4 Ways Real Estate Brokers Can Encourage Agents to Adopt New Tools
- Brokerages that provide time-saving tools to their real estate agents will see more utilization when they also offer training and support.
- Since agents manage their own time, it's important to educate them on why you felt the resource is worth implementing and including in their schedules.
- Asking successful agents what tactics were used to help them reach their goals communicates to the rest of the team the effectivness of the tools provided.
Managing a team of real estate agents while maintaining brokerage brand quality can be challenging. Each team member has his or her own personal goals and behaviors, while there are also corporate brand objectives to attain and best practices to maintain. Supportive brokerages offer tools and education to help agents be successful, but training and implementation can be difficult as progress often means asking agents to change their routines. Marketing automation is one particular category of tools that brokers know will save agents time, however adoption rates are often lower than brokers would like as it changes an agent's past behavior. Here are four tips to improve the likelihood that agents will adopt the tools in which your brokerage is investing.
1. Give the Tools Context
When onboarding new agents, they will expect their brokerage to share its unique formula and approach to generating new leads and closing transactions. In parallel to this, agents will be working to achieve personal and professional goals to excel within the company and industry. Sandy Garner, founder and president of Harcourts The Garner Group Real Estate, this month shared the following advice with REALTOR® Mag: “I encourage new agents to create a business plan — not just to jot a few notes on paper but to sit down, use a template, and create a full-fledged plan with goals, objectives, and strategies. How many hours do you want to work? What are your personal and professional goals? Then I show them how to track those goals.”
This is an opportunity to share experiences and introduce the new agent to the tools provided by the brokerage that can assist with reaching those goals. Whether you’re introducing marketing automation tools to a new hire or adjusting the marketing process for a seasoned agent, it’s important for any and all tools to be easily accessed and discussed frequently. There are likely multiple angles from which each agent is approaching his or her clients and prospects (for example social media, website, direct mail, etc.), and therefore each automation tool should have its purpose clearly identified. Explain how each element supports the other to ultimately lead to larger goals, like closing the sale and gaining a referring client.
2. Show Direct Benefit
Take time to explain how the tools will lead the agent to success at your brokerage. How will the agent directly benefit from using the tool? For example, if your brokerage is using TriggerMarketing, you could explain that the tool was selected to help agents save time by automating their just listed and just sold postcards. Also address why the agent should invest the time on training and setup. In this example, the answer is that TriggerMarketing will help the agent build and maintain credibility by showcasing his or her activity and expertise in an area. If you can help your team see how the setting up and using your tools will pay off in the long run, the chance they will incorporate them into their regular routines will increase.
3. Lead by Example
As a team leader, you must lead by example. Take time to know the tool completely by testing or possibly even launching a preliminary campaign before introducing to tool to the your agent team. That way, you can share first-hand experience and be better equipped to address possible concerns and questions from your team. If you're seen as an expert, your recommendation of a direct mail automation tool, for example, will be more credible.
Secondly, as a leader you have the opportunity to define what success looks like among the agents. It’s expected to praise a good sales month, but what about acknowledging the agents who are consistently nurturing their farming area? As an example, one agent may have hit the ground running with face-to-face communications and closed all of their hot prospects last month. They may be the high producer this month, but what about next month or three months from now? Whereas, a different agent immediately took the short time out of their month to learn and set up their AutoMail Plus account. They still achieved their sales goal, but they also nurtured their pipeline by implementing direct mail farming postcards to ensure future lead generation. The characteristics of a consistently strong real estate agent is broader than simply achieving a certain metric around sales transactions. Identifying the tactics needed to accomplish the goal can help your team to more steadily reach their desired sales numbers. As a leader you have the opportunity to offer clear and helpful guidance to your realtors on how to succeed.
4. Demonstrate Success
Ultimately, as a broker it's your job to provide your agent team with the tools and training they need to succeed. It then becomes the agent's responsibility to leverage those tools to compete in the industry. Therefore, work to empower your agents with metrics that demonstrate success garnered when the recommended tools are put to use.
Try tracking top agent tool usage and how it relates to overall success. Share these metrics with the entire team so that other agents can witness the success of the team members that use the tools consistently. Identifying opportunities for professional growth through the experience of others is listed as one of the Seven Habits of Highly Effective Real Estate Agents. So, during your next team meeting, ask your top producing agents to share what they do to maintain lead generating momentum. It will quickly become apparent which activities lead to achieving goals within the brokerage.
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