CRM Developer Consulting
How can I help? Would you like the answers to the following questions?
11 12 13 14 15 16 17 1819 RE CRMs have gone out of business in the last nine years – why?
- What is the history of Real Estate CRM?
- What are the current trends in Real Estate specific CRM?
- What are the most common mistakes CRM developers make?
- What kind of support should you have?
- Who is your primary competition based on your feature sets?
- Who is your market?
- How big is your market?
- How does your price point compare?
Virtually without exception, the many Real Estate CRM developers with whom I have worked use the same concept to improve their product. They compile the user’s requests and implement the ones that are most requested. That’s fine because you need to be responsive to your user base. The problem with that line of thinking is that it does not take into account that the majority of its users are not aware of other new features that other CRMs are implementing. So what happens? When they do hear about other features in other CRMs, they leave to take advantage of them. So how do you prevent that from happening? You need to know what features are being offered by other CRMs in the industry.
I have been in the industry since 1987, have been using CRM since 1988, and have focused on the CRM industry since 1999. What makes me unique is the significant amount of time I have spent with Real Estate specific CRM developers and end users. While everyone else in the industry has worked with one CRM at a time in either a sales, managerial, or development capacity, I have worked with over 40 of them in many capacities since 1989. Most notably I spent a minimum of 5 hours with over 30 different CRM developers and CEO’s when creating my CRM Comparison Matrix and Glossary of Terms. Most recently I had extensive interviews with them again for this site.
“…says Gary David Hall, industry leader in CRM software.” – Press Release
This Web site is devoted entirely to Real Estate specific CRM. I have developed all of the content of this site over a 15 year span, and it is well over 100 pages.
I literally wrote the book on Real Estate specific CRM entitled “Choosing & Using a Contact Manager/CRM – For Real Estate Agents and Teams”.
I am online every day in Facebook Groups, Google+ Communities, List-servs such as Real Talk, blogs like Active Rain, product specific user groups for Top Producer, Agent Office and Advantage Xi, and many other places online where people gather to discuss their desires and complaints in the context of CRM.
Who can benefit from consulting with me?
If you are at the beginning stages of developing a CRM for Real Estate – You can’t build it all at once. You have to decide which features will be there for the launch, versus which ones you will add later. I can help with these decisions.
Adding CRM capabilities to a vertical product. MLS’, Web sites, and other affiliated applications are adding basic CRM to their list of features. How much or how little do you need to make it a viable addition to your product?
Need someone to give an unbiased evaluation of your product? No parent can evaluate their child objectively. Nor can you do so with your product. Why not have the guru of the industry look at it with you. It always helps.
Do you need to improve your product but are not sure what features to put at the top of your list? – One would think that it is a self evident that polling your user base to see what they want next would be the answer. That is not always the case. Your users do not typically know what features are available in your competition’s product. They ask for one thing, then after you have committed the resources to develop it, they see something they like better. You’re committed and now you’re behind. I know what features and trends are out there that you may not know about.
See how your product stacks up against the competition. – One thing became quite evident when I was interviewing the CRM developers for the Matrix. Not one of the developers knew who all of their competitors were. No one knew even close to half of them. Most determined that they knew enough about what was needed for a Real Estate CRM and did not need to know what everyone else was doing. Really?
Background in Contact Management and CRM
Ongoing contributor to online communities since 1999, to include, Real Talk, e-PRO Talk, Stephan Swanepol’s Real Blogging, many Facebook Groups, Several Google+ Communities, Active Rain, and many others.
- 1989 – 1995 – Residential Real Estate Sales. Closed 147 transactions
- 1989 – Investigated Howard & Friends and Real Estate Specialist (RES). Both of which were DOS based at the time. Started using Real Estate Specialist for his business. Created listing and closing transaction plans and letters and follow-up campaign letters in RES. E-mail did not yet exist in common use
- 1989 – Top Producer released – also DOS. Started tracking its features but stayed with RES
- 1991 – Started hosting round table discussions on Contact Management at the invitation of the local boards
- 1992 – Agent Office released. Started tracking its features but stayed with RES
- 1992 – Started using Outlook
- 1994 – Left sales to create a team and automate the office’s top producing agent using RES.
