About Chris Drayer
Chris is the CMO for RealSatisfied & Marketing Dir for FloorPlanOnline.
You can find Chris online at finchmktg.com, facebook.com/chris.drayer & @fpo
“Always ask for a testimonial, because you never know who will give you one.”
Perhaps you’ve heard this line of thinking before. It’s motivational, something you’d hear from a stage somewhere. It’s designed to get you beyond the fear of asking for a testimonial. But it’s has a critical flaw.
Beneath the strategy of how to ask, lies a much deeper root issue. And it’s exposed by the word, “always.” Do you really want to ask for a testimonial from someone who is lukewarm about your service? How about someone who is even less than lukewarm?
Here’s what I have gathered from observation. Most of the real estate agents I have met have never, ever had an upset real estate buyer or seller because of something they did. They are the best of the best and they will send you all of their testimonials to prove it. The other agents in their transactions, however, that’s a different story. “They” are the ones that cause all of the problems.
So, lets talk about the “other” agent. Whenever you get together for a cocktail or a fund raiser for RPAC, or a YPN meeting - the other agent agent, we’ll call her Annie Agent, decides to tell you a 15 min horror story. I won’t retell the story, you know it all to well. So, here’s the take away from that story:
“I have the client from Hell.” – Annie Agent
While you’re listening to the story, you’re deciding which of the following is true:
a) This buyer / seller probably really loves this agent.
b) This buyer / seller is the the client from hell and the offspring of Beelzebub.
c) This agent may have a communication / process problem.
d) This is actually the agent from Hell, I feel sorry for that client.
Like you, I’ve been to many YPN, Association & RPAC events, so I know these horror stories pretty well. But the question at hand is this, should Annie Agent ask her client from hell for a testimonial?
Here are some possible results.
If a) is right, the client will gladly give Annie a testimonial if asked. The key word being, “if.”
If b) is right, the client will gladly throw Annie under the bus on any review site with zero stars and outlandish claims of abuse no matter what kind of service Annie provided.
If c) is right, Annie will likely not have a process in place to ask ask the client for a testimonial – but she may get around to it sometime.
If d) is right, Annie will ask the upset and angry buyer and seller for a testimonial, completely oblivious to the fact that the consumer is irate, angry and upset with the agent. See c) above.
Good customer service and experience are important to generating more a) type customers. ”81% of companies with strong competencies for delivering customer experience excellence are out performing their competition.” -Peppers and Rogers Group 2009 Customer Experience Maturity Monitor
Here is a growing problem. There are WAY more upset and slightly upset customers than anyone knew.
For every ONE customer complaint, there are 26 others who have remained silent. -Lee Research Co.
26 to 1! That is staggering to think about.
Real Estate Testimonial Tip:
Do not ask a frustrated, yet polite or very upset customer for a testimonial. This is like throwing gasoline on a fire.
Upset or frustrated clients will tear you apart. They will go directly to their SOI (Read: Facebook) and blast away at your brand. When their tirade boils over to Yelp, Google, Zillow, Trulia and Realtor.com, the damage has tremendous staying power that equates to long term brand damage.
A Dynamic Solution
Use a dynamic survey. Dynamic surveys listen to customers responses. RealSatisfied only asks satisfied customers for a testimonial. Thus no “gas on the fire” effect. Dissatisfied and upset / angry customers are asked if they would like speak with management to help resolve the problem. This is risk management customer escalation at its finest.
Listen, Measure and Improve
Don’t just ask for a testimonial because your gut says you did a good job and deserve one. Your gut is not a good measure of your customer’s satisfaction. Implement a system that knows the happy from the unhappy, the satisfied from the somewhat satisfied. Learn to deliver customer experience excellence and out perform your competition.
The Starlight was a large, brick, outdoor amphitheater with columns covered in vines. It was so close to the zoo that, at dusk, you could hear monkeys laugh out loud through the thick humidity.
The Midland seemed to be 100 years old when I was a kid. It was gilded and ornate. A classic, dusty and musty-smelling downtown gem.
I still don’t like clowns, magic or show tunes.
RealSatisfied is in Canada.
The Banff Western Connection is the Canadian national associations bi annual confrence – set in the majestic Canadian Rockies. Presidents from each of the Canadian associations, large brands and leaders like Better Homes and Gardens Sherry Chris, industry trend experts such as Kelly Mitchell, Terri Conrad and Richard Silver have all gathered to educate, learn and grow.
So, today makes it official- the RealSatisfied automated surveys, 80 real time reports and data trend analysis are officially available in Canada. We turned on RealSatisfied.ca a few months ago with little fanfare and already have satisfied brokers and brands building data and learning from their customers’ experiences.
With operations in Australia, The United States and now Canada, RealSatisfied is quickly growing into a customer service standard for the real estate industry.
Canadian? Try a Free Trial of RealSatisfied.ca
They wrote 400 offers in Two Weeks.
If that sounds impossible, you’re going to want to hear this.
