283 Mail-Right Show Special Guest Christopher Anuszewski
We Discuss all the leading Real Estate Agent CRMs In 2021
Robert Newman: Welcome back to the Mail-Right Show ladies and gentlemen, we are here with the incredible, amazing Chris Anuszewski and he is an operations maestro, he has for residential real estate. He has been part of very large, very prolific teams and currently is in the process of building his own, very large, very prolific team. And we’re super excited to have him back on the show, he came on once; Chris is my spirit animal when it comes to all things related to real estate operations.
We’re super excited to get into today, what we’re going to be talking about is CRMs and specifically what he’s looked at and what he’s used, which probably we could spend four shows talking about. But before I go on any longer, Chris, why don’t you go ahead and introduce yourself to our audience?
Chris Anuszewski: Hey, everyone. I’m glad to be here. Robert, Jonathan, thank you guys for having me back. I’m glad I didn’t scare you guys away after my first one. Yeah, I come from a background of operations even prior to getting into the real estate world, in total about 16 years of operations experience and a lot of that tech-based. That’s what my degree is in, so a lot of web tech, web design, things like that, I’m a huge tech nerd.
So, anything and everything that I can do to use technology, to leverage whether it’s my own business or an individual agent’s business I want to do or anything in life or reality, I have a whole smart home. That’s me in a nutshell, I’m a nerd.
Robert Newman: Beautiful. And my co-host and the founder of the Mail-Right Show, Jonathan Denwood, is a WordPress maestro. And he’s had the same idea that I’ve had for a long time, which is let’s leverage these tools that real estate agents are more in control of. And let’s leverage them with Facebook, let’s leverage them with SEO, let’s essentially trying to create a high-value lead generation service, and that’s what he’s doing with Mail-Right. So, without any further ado, Jonathan, why don’t you go ahead and introduce yourself to the audience?
Jonathan Denwood: Oh, thanks, Robert. Yes, I’m the founder of Mail-Right, we’re a platform that offers a suite of automation tools with the emphasis of using the power of Facebook to give you quality seller and buyer leads and then keeping contact with those possible leads in an easy to use but effective way. Over to you, Robert.
Robert Newman: Wonderful. And I’m the founder of Inboundrem, Inbound Real Estate Marketing. We are an inbound marketing company, as far as I know, we’re really one of the only if not the only, that kind of leverages both the concept of attraction marketing and SEO combined. So, if you want to learn more about how you can improve your business without paying a dime, go to my website inboundrem.com where I practice what I preach and give away a ton of great information for free.
So, without any further preamble, Chris I want to go back to the question that we introduced the show with, which is, it’s a big question. So, parse it out any way that you want, but I’d like to know two things from you. One, what CRMs do you actually use in your day-to-day business? What are you going to apply and why? And then number two, what have you looked at in order to get down to the one that you actually used?
Chris Anuszewski: So, I use Follow Up Boss right now as my CRM, and I use it and I’ll kind of delve into this when I go into what I’m looking at. But to me, it was the most well-rounded a huge, huge part of it for me was integrations, we can obviously expound on that but integrations with other systems was a huge factor. I also looked at who is using this system; I looked at who’s using a what system, what are the top producers? What are the top teams out there using that I want to be like, that I want to grow into, and say, okay, who are my role models?
So, Follow Up Boss was the big one and they captured my business and I’ve been using them now and I’m very, very happy, so it’s good stuff. Now I don’t know if you want me to kind of go into the intricacies of Follow Up Boss and, or what the other ones that I looked at and kind of rounded up that way.
Robert Newman: Well, we all know that we can spend days talking about the intricacies of systems. So, instead of getting straight into that, I would love to also hear in your journey to arrive at the Follow Up Boss decision, who did you look at?
