Technology tools for real estate agents: five tips for boosting adoption

— Weichert Franchise

While we’ve yet to reach a truly “post pandemic” reality, many of the changes sweeping our industry are certainly here to stay. Namely, we’ve seen agents and clients embrace technology like never before. In truth, it’s probably the push we all needed to make buying and selling more seamless, efficient, and enjoyable for everyone involved.

Now is the perfect time to build on that momentum. As a broker, it’s easy to get frustrated when costly technology goes underutilized. In our experience, however, it’s far better to inspire than to insist. When you embrace technology as a company leader, share success stories, and invest in agent training, adoption comes more naturally.

Here are five tips for inspiring your team to use technology to the fullest.

1. Choose wisely, train thoroughly

In real estate agent technology, your CRM is the hub of business activity, so select your platform with care. It’s also a major investment, so it should fit your needs to a T. Choose one that’s feature rich, compatible with current systems (so agents don’t end up re-entering data), and excellent at follow-up. Ideally, this will free up agents to do the crucial work of building relationships.

At Weichert, we invested in kvCORE because it’s powerful, customizable, links directly to agent websites, and features:

  • Real-time lead validation and customer look-up
  • Shareable links for mass email, text, chat, and social marketing
  • Fully integrated task and team management that syncs with Google
  • Pre-built campaigns with customized action plans
  • A mobile dialer with auto-scheduled calls

It’s also smart to choose a vendor who will be a true business partner as your technology needs evolve.

But that’s just half the story. We also invest heavily in agent training. We understand the natural reluctance and even fear of learning new skills, so we make it a company-wide mission to help everyone succeed.

Along with a dedicated service team that’s always available to help, we offer on-demand training courses through Weichert University, educational sessions, live weekly webinars, regional workshops, and more to provide ample opportunities for ongoing learning.

Aaron Duncan, a Weichert affiliate in Georgia, recently closed a deal thanks to a message sent automatically to his client based solely on the client’s recent searches. Aaron was skeptical about the benefits of the new tech platform and wasn’t even aware the client was looking. He was blown away when the client called as a result of the system’s AI follow up to make an offer. Seeing how AI can strengthen his business and enhance the client experience, Aaron’s team is now sold.

2. Enlist ambassadors

Among every team of agents will be tech enthusiasts –– first in line for the new iPhone, the one you trust to unjam the printer, and, ideally, the office “influencer” who gets everyone excited about what tech can do for their business.

Early adopters like these can help encourage agents who lag behind. You might even invite them to shape the discussion around how technology is selected and utilized in your brokerage.

What top five tools should everyone be using daily? How do they boost sales? Are there shortcuts to make them even easier to use? Having deeper discussions about the role technology plays in helping clients, agents, and the business at large can help clarify the vision.

At Weichert, analytics allow us to see how agent teams are using various features. We post a leaderboard each month to recognize the most engaged offices.

3. Keep it simple

Remember, the right technology should make the agent’s life easier, simplify the experience for buyers and sellers, and help grow your business.

While iBuyers and other emerging technologies strive to “simplify” the agent right out of the process, we believe this shortchanges the client and may even put their financial well-being in jeopardy.

A better way to view technology is as an enhancement to everything you do, not a replacement. Does it deliver immediate value? Are other features easy to learn? Are agents and clients happy with it? Most importantly, is it helping agents earn more money? If technology is adding stress and slowing your team down, it’s time to shop around.

At Weichert, our platform can go pretty deep, but it’s really as simple or complex as brokers need it to be. It’s great for novices and techies alike. There’s benefit to be had, no matter what level agents are at. You can certainly get up and running at a base level just by watching a few tutorial videos.

4. Try the 7×7 strategy

If you’re feeling like a broken record touting new technology, that may not be a bad thing. RISMedia suggests the “7×7 Communication Strategy” when buy-in is low. Hesitation may just mean that agents are busy, they learn in different ways, or they need a compelling reason to change.

Here’s a link to the full article, but, in short, the 7×7 method encourages:

  1. Talking up new tech (for months if necessary)
  2. Creating a video to support your efforts
  3. Drafting several emails that highlight various benefits
  4. Offering online and in-person training
  5. Drumming up enthusiasm via Facebook groups
  6. Promoting it on your intranet
  7. Discussing it one-on-one with agents

While this may seem like a lot of work when “keep it simple” was our last recommendation, every new office policy takes some early legwork. Once you get past some resistance and have more and more success stories to share, technology should do what it’s meant to: strengthen your bottom line with less effort.

5. Put relationships first

We’ve said it before, but it’s worth repeating: Real estate is a relationship-based industry. It’s about dreams, security, family memories, wealth creation, generational ties, and so much more. That’s why technology –– no matter how useful or sophisticated –– should always come second to human connections.

When we think of technology as a way to enhance those connections, it’s easier to appreciate. In the end, technology should put your brand promise in the hands of every client via their phone or laptop. Communication should be fast and clear. Information should be easy to consume. Tasks should be easy to complete. To-do’s should be all in one place.

Ultimately, these tools should lead to closed deals and life-long relationships. Helping your whole team keep that top of mind is always a good idea.

Above all, be persistent but patient. Agents will follow your lead on being open to learning and growing. Make time to train as a group, share tips, and show your enthusiasm so agents will be inspired to make the most of every tool you’ve invested in.

Want to learn more about real estate technology trends? Take a tour of myWeichert® powered by kvCORE technology platform. It combines artificial intelligence, marketing automation, and complete mobile access that can help your agents save time and sell more. Request a demo today.

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