ads can be beneficial in a way that prospective sellers are already quite motivated, so doing business with them will require less time and effort.
In this episode, Chris Arnold will be joined by Virtual Investing Mastery (VIM) coach Lauren Hardy and Tony Javier. They will talk about television as a marketing medium for generating leads and how this strategy can fit into your lifestyle. Lauren will also share her experience with TV, how she was able to generate 107 leads in a month, and a quick rundown of her KPIs since she utilized TV ads for her marketing.
The Hidden Marketing Channel that Generated 107 Leads in 30 Days!
As always, I’m very excited that you are with us. This is going to be fun. We are going to be talking about television with someone that all of you guys know and love. Our very own, Lauren Hardy. Lauren Hardy is advertising on television, and Tony called me up and said, “We got to get Lauren on here and talk about her experience and why she chose TV.” We obviously know that she’s the queen when it comes to virtual wholesaling and how to do deals and other markets and so forth. There’s a lot of marketing channels you could choose to utilize when you go virtual. She chose television.
I’m excited to kick back, understand the story, and how things are going? We’re going to hear her results and what she’s gotten so far. As always, we got Tony here to ping some questions off of and get his opinion. I’m excited to add some value to you guys around television. Tony Javier, Lauren Hardy, what’s up? Welcome to the show.
How are you?
I’m doing good. It’s good to get to hear from you and be on another show. I’m excited to share what Lauren has been doing. She’s been a rock star. It should be a good episode.
Lauren, so the big question is, why television? If I’m reading right now, my first question is, Lauren Hardy does virtual. Why does she choose television as a marketing channel for herself? Where did you start at?
First thing, TV always intrigued me. When I was the one making seller calls, I remember hearing the TV in the background. I firmly believe that our number one seller avatar watches daytime television. When Tony presented the opportunity of this out of the box, all set up your TV commercials for you program, it was a no-brainer for me. I love the idea of TV. I’m so excited that I started doing it. I did start doing it in June 2021.
Your number one choice for television was you felt like it was your demographic. Tony, you and I know that when it comes to radio and TV, we’re fundamentally hitting that same demographic, people over the age of 45. Lauren, I can tell you for ourselves, that’s what we saw when it came to TV and radio. It’s the very thing that gets you in front of the demographic that you want to be in front of. I’m curious. Let’s see how it works. You went live and how many leads did you get in your first month?
Let’s talk about month one since we’re not done with month two. We got 107 leads from the TV ads alone.
What was your expectation? How many leads did you think you’re going to get because 107 is a lot of calls?
In inbound marketing, the seller is already motivated. There’s already a thought process in their head that you didn’t have to plant yourself.
I thought maybe 40.
I would’ve said the same thing. Usually, when people say, “How many leads can I expect in my first month?” I give them a pretty low number, knowing that they could blow that out of the water. For me, I don’t even know if I gave you a number Lauren, but if you would tell me or asked me how many leads, I would have probably said between 20 and 40.
You came out of the gate swinging and this went above your expectation. It sounds like Tony even went above what you would normally tell people to anticipate. It’s not a bad start, Lauren. I’m pretty excited about that. What I find interesting is we know that you virtual wholesale, which means there are a few fundamental markets you focus on, but you took TV into an even newer market. This isn’t where you normally do deals and you saw the success. Why did you decide to take TV into an even newer market?
Is it versus the market that I was previously in? Here’s the thing and this is the benefit of being virtual. The market that I’ve dominated that a lot of you guys are aware of is Oklahoma. Oklahoma has become very saturated with other investors, hedge funds and turnkey companies. Anybody that is in Oklahoma City will tell you that it is saturated with wholesalers. I started noticing that trend. The benefit of being virtual is that I can pick up and pick a new territory.
That doesn’t mean I left Oklahoma. I’m still in Oklahoma, but I thought, “If I’m going to spend marketing dollars on this new campaign, I want to take it somewhere where I think there’s a little bit more opportunity and it’s not as saturated.” I decided to pick a market that I knew wasn’t as saturated as Oklahoma. There was definitely a learning curve to going to a new market, but I’ve done it now for so long that I can pick up and start new markets quite easily. We’ve had incredible success. Can we talk about the contracts I got?
That was the next question I wanted to go to. You got 107 leads. People hear that, but the next question people ask is, “What was your conversion? Did you pick up any deals?”
This is what I love about TV ads is the sellers are already pretty motivated. They’re calling you. When you’re doing outbound, you’re calling them and more planting a seed in their brain. It usually takes that seller 30 days to even accept your offer. With TV, it’s a week because they already had the idea that they want to sell. They’re calling you. We were able to get contracts very quickly.
