Collington, a CCRC outside of Washington, D.C., had an unusual marketing situation: the majority of residents and prospects came from outside of the primary market area. When sales began to lag, an assessment of the marketing efforts uncovered that the primary market area held greater potential and a greater prospect base than previously thought. A successful direct mail campaign and event introduced the community to the primary market area at costs per lead less than half the industry average.
Reaching the Primary Market Area
In an effort to cultivate Collington’s image and reach the immediate market area, the community revisited a successful earlier event, “A Taste of Collington,” and transitioned it into a signature, annual event, using a purchased list for the primary market area to invite qualified prospects, as well as prospects from the in-house lead database.
The event showcased the beautiful grounds, neighborhood feel, active lifestyle, and cuisine. A progressive lunch led attendees through an open house of model cottages and apartments and a select number of resident occupied homes, creating a sense of community while showing all the community had to offer prospects.
Introducing a CCRC to a new market (in this case, the immediate area) and transitioning an existing event into a signature, annual event began with development of an invitation that was engaging to prospects, had a fresh feel, and would promote Collington as an active, engaging lifestyle choice.
This direct mail campaign, featuring a 6 panel self-mailer with perforated business reply card, was sent to 12,822 households: 2,542 household from the in-house active lead base, and 10,280 households age and income qualified from the purchased list. Approximately one week after mailing, all households with a telephone number available were followed-up by Hamlyn’s telemarketing team.
“A Taste of Collington” successfully introduced this community to its immediate market area with a cost per lead less than half the industry average, and 54% lower than their earlier mailings ($240, versus $520). Collington increased response rates from their previous mailing from 1.4% to 2.1% for the in-house list and from 0.5% to 0.9% for the primary market area purchased list.
Lead Generation from Direct Mail with Professional Telemarketing Follow Up
|Response Rate||Industry Average|
|In-House List||2.1%||2.0 – 3.0%|
|PMA Purchased List||0.9%||0.7 – 0.8%|
|Cost Per Lead||$244||$400 – $600|