8 very helpful tools for
Productivity in Real Estate (and other professions)
Every day we hear the real estate industry is facing disruption. Some people claim it’s already underway. But it’s not necessarily inevitable. Here’s why:
Real estate will remain a “people” industry. Plainly and simply, most people still want advice from experts. And that’s where agents come in.
You might continue to hear about how new technology is going to disrupt real estate and make agents redundant. I’m here to tell you that agents should be spinning this concept on its head, and using the technology to cement the agent in the buying and selling process.
This article will talk about a few internet based tools (mostly free) that agents can use to:
Make the buying/selling process more efficient
Make agencies more productive
Improve the service to the vendor and buyer
Cement the role of agents in the process
Because you’re probably bombarded with real estate technology, this article will talk specifically about technology outside the industry. OK, except for one.
Before we get going, it’s important to make one distinction:
Not all technology is for “disruption”.
On the other side of the coin is tech that we call “enabling” and that’s what this article is all about. Enabling agents to be better.
This article will discuss some sweet “tools” to help your office function better, be more professional, more productive and continue to add value to the buy and sell process. Here are some of the topics:
Everything PDF: think you’ve got it covered? Check this out!
Communication between teams: ditch the clunky email
Admin jobs: get someone else to do the annoying tasks
Lists, to-dos and tasks: tick them off one-by-one
Copywriting: get stuff written in no time
Video storage: YouTube is for 12 year olds
Transcription: get your dictation done… find out why
Files, files, files: sharing, editing and saving all made simple
PDF’s are a part of our daily life, am I right?
You have finished your document and finalised it in PDF format.
Looks neat and professional and complete. And then you realise
you need to make a change. This is when using PDF becomes a
Smallpdf is…in their words…“the first pdf software you will actually like”, and we think so too.
The program is simple, pretty and free to use twice per hour. Or purchase an affordable premium account for unlimited use. You can do a number of things to your PDF such as:
Merge two PDF documents
Spilt a PDF into multiple documents
And a range of other helpful processes as listed in the image below:
Smallpdf is a site you definitely should bookmark to your browser screen for next time you need to do stuff to a PDF.
Each member in your team can share files and have one-on-one messages with another team member.
Or, a channel can be created which is almost like a group chat (But better, because you only get a notification when your name gets tagged).
You can have a channel for a particular property, or a personal chat with the receptionist. The conversations are endless and the communication within your agency will never slack off again.
Hate wasting your time doing the boring admin Jobs rather than using your time to do the selling jobs?
Upwork is an all in one outsourcing program that allows you to post a job, review and pick an applicant, and once the job is done, pay them through the secure Upwork program.
There are a number of digital skill sets to browse though some include:
Data entry specialists
Transcription (We’ll go into more detail on transcription later in the article)
The program is trustworthy, and easy to use.
Up the amount of work you can do in any amount of time with a helping hand from an Upwork freelancer!
Do you have 1001 things running through your brain
all at once? Want to focus on one thing at a time and need a place
to put these thoughts to come back to later?
When you’re stressed and in-need of productivity, making a list is the best tool to combat that. But you don’t want to get to work and realise you’ve left your list at home.
Everything is saved on your account, which means with Evernote you can access it from any device you log in from.
You can create a project to-do list, share it with co-workers, and find it fast when you need it.
Dropbox is a file hosting service. It simplifies the way you
create, save and share files, whether it be a document,
a photo, a video or anything.
You can have a personal Dropbox which allows you to open
your files from any device you log into.
But if you’re a part of a team, it gets even better:
You can create a team dropbox. A team Dropbox is a fantastic place to keep all the files in your agency.
You can invite staff members to have access to and save files to this team folder.
You can then work on a document, save it and in realtime, and then a co-worker can open the document, see your changes and edit it.
The drop box badge on will show on the side of the page. This keeps you updated with information such as: who edited the document last and if anyone else has it open at the same time.
Another handy Dropbox feature is being able to create a link to share the document with a friend. You can give them access to edit the file, or simple just view it.
Finally, you can say goodbye to emailing multiple versions of a document back and forth.
You are a professional, right?
So you’re going to want to publish your work on a professional
If you’re creating videos, whether they are promotional or
informative or whatever, you want to be using Vimeo.