In June 2021, we had 107 leads. Out of that, we put ten of them under contract. While you were introducing this episode, I was looking at the pipeline. Out of the 10, we’ve locked up 2 that we’re selling to end buyers. We are working on the other eight, but we already have in escrow with closing dates set about $21,000 in the pipeline. That’s from my first month. My ad spends $6,900.
On those closings, it would be 3X plus whatever else you close.
You have 3X on 2 out of the 8 contracts already because you have the other eight that you can potentially finish as well.
To give you guys perspective, I’ve done marketing campaigns for ten years direct to seller. This is by far the best return I’ve seen. It’s the fastest. One month to have this is amazing.
Tony, is that typical to see that type of turnaround in the sense of not the volume specifically that she saw, but the speed at which she saw calls and contracts come in, etc. Is that what you’re seeing with a lot of the people that are utilizing television?
It’s interesting because I’m getting goosebumps right now and I do anytime someone tells me their numbers for their first 30 days on TV. When we launched this program in late 2020, I thought that most people would take at least 60, if not 90 days, to get good traction. That after 60 to 90 days, they’d be doing well. We’d have a small number of people, 25%, let’s say, that would crush it right out of the gate. It’s been the other way around where 70% to 80% of our clients are getting pretty massive or even good results within the first 30 to 60 days. For me, if you’re getting a 3X return, that’s pretty good within 30 to 60 days, but most of our clients are doing 5X to 10X within their first 30 to 60 days.
They’re locking up a lot of deals and turning them very quickly. In most markets, when I get someone on TV, they’re typically the only, if not one, of the only people on TV. There’s not much competition. When you see a new message on TV, it sticks out because it’s like, “I never seen that before.” If they’re even thinking about selling, that’s when they pick up the phone and say, “We weren’t thinking about selling until next month or maybe a couple of months down the road, but let’s go out and start the conversation.” They’re getting deals before anybody else gets to those deals.
Tony, you and I agree what makes all the difference in the world with a particular marketing channel is it doesn’t matter how good the marketing channel is. If it’s oversaturated, you’re in trouble. Lauren is even talking about the market being Oklahoma. Saturation is always a problem. When you’re going in on television, as Lauren did in that area, you and your other students are the only ones. It’s pretty easy to come in and scoop up a lot of business fast. That’s why you guys are seeing such fast returns on call volumes and contracts coming in. It’s virtually no competition at this point on television.
When I talk to someone, if anybody says, “There’s someone on TV,” it’s typically maybe 1, 2 other people, but that doesn’t mean they’re doing it right. We’ve got a formula that’s worked for us for years. Over 70 people, we’re helping with TV around the country. A lot of them are getting good results. We know that we have a formula that works well. Some people say, “I tried TV.” I’ll look at what they tried, and their commercial wasn’t very good.
The ads that they did or the times of day were way different than what we did. We’ve tested those times. They were super expensive, prime time, and all that stuff, which didn’t work. That’s typically what stations are going to try and sell you the most expensive stuff. Even though there may potentially be 1 or 2 other people in a market, that doesn’t mean they’re doing it right. Lauren, you could probably have a better idea. How many people do you think are texting, cold calling and doing postcards, hitting the exact same list in any given market? Is it probably hundreds, maybe even thousands?
I don’t have that number. I have no idea how to get that data, but it is a lot. It’s growing. If you asked me that question a few years ago, I would say maybe not that many people are texting. It’s still a new technology, but now the cat’s out of the bag, and everybody knows about it.
Regardless of what that exact number is, Tony, I do agree with you. It’s a lot of people in the markets. That’s for sure. Lauren, I want to go to your perspective on TV and what you personally like. We chatted a little bit. There were four things that you said that you’ve enjoyed about television so far. You’ve seen it as a benefit to you, your business, and the way that you run things. The first one was the fact that this is an inbound strategy versus an outbound strategy. Why is that important? What is your perspective on inbound versus outbound marketing?
Let’s first start with the definition of inbound versus outbound. Outbound would be cold calling or texting where you’re making that cold call to a seller and essentially soliciting your service. It’s almost a more needy position to be in because you’re talking to sellers that maybe not even thinking about selling, but maybe you planted the seed in their heads. Outbound, what people don’t think about, although it sounds cheaper, in many ways, there’s a hidden cost to outbound marketing, especially if you’re scaling.
Most wholesalers are the only ones from their industry when they get on TV. With little to no competition, their message easily sticks out.
