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Real Estate Technology

How to actually convert real estate leads into clients

Converting leads into actual clients can be a daunting task for any sized brokerage, but the NAR has published a well-documented paper to tackle the matter in modern terms.



crt white paper

The latest white paper from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) addresses the systems employed around context and confidence in converting Internet leads into real estate clients. This report seeks to help REALTORS® understand the overall investment of capital, technology, and man-hours that are being made by brokerages in an effort to convert leads into clients, as well as how you can increase your lead to client conversion rates.

They define context as the information about the lead that sets the correct expectation of the outcome of a follow up. And confidence as the qualification quality of leads provided to the salesperson. By providing quality leads, agents are more likely to spend time responding to them, rather than setting them aside. This is quite a progressive and well-thought out piece by the NAR’s CRT; if you haven’t already, it is worth reading the entire report, but let’s look at the highlights:

Highlight #1: evaluating

The first area of the report addresses the need to focus on delivering higher quality leads to agents; a key to maintaining an agent’s confidence. The first way to do this is to make sure your lead is genuine.® invests in technology to weed out spammers and ban an ever-growing list of known spammers’ IP addresses. They also limit the number of advertisers who want to reach agents with their own marketing because more bad lead can be worse than no leads at all.

They suggest you ask the following questions when evaluating what services you use to generate leads:

  1. What measures do the lead providers take to limit spam?
  2. What is the source of listing data being used in the lead provider’s home-search?
  3. Is there a coaching process in place to deal with any off-market products?
  4. What has been the historical average rate of conversion for this provider’s leads?
  5. How long did it take for these leads to convert?

Highlight #2: considering a plan of attack

Once you have answered those questions, you should begin to think about a “plan of attack,” so to speak. It is important not to give up on a lead as many leads “do not respond until after the eighth contact attempt,” according to Mariana Wagner at Keller Williams.

CRT’s white paper notes that you can also employ software to match leads’ IP addresses with their contact information, so you can track them over time. Eddie Krebs, chief information officer for Better Homes & Gardens Metro Brokers in Atlanta has begun marketing his software, Brytescore to do just that.

Highlight #3: understand leads’ context

However, any lead management system is helpful as it allows you to track a long-term marketing campaign. BoomTown, Buyfolio, MarketLeader, and FiveStreet, are just a few of the popular client relationship management (CRM) choices on the market. Regardless of which CRM platform you choose, is it important to understand the context of the leads coming in, so the proper expectations can be set.

The four common types of leads are:
1. A newly registered lead that wants access to the website’s real estate search
2. A lead that continues to your website over time
3. A new lead displaying a high interest in a particular property.
4. A lead that continues to view a particular property over time.

Regardless of the type of lead, agents who maintain a consistent marketing campaign over time will have more leads, and therefore more will convert.

Highlight #4: coaching, coaching, coaching

Finally, coaching agents can be useful to keep agents motivates to convert leads into clients. A survey by WAV group found that 48% of buyer inquiries were never responded to and of those responded to, the average call back attempts were 1.5. So, just by responding to an inquiry, you would be in the top half of companies trying to convert leads into clients. Add to that additional attempts at contact either via phone or email, and you are well on your way to exceeding these standards.

Many CRM software contains coaching agents: Trulia uses a partnership approach; FiveStreet uses a competition technique whereby all new leads are published and agents are alerted via mobile messages, then the first agent to claim the lead, gets it. While companies are using both technology and coaching to change the lead to client conversion rate, more can be done.

Bottom line: focus, focus, focus

Focusing on converting leads is important, especially where agent confidence is concerned, but technology is constantly changing and evolving. The white paper even states that “soon mobile [technology] will play an even larger role in the home search. As consumers search for homes over time, real estate apps will be able to consider the consumer’s location, free schedule, homes they like, and homes available in that location to serve up potential homes on the fly.” But for now, focus on the little things, like staying on top of potential leads and contacting them multiple times and you may be surprised how many leads become clients.

The CRT white paper’s takeaway: focusing more time on converting leads to clients could result in a huge increase in business. Try using CRM software to boost performance and motivate agents to stay on top of leads, and be aware that technology is constantly changing, what works today may not work in a year.

Jennifer Walpole is a Senior Staff Writer at The American Genius and holds a Master's degree in English from the University of Oklahoma. She is a science fiction fanatic and enjoys writing way more than she should. She dreams of being a screenwriter and seeing her work on the big screen in Hollywood one day.

Real Estate Technology

New tool translates your phone calls into 29 languages – LIVE

(REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY) There’s no need for a language to language dictionary any longer. A lingvanex tool allows for real-time translation on phone calls in different languages.



lingvanex translates in real time

If you’ve read a few things that I’ve written on here, you know that I often marvel at how far remote work has come. The fact that I write this as my dog sits beside me is no small feat.

What teams can accomplish in a virtual setting is pretty impressive, and tools like Slack and Trello are very helpful in this regard. However, remote workers still utilize the tried and true phone call as it remains a tool of efficiency.

This can be especially helpful if you’re working with team members or clients in other countries when a translator may need to be involved. This concept was the inspiration behind the Lingvanex Phone Call Translator.

