This is a guest post by Doug Haines. Doug has worked on a variety of CRM implementation projects and now writes on a wide range of topics. He is a regular contributor to Discover CRM. 

For a real estate broker, data is everything.

Whether you’re finding buyers for a property, marketing to potential sellers or tracking your large pile of work, the right CRM is one of your most valuable tools. There are a number of CRMs specifically designed for real estate and hundreds that are more general but which can be set up effectively for real estate businesses.

In this article I’m not going to focus on which CRM you should use (if you’re in the process of selecting a product this CRM selection guide will help), but rather how a great CRM can send your sales through the roof.

1. A good real estate CRM helps you find the most relevant buyers

If your CRM can be set up to categorize potential buyers, this will help drive out the right marketing messages to them. A good CRM will be easy to upload buyers onto and will enable you to pre-set detailed filters; you can go way beyond budget and location. You could segment based on filters like type of property, what features they’re willing to compromise on, or how reliable you perceive them to be.

You may have a buyer who ranks a modern bathroom as highly important. When you get properties that match this criteria, you could send the buyer an email that says “The perfect bathroom for you”. A good CRM will allow you to create detailed filters and then set up automations – basically predefined messages that will be sent to different buyers when a house goes on the market. These automated processes require time and thought to set up, and discipline in terms of adding data to your system, but can positively impact sales processes.

2. Real estate CRM can facilitate administrative processes

A great CRM should drive sales activity and ensure brokers are working on the most leveraged tasks – and save time on basic administrative tasks. CRM systems use different tools to drive this activity.

Calendars: A well set up calendar will give brokers a view on their upcoming activities and allow them to plan better. If these calendars are synced with email clients and shared across the organization then even better.

To do lists: Planning what to do next can be the hardest job. As a broker a good list function will mean nothing is missed, allowing brokers to worry less about how to organize their day and focus on the job at hand.

Task planning: Deciding on the most leveraged tasks is difficult. Should you close the current deal or cultivate a much bigger deal which is a few weeks away, it’s hard. A good CRM will give you a clear view of your tasks allowing for much easier planning.

3. Real estate CRM can track progress towards key goals

In the hustle and bustle of running a real estate brokerage, it can be tough to take a step back and look at how well you’re performing.  As part of a thorough CRM implementation process you need to clearly set metrics; not just revenue but granular data about how your sales processes are working, for example, the size of the pipeline, close rate or viewings booked data which can easily be fed in.

Once you set up a dashboard view you should have a clear real-time understanding of your sales performance. If matched with rigorous management processes you should be able to iterate your sales activities to keep improving. It’s also great for highlighting problems, as a poor pipeline or close rate can be spotted early and diagnosed. Also, the process of setting targets and recording progress against them helps create a disciplined focus on sales.

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