If you have scaled and you have employees doing the outbound marketing for you, it’s very management intensive. It’s very difficult to manage these people. You can get an employee that’s pretending to work and they’re not. You’re still paying them. You’re burning through lists. Outbound marketing could go south very quickly. It’s a very hard campaign to track with KPIs. I still do it because we’ve been making money that way and I don’t want to drop those marketing campaigns that have been profitable for us.
I will say they are management-intensive and exhausting. Typically, a lead comes from an outbound method like cold calling or texting takes about 30 days to say yes. Let’s talk about inbound. Inbound is like direct mail, TV ads, radio, where they’re calling you. There’s not much effort other than setting up the campaign, turning it on and now seller leads call you. If you don’t want to deal with managing a call center, you’re probably going to be more interested in inbound marketing methods. What I love about inbound is that the seller is already motivated.
There’s already a thought process of selling in their head. You didn’t have to plant any seed for it. Typically, what we’ve noticed with TV in the first month is that it only took about a week for the seller to say yes versus 30 days. That means fewer people I need to hire to answer those calls. It’s easier for me to manage as an owner of a company. It’s very easy for me to pull the KPIs. I calculate how many leads we got and how much we spent on the ads. I’m a big fan of the inbound marketing method.
Let me ask this question. You’re a coach at Wholesaling Inc. Do you feel like people have to start with the outbound methods before they go to inbound? Do you think that someone can say, “I’m not an outbound person? I don’t want to cold-call. I don’t want to text. I want to start with marketing?” Do you feel like people have the ability to step over that and begin with marketing if that’s their preference?
Absolutely. I first got started in this business when direct mail was the thing. I started with outbound, and I did direct mail. Direct mail is the same thing. I am recommending TV to my students. Specifically, I can give you an example of one person that I recommend to TV too. The reason I gave her that recommendation was she had a full-time job. Wholesaling was her side hustle, but she didn’t have time to generate leads via cold calling or texting because she was at her full-time job.
I said, “You need something that is an inbound method where you need to concentrate on answering the leads that call you and that’s it. You don’t need to concentrate on cold calling campaigns.” Our first thought was, “I’m going to hire someone to cold call for me.” I told her, which comes from ten years of experience here, that you think that’s your solution, except for now you’re managing that person. Let me tell you how many cold callers I’ve seen fake work. They pretend they’re working and it’s exhausting to catch them in what they’re doing. You need more of an inbound campaign. You can take that human variable out of lead generation.
You love inbound. The second thing that we were talking about is you’re enjoying the quality of the leads. Talk a little bit more about that. Is television providing that much higher quality of lead than you’re seeing with some of the other channels that are out there?
For two reasons, one is that they were already thinking about selling when they saw my commercial. There was a reason they were motivated to pick up the phone and call. I love it for that reason. In general, the quality of the lead is much higher than cold calling and texting. I can’t say enough. They’re ready to sell. Usually, our avatar watches daytime TV. There’s someone that maybe works a night shift. There’s somebody that might be more in a situation where they have more motivation. It’s higher quality, 100%.
Tony and I know without question when it comes to television, everyone we’ve talked to has been utilizing it. That’s probably the thing that I hear the most about TV. You don’t have anyone who calls you and tells you that they hate that you advertised on TV. You don’t get any hate calls. You don’t get any of that type of stuff that we would get with direct mail.
Usually, when people call, they’re usually surprised that they’re talking to you if you happen to be the one answering those calls because you get that elevated sense of celebrity status. It is on the other side of the spectrum when it comes to the quality of the lead. One thing that you said next, Lauren, that I like, and again, we know you’re busy. You have a lot going on in your businesses, and everything you have this preserves your time. How is it preserving your time specifically?
It’s back to managing cold callers and texters. I’m fully scaled. I’ve got a team and my job is to manage these people. If I could wave a magic wand, I would probably not do any outbound marketing if I didn’t have to because managing the cold callers and the texters is a lot of work and it takes time to do it. I don’t have to worry about lead generation. I have to worry about my acquisition managers. That’s it. It removes a complete department of my company. It’s amazing.
The television and everything is making the phone ring for you. Literally, your team’s job begins once that lead comes in. Other than that, it’s all taken care of for you. I love that that aspect of television is pretty much automated. You let the TV do its job and make the phone ring as well. Next is the setup time. I know Tony, you’ve created television to be a done-with-you system. Lauren, how long did it take you to get your TV set up with Tony?
Not anytime at all. I think one day, honestly. Tony’s team will do everything for you. All I had to do was make sure that we had the phone numbers connected so our lines would ring and someone would answer.