Chris Anuszewski: So, I mean, God, I scoured YouTube, Facebook groups, Google, I’ve read every article, every comparison chart that I could, all the top YouTube realtors, and just tech nerds and what they were using. And then ultimately, the ones I looked at were LionDesk, Top Producer, BoomTown, Follow Up Boss itself, obviously, Cinc (Commissions, Inc.). Those are the main ones that I looked at there’re a ton of other ones, like Real Geeks and things like that, that kind of came up here and there.
KvCore is one that we get on with the EXP as a brokerage, so we get that for free, so I did test that out a little bit. So, I looked into all of those, did demos, watched walkthrough videos on YouTube, things like that, and asked other agents too; I reached out to other agents that I knew were using those systems and said, how do you feel about this? How do you feel it’s affected your team? What are the tools that they offer you and that sort of thing?
So yeah, so those are all the ones, so pretty much kind of the top names in there, even looked at some of the smaller ones like, not necessarily smaller, but like Salesforce has one and I’m a prior Salesforce user within an industry that I was in before, I was a Salesforce admin. And while I loved it, it also kind of creates this environment that you’re locked into, and if you ever want to leave, you’re in a prison, you know what?
Jonathan Denwood: Can I ask a quick question? What did you like and what you didn’t like about kvCore?
Chris Anuszewski: So, I just felt, and I’ll preface by saying this, that I know that there are some top producers out there that use it and they love it and they’re on top teams and especially within the EXP. For me, it was just a little too bony end and I felt it wasn’t very feature-rich, they do have a marketplace that’s kind of cool, so you can add on kind of third-party integrations that are already built-in there, which is nice.
So, if you’re not tech-savvy, it is cool, I wasn’t a huge fan; one big piece that kind of was a stickler for me was their library of drip campaigns, can text messages, or pre-written text messages and emails. The default stuff in there is not great, it’s not going to win you over any leads, but then they didn’t really have a library that you could tap into like a lot of the other CRMs.
I was previously on BoomTown, if you know of a top team and they’re willing to share it with you, they can share their whole library of all their drip campaigns, and boom, you just import it and it’s all in yours and it’s done, you customize it to your branding that saves you countless hours of time. And kvCore and maybe I’m misspeaking, but when I was digging through it, I couldn’t find anything like that. And when I talked to one of the big teams, they were like, oh yeah, we paid a consultant quite a good chunk of money to custom create all of our campaigns for us.
And I just said, to me, that’s something a CRM should come with, unless you just have a ton of time, which I don’t, to handcraft it, and I don’t want to reinvent the wheel. I want to get what’s working for other people and just spring it into mind, plug and play and done and I’ll tell you how I did that with Follow Up Boss a little bit later, but yeah.
Jonathan Denwood: Yeah. Because I totally understand where you’re coming from and it’ll be interesting to see Robert’s reaction, but on the other hand they’ve been very like you said, your actual brokerage and they’re being very aggressive aren’t they, KV core about supplying their solution through brokerages. But didn’t you have the same problem because Follow Up Boss when it comes to UX design and because of your background, I can see why you’ve been really attracted to Follow Up Boss?
It is just clear as day to me why you would, but they don’t provide that extensive of a library of pre-typed messages, or do they?
Chris Anuszewski: Yeah, I was actually a previous user of Follow Up Boss with my old team about three years ago. And we were only on it for a few months and I remember it was somewhat limited, but in the last three years, they’ve come leaps and bounds because when you go in there, they already have this nice default library that you get. You can go into their library and see what other plans other top producers, or just other teams other agents have shared, so it kind of creates this nice, hive mind of sharing information, which I’m a huge proponent of.
And then they’re kind of where they call them there, well, it’s Ylopo’s real term, residents, but Ylopo works very hand in hand with Follow Up Boss. Barry Jenkins, has his whole smart drips everything’s in there, and you can import it right in there, and even his smart lists, which is what they call their filtered views in Follow Up Boss.
