Leading Agent

Leading Agent

Checklist

Leading Agent may be the right

Real Estate CRM for you if…

The people I typically point to Leading Agent are people who have already used (not just trialed) several of the best CRMs and still find them to be lacking for their purposes. They have specific things they want in their CRM and they are not getting them. They enjoy playing with the software and they may even be considering having one built for them. The latter in my opinion is a mistake. I have had a fair number of people call me over the years who have had a CRM built for them, only to find out the pitfalls in doing so. If you’re considering it, you may want to read this post. If you fall into this category of agents, instead of having someone build one you may want to look at this product. You can make all the changes yourself or you can hire any one of hundreds if not thousands of people who can make the modifications for you.

The point is that you can add and delete fields, modify or create entire screens, and create almost any kind of report both text and graphically that you can imagine. Another benefit is that if you create a field, you can then import that information. For example, if you currently have a CRM that has a field not only for the Source of the contacts, but also a Sub-source, the odds are good that you will not be able to import that field into many other CRMs. As a matter of fact, Leading Agent does not have that field out of the box. BUT – you can create that field and when you do it becomes available to import into automatically. One of the problems with moving from virtually any other CRM to another is that you lose a lot of data in the transition. Not the case with Leading Agent more-so than any other one.

Another group of people I recommend this for is agents who are not focused entirely on plain vanilla residential resale. With few exceptions, most of the real estate specific CRMs have that primary focus. If you also dabble in commercial, short sales, property management, foreclosures and so on, this one can be modified to accommodate the fields you need for those other uses. If you deal primarily in property management or commercial then you probably want something specific to that field. If not, this could be just the ticket for you.

Those are some of the upsides. The downside is that this is a relatively new product and has a way to go to add some of the features that CRMs that have been around a long time have. That is not to say that it does not already have many of the features, or that some of them can not be replicated by you. It is also notable that it has a lot of features that the others do not have. It’s a matter of priorities.

With regards to the Salesforce App Exchangeif Leading Agent does not already have a feature, there are literally thousands of apps to choose from on the exchange. For instance, if you want to be able to auto-dial directly from Leading Agent, there’s an app for that!

CRM Discount

Purchase though my link and get my Trans-Plans Email Templates for free. NOTE: They do not automatically install so you will receive an RTF file that you can copy and paste them into it.

Have you used this CRM?  Rate it – but please be professional. Thanks!

2.95 / 5 (20 votes)

Leading Agent’s Vital Statistics:

–Understand these terms–

Out of beta & started selling: 2012 (but are adding to an existing series of real estate related products)

Parent company: Status 5 Studios, Inc.

What kind of sales is this for?: Residential, agent, teams, brokerages, customizable

Features: 

Support: 9:00 – 5:00 EST  by email or phone

Have you used this CRM?  Rate it – but please be professional. Thanks!

2.95 / 5 (20 votes)

Stats

Dashboard/Desktop/Home Page

There are a number of things I like about Leading Agent’s dashboard. First and foremost is the fact that you can customize almost everything in this CRM including the Dashboard.

Across the top you see various tabs such as Home, Contacts, Seller Transactions, Buyer Transactions, etc. But – note the image below on the right. There you see all the tabs available to be placed at the top, so you pick what you want.

Another thing I like is that my tasks for the day are right there, as are my appointments. I used to prefer looking at an actual calendar but I am finding that I now prefer seeing a list by day and time. The calendar view is still available with one click on the day, week, or month on the right where the calendar is.

Moving to the left side of the page you have a number of choices for frequently used actions and something I have grown to be very dependent upon, the Recent Items list. As far as I’m concerned it is one of the best uses of screen real estate that there is and it should be on every CRM’s desktop.

At the bottom are your new leads and contacts you should be following up with today.

Overall this is one of my top three favorite desktops/dashboards/home pages.

Leading Agent Desktop

Leading Agent Desktop-2

Features

Unique or Notable Features

 

Customizability – Best in Class! What can I say about Leading Agent/Salesforce in this context? It might be a bit of an exaggeration to say there is nothing you can’t modify to the way you like it, but it would not be much of one. And there are thousands of software guys out there that can modify it for you. On top of that you have the Salesforce App Exchange which allows you to add functionality that Leading Agent/Salesforce does not already have. It takes time to learn how to do all these modifications and in the long run it’s not very difficult but you do need to be ready to invest some serious time on this one. It depends upon your priorities. I always tell people that there is no perfect CRM. This one is not either. BUT – you can make it perfect for you if you want to take the time. That can not be said of virtually any of the rest of them. The only one that comes close that is not based in Salesforce is Tribus.

Email Campaign Reporting/Back-end – Staying in touch with groups of people with emails is a great way to make sure people don’t forget you, or to simply get some information out to them. To do it right though, you need to know things like; How many people received the email?; How many opened it?; How many clicked on a link in the email; Or how many times did they click on that link? These are just a few pieces of information which are commonly referred to as campaign reporting or back-end statistics. If you send 500 people an email and find that only 2% opened it, something needs to change. So you experiment and change the subject line. Lo and behold the open rate jumps up to 22%! Was it just because you changed the subject line? It can happen. But you won’t know it if you don’t have campaign reporting available to you. Even if you do have it, it has to be laid out well so you can make sense of what they mean. Leading Agent enables this feature by utilizing the Salesforce campaign reporting.

Salesforce allows you to do any regular outgoing emailing without limit. For blast emails to groups there is a limit of 1,000/day, but it allows mailings to be scheduled. I use that feature and it’s sweet!