Chief Paper Killer, Chris Smith, will sit down for a chat with the superstar team that did it – Lisa Archer and Laurie Davis Monday, January 7th.
Lisa and Laurie will talk about how to drive volume and growth (and in turn, success) by using the smartest, most innovative and effective systems available. Join us for the session
Learn how TeamLudlow produces BIG results by leveraging systems like:
• MarketLeader to generate leads
• Happy Grasshopper to nurture leads
• Placester to build lead-friendly websites
• RealSatisfied to survey clients
• BoomTown to convert leads
• REALTOR.com to post listings
• dotloop to eliminate paperwork
Tune in from anywhere and let’s kick off 2013 by focusing on the consumer experience.
You’ll hear about the online tools Lisa and Laurie use, why they use the ones they do and the impact that using those tools has made on their business.
Perhaps scare tactics should be reserved for Halloween, however, in 2013 we will see the growing divisive nature of customer service & brand quality. Real Estate brokers and brands beware.
With empowered consumers searching for answers and online agent review sites full of polarizing data like homlight, there will be a greater divide between the haves and the have nots in the form of stars, smiles, likes, testimonials, recommendations or even linkedin’s new influence score.
Real Estate has relied on the the referral model for over 90% of its leads for decades. Now, more of those referrals are checking up on you online before pinging you.
So, what is at stake? If you are a single agent rookie – not much.
If you have helped build a brand a team or perhaps a company, you know it did not come easily.
”Customers will not hesitate to defect to competitors or go social with their complaints if your business does not deliver on its service promise“. -Anand Subramaniam
When companies fail to deliver on their service promise or fail to value a focus on customer service, they run on the edge of a cliff. They might not fall, but its a gamble. The greater risk is to have a landslide of brand erosion beneath their feet. When a landslide is imminent, there is no stopping it, evacuate the brand.
Only 1 out of 20 angry customers tell the offending company. Who do they tell? They attack your credibility from your sphere using social media.
This is not to say that everyone needs GoodLifeTeam* style 5 Star oriented service. For now, there is still room in the market for lousy mom and pop shops that frequently drop the ball. (& thus RealEstates lowly overall lack of trust title among professionals will remain secure).
The trick is to determine if your brands values align with caring for customers. If so – how do you make improvements to your reputation when you only see 5% of the angry or upset clients? That’s not statistically sufficient data to warrant change. Where is the data?
You value sales. You track sales data.
You value recruiting. You track recruiting data.
If you also value quality customer service and experience – you ought to track and measure these as well. If not, how will you know if you are delivering on your quality service promise?
Measure feedback on your brands reputation. With data, you are free to follow your vision and deliver quality service – both as a leader and as a brand.
*Full Disclosure: TheGoodLifeTeam is a RealSatisfied client.
Emerging trends in RealEstate that deserve our attention are often not very related. However today, there is a strong correlation between harvesting data and going green.
Green is in. Todays consumers desire green products and services. 20% will pay more for recycled products and opt to work with companies that are careful with resources and care about the earth. Green is a growing market segment. “25% of consumers will buy a green product,” says Kathy Crosett, ”if it makes them feel like they are contributing to saving the environment.” Realtors can appeal to those with an eco sense by selecting green products to work with. Consumers are voting for environmental sustainability – thus paperless is in.
NAR recognizes this trend and wants to help brokers understand and differentiate those products that help target the green movement. Of the hundreds of exhibitors at this weeks National Association of Realtors Convention, NAR granted 14 exhibitors the Green Designation. These companies do more to care for and help the environment. This list includes our friends at DotLoop who have done a fantastic job providing an easy to use system for real estate that reduces the need for paper.
We are very proud to announce that RealSatisfied’s paperless survey and reporting system has also been awarded the Green Designation. And we are proud to be a part of a growing movement to empower brokers with tools and information that help them improve their businesses.
Your business, your brokerage and your growth for next year are all on the table. The data you require to make informed decisions to improve is out there – data that helps you make decisions on what to change, what to keep and what to keep an eye on.
Your 2013 business plans and resolutions sit on the not so distant horizon.
Good data is an important ingredient to making informed business decisions. RealSatisfied collects customer feedback for brokers and brands in Real Estate, and gives you tools to view this data in ways that make decision making simpler. We want to help you manage your reputation and make better business decisions in 2013.
Here is our One Week Offer: Register this week and begin to measure your customer feedback free for the next two months. That’s November and December, Free.*
Resolve to measure customer feedback. Make reputation management and customer feedback your New Years Resolution now.
*New customers only, not valid with other offers – but you already knew that. Valid until 19:00 CST, November 8 2012
Nashville, TN – October, 25th 2012
Today, we are proud to announce an automated back end integration with EXIT Realty Corp. International’s new Total Office Resource Center (TORC) system.
The reputation of the Real Estate industry is not favorable. EXIT has integrated with RealSatisfied to raise the reputation bar while helping consumers and agents. EXIT has a strong desire to highlight its successful agents testimonials and seek innovative ways to educate and coach others.