He has those there too, and it makes it very, very simple to train an agent on these are the leads you need to attack first, second, third, here’s where your money’s going to come from, and here’re all the campaigns that go along with it. So, I thought it was very plug and play.
Jonathan Denwood: Yeah, over to you, Robert.
Robert Newman: God, as usual, you just covered so much. So, I’m also a huge fan of Barry Jenkins, let’s start there I know exactly who he is. I follow him in the Ylopo success community, which for those of you listening to the show if they’re willing to let you in, you don’t have to be a Ylopo user to be part of the community. And it is a great place where you can tap into some of the things that Chris is saying right now without paying.
Again, this is one of those tips where, hey, if you just want to get a little bit educated but you don’t want to spend any money, go be part of that group, Barry’s in it. And I think last time I checked, he’s posting almost every other day, maybe
Chris Anuszewski: He and Gabe Cordova is another realtor and residence they have now, and they just put on last week a listing presentation, a little webinar and it was amazing. I took away so many huge nuggets out of that and it was great, it was just part of their community.
Robert Newman: Yeah, exactly. And among the many things that Barry’s posted that I track, he’s posted, I think his eight or nine steps per process. So, for those of you who are listening to the show today, serums are about the process. It’s about is there something, an email that you can send or language that you can use, that’s going to improve the process, get people to respond to you better, train your agents better, make sure that each and every single thing that somebody says to you or somebody responds to you with, has a response prebuilt into the system.
That way your clients are getting a uniform result and this is especially important for people who are running small, medium, and large-sized teams. Well, Barry is posting all of his processes for anybody to grab, he’s letting you take those for free, his processes have him using Ylopo at a 4.53 ROI, which just means that for every dollar he spends, he makes $4 and 50 cents.
That is a very good return on investment for the kind of system that he is using, so, and you’re going to be hard-pressed to beat that anywhere, in terms of a direct marketing system. Now, so I’m glad that you touched on all of that and you touched on kvCore too which you said, hey, it was a little bland and it didn’t have robust features. Let’s talk about some of the other stuff that you looked at though, Jonathan because I could get into direct responses, but I am very public if you Google any of the names that we’re talking about, like kvCore.
Chris Anuszewski: I came across some of your reviews, that’s how I kind of got introduced to you actually with some of your YouTube videos.
Robert Newman: Right. So, I’m already on the first page of Google for half of the list that you just gave. So, anybody that wants to know my thoughts, could just Google and they’ll find an hour-long, deep dive that I did on any of these subjects. But let me ask you about BoomTown because BoomTown is a big one, but it’s starting not to get talked about as much I’m noticing.
It’s not getting talked about on the show, it’s not getting talked about by realtors and I feel like they haven’t innovated and kept up with their competitors just as a top-level comment. But what did you think about BoomTown when you looked at it?
Chris Anuszewski: Yeah. And I can speak to that one pretty extensively because that was the CRM of the big team that I was a part of and ran operations for, for the last couple of years, and I have mixed feelings about it. I do agree, it’s kind of funny, you say like, hey, I haven’t really seen them being talked about, and I kind of had been thinking the same thing. As I was digging through these, I’m like, it’s weird that none of these top 10 rankings, top five rankings, five best CRM, whatever, BoomTown’s not in the mix, and I’m like, they used to be a powerhouse.
And I don’t know if it’s a lack of innovation, I don’t know what it is; I can tell you, so I’ve got mixed feelings. So, on the pro side, I think that if you are looking for an all-in-one solution, you’re not tech-savvy; it can be a good option. And the reason for that is it has a built IDX website, If you don’t even know what an IDX is and you’re in the real estate industry, then that’s probably a solution for you because trying to get a third party IDX and then combining it with a separate CRM is not going to be easy for you.
Are you going to pay somebody a lot of money to do that? So, long story short, it builds in a feed website for it to pool MLS listings, and then it has all the behavioral kind of monitoring in there. So, if you send a user or a lead to your website and they favor the property, it’s going to give you notice in your CRM and you’re going to know, and then you’re going to see within the CRM of BoomTown, okay, this person has been active in the last 24 hours.
