Tyler Smith is the CEO of SkySlope, and he’s here to take on the industry’s questions, speaking from his experience as a tech leader and former top producer. And when he says, “Ask me anything!” he means it. Check out episodes 1, 2, 3, and 4.
Big questions this week! These really highlight how forward-looking this audience is!
Will there be a one-stop-shop, like Amazon, of real estate technology?
The rise of Amazon and its domination of the retail space is truly incredible. As a provider that encompasses almost every product on the market, Amazon, is the one-stop-shop for consumers. But the Amazon experience is linear. You search for a product. You find it. You buy it. It shows up at your door.
We all know that real estate is anything but linear. Furthermore, due to the complexity of the real estate industry, there’s not one tech company that excels at doing it all. Even Brad Inman has warned, “End-to-end technology platforms that promise too much often fail.”
Deals are complicated. No two transactions (or clients for that matter) are the same. Additionally, Realtors like to have choices. Every Realtor manages their deals differently. And on top of that, brokers often provide technology, be it required, provided at a discount, or for free. And to make matters more complicated, if an agent doesn’t like the brokerage offered tech, they’re not going to adopt it.
Recently, I had the opportunity to spend some time with several Realtors and watch their workflows. (Side note: I’m still completely obsessed with the real estate process.) What was fascinating to me was all the different screens and tabs that were open. It made me realize, even with how far technology has come since I was an agent, there still isn’t a complete end-to-end solution. If anything, the workflow is more complicated, disconnected, and time-consuming.
So when considering a true end-to-end solution, from the time you first elbow-bump to when you’re sending them pizza on move-in day and beyond, technology companies are looking at it wrong. It’s not about how far you can stretch across a transaction. It’s how deep you’re willing to go. SkySlope is never going to build a CRM. We just won’t. It’s not our area of expertise. But you better believe we are going to double down on anything related to the transaction.
Software providers need to figure out where they fit into an agent’s flow and then meet the agent where they’re at. If there will ever be an end-to-end solution, it’s going to be through deep integrations and partnerships between tech companies that are experts in their domain.
Because at the end of the day, Realtors deserve a beautiful and straightforward experience for a complicated and complex process, one that allows them to get work done efficiently so they can better serve their clients.
Are listing presentations still relevant today?
With the rise of online sites, consumers can research any Realtor, see ratings, homes sold, volume, etc. But that doesn’t mean that you don’t have to articulate your value or explain the services you offer.
Consider Ryan Serhant. We all know him from Million Dollar Listing. And even before that, he had built a killer online presence so potential new clients were already familiar with him. But just because he built a reputable brand doesn’t mean he doesn’t need a listing presentation. Ryan still has to deliver the goods and show his clients all the ways he’s going to sell their property. Especially with the high-end luxury market, sellers are interviewing multiple agents to sell their properties.
Now in the mid and low-end markets, you have portals like Zillow Offers and Opendoor that have eliminated the listing presentation altogether. Sellers who use these services want to put in their address and get a cash offer. And, to be honest, it works in some markets.
So is your listing presentation crucial? Honestly, it’s going to come down to how you articulate your value both prior to meeting and after. You have to show sellers that you can get them more money than if they sold their home for cash through a portal.
The National Association of Realtors says that 41% of deals are repeat and referral business. So, by the time you step in the door, the referral and endorsements are already there. Complemented with your online presence and reviews, that seller should already know quite a bit about you. The listing presentation now serves a different purpose. It complements the work you put in to develop a strong brand.
Look, you’re smart. I’m not teaching you anything new. The takeaway here is to invest in your online presence and in your brand. This is where sellers are looking. That way when you step in the door, you already have an advantage to selling them on why you’re the best Realtor to serve them.