- 1995 – Became a mortgage loan originator and used an industry specific CRM
- 1996 – Automated the #1 agent and staff in Philadelphia using Agent Office to organize prospecting, listings, closings, and post closing follow-up for 140 transactions that year
- 1997 – Became a new construction salesperson and used their industry specific CRM
- 1998 – Became RE/MAX regional roving technology consultant. Trained agents on Agent Office and Top Producer, as well as other technology related training
- 1999 – Hired by Polley Associates Real Estate school to teach Real Estate specific technology. Discussed and polled use and opinions of Contact Management and CRM with over 10,000 agents over the next 10 years
- 1999 – Founded RE-ACT – Real Estate Automation, Consultation and Training, allowing the following to happen…
- 2001 – Wrote original Online Agent versus Top Producer article, read by many thousands of agents, and was one of the most popular pages on Gary’s original site for many years
- 2003 – Various articles for Realty Times Magazine about Contact Management and CRM
- 2004 – Interviewed by Jack Peckham for RECS Radio about CRM
- 2005 – e-PRO Certified Trainer
- 2006 – Elected to CyberGuru Hall of Fame – Real Estate CyberSpace Society
- 2007 – Author and Certified instructor for the 2 day RECS Designation Course
- 2007 – Started using Advantage Xi Real Estate CRM
- 2008 – Guest speaker at CyberProfessionals Conference in Pittsburgh
- 2008 – Invited to write article for Arizona Association of Realtors Magazine
- 2009 – Interviewed for VA Association of Realtors Magazine – July/August 2009 Issue – “Kill Your Rolodex”
- 2009 – Interviewed by Kathy Googenour – LeadBooster Club
- 2009 – Created Considerations when choosing a Real Estate Contact Manager or CRM.A 60 minute Power Point Presentation,prepared for the Real Estate Cyberspace Society’s 2009 Cyber Convention
- 2012 – TheTechByte.com – Technology eSummit – Webinar – Top 10 CRM Features You Should Look For
- 2013 – Point2 Success Series Webinar – Tips to Better Use CRM’s to Generate and Cultivate Leads
- 2013 – Real Estate Dominance Webinar for Online Dominance.com – Top 10 things to look for in a CRM.
- 2013 – Salt Lake Board of Realtors Webinar – How to pick a CRM.
- 2014 – Started using Leading Agent based in Salesforce in conjunction with Gmail and Cirrus Insight
- 2014 – Started using Leading Agent/Salesforce as primary CRM
- 2015 – Google+ Hangout with Eric Aubrey – “Talking CRM”
- Used ACT! for 1 year
- Trained hundreds of agents individually in person and online on Agent Office and Top Producer
- Created 10 hour class on Agent Office. Trained hundreds of agents in groups in online 2 hour/week interactive classes using GoToMeeting for two years.
- Created Agent Office Training CD based on the experience gained in the online training classes
- Has been speaking with thousands of agents over the last 10 years about their usage of Contact Management and CRM with regards to what they have used in the past, what they liked and disliked about each, and found a better product for them if it existed.
- Created Trans-Plans Listing and Closing Plans and e-mail/letter Campaigns. They started with Gary’s plans from RES, then Agent Office, and then were improved and expanded during Operations Management consultations with agents and teams in the US and Canada over the next 8 years. They are now available in Top Producer, IXACTContact, WiseAgent, Realvolve, Advantage Xi, Active Agent for Outlook and Agent Office.
- Conducted minimum 5 hours of interviews with developer/CEO’s of more than 30 Real Estate specific CRM’s. First round was to create the Real Estate CRM Matrix and then another round when developing this site. In these interviews, Gary examined their product in great detail to list which of the 350 features in the Matrix their product had. As compensation for their time, Gary consulted with them to help the improve their product. More recently Gary worked with these developers again to create much more in-depth reviews of the CRMs on this site, replacing the Matrix.
- Consults to several of the company’s developers on a fee basis to help them improve their product on an ongoing basis
- Gary was the ONLY person/company authorized by Top Producer® to sell both their product, and AgentOffice®, their primary competitor, until 2008
- Has been the answer man for Contact Manager and CRM questions since 1998 on Real Talk, followed by e-Pro, and then blogging on Active Rain and Stefan Swanepoel’s Real Blogging, as well as many other Internet forums
- Moderator for the Top Producer user group on Yahoo.
- Creator and Moderator of the user group for Advantage Xi on Yahoo.
- Started reselling Agent Office in 2004, then Top Producer, then most of the rest of the 30 some odd available. Have been speaking with agents, teams, and brokers every day, one on one, about their experiences with a wide range of products, as well as their needs, preferences, likes, and dislikes, ever since.
- Gary is the person of choice for many coaches around the USA and Canada to refer their clients to for Contact Management and CRM questions and solutions.