The second principle of lead generation messaging is your message must make an offer to get a response. When you create messages for buyers or sellers you must determine what kind of offers you will make based on what kind of responses you want. This theory is called “offer-response” messaging. Now, please know that this has been confusingly mislabeled by many as “direct-response” marketing for some strange reason I don’t quite understand. The concept they are trying to describe is actually a foundational messaging principle that applies to both prospecting and marketing and includes two types of offers. When you lead generate you are simply making offers to people with the expectation of a response—thus the name “offer-response.” Your two offer choices are to either make a direct offer to get an immediate response or to make an indirect offer to get an immediate response.
A direct offer is exactly that—direct. It is an offer designed to get an immediate response from someone who wants to buy or sell with you now. An indirect offer is still an offer that seeks an immediate response, but not directly for using your services of helping them buy or sell. It is an offer to get something else from you now, thus it is called an indirect offer, which puts you into a relationship with them and opens the door to possibly doing business with you in the future. If you are offering a home for sale and they respond, that is a direct offer and an immediate response—they are immediately interested in buying. If, on the other hand, you offer a free report of some kind and they respond, that is an indirect offer and an immediate response—they are immediately interested in the report but haven’t indicated an immediate interest in buying or selling. They are not seeking to hire you for what you directly do, but their response may give you the opportunity to build a relationship and serve them some time down the road.
Direct offers seek to generate immediate responses to buy or sell and indirect offers seek to generate immediate responses for something from you other than to buy or sell. One is a path to immediate business and one is a path to immediate services that might lead to future business. One takes a direct route to doing business and the other an indirect route—thus the labels direct and indirect. Regardless of which offer you make you always want people to respond now. To do this you must practice the simple concept of MOFIR—Make Offers For Immediate Response—at all times. You might have heard this explained in the past as “a call to action” for it is a tried and true messaging theory. Whether it is a direct or indirect offer you use in your message you should always call someone to action by putting forth an offer they will immediately respond to.
Gary Keller, Shift: How Top Real Estate Agents Tackle Tough Times, eBook edition (McGraw-Hill: New York & Chicago, 2009), 60-61.