At its most basic level, the primary function of a real estate CRM is to save you time. And as a real estate agent, time is certainly something you could use more of!
Unfortunately, there are ways you can shoot yourself in the foot when using your real estate CRM. In this post, I’ll take you through four of the most common time-wasting CRM mistakes agents make...and how to fix them.
Time Waster #1: Waiting too long to contact support or watch tutorial videos
Learning how to use your CRM is going to take a significant amount of time. That’s to be expected. How else will you discover all of the valuable functionality available?
That's the not the time-waster...
The only instance in which you start to waste time is when you fail to take advantage of your CRM’s support team (or wait too long to do so). Spending more than five or ten minutes trying to figure out something on your own, when someone else already has the answer—that's a big waste of time.
Like many people, I prefer learning software by playing with it rather than taking the time to watch tutorial videos. But at what point are we wasting even more time by not watching the videos? Depending on your aptitude and the power of the software, it often takes less time in the long run to go ahead, bite the bullet, and watch those videos. (Plus, I often find that I learn details from the videos that I otherwise would have missed.)
How to save time:
- Make a list of your easy, quick, non-urgent questions, and submit a Support Ticket.
- If you need an immediate answer, go to Live Chat Support (provided by most CRMs) or make a call.
- Watch the tutorial videos, especially the ones about the more complicated aspects of the software. (Check out Realvolve's training videos!)
It’s important to dedicate a lot of time to learning your CRM. And to make that time more productive and efficient, be sure to use the support and help tools provided.
Time Waster #2: Doing everything manually
If you’re not automating, you’re not using your CRM to its full potential. And you’re wasting a ton of time.
To save time, create workflows to automate as many activities as possible, including things like lead follow-up emails, inspection reminder texts, staff task assignments, etc.
Here are a few ways to use workflows in Realvolve to save you more time:
- Use a workflow to assign a list of tasks to all of your staff, all at once. As soon as you start a workflow, everyone will instantly know what is expected of them.
- Using Notes in the Tasks, include instructions for each of those tasks as a kind of dynamic operations manual to significantly reduce the learning curve for new agents.
- When you’re out sick or going on vacation, allow the person who will be covering for you to have access to all of your workflows. You won’t have to spend any time explaining what deals you’re working or what’s next on your To Do list.
- Schedule an automated email to go out to a client two weeks prior to closing with a link to the USPS Change of Address page.
When you were expecting a child, how many times did you hear, “They grow up so fast?” It wasn’t until years later that you were capable of fully comprehending what people meant. It’s the same with workflows. You can’t understand how much they help until you have actually used them for a while. Then you’ll have an epiphany and you won’t believe how much faster, better, and easier things are flowing. Don’t make the mistake of failing to use this valuable tool.
Time Waster #3: Failing to plan your tagging system
Failing to plan is planning to fail. One of the most important first steps in setting up your CRM is planning out your tagging system. If you take the time upfront to create a way to organize your tags, you’ll prevent the time-consuming task of having to reorganize them later.
If your real estate business is a team, assign a “Tag Tender.” The Tag Tender should be the only person authorized to add or remove tags.
Learn more: Four Tips for Organizing Tags in Your CRM
Time Waster #4: Stop reviewing every template email before sending it
I’m a control freak. I can’t help it. Before I send a template email, I have to make sure it’s perfect for that person at that time.
Or do I?
The entire point of a template is to avoid starting from scratch every time an email needs to go out. Using merge fields, your emails can be personalized to a significant extent. You can set up a template to automatically pull in the recipient’s first name. In Realvolve, for example, “Dear [[Greeting]]” will appear as “Dear Frank” if that's your contact's first name.
Realvolve even has a personal pronoun merge field! That’s crazy! And it makes it possible to create a very convincing template that doesn’t actually look like a template at all.
You’re probably already in the habit of tweaking the way you run your real estate business to be more efficient. Be the same way with your CRM. Try to always be looking for ways to save a click here and a click there. It all adds up and makes a huge difference!