“Reviews and testimonials are important to EXIT because we strive to provide the best experience possible to our customers, and buyers and sellers look to reviews when vetting an agent. RealSatisfied simplifies the collection of testimonials and amplifies their value,” says Tami Bonnell, CEO of EXIT Realty Corp. International. “Integrating this system with TORC allows brokers to easily monitor their brand in the market in real time, analyzing trends for ways to improve.”
EXIT knows their public reputation is at stake and they do not want to leave it to chance. They selected tools like RealSatisfied that are cutting edge and deliver maximum benefits.
“EXIT has chosen key strategic partners from among the best technology available for the real estate industry, such as RealSatisfied, and integrated them into TORC,” Jeff Lobb, EXIT Realty’s VP of Technology and Innovation, added. “EXIT brokers will seamlessly leverage the RealSatisfied customer satisfaction system to grow and improve.”
In the last three months RealSatisfied has continued to build on its early success by allowing consumers to easily push agent testimonials to Zillow, Yelp, Trulia and Google on one page. RealSatisfied also added verified, third party Agent Profile Pages and a new WordPress plugin that pulls approved clients testimonials into agent websites.
“They see a benefit from reviews on Trulia, Yelp, Zillow and Google – but want to learn more from the big data picture,” said Phil Kells, co-founder of RealSatisfied.
“EXIT Realty is putting the consumer first by listening and tracking their satisfaction after the transaction,” RealSatisfied’s Jeff Turner notes. “Everyone wants a better experience for the real estate consumer; things that don’t get measured don’t get managed. The first step to improving customer satisfaction levels is understanding where those satisfactions levels are to start.”
Austin, Texas – RealSatisfied, the fast growing provider of customer satisfaction surveys & performance ratings to the Real Estate industry, today announced an integration with the most technology focused Real Estate brokerage in the United States, The Good Life Team.
“Testimonials and reviews are important because buyers and sellers look to reviews when vetting an agent. RealSatisfied collects content rich testimonials,” says Krisstina Wise, CEO The Good Life Team. “But That’s not why we use RealSatisfied. We use RealSatisfied to listen and measure our brand’s reputation in the eyes of our customers because we are constantly looking to improve.”
“The GoodLife Team represents new thinking in the industry, looking to leverage technology to grow and improve. They see a benefit from reviews on Zillow Trulia, Yelp and Google – but want to learn more from the big data picture.” said Phil Kells, co-founder of RealSatisfied.
In the last three months, RealSatisfied has built on its success by adding Agent Profile Pages and a new WordPress plugin that displays customer satisfaction results and approved customer reviews. They have also added reminders for consumers to push agent testimonials to Zillow, Yelp, Trulia and Google on one page.
“The GoodLifeTeam has made headlines by raising the bar in the real estate industry with technology in the lead,” Jeff Turner, of RealSatisfied notes. “The Good Life Team was recently recognised by Apple for their use of iPads and removing paper from the transaction. This relationship with RealSatisfied further shows their commitment to emerging technology that enhances the consumers experience in a real estate transaction.”
Monday and Tuesday Krisstina Wise and the Good Life Team will be helping teach attendees the exact strategies, practices and systems used daily at her first ever REiNVENTION event in Austin. REiNVENTION will show teams how The Good Life Team uses RealSatisfied as a key component of building quality customer experiences.
The GoodLife Team is an Austin, Texas real estate brokerage focused on delivering industry-leading customer care through innovative technologies and an award-winning team of Realtors®. Named the Most Innovative Brokerage of 2010 by Inman News and as a business case study in 2011 by Apple, the GoodLife Team provides customers with a 5 star customer experience by utilizing the latest tools and technologies in the industry. The firm’s principal, Krisstina Wise, has gained national recognition speaking on the future of real estate, changes in consumer expectations, and how brokerages must adapt to meet customer needs in the 21st Century. To learn more about The GoodLife Team, visit www.GoodLifeTeam.com.
Based in Sydney, Australia with operations in Australia, The United States and Canada, RealSatisfied is the 3rd party customer satisfaction and service measurement platform for the Real Estate industry. Founded in 2010, RealSatisfied provides a turn key solution to enable real, actionable feedback and performance ratings from clients. http://www.realsatisfied.com/
Do you know other agents that would benefit from using RealSatisfied ?
Lots of agents are ready to Get Real and will benefit from the cool RealSatisfied reports, testimonials and feedback just like you.
Since you are a front runner you should be the first to share RealSatisfied with your network. Tell others and we’ll credit your account with $9.95 for each of your referrals that opens a paid account.
Making a referral is simple, just Log in to your account, click the Admin tab and complete the details in the panel. We’ll send a personalised message from you right away. (you can see what the message looks like by sending one to yourself!)
To receive your credit your referrer code must be applied at sign-up by the new company. When you use the referral form or your unique company referral link, the code will be applied automatically.
Once there is referral activity for your company, a summary table will appear to show you the status of accounts referred including credits due and paid.
Remember – there is no limit to the number of referral credits you can earn, so start earning yours today – share RealSatisfied with your network.