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"E-mail Power Tactics!"

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12/6/02 Interview with Mike Barnett

7183 Navajo #F
San Diego, CA 92119

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Ways to Control Spam

  1. Unsolicited email (spam) gets in the way of productivity; to get around spam, create filters on your client (any hardware that sends and receives) by programming your email software to direct spam to a delete folder.
  2. Set rules or filters to identify common spam words (e.g., "debt," "sex"or "Viagra"); filtering rules can also help to block viruses, which commonly end with the extensions .exe or .zbs.
  3. Some ISPs do offer generic filtering programs, such as Earthlink'sSpaminator, at the server level; customers can go into the program to check what has been filtered out.
Becoming Your Own Postmaster

  1. Working through an ISP, you may have ability to adjust filtering within the limits set by the ISP; however, by using a product such as InternetCrusade's MaxEmail [renamed e-MailPLUS] to set up your own server, you can have full control as your own postmaster.
  2. Control is especially important for brokers, who are required to keep copies of all customer correspondence; setting a rule to copy all inbound and outbound messages referencing the domain to an archive file accomplishes that requirement at the server level.
The e-MailPLUS Product

  1. e-MailPLUS allows a user to go to a Web interface and set up rules; the product is compatible with any of the favorite email software such as Outlook, Outlook Express and Eudora for accessing email.
  2. With this program, you have your own virtual mail server so that your domain name is your ingoing and outgoing server name; having your own server gets around ISP limitations such as setting the size of messages and the number that can be sent simultaneously.
  3. e-MailPLUS allows branding even if you use AOL; you can minimize AOL and then use e-MailPLUS to send and receive mail using your own domain.
Mail Protocols

  1. ISPs give you two choices with a POP (post office protocol) account‹leave copy of mail on the server or not; when the space of a POP account(usually 5-6 MB) is used, the server won't accept additional mail.
  2. IMAP gives the same choices but allows you to synchronize multiple devices with the server; folders/contents created through any one device will show on all of them.
Establishing a Drip System

  1. A drip system involves automatically sending messages on a periodic basis; Realty Times' newsletters and the Society's CyberTips are examples.
  2. The strategy takes advantage of the fact that when people log on to the Internet the first place they go is their own IN-box; getting into their IN-box is the way to get in front of your customers.
Action Plans

  1. A more sophisticated approach is to pattern an email action plan on common offline plans; identify the particular interest (geographical, property type, etc.) of individuals and assign them to automatic communication programs tailored to their interests.
  2. For example, send to someone looking for a house in a certain community new listings weekly plus updates on the neighborhood monthly.
Tips for Email Lists

  1. Permission marketing is the way to go; always allow people to opt out of receiving communications from you.
  2. Rather than buying lists, solicit your own set of addresses by asking everyone you contact to give you theirs ‹though an obvious strategy, few are doing it, so asking will separate you from the pack.
  3. Structure listserves on your server, not on your client; off-the-shelf software will not help to maintain the list at the server level; e-MailPLUS offers a web-based maintenance solution.
  4. e-MailPLUS costs $19.95/month (includes two accounts of 15MB each); the price goes down for volume accounts; it has recently been used by a company in Florida with 1600 agents.
Marketing Advice

  1. Every agent should assign every listing an email address (with an autoresponder) and a third-level domain (that points to the listing on the agency site or the MLS).
  2. e-MailPLUS has unlimited autoresponders; InternetCrusade offers third-level domain set up inexpensively (first two @ $15, the rest, free).
  3. An awesome strategy would be for a broker to advertise that people could get information about any property in their area (no matter who has the listing) by typing the street address@agency domain or domain.
Favorite Time-Saving Web Site

  1. has one of the best search capabilities ever use it first to find information on anything.
  2. You can download the Google shortcut bar right into your browser.
Information Sources

  1. For advice on managing email, contact or visit
  2. All the topics touched on in the interview are developed in detail in thee-PRO course; to sign up, go to
Contact Information for Mike Barnett:

(v) 619-283-7302
(f) 619-283-7343

Real Estate Sites & Tools in this Briefing:

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