New American Funding Blog

Why You Need Customer Relationship Management Software: Part 2

By Courtney Lynch   |  June 29, 2016

Customer relationship management software can help Real Estate Agents strengthen their relationships with both leads and current clients. Perhaps most importantly, CRM software can help agents turn those prospects into clients. There are several steps Real Estate Agents must take before deciding on the best CRM software for them. First, they have to determine the features they need most. Then they have to comparison shop to find the best possible brand. 

The best, of course, depends on each agent's individual needs. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to CRM software shopping, but there are many platforms out there that product reviewers are urging Real Estate Agents to consider. 

Generic CRM Platforms Versus Real Estate-Specific Platforms 

Generic CRM platforms - or those not tailored specifically to the real estate industry - can be great options if you are looking for a few basic features. Generic platforms are generally cheaper than real estate-specific platforms, so if you are not looking for fancy, personalized software, it might be the right choice.

Top Generic CRMs: Insightly and Hubspot 

Fit Small Business, which writes reviews and how-to guides for small businesses, named Insightly as a top generic CRM software.1 Here are some benefits:

  1. Insightly is relatively cheap and assists with the management of contacts and transactions.
  2. By integrating with both Gmail and Outlook, Insightly can help you keep track conversations.
  3. Insightly provides a few customization tools so you can add some real estate-specific measurements,

Here are a few drawbacks to Insightly:

  1. Insightly lacks the ability to provide Multiple Listing Service integration.
  2. Unlike other software, it will not remind you to follow up with a contact you have not spoken to in a while
  3. It will not allow you to create automated email marketing campaigns.

Despite a few limitations, this software is recommended for anyone looking for just a few basic ways to stay more organized.

If you want to try out a platform without paying anything at all, real estate software company Easy Agent Pro said HubSpot has a free CRM that is very good.2 The platform cannot help you conduct real estate-specific tasks, but it can help you keep track of conversations as you work with prospects.

Top Real Estate-Specific CRMs: Top Producer and REthink 

One of the most popular real estate-specific CRM platforms is Top Producer. Both Fit Small Business and Easy Agent Pro listed it as a great choice. Here are a few benefits of Top Producer:

  1. It allows Real Estate Agents to import leads from over 80 providers, including Realtor.com and Zillow.
  2. It assists with follow-up and email drip campaigns - automated campaigns set up to send a series of emails to prospects at set times.
  3. It continues to add new features.
  4. It won't break your bank account.

One negative aspect of Top Producer, however, is the fact that the many features it offers can make it a little complex.

Fit Small Business also recommended Rethink, which is based off Salesforce's software but is tailored specifically to Real Estate Agents. Like Top Producer, REthink can also be a little complex to set up, but the features it offers can help foster stronger relationships with clients and prospects. Here are a few features REthink provides:

  1. Multiple Listing Service integration
  2. Email drip campaigns
  3. Follow-up reminders.

When Will a CRM Start Showing Results?

It takes some time for CRM software to work its magic.3 If you have only been using it for a short amount of time, don't give up because you have not seen results yet. The more consistently you use it over a long period of time, the more likely you will see success. CRM software is an investment, which is all the more reason it is key to choose the right one. 

As you comparison shop, be sure to take advantage of product demonstrations and free trials. It will be better to take your time and make the right decision than it will be to rush into a product that will not adequately boost your business.

Still deciding whether CRM is a good choice? Consider this fact: revenue increases up to 41 percent per sales agent when CRM applications are used.2 That's no small number. 

Sources 
1Fit Small Business
2Easy Agent Pro 
3Zillow

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