Join real estate technology expert at Agentbox David Bliss and host Tim Neary as they delve into the efficiency of Agentbox’s software — how it increases productivity, minimises disruption and pushes smoother performance.
David reveals his most prominent success stories, including how one agent tripled his income! He also reveals why clean data converts into better business and increased revenues!
REB’s Top 100 Agents ranking for 2017 revealed that 28 per cent of Australia’s best agents use the software, thereby rising in the ranks.
You will also hear about:
- What’s on the software development dashboard
- How Agentbox will be better than ever in 2018
- The big plans it has to help agents grow their income in the year ahead
Tune in now to hear all this and much, much more in this episode of Secrets of the Top 100 Agents!
Announcer: The Top 100 Agents of the Best of the Best, listing and selling more than any other agent in Australia. These are the practises, actions, and beliefs of the most successful agents in Australian Real Estate, raw, honest and completely uncut.
Tim Neary: How's everyone? It's Tim Neary, I am editor of Real Estate Business and host of the Secrets of the Top 100 Agents podcast. Really interesting guest on the show today, it's David Bliss, who is the real estate technology expert at Agentbox. Hello David, and welcome to the show.
David Bliss: Thanks very much, Tim.
Tim Neary: Tell us a little bit about Agentbox.
David Bliss: So Agentbox has been around for a number of years now. We're one of the more mature products on the market. Even though, we are specifically within the CRM space of the real estate industry, we actually like to refer to ourselves as more of a business operating system, because we have grown from not just doing marketing, but also administrative processes, portal fadings, sales trust, most of the things that you need to do on a day-to-day basis within a real estate office.
Tim Neary: And you work obviously very, very closely with real estate agents and your systems, integrated systems with the business, tell us a little bit how those work and how those hang together.
David Bliss: Yeah, we've definitely fanned over the last number of years that there's an app for everything. There's lots of cool little tools that are coming out. So even though Agentbox is very much at the heart of the business, we do very much have an open platform. So if people want to use a particular app, or a particular secondary system, there's lots of opportunities to be able to integrate them together and make sure that you can have one efficient business operating system.
Tim Neary: And you used a really good word when we were talking a little bit off air, and you said, it's one of the great things about Agentbox is its ability to be scalable, is that correct?
David Bliss: Yeah, most definitely. So, we're not just helping our offices, we do help out individual agents as well, people who maybe working within an office and just want to manage their own database. And from there, people can scale their particular system to move into their own office, even be on that. We had a great scenario about two years ago where single agent did just that, he had his own system, he was doing well, he found success, went at, started design office, and then started hiring staff. From there, he opened up more offices and that actually all stem from his one single Agentbox system that he started with.
Tim Neary: And as his business grew, so your solution, your product that you offered to me, that was able to grow and match his needs as his needs developed?
David Bliss: Yeah, very much so. Very clearly, at the start he wouldn't have needed the sales trust, his existing office would have done that, but then as he grew, we were able to add that on. There's a few other additional modules that allow him to save time, get data in there, our prospecting tool with their integration with RP Data and Google Maps allowed him to segment his target market and all these things could be added on as over time as he need it.
Tim Neary: And I want to come back to the prospecting, but I just want to clear up one thing, it is not just for starting out agents, you can come in at any level that you want to, isn't it?
David Bliss: Yeah, from there we can tailor a solution to suit and depending on their needs, we can also work on, if they already got existing systems on a very good implementation process to minimise disruption to their business. And I help them move on to a more advanced platform more easily.
Tim Neary: It's terrific. And you do work with some of the top agents in the country. Give us some idea of some of the success stories that you're hearing from them that come across your office.
David Bliss: So yeah, this is something we are very proud of. As of last year, there was 28% of the top 100 agents for the REB business awards using Agentbox, so there is that old saying that, "Success leaves clues." There's a number of them. David Highland who everyone knows is growing from small offices and now has multiple offices in those projects in commercial. Alexander Philips, as well as a number of single agents in the top 100 that are using us. There was actually a really good story just a little while ago, I was working with a single agent, just wanted to improve the efficiency within his business. He decided to move to a more advanced CRM. He researched around, he chose Agentbox. He was consistently writing about $500,000 in GCI year prior to that. The immediate year after implementing Agentbox, he tripled his income to 1.5 million dollars. And so, that's the kind of effect that we really can have on people and what people business can do.
Tim Neary: Now, this is a good example of "success leaving clues". Did he tell you what it was about Agentbox that really enabled him to make that ramp up?
David Bliss: Yeah actually and it's ... it comes back to something that's really basic, but it's making sure that he has his data clean and accurate. By having that, by having his clients in there, making sure that they were segmented, he could very easily target markets. So moving away from blast marketing and sending out the same thing to the same people, very easily to be able to segment database into core areas or key categories, and then being able to keep in touch with them very, very easily and naturally.
Tim Neary: That's such a good story, because we talked a lot of top 100 agents on the show. As you know, we talked quite a lot about what a good efficient database should look like around size and what it should do, and there's various different options, difference of opinions around what it is. But there's one thing that's consistent. And that is that the database needs to work for you. So having clean and accurate data, I guess, is the cornerstone of that.
David Bliss: Correct. Yeah, Agentbox has very much been founded on that philosophy of having clean data. We have quite a unique database structure, which allows the relationships between contacts and properties, so not only can you see all of your clients, you can see all of the properties that they related to, whether they are vendor or landlord, a tenant, a buyer, and also in reverse. So when you go into a property, I can see the solicitors, the vendors, the tenant of that property. So it's very quick and easy to be able to access.