I probably should reach out to them, my next paycheck might come from that person; I’d better stay on top of them or what do I have to do to stoke these people to get them back in there? But I thought it was a pretty good all-in-one solution because it has the drip campaigns in there already built-in. If you have a realtor or a team that you emulate, you want to emulate and they’re willing to open it up and share their library which I’ve done several times, I’ve connected with other ops managers that say, hey, could you connect me with your lead ISA?
Would you care if they shared? Nope, go ahead, boom. And that it saves us time and money and we’re willing to give back whatever we have that they need, that I think is very cool. So, it’s a nice all-in-one, it’s not cheap; I’ll tell you that its pricing, but at the end of the day you get what you pay for too. So, if you want an all-in-one solution, it’s nice, but the gripes I had about it were real, it’s such a closed-off system, it does have some integrations.
So, you can integrate with BombBomb, if you’re into the video messaging and things like that, it would integrate with Dotloop on a very, very minimal scale. It would basically pull over their phone number and email, so it’s not really saving you a lot of time there, and a couple of other third parties, but in the grand scheme, it’s a very closed system. So, they want you to kind of life and breathe and stay in the BoomTown system, and not really go out there and reach out, they don’t have an AI solution.
So, they don’t really have anything that’s going to automatically kind of touch base with your leads if you can’t get to them, especially if you’re a single agent, it gets tough because you’re out showing homes all day, and then leads are coming in or leads are favoriting properties. No one’s given them those touchpoints until you get back to your desk, which could be nine o’clock at night, and then the next day you have another day full of showings.
But now two, three, four days go by and that person was hot, and now maybe they’ve called another realtor, they’ve called the listing sign, and boom, your paycheck’s gone. So, I didn’t like that they didn’t have a lot of integrations, they didn’t have AI. The cool part when you have integrations is that you get to find the best system in that particular niche. So, let’s just say AI bots, like I was just talking about, Ylopo is one, they’re a big one out there; there’re a couple of other ones out there.
Ava, I think is another one that I’ve seen, so the fact that you can then integrate with the best AI bot, whatever it may be, whatever your choice is with a system, that’s great. Or hey, maybe you want something where every time you go to a listing appointment, you automatically want a gift card to be sent or a thank you card with brownies, you can integrate with some systems like Follow Up Boss or whatever. There’re lots of systems that do that, but you can do that, you can’t really do that with BoomTown.
And that was where I was like, man, if I wanted the best AI bot and I wanted the best video system and I wanted the best follow-up gift-giving thing, I can’t pull it out of there, I have to manually go or pay an admin to go, all right, here’s this list of people. I need you to go over to cards and I need you to upload all their info and then send some brownies; it’s time and money that you don’t have, or it’s costing you time and money. Whereas if you can integrate with a third-party system, click a button or listing appointment completely, boom, it’s all done for you.
Jonathan Denwood: Well, we need to go for our break, Robert, then come back for another feast. Christopher, I just start grinning but we need to go for a break, Robert.
Robert Newman: Wonderful. All right, ladies and gentlemen but we’re going to come back, and when we do, Jonathan is going to serve up some part of his feast in the form of a question. And then I’m going to jump in with my nuggets as well. We’ll see you in a second.
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Robert Newman: Welcome back to the Mail-Right Show ladies and gentlemen, we’re here with Chris Anuszewski and he is just as usual blowing the doors off the details of using very large, popular residential real estate CRM systems, and he’s giving us really great in-depth details on those systems. When we left off for the break, we were going to hear what John had to say about our previous feast.
Jonathan Denwood: Well, you are using almost every tech-savvy word in the dictionary there, Christopher. It’s just that there’s such a broad spectrum of real estate agents, isn’t there? And their knowledge level, because everything you were saying, I could understand for somebody with your experience and your inclination, these are what you would be looking for. But I was working with an agent yesterday that will remain nameless, that was recommended to us by Robert, and we’ve been working very extensively with this particular agent.
