Real Estate Technology
Long sales cycle and many incoming leads. Needed a process in place to manage leads.
Salesforce was complicated and support was not good.
Simple, intuitive and easy to use
Able to effectively manage inbound leads and track deals across pipelines
Freshchat and Freshdesk integration helps in managing inbound leads, and solving customer support effortlessly
In 2009, Eric Stegemann founded TRIBUS as an alternative to the traditional real estate brokerage platform companies. Today, the company offers a host of products to its customers, such as building custom brokerage websites, brokerage API and data warehouse, custom brokerage CRM, brokerage Intranet, and concierge support.
Jeff Harris, the company’s Vice President Of Business Development tells us that instead of looking at the 1.5 million real estate agents spread across the country, TRIBUS scopes among the top 500 brokerages with branding and re-targeting efforts. Thus, its customer base comprises companies like RE/MAX Results, William Pitt, Sotheby’s International Realty and Zephyr Real Estate.
With a team of 20 employees on board, working out of Chicago and Denver, the company talks to prospects (brokerages) which are looking to improve their technology stack. It gets a fair share of inbound enquiries, and has a long sales cycle, which, in Harris’s words, means there are many plates spinning constantly. “It’s difficult to keep track of who needs following-up and who is at what stage of closure. All this just can’t be done without a CRM.” he opines.
The team at TRIBUS was earlier using Salesforce. “It’s challenging to use,” comments Harris, adding that, finding a Salesforce administrator was difficult, putting the data to effective use was an effort, and the software wasn’t intuitive.
“On Salesforce, everything I needed to do had to be researched and then Googled. They had their old solution that looks like it was built in 1995, and then they came up with the lightning solution. Sometimes the things you want to do have to be done on the old version, but I was working in the newer version. I did like some features in Salesforce, but the biggest reason we decided to change CRM vendors was because the support wasn’t great. We were not treated well.”
TRIBUS did evaluate other CRMs which bode well with Pardot, its former email marketing tool. But, it found its fit in Freshsales in the end. Evenutally, Freshsales integrated seamlessly with Freshchat, the chat software, and Freshdesk, the support software.
“We were using Freshchat, the chat software, and Freshdesk, the support software from the Freshworks suite of products. So, we evaluated Freshsales CRM, tried the free version, and started with a paid plan. Ever since we have moved to a higher plan with more functionality, and the CRM is integrated with Freshdesk and Freshchat.”
The company primarily captures leads through a form on its website. The form, in turn is linked to Segment, which is connected with Freshsales. “As soon as a lead is captured in Freshsales, an automated email is triggered to the prospect using workflows,” explains Harris. The email comprises information about the company, an embedded video, a brochure, and a Calendly link to schedule a call with a representative at TRIBUS. “We’ve set up several other workflows. Another instance is when a prospect visits our website and seeks to download a white paper or get access to a webinar. In such a case, we trigger a workflow to email the prospect with the link to the white paper or webinar,” he adds.
The email is followed up with a series of follow-up calls, effectively targeted at qualifying the lead. “In this process, I also use the tasks and notes features heavily. For example, a prospect may be interested in our tech stack, but may still have a year left in their contract with our competitor. In such a case, I create notes, and setup tasks to follow-up, and keep in touch, with the prospect, so I can potentially close the deal near their contract ending period.” he explains.
At times, Freshchat too acts as a platform for TRIBUS to engage with new leads. Harris notes that Freshchat helps pull prospects down the sales funnel faster. “Prospects who come through chat are typically the smaller companies. The larger prospects usually come through networking, outbound sales efforts, and word-of-mouth,” he says.
Once the lead is qualified, it enters the deal stage.
“We are now able to keep track of all our deals. We don’t lose track of them, or lose many deals because we haven’t paid attention to it.”
Harris and his team also use the Freshsales mobile app quite extensively. “When I'm on the road, I find it easy to go through my tasks and make calls on the go,” he says.
“With Freshsales CRM, the satisfaction is definitely a lot higher. Even the customer service response times are very good.”