Tony, talk a little bit about that system because this is a done-with-you system. When Lauren says, “Tony’s team did everything for me,” what does that specifically mean?
You call it done with you, which is a good term. I call it mostly done for you because we handled over 90% of the work. I’ve talked to many people that said, “I thought about TV. I tried to get on TV. I called reps. I tried to negotiate rates. It was too expensive and all that stuff.” When we set this up years ago when I got on TV, I was able to get on TV easily because I had a good media buyer, understood media, and had a production team. I had to do a lot more work than my clients had to do. I had to start with scripts and figure out what the field would be and images and all that stuff.
For several years, we’ve been able to develop many different scripts that have worked. We have tested many different schedules. Rather than someone going out and figuring out what stations to call, all that stuff, waiting for reps to call them back, figuring out what a good rate is on certain stations or shortens shows. We’ve basically cut all of that out to where my media buyer, who’s been with me several years and has been doing media for many years, does all the negotiations, so you know that you’re getting the best pricing. He’s plugging in what has worked for us and has worked for many other people throughout the country into other markets. We’ve got the production team, so we’re producing the commercial. As Lauren said, all anybody has to do is give us the phone number, the website and the logo.
If they want to be in the commercial, they shoot it. Lauren, I think you spent more time driving. Lauren lives about an hour from me. I offered her. I was shooting a commercial anyway. I said, “I want you to drive now. Let’s shoot the commercial.” It would take fifteen minutes or less probably to shoot the commercial. She drove 2 hours, took her 15 minutes to shoot, but we will set you up in your market to shoot the commercial, so you do not have to drive so far or fly to us. That’s the reason that I think we have such a high success rate. First of all, pretty much everybody gets on TV when they find the program because we do it for you.
The other thing is that we have the formula like a franchise-like system that has worked in other markets and we plug it into your market. We make it easy for you to get on TV because we know real estate investors are busy. If I gave anybody the course, it would take them at least 3 to 6 months to get on TV. It takes a lot of time to negotiate and figure out the feel of the commercial and everything that we’ve already figured out. We can get someone on the air in as little as three weeks. We say 30 to 45 days, but within three weeks, honestly, we can have you rocking and rolling.
Tony, I’m curious. At this point, you said you got somewhere around 70 people that you’ve set up on television so far since you’ve launched. Is that right?
It’s 86 spots technically because we have a lot of people that are in multiple markets.
The quality of the lead is just much higher than cold calling and texting, solely because these people are ready to sell.
Tell me 1 to 2 things you’ve observed now that you’ve helped 86 people do this. I haven’t asked you this question. That’s a decent amount of data that you probably began to connect some dots or see some patterns. What have you seen a couple of things so far that you’ve now realized?
Let me give you a few. One is that we have some beginners in the program, which we tested. If you read the episode before, we tested with a couple of new investors and they crushed it. We’ve still been selective when we get new investors in the group. One thing is that even the most experienced investors, when we get them to the program, there are things that we’ve figured out that I thought were so simple that they didn’t think about or understand. That could have been potentially the difference between them doing well or not doing well. Things as little as the phone number, making sure it’s right. The domain and making sure it’s going to the right spot. It’s the intricate details of what needs to happen throughout the whole process and that’s why I say not everybody’s doing it right.
We had someone buy into our program that was in a big market. I looked at his commercial and I told him six things right away that were wrong like the domain, the phone number and the way the actor was acting. There were so many different little things that he didn’t have data on. He threw in a commercial. We changed it for him. At the time, he was doing no deals off that commercial. Now he’s doing deals and in three markets with us. He started on a fourth. That’s one thing.
Two things are that there are people that don’t do deals very far outside of the market. The thing with TV is it can be a bad thing for some people, but the good thing is it reaches a pretty broad audience. I’m in Wichita, Kansas. Our commercials reach like 2 to 3 hours West and I think an hour, an hour and a half, maybe two hours East. TV audiences can be pretty broad. A lot of our investors have said, “I don’t typically do deals 2 or 3 hours away. When I got those calls and saw the numbers, I had to figure out how to make this work.”
I’ll give you two examples. One guy was about two and a half hours North. He said, “I’ve never done a deal in this area. I don’t even think I ever heard of this area before.” He made $35,000 in his first month off one of those deals. The second deal, I have a funding business. I had one of my clients come to me. Lauren, she’s one of your students. She was in a virtual market. She said, “I’ve got this deal about an hour and an hour and a half outside of my market. I can lock it up for 75. I think I can put it back on the market for 150 with barely doing anything to it.”
