By Mark Brodsky

If you’re using email to stay front of mind with your clients, that’s terrific. It’s not an easy thing to do consistently, so well done!

If you’re using software like MailChimp or Constant Contact, even better. Your emails look professional and you have access to all sorts of important information, including how many people opened your email and what articles or links they clicked on.

There are so many different reports you can generate that the problem becomes having access to too much information and not knowing what numbers and information matter to you.

Here’s a primer on which numbers to pay attention to and how you can use them.

The percentage of people who open your email:

According to MailChimp, the average open rate for a real estate email is just under 20 per cent. This includes people who download your email but don’t read it. If your average is higher, that’s great. If it’s lower, you may need to make your subject line more compelling or change the time and day you send your email out.

The number of people who click a link to a listing or an article you’re featuring:

Why? It shows true engagement. Someone was interested enough to open your email and take an action to read more. Pay attention to the click rates because people are telling you what they are interested in. Give them more of those topics and less about topics that don’t generate engagement. You may be surprised. To get people to open an email, it’s more about giving them what they want and less about you think they should know.

Bounced email addresses:

If you know these people (and you may not know everybody on your mailing list – some may have signed up via your website or social media) it’s the perfect opportunity to reach out to get an updated email address and touch base.


Up to one per cent of people on your list will unsubscribe every month. This is completely normal. Most software systems allow people to give a reason they’re unsubscribing. Those who do are giving you good information. If the unsubscribe rate is higher than one per cent, it’s worth revisiting your strategy. Are you sending too often? Is the email too long? Is your content relevant?

Ready to go deeper?

You can pull a list of people who haven’t opened an email in six months to a year. You know they’re not engaged. You can decide if you’d like to remove them or if you’d like to reach out. It can be as simple as confirming an email address – “I was wondering if you’ve been receiving my monthly newsletter?”

On the flip side, you can pull a list of everybody who’s clicked a link in the past six months. Identify them as your top fans (Facebook has recently started doing this) and offer them something special, such as early access to tickets to an upcoming home show. You know your clients best.

Your newsletter database can be a gold mine, but it’s not going to work on its own. You must pay attention to what’s happening so you can maximize your effort.


  1. Hi David, I agree that we need to spend time face to face with clients and prospects. However, realtors should only be sending their email to people they know so it’s not a shot in the dark. Email is an additional tool to use to stay in touch with people. You may be surprised at the number of people who are happy to open an interesting email and click to read an article or check out a listing. It’s also a great method of finding out who is engaged so that when you do choose to spend time face to face with people, you know who contact first!

  2. Or you can spend your time face to face with real people instead of spending hours trying to decipher who is reading anything you send out. Here is a tip. Very few people are reading any emails these days. People receive a glut of emails and Real Estate is probably one of the leaders in sending useless information out to people they do not even know in the attempts someone will reply to them. Similar to trying to hit the bullseye on a dart board while blindfolded in a dark room.

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