The new tool translates voice calls into 29 different languages in real time. Working on both mobile phones and landlines, users can call countries all around the world (150 countries in total are available through the app).

This option is cheaper than roaming calls, starting at 18 cents per minute through use of VoIP. The conversation is then transcribed in real time with the details of the conversation being available only to the user, as Lingvanex does not store conversation data.

“We are happy to represent you the Phone Call Translator – a real-time voice translator, which was created to help in solving questions in travel situations and urgent business problems with foreigners or help in communicating with friends abroad,” says Lingvanex. “You can speak your native language when you call through the app. Your partner and you will hear the translation of both callers during the call, the original speech and translation will also be duplicated on the phone screen.”

The app works in a few simple steps: first, download to your device (works on both Android and iOS). Next, register and create application account – during this, you’ll select your default language. Then, you will select the language of the person you are calling. Make the call by dialing the phone number with the country code. Finally, chat it up walkie-talkie style.

Say what you need to say, then Phone Call Translator takes your words and transcribes them for the person on the other end. This could be very helpful as it gives you an extra moment to think about what to say next!

Do you think this will be helpful for you? Let us know below!

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Real Estate Technology

Should digital assistants have empathy? Big investors say yes

(REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY) Bonding with your digital assistant might be more likely than you expect with ElliQ. The rising numbers of AI assistants have created unique interactions.



ElliQ assistant

It sounds crazy to think that you could form an actual bond with something like Siri or Alexa, but actually, humans are pretty dang good at forming emotional connections to machines. For instance, a Canadian company threw an entire retirement party for five mail delivery bots. People will use Roombas as a substitute for companionship, not unlike a cat or dog. Humans just seem to enjoy connection – even if it’s with a lifeless robot.

Intuition Robotics is taking this desire for emotional connection a step further by working to create digital assistants that can more easily bond with their human companions. At the moment, their biggest product is ElliQ, a robotic digital assistant designed to bond with eldery users. In fact, according to Intuition Robotics, their average demographic falls between ages 78 – 97.

And ElliQ seems to be doing its job. The company reports that customers interact with ElliQ regularly throughout the day, even holding conversations with the machine, and are more likely to listen to ElliQ’s suggestions, which often include proactive behavior like getting outdoors or eating more vegetables.

By working to create a more empathetic and emotional digital AI, Intuition Robotics has started to discover a whole world of new possibilities. And they’re just getting started, having recently raised another $36 million to continue research.

One of their plans? Combining these empathetic digital assistants with the automotive industry.

Imagine an assistant that could suggest you pull over when it senses you’re getting drowsy, or provide something to talk to during longer drives. Plus, unlike ElliQ, which stays put while you move around, you and the assistant will be together in a car, making it easier for the AI to learn your preferences and habits.

Of course, this is just the tip of the iceberg for Intuition Robotics, which has recently majorly expanded its workforce. A digital assistant that can provide a better emotional connection to humans has a world of possible applications, from nursing homes to elementary schools.

Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of reasons to be worried about a more empathetic AI – the marketing capabilities alone are something I’m side-eyeing. That said, humans have been befriending vacuum cleaners and we’ve turned out alright, so for now, let’s focus on the positive possibilities that could come with tech from companies like Intuition Robotics.

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Real Estate Technology

Moving just got a lot easier with this NAR invested app

(REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY) Worried about moving? There’s an app for that, updater, and NAR has taken notice. They want to help their customers from beginning to end.



updater app

Moving isn’t exactly a walk in the park. There’s coordinating movers, finding boxes, cancelling services, changing your mailing address on, well, everything, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg! With so much to do, it’s easy to get overwhelmed but good news: turns out, there’s an app for that. And it’s promising enough that the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) have invested in it.

The app in question is Updater, which serves as a one-stop shop for everything you’d need for a move. Not only can the app help you craft your moving “to-do” list, but with its connection to all sorts of businesses involved in the moving process (from moving truck companies to cable services) you can keep all your prep in one place. Essentially, Updater is designed to make moving as stress-free as possible.

Updater’s current successes have drawn Second Century Ventures, the venture capital section of NAR, to invest in Updater. Which is cool, but why would a company focused on realtors want to help a company that focuses on what happens after a realtor has done their job?

“Updater’s platform delivers unique value to Realtors®, property managers and consumers alike,” said Mark Birschbach, senior VP of Strategic Business at NAR, “This investment is well aligned with SCV’s mission to support and advance technologies throughout the entire real estate ecosystem.”

Plus, Updater is a great tool for realtors to have in their back pocket. If a client seems nervous about moving or overwhelmed, Updater is a great recommendation. Not only does it help the mover, but it shows that the realtor cares about their client’s well-being, even after the deed is signed.

So, what’s next for Updater? Growth. Recently, Updater acquired Bridgevine, a company that works with home subscription services like cable and internet. This merger will allow Updater to offer more options to users while also increasing their reach. This is the first in what will likely be many growth initiatives for Updater.

David Greenberg, founder and CEO of Updater, is also looking forward to the partnership with NAR. “We’re excited to deepen our great relationship with SCV and NAR by investing heavily in the real estate industry and by enabling Realtors® and property managers to deliver an unrivaled moving experience.”

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