Email is fast becoming redundant, particularly as a communication tool between franchisors and franchisees, and online enewsletters are the way of the future, claimed Raine & Horne South Australia CEO Kevin Magee.
“People’s inboxes are too full to function … there’s spam, subscriptions, social media updates and actual work. The work emails end up getting drowned and lost,” Mr Magee told Real Estate Business.
Mr Magee decided to approach concept, software and website developers WhiteSky Labs to fix the problem.
“We looked at email and asked ourselves what was wrong, and we realised it was choice. So what we wanted was a dashboard style layout that gives users the choice to see and interact with what they wanted.”
WhiteSky Labs, which has a customisable eBook Publishing System (SkyVUE), designed an online newsletter which allows the state office at Raine & Horne to communicate with franchisees, without clogging inboxes.
“I’d send out notices about training, updates on new offices and people, supplier deals and specials, facts, stats, awards and whenever we are in the local paper or in the media," Mr Magee said.
“I would usually send 20 to 30 emails to all the offices each month. Now we send one a month.”
“This means our franchisees won’t see an email from state office every day and encourages them to actually look at it.”
The dashboard-style newsletter condenses information that would otherwise come in multiple emails, giving Raine & Horne agents access to suppliers and services as well as informing them about upcoming events or training days.
Videos outlining market updates, staff changes, office updates, awards and an 'in the news' section, are some of the features.
“If you say to yourself you don’t have time to look at it, we tell people to call state office immediately. People need a balance, and if you can’t take two minutes to watch a video, your time management needs to be addressed.”
“We went to WhiteSky Labs with a concept, it was our idea, and they just put it together for us. We were so impressed we asked for a second newsletter to be created for our clients.”
“The clients' newsletter has things like buyer, seller and investor tip videos as well as every Raine & Horne property listing in the state.
“And best of all, it’s all automated. Our CMS [database], R&H Compass, gets updated once and it goes to realestate.com.au, domain.com.au and this enewsletter, and updates the property listings there too.
“This became a great marketing tool for us, because we put a link on every single agent and principals' email signature, linking to the client enewsletter," he continued. "So, with 200 members in our state, each sending a minimum of 20 emails a day, we can tell a buyer that their property is advertised in every single email any R&H agent sends. And it’s free.”