Despite being smaller than its main competitor, Vimeo boasts
an intimate and fully engaged community.
That means your audience are more relevant, and your video
won’t be competing with some 12 year old kid’s home-made
rendition of MTV cribs.
There are so many great features to the free accounts, but if you want a little extra check this out:
Vimeo has 3 extra levels of premiums:
As well as an increase in upload capacity, premium accounts also mean no ads!
Your workspace will be nice and clear as you will have no banner ads on the main site. But even better, your viewers will see no ads on your video pages if you have a Pro or Business account.
Why is this so helpful?
It reduces distraction! You’ve spend a heap of time making your video, the last thing you want is to be competing with another companies ads!! Your video holds prime position.
Another perk is being able to customize almost any part of the player.
You didn’t see that coming, hey!
You can put your logo on the player, adjust the play bar or decide what happens when the video finishes.
More control for you to reflect your business.
All of this sounds fantastic and that’s without even mentioning:
Insights and video data
Ability to capture email addresses before a download of your video
Heaps of other marketing tools
Domain level privacy
Ability to sell your videos
If you are using video, Vimeo is a great platform to keep in your tool belt.
So, you’ve made video, a podcast or recorded a
meeting but now you need a visual reference in the
form of a text file.
Transcribing a dictation can be super helpful in the
business and personal environment.
Let’s begin with video:
You have made a video (all ready to post onto Vimeo ;P). There are a few things required to get the most out it:
You want it to be found
You want people to be able to understand it, even if there is no sound
Providing a transcription of what is being said in your video allows it to be indexed and appear when relevant keywords are being searched.
Without it, you may be missing out on potential views!
Imagine: You’re on public transport or you’re in the office and have forgotten your headphones. Sometimes you just can’t listen to a video with sound. This is where captions, subtitles or a transcription comes in handy.
85% of videos on Facebook are watched without sound!
So, how are you going to keep your viewer engaged and informed if they can’t hear what you’resaying?
Using subtitles or posting the full text allows a viewer to participate in the video, even without half of its functions.
The same goes for podcasts, or keeping a record of a call, meeting or an interview.
Now you know why transcription is helpful, let’s look at how to do it:
There are companies out there that rely on algorithms to transcribe, and some that pay a human to do it. I’ll show you one of each:
Trint uses an automated speech-to-text algorithm to generate transcripts.
As well as this, Trint allows you to make your audio and video files searchable, put captions on your videos and share some of your audio and video online.
In comparison to manual transcription Trint has the benefit of being cheaper and faster than most other brands!
At only $12-$15 an hour Trint can produce a transcription in less time than the video or audio file.
And even better:
Trint can transcribe to over 15 languages!!
If you want to all your whole team to create transcriptions you can purchase a team account with one paying admin and multiple users within.
Unlike Trint, Revuses a network of hand-picked freelancers to transcribe, caption, subtitle and translate files.
With real people doing the work it takes slightly longer than an algorithm based program.
A 30 minute, good quality audio will be returned in around 12 hours.
It may take longer, but for $1 a minute and with 99% accuracy it may be worth the wait.
You’re reading this article because you are looking for ways to increase productivity in your real estate agency, or in your own career.
What if I told you, there is a software that will not only:
Make your job way more productive
Help with sales, but
Increase the quality of your listings!
If that sounds good, you’ll love this:
Realwords uses Natural Language Generation to automatically generate property profile descriptions that are indistinguishable from human written ones.
As you would know, property profile descriptions are a vital piece of communication between a seller and potential buyers. So, it has to be good.
It gets even better:
The program is beautiful and simple to use.
You simply click the features that are present in your property. Click generate. And a structured property profile description is generated and emailed to you.
There are a bunch of cool features such an archive and re-generation tool so you don’t have to completely re-do the form for similar properties.
There are affordable accounts to fit a solo agent or a whole agency, depending on your needs.
Realwords is much more affordable than hiring a copywriter and much more efficient than doing it yourself.
They offer a free version so you have absolutely no reason not to try it out!
So there you have it! A list programs that’ll help your everyday life in the
real estate industry. If you use any of these or have a great program you
rely on, let us know in the comments/contact page.