Leading Agent Email Backend
This is a plain vanilla default view of the last weeks mailings. As you can see, you can create any kind of view you like. The possibilities are endless.
You can print out a report in any format you like, or export it.
You can print out a report in any format you like, or export it.

Phone/Tablet Leading Agent uses the Salesforce mobile app which is the best on the market. It has a nice clean interface (see below) and does anything I would want to do from the road. If need be I can also pull up the full blown site as well. There really isn’t much else to say other than that you really couldn’t ask for anything better. I did give Top Producer Best in Class for their mobile interface but it is only because they have features in the CRM that Salesforce does not and they are also available on the phone .

Leading Agent Mobile Home Screen
Home Screen

Leading Agent Mobile

New Lead Display – At the bottom of the screen under Imported and Synchronized Contacts.

Leading Agent New Lead

Leading Agent List of Leads

Leading Agent New Lead - Gmail

Geographic Farm Social Interaction – Best in Class! This is brand new and very cool! You can create socially enabled neighborhood pages within Leading Agent that is in a format very similar to Facebook so people will be able to easily adopt it. It’s like having a Facebook page for a geographic farm but you’re in total control. Getting established in a geographihc farm can take years and there are many things you can do to help establish yourself as the defacto agent in a neighborhood. This may be the very best one! Check out the video to learn more. Not in Propertybase.

Social Networking – Once you link the contact to their social network from within the contact record, it takes you to their profile and you can go from there. Facebook, Twitter and Klout are all free, but LinkedIn makes you go to the premium plan to link from Salesforce.

Leading Agent Contact Screen

Leading Agent LinkedIn

Leading Agent Twitter

Leading Agent Klout

How does Leading Agent stack up with other popular features?

Phone/tablet: Covered above

Lead capture: Leading Agent provides a contact form for your web site, but it also provides an email parsing service that will auto-populate virtually any lead from anywhere as long as you get it in an email. All you have to do is tell your lead provider to change the email address that they are currently sending the leads to (yours), to one provided by Leading Agent. From then on they just populate into Leading Agent.

New lead display: Covered above

Lead notification – By email or text from Leading Agent.

Team capabilities: Leading Agent’s is as powerful as anything anywhere. Remember – Salesforce is the largest CRM in the world and mostly used by large companies and sales teams so there isn’t much you can’t do with it.

Buyer home search: Buyer preferences for their new home can be entered into the contact record and you can add as many fields as you like and re-arrange them to suit your needs. The search function in Leading Agent/Salesforce is as good as you can get so you can search any of those fields any way you want.

Internal email software: No

E-mail stored with contact record: I use Leading Agent it in conjunction with Gmail and Cirrus Insight and I can’t imagine how you could be more efficient with email. The way I use it, I just click a button on incoming or outgoing emails in Gmail and it will store the email with the contact and/or the attachments.

Blast email: Covered above

Email campaign reporting: Yes

Capable of building email drip campaigns: Yes

Capable of building activity plans: Yes

Included template content: Not one of it’s strengths as far as included template content. A buyer and seller follow-up campaign comprised of 20+ emails is included. That said, the power provided to create templates and activity plans/drip campaigns is more than any other CRM’s.

Social media: Covered above

Call center: Leading Agent doesn’t come with one per se but between the customizablility and the AppExchange you can make it happen.

Lockbox manager: There are fields for the information and you can expand on that if you like.

If you’re on the fence about it, don’t be bashful. I’ll be happy to do a live online screen sharing demo to show you some of the great features of this CRM.  Gary David Hall

CRM Comparisons

CRM History

Leading Agent’s History

Leading Agent is the one I use currently. That does not mean it’s the best one. It simply means it’s the best one for me. My whole business model is built upon the fact that everyone has different needs so there is no one best CRM for everyone. 

One of the things I like about Leading Agent is that it has been around for a while in the real estate industry as a provider of web sites, marketing and lead generation. This CRM was the next logical step for them to tie together all their products. This means that although it is a newer product, it has the benefit of already having a revenue stream to see them through the hard times any CRM has when starting up. It makes their long term viability that much more likely, especially given that they are building upon an established CRM in Salesforce.

This is one of three Salesforce based Real Estate CRMs with which I am or have been affiliated. Salesforce is the undisputed leader in CRM worldwide. That said, Salesforce in it’s generic form is not a good solution for real estate agents. It is geared towards B2B (Business to Business) sales versus B2C (Business to Consumer), which is what we do. In that arena of sales there is a great deal of sales to companies versus people or contacts. Very often the salesperson is working with companies so the focus is on the company, and then the people within the company. Time is spent trying to get to the decision maker within the company. Therefore it is company centric. We in real estate deal directly with the person so the company is usually not important. We need a CRM that is contact centric. That is what Leading Agent and other real estate specific Salesforce based CRMs have done. They have made modifications to make it contact centric. 

All of the Salesforce based CRMs are extremely similar in appearance. It’s like the custom Monopoly games. There is the original, and there are all the versions. The Star Trek version has a different look, but it’s still the same game. But even the look is very similar from one version to the next. Each one has created screens relevant to real estate such as Listings, Closings, etc. and they may have changed the look of the buttons on the left or the tabs at the top, but they are extremely similar overall except for a few unique features in each one.

Do a screen sharing session with me and see this product or any others in which you may be interested.

30 Day free trial with no credit card required. This link for the trial and the link for the purchase are the same. There is no reason not to start with a trial so you start here.

$60/mo. per person billed annually. $69/mo. billed quarterly.

There is an annual contract because it is based in Salesforce and they have the requirement

Have a question for me? Click here and ask away!