York Baur – CEO, Moxi Works
Redfin went public last week, raising well over $100M at a valuation of $1.5B. That’s what all the media is focused on, but what does it mean to you the brokerage owner?
The bad news is that you should be concerned. Redfin has deep pockets, deep technology, and now has access to the public markets to raise more capital as needed to grow further. They invest tens of millions of dollars in their technology annually, have a great website, and spend lots of time and money driving traffic to it. Like it or not, they’ll be a factor, and they’re going to put pressure on you to deliver better technology and a slicker experience for both your agents and their consumers.
The good news is that you have everything you need available to you to compete successfully. How can I be so sure? Because Seattle-based Windermere Real Estate has had Redfin operating in its home market of Seattle for 12 years with $200M of capital, and despite all the hype, tech and money, Redfin still has only 2.6% market share compared to Windermere’s 21%. Even more important, Windermere did 38% more transactions last year than 5 years ago in the tightest inventory market we’ve seen in a long time.
How can Windermere continue to dominate in the face of Redfin? And Zillow for that matter (also based in Seattle’s tech-centric market), supposedly siphoning away business by selling leads to the highest bidder? And how can you do what they’re doing? The answer is:
- Continue to focus on agent’s sphere of influence – the people that already know, like, and trust their agents. Sound obvious? It is, but I’ll bet you’re not doing it enough. We talk to brokerages across the country every day who are distracted by chasing a lead generation battle that they can’t win. How are you seriously going to compete with the billions of dollars of capital that Redfin, Zillow, and Realtor.com spend every year driving consumers to their sites? You can’t. Period. Lead gen will continue to be a small piece of your business, but that’s it – a small piece. The biggest piece of your business is the core business, which is transactions coming from consumers an agent already has a trust relationship with.
- Quit focusing on buyer leads. Every realtor and broker wants a seller, not a buyer if they have the choice. Redfin generates buyer leads. Zillow generates buyer leads. What’s the overwhelming source of seller leads? It’s an agent’s sphere. Control the inventory in your market by concentrating agents on their sphere, and you make money. There are only around five million homes transacted every year no matter how many buyer leads are generated – don’t you want to control the seller side of that equation?
- Control and centralize your data. Windermere decided years ago to put an open platform in place. It’s like a power strip where they can plug in all their agent tools and have them work together. How? By putting all their property data, agent and brokerage data, and consumer data in one place. Windermere currently has over 2.6M consumer names in that platform, allowing agents and the brokerage to market to those consumers to generate listings, using dozens of tools in various markets to do so. Do you have a centralized database of your agent’s contacts? What are you doing to help them stay in front of their sphere of influence?
- Quit creating islands of data and technology. Windermere has taken the platform concept to heart, and has solved the problems of tools that don’t work together, redundant data entry, and not being able to get a comprehensive view of their business. A technology platform allows them to save millions of dollars annually in office staff time, custom software development, and management overhead. This is in sharp contrast to most brokers, who don’t have a technology strategy. They buy the latest shiny technology object, and don’t even ask the question of how it works with the other technology they have now or might use in the future. Agents are demanding a better experience, and that means not having to start over from scratch with every new tool you provide them, upload their database for the 17th time, or having to rekey data.
- Training, coaching and sales discipline. Redfin has made much out of the fact that they hire agents and support staff as full-time employees, not contractors. But that’s not the big difference – we hire contractors in the tech world all the time, and they contribute just as much as our employees do. So what’s the difference? It’s not the person, it’s how they’re trained, coached, and held to a standard of how to do business. That means having a training program, providing good coaching (which means training your coaches), and having a technology (specifically a CRM system) that reinforces the sales discipline every day as agents do business. Windermere has trained over two-thirds of their agents in the Windermere sales discipline (heavily influenced by Larry Kendall’s Ninja Selling), puts an emphasis on managers doing agent coaching, and has built their discipline into their CRM to provide ongoing reinforcement.