And she’s a great lady and she wouldn’t understand half the things you were saying, Christopher, it would be just, and it’s not that she’s stupid or she’s just not in that. But for the kind of agent that you are, I can see precisely why you would not be attracted to BoomTown and be looking at something else. Does that make any sense, Robert?
Robert Newman: Yeah. Well, I think it’s, here, we’ll take it really top-level for everybody, that’s listening to the show. I’ll give you a great example that every single person here has already had an experience with that. What Chris and John are talking about is the concept of an enclosed system. What does everybody use, that’s an enclosed system that is popular and the most valuable company in the world, Apple, okay, use an Apple phone, you’re using an enclosed system.
They tell you what to do, what to use, and how to use it, and they dictate to you who the vendors are going to be on your phone. Android allows a wider plugin array, and it has 30% of the market and Apple has 80. So, for a lot of you that you’re probably going to be sitting here going just point me in the right direction and I’ll go there. And for other agents, agents who are already operating at what would be considered the basic level, the basic level being, I have a system, it came out of the box, it told me to do XYZ; I did X, Y, and Z, and now I’m doing as much as I can be doing with X, Y, and Z.
Chris has already done X, Y, and Z, and he’s also saying, hey, at many, many times I felt the greater performance was possible if I did whatever’s beyond X, Y, and Z. And so, for those of you who are listening, this is definitely a show where we’re going to be talking to those of you who want to go beyond X, Y, and Z, no doubt about it. That’s what this deep dive is supposed to be for, that’s why we’re talking about CRMs. Yeah, go ahead.
Jonathan Denwood: Because there’re clearly different types of agents looking for different types of experiences and in the CRM marketing automation industry, there’re certain levels of players that are appealing to different groups. Mail-Right is really aimed at the bold leads, the real geek type of individual that’s looking to use BoldLeads or Real Geeks, that kind of agent at that type of price point, which in some ways, kvCore has entered in; it used to be at a much higher price, but by discounting it’s entered.
And that’s, that kind of level and you could also put Top Producer, I’ll be interested to see what your attitude toward Top Producer is, but then you have the kind of BoomTown, Follow Up Boss. Both to me, they were always aimed at somebody in the organization, like yourself, Christopher, that really understood the technology, that really loved it, that was going to be a team leader, that had a group around him where they actually handed out the leads that the system was managing.
So, they’re kind of different levels at different price points aimed at different types of agents. Does that make sense, Robert?
Robert Newman: Absolutely does. Now I want to jump in here and follow-up on John’s query about Top Producer, I really do but before we move into that topic, Chris, I have a question for you. You mentioned while you were describing BoomTown, you said when somebody favorites a property, a feature of this CRM is that you get a notification, and that way, in theory, as a salesperson, if you are seeing these notifications, you now have a chance to jump on a prospect perhaps before they’ve messaged anybody.
That’s kind of the way I interpreted your question, here’s my question for your statement, here’s my question for you. How many salespeople in your experience really used BoomTown in that way?
Chris Anuszewski: I think that’s a question that addresses all agents with all CRMs. The common term we always hear, no matter what level you are as an agent is speed to lead, that lead comes in, it’s the first one to get there. And so, I can tell you as far as how many were using, what percentage, I can tell you a very small percentage of agents actually followed the plan, and we had a team of 50 agents. And I can tell you that a majority of the business was done by this very small sliver of the pie of agents that were actively out there following the plan, jumping on leads, that sort of thing.
So, I guess this is a bigger conversation, and I won’t get into it, but I will say that the CRM is a tool, but the other half of the equation is the accountability by the team leader or on the agent themselves of are they using that tool to its maximum advantage? So, when it goes back to the BoomTown thing, the ones that we’re staying on top and going to their lists, it’s the same thing in Follow Up Boss and the Barry Jenkins thing, he has a list that’s okay.
