realestatebusiness logo
Home of the REB Top 100 Agents

Bringing confidence to cold calls: The human effect of AI

By Staff Reporter
13 October 2023 | 12 minute read
john foong and frank greeff reb nmo4ud

How artificial intelligence (AI) can be wielded to revolutionise an agent’s workload is the question on everyone’s lips.

During a recent episode of PropTech Pulse, Domain’s chief revenue officer John Foong and the firm’s head of industry and Realbase co-founder Frank Greeff shared some insight into the ways they are utilising the tech right now, looking at some of its quantitative as well as qualitative impacts on an agent’s life.

The firm has made headway in tackling one of the most challenging – and time consuming – aspects of sales: making cold calls.


“It’s tough and it’s a necessary part of the business,” Mr Foong acknowledged.

“What we’ve tried to do is ask, how do you increase the success rate?” he shared of the guiding question that gave rise to one of their AI-powered tools.

“If every time you make 100 calls, you might get 99 telling you please don’t call me again, or using some other colourful language. What if we could increase that to 10 per cent, 20 per cent, 30 per cent – its just a much better outcome, right?”

The firm has been looking to use the data that it can collect to provide agents with a pool of likely sellers, based on their information, as well as analysis of their local area, giving them a higher rate of success going into calls.

As Mr Foong explained, the tool “takes all these signals, it integrates with your CRM and then on all the records in your CRM gives you a score of zero to 100, zero being very unlikely to sell, 100 being a pretty good chance they are going to want to sell in the next year based on their browsing behaviour, based on their use of the app, based on whats happening in that particular market”.

“Thats one way where we hope that the time that agents spend cold calling is much more effective, so they can either spend less time doing it or more time and getting better results.”

To that, Mr Greeff added that even small increases in productivity such as this can have a remarkable effect on an agents success rate because of the confidence having positive conversations can instil.

“The reality is it is a human business, right?” Mr Greeff posited, suggesting that anything that can increase an agent’s confidence has the chance of also increasing their success.

Part of the challenge he observed over the past year was a lack of energy from agents who were struggling to bring sellers to the market, even when buyer behaviour had signalled positive growth.

Listings were down, so energy was down. Yet he saw certain agents weathering the circumstances better than others, purely because they were able to bring a high level of enthusiasm to every conversation.

Now that sellers are returning, energy is higher, and the combination of both is bringing agents a higher level of both success and job satisfaction.

In the innovator’s view, AI has the power to have a similar effect.

“Every ‘no’ is like that little bit of energy lost,” Mr Greeff said, referring back to the topic of cold calling.

“But if you increase that, just a marginal amount, and you get three yeses for the day, you start to feel a little bit good, you get a little bit extra pep in your step,” he said.

The benefits then multiply: “And then the next phone call youre making is better and more likely to strike because youre bringing that energy to the call.”

You need to be a member to post comments. Become a member for free today!

Do you have an industry update?