She locked up the deal. I funded it for her. She was at my mastermind and she said, “We pulled new comps, and we think we can list it for $185,000.” This is forcing people to figure out how to do deals a little bit outside of their market. It produces a whole new opportunity. Instead of saying, “I want certain ZIP codes, this and that, and being super selective about the lead they’re getting,” they’re getting leads a little bit outside their area, are able to do more deals and understand that they need to do different markets.
That deal that she did was a mobile home. I have students in my program that have said, “I don’t do mobile homes.” I say, “You’re going to get mobile home leads and figure out how to do them,” because I make $30,000 to $50,000 in every single mobile home deal that I do. This is in like $130,000 price points. I’m sure there are many other things that I could probably talk about. I think those are the two main things is that you’ve got to set it upright. Even if you’re the most experienced real estate investor, there are still things that could go wrong. Two is doing deals outside of their area and figuring out how to utilize the leads that come in.
It’s going to stretch you in a good way. It’s going to help you mature as a business owner to capitalize on those opportunities that are coming in. Lauren, I know you’re a big believer now in TV because at this point, you’ve had some of your wholesaling students do TV. We were talking a little bit about one of them, Nadia. You’re telling your students now at this point that you think that TV is a great fit for them. Talk a little bit about maybe Nadia so far and what you’ve seen with your students.
Nadia came to me. She was super busy. She didn’t have the time to do outbound methods, like cold calling or texting. I went straight for, “Why don’t you try TV?” The thing about Nadia that I liked is she has some experience in the business. I think maybe she’s closed maybe 3 to 5 deals in her career. I felt comfortable recommending TV. She started it and told me within a week of her ads going live. She had locked three contracts. It was amazing.
I had a similar experience. I think by my second week, we’d locked six contracts. She’s doing well. Aside from my students, I also wanted to throw in a couple more KPI numbers that excite me. Typically for outbound methods like cold calling and texting, it takes about 20 to 22 leads to get one contract. That’s not a deal. It’s a contract. With TV, it’s 10 to 1. You’ve got to think that ten fewer sellers that we have to follow up with. You do a lot of follow-up and negotiation calls. Those calls take time. They’re time intensive for my sales reps and acquisition managers. It feels much more efficient.
You’re doing half of the amount of work. I don’t know if you found this because you haven’t been on TV long enough, but I know the size of the deal is also bigger with television and radio. If you’re not dealing with a marketing channel that doesn’t have a lot of competition and you’re the only one that’s going out there to lock up that contract, then you’re going to negotiate a bigger spread because you do not have to pull your number up to compete with five other wholesalers. That’s one of the other benefits is not only is it half the work, but it also pays out a lot more profit per deal historically.
Some of my biggest profit deals have come off TV. I’ve done at least $200,000 deals off TV. I’ve done multiple $50,000 deals. I don’t think we do those types of spreads on any other marketing than TV.
If you’re reading and you’re like, “I’ve been trying to figure out what I want to do in 2021 when it comes to a marketing channel. Our responsibility at Wholesaling Inc. is to provide you guys with some different things to take a look at. I believe that marketing channels fit different personalities. For someone like Lauren, it totally fits her lifestyle, the way that she thinks about marketing, her philosophy, all of that type of stuff. We always encourage you, if you’re interested in it, to begin by asking questions.
What you want to do is you want to book a call and, first of all, see if your market is available and it’s open. On top of that, to see if it’s a good fit, but cool to hear Lauren’s story, particularly her being a coach. You guys can even see those of us that are at Wholesaling Inc. Even though we’re coaches, we’re over here like you guys are running businesses needing to utilize marketing channels, to create inbound leads and so forth so that we can continue to grow our wholesale companies as well. Tony, if somebody is reading, where do they go to find out more?
Go to RealEstateMastersTV.com/Chris. You can book a call directly with me and see if your market is available.
Tony, thank you so much for coming on. Lauren, it was super cool to hang out with you. I’m glad that we got to do a show together, which is a lot of fun as well. Thanks for coming on and sharing your experience so far with TV and your numbers.
You’re welcome. Thanks for having me.
To the rest of you guys, we will catch you soon when we add more value. Talk to you later.
About Lauren Hardy
Lauren Hardy is a Virtual Investing expert and Real Estate influencer who owns multiple companies in the real estate industry including real estate investment, coaching, and software companies. She is also a Wholesaling Inc coach and co-host of the Wholesaling Inc Podcast.
Her experience in the last decade has been focused on real estate investing and creating products and services to serve the real estate investing community. If you are interested in investing in real estate virtually, house flipping, or virtual landlording, Lauren’s your girl.