List number one is new uncontacted leads, nobody’s touched them, list number two, are leads that have come in the last 10 days, but we haven’t been in contact with them, you need to call them nonstop, so you get ahold of them. Send them text messages, blast them with tweets, then the third list is, okay, we may be touched base with them, they said they weren’t really interested, but now they’re back and they’re active in the system. And that’s where something like a BoomTown or having a nice IDX that plays well with your CRM will tell you, hey, and that’s where the money is in my opinion.
Unless you’re paying for really high intent leads, which caused a really high amount of money, it’s why Zillow charges so much for their leads or why you’re getting a lot of these companies like, OJO, Opcity, UpNest, they’re saying you can have our leads for free, but we’re going to charge you 25 to 35% at the close. Why so much money? That’s three, six, $10,000 of your income that’s going there but it’s because they were already a pretty ready now lead, they’re higher intent.
When you’re saying, okay, well I want my cost per lead to go down to the 5, 6, $8, sub $10 range, that means, okay, you’re probably looking at Google ads, Facebook ads, but those are longer-term. So, right now to get on top of them is important, but it’s when they come back and they’re active, that’s where the money is going to be made by your business is getting back on those ones that maybe have been in your system for 60, 90 days, and now they’re ready to buy.
And if you don’t have a system that tells you that they’re back in there and active, if you could just have a system that’s just telling you, hey, you haven’t called him in a while. To me, that’s not good enough, you need something that’s going to say, hey, we’re monitoring what they’re doing and they’ve actively looked at this property four times. I have a thing with Ylopo, it’ll say they favored this property, oh; they viewed it six times in the last day, okay, that means I need to go, hey, I saw this property that came up that I thought maybe would interest you. And they’re like, Oh my God, yeah, I was just looking at that.
The system allows me to do that without going, hey, I’m creeping on you, and I know you’ve seen it six times, but I think it’s also important to the higher conversion rates for those longer-term leads Because when you pay for Google PPC or Facebook pay-per-click ads for those out there that are not tech-savvy. And every time you see those ads and someone clicks on them, you’re paying every time they click on it, those leads are longer-term conversions, they’re low intent.
There’re a lot of looky-loos, a lot of browsers that maybe in six months, maybe in nine months, maybe in two years, I saw Robert and I’m sorry, I’m going to butcher his name, Trefethen. He’s a really top ISA trainer, Robby T is with they call him because his name’s crazy like mine. He posted some stats in the, might’ve been Ylopo or Follow Boss community recently; He said that their average, and he runs a whole team of ISAs, their average conversion for Google and Facebook PPC average is 240 days I think is what he said.
Robert Newman: Wow, all right.
Chris Anuszewski: I already crushed all of theirs
Jonathan Denwood: You’d be surprised to hear this, Robert but we really need to wrap up the podcast part of the show and obviously listeners and viewers will be continuing this discussion on bonus content, which you’ll be able to see on the Mail-Right YouTube channel. Because we have a lot more, hopefully, Christopher can stay on for a while because where has the time gone, Robert.
Chris Anuszewski: And in the bonus, I’ll give you the corrected stat for that because it’s not 240, I just pulled it up.
Jonathan Denwood: Where has the time gone, Robert?
Robert Newman: I don’t know. So, ladies and gentlemen, we’re going to go to a break for those of you who are going to join us or are already on YouTube or watching this on Facebook or some other channel. You can just continue watching, when we come back, we’re going to one, Robert Newman that’s me is going to make a small retort to the system-based productivity; it’s one of the rare times I’m going to plug inbound marketing.
And then we’re going to talk about the corrected stats that Chris just did us a favor and looked up, and then if we have time, we’ll also get into Top Producers. So, stay tuned and we’ll see you in a moment