After a morning full of informative and inspiring breakout sessions, Day 2 of Mega Camp 2020 crescendoed with a powerful keynote featuring KW President Josh Team and KW VP of Industry (and beloved host of the wildly popular ‘Choose Your Script Champion’) Jason Abrams. The passion and energy both presenters brought to the Moody Theater were just what viewers needed to fire up the message boards with aha’s and excitement.
Team kicked off the keynote by explaining what brought him to Keller Williams in the first place: storytelling. After his first meeting with Gary Keller, Team could tell “[Gary] was a pioneer who wanted to make sure he wrote his own story.” But that authorship didn’t end with the co-founder of the company. Keller wanted everyone, from KWRI employees to agents, to write their own stories. And from the day he joined the company, Team’s story has been about empowering agents.
To help tell that story, Team invited Abrams on the stage to explain how Keller Williams is partnering with some of the biggest companies in the world to help agents craft narratives of success.
The Power of Partnerships
As the old saying goes, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” Keller Williams isn’t interested in quickly getting through 2020. It’s focusing on helping agents seize the opportunities that await in the decades that follow. And, to give agents an even greater lens into the future, KW has forged exclusive partnerships with companies like Google and Facebook.
“If you took the world’s largest real estate company and combined it with the world’s largest search engine and social platform, could they share their data and insights and craft and pioneer a new future that allowed agents to help consumers at a higher level?” Team asked. The answer is “YES,” and to prove it, Team and Abrams gave viewers a sneak peek into some of the everyday discussions they’ve been having with executives from the tech giants.
Google Search Has a Story to Tell
With all of 2020’s uncertainty and at-home-working, people are performing a massive amount of Google searches, and the trends are pretty indicative of what buyers and sellers are wondering. According to Google Head of Industry, Automotive and Real Estate, Dan Siegler, searches surrounding virtual home tours and contactless payment options have increased 400% since the beginning of the pandemic.
With that increased demand for digital transactions, it’s no surprise that 54% of the consumers they polled said they are willing to try a new brand if that company is perceived to be more technologically advanced. To put that in perspective, Abrams proposed a little thought experiment. “Take your database, everyone in your database, your past clients, your future clients, your family, and cut right down the middle,” he began. “If you’re not reimagining your business right now, you’re not pouring into those people. You’re not making the calls. Someone else is.” Luckily for tech-enabled agents, that 54% could lead to a lot of new business.
What’s even more surprising is the fact that 80% of consumers may not continue to use that same company post-pandemic. Abrams believes this level playing field presents two problems agents must be prepared to solve. “Number one, how do I get more leads into my system? And then, number two, how do I follow up with them with more frequency and intensity?” To answer the first question, Team consulted Facebook VP of Global Marketing Solutions, Michelle Morris.
Facebook Makes Finding Leads Fast and Cheap
When agents first started advertising on Facebook, the cost and complication of it were too much for some. By partnering directly with Facebook, Keller Williams made the process simpler and cheaper, producing millions of leads for under $2 a piece. Those are pre-pandemic numbers. Now, with people spending more time on their computers than ever before, the impact is even greater. Take livestreams, for example.
According to Morris, “Over 800 million people are watching livestreams on Facebook or Instagram daily.” Compare that to the 99 million households Abrams was exposed to during his time on HGTV’s “Scoring the Deal,” and it’s easy to see what a huge opportunity social media presents to agents. Morris also stressed the importance of authenticity. Livestream viewers don’t want big-budget productions. They want brands and businesses that feel real and genuine.
One other shocking statistic Morris mentioned revolved around how comfortable users are with interacting with businesses via social media. “Three out of four Facebook users in the US actually visit the page of their local businesses, and eight in 10 interact with businesses on those pages,” Morris noted. The key takeaway: If you want to promote your real estate business on Facebook or Instagram, don’t do it through your personal page. Establish a business page and take advantage of the business-specific algorithms embedded in Campaigns.
Putting Insights Into Action
The most important partnership Team and Abrams mentioned was the one between KWRI and their agents. They highlighted this by giving a little glimpse into the exciting new features Labs has been working on throughout the pandemic.
For starters, there’s the new Campaigns email editor that allows agents to personalize their email templates by adding custom Neighborhood Nurture videos right in the header. In the KW App, clients can now request virtual tours directly from listings and find their dream home faster with the new saved search functionality.
Another showstopper was the new SmartPlans library, which allows agents from all over the world to share and exchange their most effective SmartPlans. Users can even search the database via agent name or topic, so if you’re looking for a plan specifically geared toward Instagram, you can just type “Instagram” into the search bar and see what pops up. Agents also have the ability to rate each entry, so the cream will rise to the top.
The most collaborative innovation introduced during the keynote was Command for Teams. This bespoke technology woven into Command’s existing platform gives real estate businesses of all sizes unprecedented transparency, integration, and foresight into their operations. From gaining more leads for the entire organization to routing them to the right agents, Command for Teams boosts the power of Contacts, SmartPlans, and Opportunities in Command. And that’s only the beginning.
Down the road, KWRI hopes to bring the Teams functionality to every applet in the Command toolbar, making it even easier for agents to collaborate and learn from each other. Because as KW’s partnership with Google and Facebook has proven, while everyone should write their own story, no one should do it alone.