CRM Impact on Recruiting and Retaining Agents

by Victor Lund on June 27, 2016

WAV Group has deep experience supporting real estate brokers on the selection and adoption of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) for their agents. Sometimes the best business strategy is a simple one. All research points out that successful real estate agents have 500 or more legitimate prospects in their CRM and they actively communicate with those prospects with a customer for life philosophy. Bearing this in mind, a broker or manager can better understand customer value of agent recruiting and retention.

victor27juneIf you have been in the industry a long time, you may know the story of Intero Real Estate in Silicon Valley. They worked with a company to build a CRM that became the cornerstone of their business. They used it to recruit like crazy from Alain Pinel and Coldwell Banker and became one of the largest brokerage firms in America under the leadership of Gino Belfari. Granted, having an agent CRM is a requirement for brokerages today, and Mr. Belfari and his partners built the business on far more than a piece of technology. But this is an iconic story that shows the representational value of implementing CRM successfully in a brokerage and the resulting value of how agents using CRM leads to customer development, customer retention, and long term success.

 

Agent Experience Demographics

Recently, we have begun to create three categories of agents: New Colonists, Old Colonists, and Native Loyalists.

The New Colonists – Those who have been in real estate less than six years and at the brokerage less than six years.

The Old Colonists – Those who have been in real estate more than six years, but who are relatively new to the brokerage.

The Native Loyalists – Those who are well experienced in real estate with over seven years of experience and who have also been at the brokerage more than six years.

Interestingly enough, we have begun to use this methodology with all of our enterprise software adoption research. As it turns out, year six seems to have a material breakpoint in terms of behavior. At year six, the agent is experienced and routine in their behavior. Changing behavior for people who have been in real estate for less than six years is very different than changing behavior for professionals who have been working in the industry for more than six years. More importantly, it is vital to communicate differently to these groups.

Average Contacts

WAV Group averaged and rounded the approximate number of contacts by experience demographic. It is important for firm owners and managers to understand the number of customers that are likely associated with an agent as it has an important impact on production.

Contacts New Colonists Old Colonists Native Loyalists
1-250 65% 45% 40%
251-500 20% 30% 40%
501-1000 10% 10% 5%
1001+ 5% 10% 20%

Summary

  • Contact records matter – ask how many contacts an agent has and score that value for recruiting, retention, and commission plans.
  • Communicate differently to agents who have been in the business for more or less than six years; this means having a completely different training and support program, too!
  • Understand the importance of retaining agents for more than six years – that is a goal! They have carried your brand for a long time, and they have the largest share of customers in the real estate business.

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