Q: “Denise, I was just at my office holiday party and another agent was talking about how he has been mailing to a farm area for the last six months. I was shocked because I have been mailing to this farm area for a year! I have had one or two calls, but should I stop farming in this area? Should I ask him to stop farming in this area? I cannot believe we are mailing to the same group of people!”
A: OK, a few things here to consider:
1. You may not be mailing to the same group of people. If you are mailing to a few hundred people, he is mailing to a few hundred people, but there are a few thousand people in the area, you may not have that much overlap.
2. People like choices and options. If you are mailing two different sets of information, people are going to likely gravitate towards the person or information that resonates more with them. Choice is a good thing!
3. There is probably a reason that you both picked this area. If there are a lot of sales, there may be more than enough to go around.
4. Agents are notorious for doing something for a few months and stopping, so if you are in it for the long haul, he may not be and you will be there to pick up the pieces.
Depending on your relationship with this agent, you may want to consider striking up a conversation about it. Something as simple as, “Hey Jim, I understand we are farming the same area! I would love to chat with you to make sure we are both getting the most bang for our marketing buck. Would you mind comparing maps with me so we can make sure we are mailing to different people and not employing the same strategy?”
This is very common. If you have made an investment, I wouldn’t be concerned about standing my ground, but be helpful and try to work out a solution.