EPMEPM: Customer ServiceReal Estate Tech & Social

Great Expectations

It’s true that in this age of consumerism your clients hold more power than ever before. Whereas once it was enough to provide a good service face to face or over the phone, today’s clients demand that you offer an outstanding experience from start to finish across all touchpoints while allowing for feedback at every step of the process. Alister Maple-Brown discusses the ‘must do’s’ today to keep your customers raving tomorrow.

Technology can help you to create the best possible experience for your clients. Here are a few questions to ask yourself when deciding on the right technology to elevate the client experience and effectively position your business for the future.

1. DOES IT MAKE INFORMATION ACCESSIBLE?
You don’t need to control every bit of information that flows to your clients. They shouldn’t need to call or email you every time they want the answer to a simple question.

These days, we’re conditioned by the plethora of online tools we use to expect control over the information we receive. Think about Facebook. We choose the posts we see, the alerts we receive and the people we’re connected with. We decide what we want to see and when. And whether it’s social media, news feeds or any number of the online suppliers we’re engaged with daily, it’s the same. We want information to be readily accessible, but we want to control its flow.

It’s no different when it comes to real estate. Implementing the right technology can ensure your clients have access to the information they’re after when they need it. From online knowledge bases and information videos to self-serve preferences and user portals, the options are endless.

2. IS IT EASY TO USE?
We live in an interconnected world and expect all of our interactions to be seamless, streamlined and easy. If it’s not easy, we quickly lose interest and move on.

Consider Uber. It’s not just an app. It’s an experience –and an easy experience at that. Taxi companies have tried to respond to Uber by releasing their own booking apps. But these apps fail. Every time. They fail because they completely miss the point. The success of Uber isn’t because of its schmick app. It’s because the entire interaction is easy. From making a booking and knowing when your car will arrive to stepping out at your destination and knowing that payment is already taken care of, Uber makes the end-to-end experience of catching a ride easy.

The success of uber isn’t because of its schmick app. It’s because the entire interaction is easy.

When it comes to your clients, how can you ensure that it’s easy for them to interact with you?

3. DOES IT ALLOW FOR FEEDBACK?
Gone are the days when we as clients are essentially the silent partner in a transaction. Look at Airbnb. It’s a community based on trust and the site’s review system is an absolutely vital cog in its success. With the website and app as the only platform for communication between hosts and guests, reviews are heavily relied upon to make rental decisions. And therein lies the value.

Feedback is the glue that holds the sharing economy together. The overflow impact is that we expect the same opportunity to provide feedback across all our interactions –and that includes real estate.

There’s no excuse for not knowing what your clients think of your agency and the service you provide. Your clients want to know that they can easily provide feedback at every point of their interaction with you.

THE EXPERIENCE COUNTS
At a time when ‘disruption’ continues to be a buzzword on everyone’s lips when talking about the real estate industry, you need to focus on the experience you’re providing to clients.

People want to deal with agents who offer a great experience. And agents have a unique opportunity to enhance that experience by bringing a wealth of knowledge about people, property and the market to every real estate transaction. But any sign of a poor experience opens the door for external disruptors to jump in. So what’s the lesson? Creating a positive experience counts.

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Alister Maple-Brown

Alister Maple-Brown is the CEO of leading property management software provider Rockend. For more information visit rockend.com.au.
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