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Spotlight on the Modern Landman


Photo of mountains with text overlay 'Spotlight on the Modern Landman'

Shared by Tyler Morton


In the highly competitive world of mineral and land acquisitions, the smallest of advantages can be paramount when determining the success of a venture. In areas such as the Permian Basin in West Texas, for example, landmen from all over fill mailboxes and clog telephone lines in an attempt to engage in negotiations with mineral and property owners. And with good reason, as the resulting agreements often yield substantial benefits for all parties involved.


During my career as an Acquisitions Landman, I worked to purchase mineral rights throughout the country. Acquisition campaigns took me from the Permian Basin in West Texas, up to the Williston Basin in North Dakota, and over to the DJ Basin in Colorado. Throughout the years and the campaigns, the process remained largely unchanged. I spent many hours slumped over spreadsheets while formatting mailing lists and looking up phone numbers, and then followed it up with cold-calling from an auto-dialer. There were stretches where I would average 80-100 calls a day for weeks at a time. And once I wrapped up a campaign, the process started anew. It was mind-numbing work that often went unrewarded as we were competing with hundreds of other landmen doing the exact same thing.


Acquisition Campaigns


The Old Approach


As someone who worked in the highly competitive field of purchasing mineral rights, I can say with confidence that most Acquisition Landmen were following the same tedious steps mentioned above. This approach leans heavily on high-volume efforts and lucky timing to (hopefully) generate deals with landowners. The basic principle is that if you send out enough mailers and speak to enough people, you may eventually come into contact with an interested party. However, this high-volume process is time-consuming, expensive, and monotonous. A conversion rate of 0.2%, or 1 out of every 500 mailers resulting in a deal was often considered successful. And to find that one landowner would require hundreds of hours of data formatting, mail prep, and time spent cold calling. Having been in the position myself, I am deeply familiar with the flaws in this system and often found myself thinking of ways the process could be streamlined and automated.


How to Improve Land and Mineral Right Acquisition Campaigns


Since joining LandGate, I have been introduced to tools that reimagine how mineral and land acquisition campaigns can work, and address the frustrations I faced while working as a Landman. Specifically, the PowerCRM and PowerMarketing tools improve efficiency for developers by automating the outreach process which in turn lowers costs as workers spend less time formatting data and prepping mailers. These tools also increase the rate of successful negotiations by providing interesting, full-page property reports which result in more mail opened and less mail in the trash. Landmen and developers who utilize these automated tools have reported conversion rates as high as 5%. That is not just the number of land and mineral owners returning calls, but successful negotiations per mailer sent. For a campaign with 500 mailers, this would increase the number of deals 25-fold when compared to the traditional approach.  An example of an acquisition campaign using PowerCRM and PowerMarketing can be seen here:

  1. Use a map-based tool, PowerCRM to select parcels of relevant owners in minutes

  2. Filters can be applied to search specific areas, proximity to infrastructure, land attributes, and more

  3. Send high-conversion mailers with a click of a button

  4. These high conversion mailers are property reports with in-depth & site-specific data that is valuable for any landowner

  5. LandGate prints, mails and posts everything for you

  6. Export phone numbers and email addresses to follow up on the mailers and manage client leads in the map-based PowerCRM through stages and color coding with your team

For more information on how to improve your land and mineral acquisition campaigns using LandGate, reach out to sales@landgate.com.



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