With Redfin beating its chest on Wall Street, you need a response for your agents and your consumers – now. Do nothing and you’ll lose agents, because they won’t tolerate inaction. And don’t forget the Millennial agent who isn’t just comfortable with tech, they demand it as a necessary tool for doing business. But despite all the hype and money spent, Windermere did eight times as many transactions in the greater Seattle market last year than Redfin did. With performance like that, we’d all be well served to look at what they’re doing right.
Find out more about brokerage open platforms and how they work by clicking here.
We’d love to formally announce our newest partner, Loop & Tie, making sphere marketing through Moxi Works tools even easier for our agents.
Sending closing gifts is a seemingly small, but quintessential aspect to any deal done with clients, and later on, can be a reminder that their agent still cares and are thinking of them. Everyone likes presents, but more importantly, everyone likes to be thought of. We have partnered with Loop & Tie to provide an easy and effective way for agents to build and maintain these integral client relationships.
“This partnership allows Moxi Works to save agents, even more, time and provides them with more tools to grow and maintain their long-term relationships. We love what Loop & Tie is doing,” said Mike McHenry, VP of Channels & Partnerships. The positive feedback from agents is what made this an easy decision. Sara Rodell, CEO at Loop & Tie says, “Using Loop & Tie for gifts is like taking your clients shopping. Clients get to select what they want, and agents don’t have to stress about what to buy.”
Loop & Tie lets you send gifts from curated selections. Simply choose a price point and let your client pick from the gifts. This way your client gets what they want and they never see the pricing – win, win! Loop & Tie has a variety of unique products in numerous categories, including Home, Bath, Travel, Lifestyle, Food & Drink, and Accessories.
At Moxi Works, we also know that there is never enough time or days in a week for those in the real estate world. It is the entire reason we are in this business: to save brokerages and agents, precious time and money. The best part of this? No training required!
• Clicking a button leads you to the collections where you choose the level of gift to send
• Loop & Tie sends a gift email to the recipient, who then chooses the gift, where to send it, and a thank you note back
• All steps are brokerage-branded for a professional looking environment
• Moxi Works will show reminders to send gifts at logical points in the sales process
• Support is handled by Loop & Tie
Maintain long-term relationships and start impressing clients with these exciting closing gifts! Find out more about the importance of sphere and why it’s a quintessential part of your business:
It’s been a busy year at Moxi Works. Earlier in the year we spotted a major trend developing that was making it harder and harder for brokerages to evaluate and implement the ever-increasing number of technology solutions. Every day it seems there’s a new lead generation company or mobile app or a marketing program for text. Or 3D video. It’s a tsunami of technology and the brokerages who don’t have an integrated platform are really falling behind.
No Integration Is Painful
It’s one thing just to track all the updates from existing providers and vet the newcomers. It’s quite another to integrate the ones you choose into a seamless experience for your agents. The underlying problem is all these tools and services don’t share data. Many, for example, require you to input your roster so they can work properly. Importantly, they are created independently and don’t work together. Your open house app and your CRM probably aren’t connected and doing things together to support your agents. There’s no cooperation in your system. The tsunami is a big problem that can’t be solved by brokers on their own.
You Need a Platform Provider
A platform is really a data exchange where all your applications give and receive the information they need to deliver a better experience for your agents. Everything from listing and roster data to public records data. The platform acts like a power strip where your applications plug in and everything just works. With it, your print provider can access the consumer data along with your brokerage branding to run effective marketing campaigns. With it, your agents don’t need to redundantly enter the listing information into your digital transaction management system since that can be transferred automatically. Done well, your agents will be presented the right tool at the right time making them more efficient. They like that a lot.
The Great Expansion
Moxi Works is a well-established brokerage platform. It runs some of the most successful brokerages in the country. This year we made it easily accessible for the whole ecosystem of tools and services. That was the technical part. Then on the business side we are creating a long list of business relationships with companies that provide the tools and services you need. We are integrating them thoughtfully into the platform. Not only do they get the data, but we surface them at the right time and place. For example, when your agent goes to manage a transaction in their CRM, a transaction is created in your digital transaction manager. No more double entry.
