It’s perplexing how often real estate industry questions are referred to social media for answers. Some of the most basic questions of brokerage model, pay structure, technology tools, and marketing systems lack a unified research database where brokers and agents can begin their searches on an objective playing field.
In lieu of a go-to guide, we use personal references, anecdotes, and one-line Facebook comments and hope that the general consensus is the right answer for our businesses.
That’s the gaping hole that the T3 Tech Guide is hoping to fill. I received a copy of the Software Edition this past week, and it immediately made me realize that it’s the kind of tool I needed years ago.
It’s an understatement to say that the review process of real estate vendors’ products is scattered. There doesn’t seem to be an even remotely balanced platform for comparing lead generation websites, real estate portal advertising, etc. If you have personally borne the scourge of the CRM research and purchase process, I apologize for reminding you of the pain.
The T3 Tech Guide is a huge leap forward in this regard. It doesn’t include every one of my favorite products, nor does it cover every product type, but it does an intensive job of educating the end user on many of the top products in each software category. It identifies the criteria and functionality that the user should be comparing, and analyzes each one in-depth.
In short, it’s a fast-paced primer on software products that allows brokers and agents to understand the technologies they’re evaluating in a way that would have taken enormously longer in the past. It’s a huge time-saver for an industry which never has enough.
The software products analyzed include:
- Home Valuation Websites
- Lead Generation Websites
- Agent Websites
- Prospecting Systems
- Lead Management Systems
- Real Estate CRMs
- Software Forms
- Digital Signatures
- Transaction and Document Management
Having researched, purchased, and/or subscribed to virtually all of these categories in the past (and sometimes more than one of each), this would have been a godsend for my business as a starting point. Readers will inevitably ask for more products in the next edition. There are some really valuable products that didn’t make the cut, probably because of their lack of longevity or market exposure. Still, most of the big names we see repeatedly batted about in online forums receive a structured, thorough analysis and are laid out comparatively in grid form at the end of each chapter.
Kudos to the Swanepoel T3 Group for this initiative. To build a knowledge base like this and take on the costs of producing it without asking the vendors to pay for product placement is a big effort. I wouldn’t be suprised to see it become the industry standard. I’ll certainly be checking in for updates next year. If you’re looking for some quick bites of the content, they’re doing webinars on each section and following up with digital copies of the chapters here.
If you’re researching CRMs, congratulations. You just moved up from microfiche to broadband search.