Virtual open houses, digital closings, conversations from behind face masks — what productivity looks like for real estate agents this summer covers new terrain for all of us. All June, Inman surveys the New Productivity: the tools, skills and insights needed to make it work now.

Have suggestions for products that you’d like to see reviewed by our real estate technology expert? Email Craig Rowe.

In Compass CEO Robert Reffkin’s chat with Brad Inman at Connect Now, the Compass CEO remarked that only 20 percent of agents use their CRM software in a meaningful way.

There’s a lot of nuance to that statement. What does “meaningful” mean? Was that number from a poll given only to Compass agents?

Still, you can reasonably see his point, we don’t really need to know more to agree. Customer relationship management software is the most talked about, debated, and top-of-mind corner of proptech, largely because agents switch so frequently and because brokers offer multiple options.

But why?

The idea that the best CRM is the one you use isn’t totally true — some options are a better fit for the way you do business. Thus, finding the best one matters, and even more important is what you do to get a return from it.

The below list compiles 11 things you can do —do one each day to keep it simple — to better learn, engage and, eventually, fully embrace your most critical technology tool.

And hopefully prevent you from switching in three months.

1. Find your best lead sources

Look at your most active buyer clients, find your last five closings with sellers, and determine from where they originated. Focus there. Remember, lead source quality ebbs and flows, so make this step a habit.

2. Send a text through your CRM

Use your CRM’s text-integration to reach out to an active client or wavering lead instead of your phone. Keep your communications local to what you’re working on with that client.

3. Set up an automation

When a lead saves a search, what comes next? Thankfully, many of today’s CRM products have your answer—they can do it for you. Put all that sophistication you (or your broker) are paying for to work.

4. Create a landing page

Rich marketing features have become commonplace in CRM products, and landing pages are a popular item. Have a new listing? A current listing with a price adjustment? Let the internet know with a landing page, linked to a Facebook post. Capture those leads.

5. Power dial

Even if it’s only five calls, learn to use your CRM’s power dialer. Agents of old would give up their glamour shots to have this kind of tech, and they’d probably rule the market with it. The phone call is not outdated.

6. Customize your dashboard

Make your CRM adapt to how you work, not the other way around. Prioritize how you search. Move preferred features to the top of menus. Minimize the number of contacts you see. Streamline your user interface.

7. Learn a new feature

Something you haven’t touched? Maybe you have a “find similar listings” tool or “ignore contacts after x amount of time” capability. If it’s new to you, make it familiar.

8. Attend a training

Most CRM companies have regular training seminars or recorded webinars. Check one out during lunch, even if it’s remedial.

9. Post a message

A number of CRMs come with office productivity features, such as message boards or team communication tools. Get in the mix by asking colleagues for inspector recommendations, a listing presentation tip or what coffee shop has the best work atmosphere.

10. Look at your performance goals

We like to think we know how we’re doing, but the numbers don’t lie. It’s time to swallow your pride or rejoice in your greatness. Either way, looking at your list-to-close percentages, average GCI, and other personal metrics often reveals something that can be easily fixed.

11. Use it on your phone

Many of the market’s most popular CRM options are designed mobile-first, with sleek efficiencies and features adjusted for agents on the go. Become familiar with how to manage it from your mobile device so you’re never hesitant to keep your system up to date.

So, what can you do for your CRM today?

Have a technology product you would like to discuss? Email Craig Rowe

Craig C. Rowe started in commercial real estate at the dawn of the dot-com boom, helping an array of commercial real estate companies fortify their online presence and analyze internal software decisions. He now helps agents with technology decisions and marketing through reviewing software and tech for Inman.

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