When you’re a newly licensed agent, you might look at more experienced agents and wonder how they do it. They seem so cool, collected, organized, and on top of things.
And while some of that comes with experience, savvy agents know that there are digital tools that can streamline the more boring or repetitive parts of the job.
Here are four tools that every agent should have in their toolbox.
4 Digital Tools New Real Estate Agents Should Consider
1. A Customer Relationship Management System (CRM)
A CRM is a tool that helps agents organize leads, create email and text marketing campaigns, auto-respond to emails and texts, create shared team calendars, store documents, create sales reports, and more.
There are many different CRM tools out there designed specifically for real estate agents. Each tool has different features (and a different price point). At its most basic, a CRM will track leads and customers, keeping tabs on where you are in any particular deal.
At its most robust, a CRM will integrate with your email, ad platform, social media, calendar, and texting tool, becoming a single hub for everything you do. What features you need will depend on your style, your business, your price point, and how many clients you’re working with at one time.
CRMs have become standard with digital-first agencies, and in fact, your broker may have already chosen a CRM for your team to use. If so, that makes your decision easy!
2. A Social Media Management Tool
A social media management tool is an absolute must for agents. Between marketing your properties, networking, and generating leads, you’ll be juggling at least an Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
It can get overwhelming, especially if you have separate, personal accounts on any of these platforms. A social media management tool can help you automate posts, post to multiple accounts on the same platform, port posts from one platform to another, and generate analytics so you can track your engagement on each post.
It’s possible that you may have a social media management tool integrated into the CRM you use. If not, you’ll want to find a standalone tool (and some people prefer a standalone anyway). There is a huge range of options and price points, including free apps.
Hootsuite, Planoly, and Sprout are a few popular ones, but there are many options! Research which has the features you need.
3. A Shared Calendar
Any agent that works with a team to sell property needs to have a shared calendar. It’s the best way to ensure that all the paperwork that needs to happen on time happens, to make sure open houses and showings are covered, and to keep everyone on the same page.
Most CRMs will have a shared calendar function. However, there are free options that many people on your team may already use. It’s simple to create a shared Google or Apple calendar — you probably have the app on your phone already.
The hard part is making sure everyone is using it! That’s up to you, unfortunately.
4. Automation Tools for Paperwork
There are a lot of ways to automate tasks that you do routinely. Tools like IFTTT (If This, Then That) and Zapier are good ways of setting up automations to help you save time. After all, the more time you spend on routine tasks, the less time you’re spending making money.
Other digital tools that can save time are digital signature tools that save documents, digital archiving tools, and email autoreply and formatting software.
“Agents should look for the tools that integrate well with their brokerage's operations and reduce the time spent doing administrative type work, or those that help them stay organized with the pile of tasks that an agent has daily,” says Matt Hernandez, Aceable’s Real Estate Subject Matter Expert. “The more things you can streamline as far as paperwork and communication goes, the more time you can spend following up on leads and closing deals.”
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