We were doing some research here at Scout for writing a blog post on our favorite real estate postcards and, honestly, what we found was so much utter trash. So let’s go through the trash first to help make sure you aren’t sending it now.
Even if you are, it’s ok, we’ll help you clean up your act :).
10 Utter Trash Real Estate Postcard Examples
Ok, hold on to your hats kids, these trashy cards will make your mind spin. We’re going to go through each one and call out why it is trash so you can spot a good design when you see it. Or, at least avoid the bad ones.
1. WHY IS THERE A DOOR IN A FIELD!?
Ok this postcard is terrible. As let’s break this thing down, Scout style!
No clear headline
Too many messages in confusing orientations.
Why is there a door that leads to the same field they are in?
Look at it for 2 seconds, do you have any idea what this card is about?
Who sent this, why did they send it?
What’s with the weird spacing and spaces before the periods?
No call to action.
No useful data!
This postcard looks like trash to me because the person that designed it didn’t care about adding value to my life. They just wanted to confuse me with weird layouts and a door that is open to a field I am already in, what the heck!
2. GET THOSE KIDS OFF MY LAWN!?
This postcard is a world better than the last card. I know it’s probably about real estate and it wants my dreams to come true. But, what the heck. Here’s why it’s still trash.
Where does the relator sell? Is it relevant to me?
Is this the actual realtor? If not, weird.
What do they want me to do once I get this?
Did this couple “win” or just settle on an OK price?
Postcards should be about two things
Telling your story
Convincing your potential customer to take action
While this card tells some type of a story, it’s not a cohesive one and it certainly has no call to action.
3. Oh, it’s a dog adoption agency?
So this one is better than the first option, but worse than the first. Here’s what they could improve.
Agent contact info, but no picture?
A friendlier dog? And why is that woman straining her back?
A better tagline, e.g. An affordable new home.
There are no facts? Tell me why you’re the best.
No call to action, what should I do next?
This postcard, like all in the ones we found, reeks of amateur. It’s like someone had to complete 100 postcards in 100 seconds, it just doesn’t do it for anyone and you shouldn’t spend money on a card like this.
5. A tiny gold house? Toy company?
This one is awful. First of all, no one owns a neon green shirt. I’ve honestly never seen a shirt like that. Second, if you’re part of some weird gold tiny house society, you certainly don’t exchange these things over a pit of $100 bills.
The one thing we know for sure is no one is calling Stan Johnson, unless this guy is sending these cards to the society of tiny gold houses. Here’s why this sucks.
Title is not clear enough. It should be more direct.
The benefit is not clear enough either, why use me?
I’m not compelled to do anything.
Again, like most of these cards this doesn’t appeal to anything in me. It really just looks like trash.
6. Free Seminar? Is this a time share postcard?
This is too on the nose. A house in a huge shopping cart? Come on. Ever see Apple or Google or Target do a silly thing like this, no.
There’s too much text.
“We have answers” seems like a religious ad.
The time of the seminar is small and the location is unclear.
The call to action is also small (call to RSVP? it’s so tiny).
Like most of these cards, they weren’t designed for you. They were designed because someone had a quota to meet. They have to pump out a certain amount of cards. Don’t use this postcard.
7. Finally, a decent postcard
Look at this, a postcard that’s actually not terrible. Why isn’t it terrible? Well, unlike the card before it, it’s simple. Here is a house, this realtor just sold it. Then there is some branding at the bottom.
Here’s what I think about this.
The simplicity is the greatest piece here.
It’s probably a house these people recognize.
It should have included the amount it was sold for, that’s the important part.
Overall this is my favorite of all the cards we looked at and if you were forced to use any of these cards, this would be it.
8. Distracted, I am!
The main image is totally obscured, why even bother with it? Also, each of these very small pictures of the house are surrounded by obscene boarders. You only have so much space on a postcard to make an impression, why put double boarders around everything.
While distracting, this postcard does contain an address and a price.
The call to action (phone number) should be bigger.
It’s nice to see images of the place, but they should be bigger, too.
The background image doesn’t add anything to the card.
9. Come watch a movie about terrible postcards
This is where your message is ignored. This is where your message is ignored. No one wants to read an unsolicited paragraph about a fake movie house.
The headline is nice, I know it’s a home being listed.
The address as a subtext is good, too.
I like how he put his face there, too.
Remove the paragraph of text.
Remove the weird film strip thing, just show the property.
This postcard could have been there if the there wasn’t that weird paragraph or that film strip thing. Don’t get too clever with your postcard design.
9. Contemporarily confusing you
Whoa so many boxes. This is too confusing. Just because the home is ultra modern, doesn’t mean you need to throw in a bunch of useless geometric shapes and contrasting colors.
New listing should be much clearer.
The address of the listing should be close to the headline.
The price should be the next biggest thing on the card.
There should be one really nice image of the house.
If there are house features there should be a few and then a big, come see more.
10. A totally useless toolbox
These postcards are too clever for their own good. Instead of agent mustache showing how he is able to sell a great home at a high price, or find you a great home at a low price, he shows you a toolbox.
I think the only redeeming thing about this postcard is that the agent is pictured on the card, but in this case it just puts a face with the bad decision to send this card.
I won’t go further into this card, it’s just not worth it.
10. Scan this postcard right into the trash
Scout is a tech company in San Francisco. We have services for cupcake delivery, you can rent scooters anywhere, and yet no one uses QR codes here. You need some QR code app and it’s just too complicated. No one person I know uses QR codes.
The QR code is the biggest thing. Does Samantha sell QR codes?
Lots of heavy boarders, useless. Don’t do that.
I like how her image and contact details are prominently displayed
There is no call to action that doesn’t suck (i.e. scan this QR code sucks.)
10. Blah blah blah blah blah blah.
Ok this postcard just makes me dizzy. Don’t do this. No one wants to join you on Facebook that doesn’t know you. Talk about what you do, how you can sell and buy. If a relator is nice, but terrible at their job, you wouldn’t want to work with them.
That’s what this postcard says to me, they may be fun, but they aren’t a professional. Just don’t puke random text on a postcard and expect it to convert.
1 Path Forward
The thing that should be obvious by now is that less is more. You should always remember that your primary purpose is to communicate value to your customer. You must also remember that your customer doesn’t really care about what you do… it’s why they are hiring you. So, the postcard should be about them. It should be the vehicle you use to deliver useful information to them. No one wants to scan a QR code, or follow you on Facebook, or see a picture of your toolbox.
When you send a postcard always make sure that it does the following things.
It’s simple and clear.
It communicates value to your customer.
It’s not “designed”
It is targeted to people interested in what you have to offer.
It has a clear call to action.
It is easily understandable.
Just keep these things in mind before you send any postcard.