Moxi Works now has a full-time team dedicated to building and integrating tools and services. We are providing the resources brokerages don’t have. We currently have over 30 integrated partners and the list is growing fast.
Want to learn more about open platforms and how they can revolutionize your brokerage business? Find out how it works!
See what other brokerages are saying about us by clicking here!
Moxi Works Launches Redesigned Listing Presentation Tool
Constantly evolving consumer and agent expectations means delivering products and services to ever-increasing standards of excellence. We understand that very well and through the involvement of our brokerage clients, we have significantly updated our presentation tools Moxi Present™ and TouchCMA™.
We’ve made things easier for agents to create their presentations and we’ve produced a very modern and stunning presentation layout. The visual appeal of the presentations is obvious the moment you see it.
“Whether I am on my desktop or phone, my presentations all feel the same,” one agent told us. “Having my presentations be consistent across all my devices is huge, especially when I am meeting with a high number of clients on a given day.”
Key elements of the redesign include:
- A new engaging layout
- Infinite Scrolling for better presentation navigation
- Easily incorporates video for more engaging presentations
- Listing photo gallery now produces larger, hi-resolution images
- INRIX Drive Time™ map enhancements
- Mobile responsive design looks great on all screen sizes
The new Moxi Present is available now for brokerages.
In 2014 a survey by National Association of Realtors (NAR) found that 70% of home buyers couldn’t remember the name of their agent 12 months after transaction. Additionally, when polled 86% of buyers and 82% of sellers say they would use their agent again, yet for the average NAR agent, only 22% do.
The reason? After agents cash their check they tend to forget about the client.
There’s a cold reality of not maintaining a relationship with past clients; it forces you to work a ton of new leads. And new Internet leads convert only at 1%. Whereas leads from your existing sphere of influence, people who already know and trust you convert at 80%. Big difference. You can engage 100 strangers to get one sale, or you can engage with a little over 1 person to get a sale. Which would you rather do?
Of course, staying top of mind with past clients also takes effort, but we’ve got the tools to help make that as easy as possible.
Stay Top of Mind with Listing Announcements
Agents with Moxi Works can now email agent branded Listing Announcements to their contacts every time they list or sell a home. To save you time we’ve done all the designing and coding so you look great with almost zero effort on your part.
105% More Repeat and Referral Business
The average NAR agent generates 20% repeat business and 20% referral business, a combined 40%. Agents embracing the Moxi Works Listing Announcements tool? On average 82% repeat and referral business. That’s 105% more!
Sending a listing announcement is incredibly easy and fast.
Got the listing? Great! Moxi Engage automatically generates a new task reminding you to send a “Just Listed” email to your contacts. Oh, and “Just Sold” works the same way.
Add a custom message if you’d like, preview the email and then hit the send button!
Congratulations. You just reminded 479 people that you’re the type of agent who gets results and who people like to work with. And who knows, you might even generate a couple of sphere leads (the ones that convert at 80%).
Today we’re very excited to announce that LeadingRE has named Moxi Works a preferred business solution provider!
LeadingRE is the largest network of top independent residential brokerage firms. The 500+ firms affiliated with LeadingRE are represented by 3,500 offices and 120,000 associates in over 50 countries worldwide. Collectively, LeadingRE affiliates produced over 1 million home sales valued at $321 billion in 2014.
VP of Marketing at LeadingRE, Robin LaSure said:
“We are impressed by how Moxi Works takes a proven, sphere-based selling methodology for real estate and combines it with highly effective tools designed to support an agent’s success. The fact that it also offers a manager dashboard and automated coaching makes it even more compelling for our member firms.”
Over the years Moxi Works has been working successfully with over a dozen LeadingRE brokerages. Now with this expanded partnership with LeadingRE, we are looking forward to helping even more top brokerages grow their profitability and attract more agents.