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24 June 2013 Reporter

CRM is more than a software program – it represents your ability to connect and maintain connection with your clients, writes Box+Dice’s Travis Williams

AS A real estate technology supplier that specialises in CRM, we often hear, “We have everything else, now we just want CRM”.

On the surface, this seems like a perfectly normal statement – making sales is about servicing the customer until they buy or sell. However, CRM stands for client relationship management and without a client, your business doesn’t exist.


What sets consultants apart is their skill and ability to advise, market, lead and negotiate.

So, if the client is essential to your transaction, why not put the client at the heart of your organisation and build all of your business systems and technology around your clients?

Everything you do in your sales business right now leads to making a sale. Amazing customer service is a huge part of this, and therefore a subset of CRM. Your web experience, the after sale gifts, the experience at your inspections and resulting follow up, the procedure you follow to appraise and list property, are all part of this customer service.


When you map out your customer supply chain, websites and email represent less than five per cent of your client experience. The remaining 95 per cent constitutes the many conversations, meetings, inspections, advertising, billboards and dinner party conversations that add up to become your brand experience.

Putting the client at the heart of your organisation means that when you are making decisions, you place the clients’ needs first.

With regard to your brand, this means what will communicate best with your clients? What are your business policies, your systems and procedures?

When recruiting, who will service your clients the best and leave the best impression? Who will value your clients’ needs?

When it comes to technology, what is going to enable us to service our clients better? Not to discriminate against trust accounting people, but nobody ever made a sale because their trust accounting software was more detailed. This is a matter of compliance rather than business performance.


Many real estate agents are gifted at engaging and connecting with their clients, but many are shocking at staying connected. CRM is the act of staying connected.

Yes, you can do this with paper cards and a full-time personal assistant. But it’s just a whole lot easier when you have thousands of contacts at your fingertips and you’ve geared your technology to systematically prompt you to stay connected with them.

A farmer doesn’t walk out to his or her paddock one day and say “Where’s the harvest?” They spend years cultivating it.

One of the great traps I see in our industry today is the many people sitting at their desk asking themselves: “What can I do today to list or sell a property?”

A far more empowering question might be “What can I do right now to guarantee that this customer does business with me in the future?”

CRM is more than a software program. It is an acronym that represents your company’s ability to connect and maintain connection with your clients.
Succeed at CRM and you’ll have a successful business. Fail, and you’re history.

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