Tim Neary: It sounds like you're getting the impediments out of the way. You're getting the noise out of the way, and letting the agents have the direct conversations with the people that they need to have the conversations.
David Bliss: Yep, that's a perfect way to put it that getting the noise out of the way, so clean relevant conversations.
Tim Neary: Terrific. Let's talk a little bit specifics. You mentioned earlier the prospecting tool, the prospected tool, I beg your pardon. Tell us a little bit about that and how it integrates with the various other platforms.
David Bliss: Yeah, the prospected tool has been something that's a really revolutionised how the real estate industry has worked in regards to be able to target market and segment. Even from my own experience when you're working within an area, a suburb and you really want to become an area expert there, there's often a lot of hindrances as you come to the edge of a suburb and strayed in where the target market. And from speaking with a lot of our agents, even within an area pricing can change. There might be a high-end area/section of one area at a lower end. And being able to segment those markets is really important. So what the prospected module does is integrate live with google maps and RP Data, you can map out core areas and see exactly what information is in your database, see what information is not in your database but existing in RP Data, and then you can actually pull an information live on the spot, book in your appraisals and start setting follow-up tasks, so you're not having to do as much Data entry.
Tim Neary: I reckon that works well with all what we're talking about earlier about getting that noise out of the way. So you get the noise out of the way and then you pump ready valuable information into the system, so you're talking to a lot of people and you got information at your fingertips.
David Bliss: Yeah, that's exactly it.
Tim Neary: Probably, I'm over simplifying, but that's what it sounds like. Is it as we speak about?
David Bliss: No. That's exactly it. Yep.
Tim Neary: And then it doesn't end there, does it with Agentbox? Because once the work is done, there's a tracking tool, the KPI tool as well?
David Bliss: So there's actually two answers to that particular question. Because for a CRM to be successful, data needs to go into it very, very, quickly and easily. We completely understand that a lot of agents aren't necessarily tech-savvy or they're busy at, they're great talking with people, but might not be great in front of a computer. So, to be able to get clean data in very quickly is important. So with the prospected tool, to be able to create your appraisal, [inaudible 00:08:01] to the right people, follow them up is important. And if they're doing that, then that actually helps out the other parts of the business, because that means a property is already in there. So when they come to list it, they're not reentering data, the admin is saving more time. If they're doing that correctly, then the directors are getting better reporting, better KPI tracking and that brings me to the second answer, which is to be able for a business to be effective, they need to be able to track the performance of the agents.
And the system can actually very, very, data all the way down to the amount of calls that you're doing, up to your listings, your sales, presentations, GCI that you want to achiever in a quarter, month or year. The system will be able to automatically track that. And we've actually just implemented a brand new dashboard, so you can see that as soon as you log in every single day, how you and the office-
Tim Neary: More information.
David Bliss: Yeah.
Tim Neary: More information at your fingertips.
David Bliss: More information at your fingertips. Most definitely.
Tim Neary: Now, we're getting ready here at REB for the new Top 100 Ranking. So we're looking forward to that. Now, I know that Agentbox's featured prominently in the top 100 ranking, really keen to see how you go with the new one for the 2018 year. But tell us a little bit about what is on your menu for 2018? What developments you're looking at? And how the product is going to be improved and enhanced?
David Bliss: Yeah. And thanks for mentioning that. At Agentbox, we are very, very proud that a lot of those agents are using our system.
Tim Neary: Good effort, yeah.
David Bliss: From there, we're definitely not going to let rest on our laurels and sit there and say, "Oh, we've done enough.", we're now moving to a stage where, what can we do to really make some huge changes within the industry. One of the things that we're definitely starting to see is a move toward more mobile functionality. We understand that agents aren't sitting in front of a desk anymore. People are out in the road. Really, if they're sitting in the office, they're probably not making money. So if we can give them the tools to reach their database to communicate with their clients from their app, from a phone, from the palm of their hand, that's going to be really vital for them to be as efficient as they can be as well.
Tim Neary: It sounds like it's continue some improvement. When we talked to the Top 100 Agents and other agents in the top end of the business, they talk about continued improvement. I know we just come off the Australian Open, tennis, Roger Federer, who just won for the record time at a record age, talks about reinventing himself and continue to see improving all the time. So, it sounds like Agentbox is doing the same thing.
David Bliss: Yeah, perfect way to put it. As we've been around for a number of years and we're established, we can now look at reinventing how things being done and that stems all the way from our onboarding to our support to our actual product. We got some bright new developers that's happening and we're really excited to be able showcase new functionality that's going to be coming out over the next six to twelve months.
Tim Neary: I look forward to seeing that. David, thanks for taking the time to come in and tell us all about it today.
David Bliss: Thanks for inviting me in.
Tim Neary: Really appreciate it. Thank you. Remember to follow us on all the social media stuff, twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn. You can follow me, too, on twitter @timothyjayneary if you'd like to do that. If you've enjoyed today's show, please leave us a five-star review on iTunes. It's the very best way for new listeners to find us and for them to hear the great content that we're putting out. As always, realestatebusiness.com.au is where you'll find us. There's plenty of stories there on the business of real estate across the whole of Australia and on my guest today, David Bliss and Agentbox. Thanks again for tuning in and we'll see you next week. Goodbye.-