The Question: What is IM?....The Answer: An amazing communication tool for real estate.

By
Real Estate Agent with Realty Executives Liberty

Instant Messaging (IM) is a means of communicating with potential and current clients as well as family and friends.  For the purpose of this blog, I will focus on the clientele communication opportunities.

IM is a innovative way for people to ask quick questions and get quick answers. You can download the software free from various different entities to include MSN, YAHOO!, and AIM.  There are also software programs that are free in which incorporate all three entities so that you done have to have three different accounts to log into for different customers, such as Trillian.

Why should I implement IM? Communicating with potential and current clients is essential. The top ranking complaints that buyers and sellers have about their agents is communications.  Today's consumer wants answers now and not the next day, IM allows us to answer their questions when they are asked. Sure we have phone texting, but we pay money for that as well (maybe even per text). 

How can I use it to increase my business? After downloading your preferred program (for free). Go through your database and invite them to your IM.  Once invited and accepted, they will forever by on your contact list. Now you have immediate contact with those people when they are online.  Even saying a quick hello and how are you can go along way. When you are in your office at our computer for floor duty, updating your MLS, website, etc, have your IM up and logged in.  In your "personal messages" write something like, I am available to take any real estate questions at this time.  Clients feel like they have a more open relationship with you and are not so intimidated to ask a quick question online.  This alleviates the questions you always ask when you bump into the customer who says, "I was gonna call you, but I didnt want to bother you." You can also communicate with mortgage lenders, home insurance agents, attorny office, etc to ask a quick question (whats your interst rate today? can I squeeze an client in to see you about that insurance binder today at 3p?, etc) There are so many different ways you can use this form of communication.  Try it out and experiment.

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Rainmaker
239,273
Vickie Slade
Colorado Landmark, Realtors - Boulder, CO
Service You Can Trust ~ Someone You Can Depend On

Janie, this is particularly with the younger generation.  But don't forget just plain old text messaging.  They love it and it is a fast and effective way of communicating.

Nov 04, 2008 02:01 AM #1
Rainmaker
808,819
Anthony Stokes-Pereira
Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty - Nanuet, NY
Realtor

Hi Janie;

Great post and super information, thank you for sharing.

Nov 04, 2008 02:01 AM #2
Rainer
28,727
Darla Jensen
Edina Realty - Crosslake, MN

Great post - thanks for sharing - I use IM and love it

Nov 04, 2008 02:10 AM #3
Rainer
70,555
real estate real estate
Providence, RI

I use IM and I love it as well. I wonder how I can convince my friends and colleagues to use it.

Nov 04, 2008 06:45 AM #4
Rainmaker
284,767
Gene Allen
Fathom Realty - Cary, NC
Realty Consultant for Cary Real Estate

When I sign out of my IM it goes directly to my phone so I am always on IM.  Lucky me.

Nov 04, 2008 08:33 AM #5
Ambassador
2,138,276
Respect Realty LLC
Respect Realty LLC - Milwaukie, OR
Brokers - Oregon / SW Washington Real Estate

I get at least one IM a day from clients or potential clients and I do have to say it is usually better and more concise than a phone call.

Todd Clark, Helping Families Home - www.IFoundYourNewHome.com

Nov 19, 2008 11:43 PM #6
Rainmaker
66,518
Heather Goodwin
Licensed by the Louisiana Real Estate Commission - Shreveport, LA
GoodWin Team Realty

Janie, I am still getting up to speed on the web access on phone, IMing, and Twitter (don't think I'll ever figure that one out!), so this post is an eye-opener for me.  Since I specialize in first-time home buyers, this would be a great tool to engage my younger prospects and clients.  Thanks for the post.

Nov 20, 2008 01:08 AM #7
Rainmaker
814,185
Troy Erickson AZ Realtor (602) 295-6807
Good Company Real Estate www.ChandlerRealEstate.weebly.com - Chandler, AZ
Your Chandler, Ahwatukee, and East Valley Realtor

This is a good idea that I have never implemented.  I also had never heard of trillian, and if it can actually incorporate several different ententies, that makes it even cooler.  You are so right about people wanting information now, and not tomorrow.

Nov 23, 2008 09:01 AM #8
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Janie Diggs

ABR, ASR, GRI
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