Real estate agents live their lives on the go, shepherding clients through buying or selling, showing properties, keeping track of legal and financial details and answering a lot of questions, morning, noon and night.
A mobile phone is essential for all these tasks, and many realtors make do using just that. But new features are taking communications to a new level, improving professionalism, supporting work-life balance and allowing real estate professionals to use their mobile phone in a way that better manages interactions with team members and clients. If you're a real estate professional, here are three features you should consider implementing this year:
How it helps in real estate: In the unpredictable world of real estate, one day might be slow while another involves numerous appointments, meetings, showings and closings. On those perfect-storm days, being able to share numbers with an assistant or colleague can make sure nothing falls through the cracks.
The shared numbers feature from a Business Texting service like Cloudli's TalkNText app allows you and your team to use the same phone number for calls and texts – meaning everyone can see every message sent or received on that number. When you're unavailable, a backup person(s) can respond to your client. Just imagine: You’re handling a closing when another client calls to make an offer – immediately! – on a hot property. You can have your colleague step in to keep the ball rolling until you’re available.
Shared numbers help you to provide the customer service you desire for your clients, so no one feels slighted or ignored. Anyone with access to the shared number can view the entire conversation thread, so everyone is in the loop about what actions were taken and what the client expects next.
Getting started: To share your number with colleagues using the TalkNText app, you click on Invite Your Team and indicate which number you want to share and with whom. The app sends the team members an email allowing them to access that account and begin responding to calls and texts. You can leave those setting in place or return the account to private mode as desired.
How it helps in real estate: Though voice communication remains widely used, texting is gaining ground. A Cloudli-commissioned survey found that texting came a close second to phone calling as the preferred form of business communications, and 90% of respondents said they would like to have the option of either phoning or texting a business.
If you're a real estate professional and you've been texting back and forth with customers, you are likely doing so from your personal device, which isn't optimal. Standard SMS, which is the technology most use to text from a personal mobile device, differs from Business Texting. To use texting to its full potential in a business context, you need to transform your dedicated business phone number into a multi-channel business coordinate for your customers – which can be done with a Business Texting app. You'll benefit from features like shared numbers discussed earlier, as well as other powerful functionalities such as text auto-replies, business hours, and more. With a Business Texting app, your personal mobile device becomes a holistic business communications platform.
With a dedicated Business Texting service like Cloudli’s TalkNText, you no longer have to mix your personal and business texts, reducing the likelihood of missing an important message. You can access all your business texts, as well as voicemail transcripts, on any mobile device or computer. They are consolidated in the app and grouped by date and phone number.
Business Texting allows you to communicate with clients even when you can’t easily call them, like when you’re on a plane or in a public space like a restaurant. Texting also lets you send links or photos of available properties. Your clients can likewise send you pictures if they spot an available property they want to visit. No more leaving voicemails and wondering if the message got to its destination.
Getting started: Adding Business Texting to a voice line is quick and easy, especially with VoIP technology. You can switch to a combined voice and text service like Cloudli’s TalkNText, or layer Business Texting on your existing landline or VoIP phone service.
How it helps in real estate: Real estate professionals work notoriously long hours, so it’s important to use telecom features to your advantage so you can carve out family time and much-needed rest. Text auto-reply is perfect for that purpose.
When you’re not available by call or text, you can set a text auto-reply on your business line that lets clients know you received their voice message, text or missed call and will respond at the time you specify. With Cloudli’s TalkNText, you can customize the text auto-reply with specific information (e.g., business hours, vacation dates), and even set different messages to send at different times of the day – for instance, one message when you’re available (during business hours) and another when you’re muted (after work). If you want customers to be able to reach you if something is urgent, you can include your personal number in the auto-reply.
People know their realtor™ has multiple clients and can’t always answer their calls in the moment. However, they also want to know if you received their call or messages, so they’re not left wondering. Text auto-reply gets rid of the guesswork. Meanwhile, all text messages and transcriptions of voicemails will be stored safely in the TalkNText app so you can easily review the record and return messages the next day.
Getting started: Once you subscribe to a Business Texting service like Cloudli TalkNText, you simply log into the app and follow the prompts to write the auto-reply text message and set parameters. You can change the message as needed, or stick with standard messages if that’s preferred.
Communications Matter in Real Estate
Buying or selling property is stressful and anxiety-producing for most people, and they count on their real estate agent to lead the way. That makes good communications critical in this client-focused industry. If you rely on your phone line alone to carry the load, you’re likely to miss calls, and miss opportunities to serve your clients well.
This year, upgrade your phone service to a dedicated business line with features that work for realtors. TalkNText, which was designed especially for small businesses and entrepreneurs, offers Business Texting, text auto-reply and shared numbers, plus many other features you’ll appreciate. Give it a try today with our 7-day trial.