Tech in CRE

The Deal is in the Details: Using CRE Tech to Never Miss a Step

Commercial real estate (CRE) is a complex industry. Brokers, owners, and developers manage massive amounts of tiny details in order to build robust portfolios and pipelines.

Something very small can make a big difference in the CRE game.

One big stroke of luck might help you break into opportunity, but it’s the small successes that create sustainability across unpredictable markets. It’s one of the biggest lessons from creating software: you can develop the most powerful solutions in CRE, but they’re useless if you don’t nail the details of daily interaction.

That’s why we’re always learning from our customers and more than a decade of deal data and supporting brokerage best practices. And it’s how we know that the future of CRE is broker-led and tech-enabled. Because tech is only as good as the people taking full advantage of it.

Let’s put precision into practice and see how the best tech leads you to opportunities for perfect personal touches.

Delivering the details differently

From the very first steps of a property’s lifecycle, the details matter. They can make the difference between the time developing a parcel of land getting measured in years instead of months.

Every commercial professional knows that all the data and details sum up to the possibility of a property and the story they tell. Instead of getting stuck in the dry deliberation of zoning approvals, leverage tech to reframe the information for accelerated accessibility.

Hollywood screenwriters call it the rule of “show versus tell”.
Our Buildout Media team calls it “using visual solutions to expedite the development process”.

3D renderings and virtual tours can illustrate how a property will fit into its community before construction even breaks ground. Building visualizations of data, whether it’s blueprints or deals flowing through your pipeline adds an extra dimension to discussions that will draw more people in, faster.

Match your data flows to CRM workflows

The only good data is validated data.

It doesn’t matter how many hours you spend canvassing or using a research tool if the details you’ve acquired run the risk of ruin by being bounced around multiple tools.

The closer you can keep your research data to the tools you use to act upon it, the better. Otherwise, every transfer of data allows for errors to slip in or some detail to get lost in translation between the ways different systems label or store items. Then, you’ll need to spend more time cleaning up or validating your data than actually activating it.

New tech provides some options. We’ve talked with brokers using AI to clean their research and contact data anytime it’s updated or transferred between tools. Be sure to train your AI programs on small data samples first to ensure they return the kind of results you need before you trust it with your entire book of business. And that question of trust is one to consider with any AI built on a large language model—if it’s training on your data, make sure that it’s not also incorporating it into its public access memory.

If you’re looking for true peace of mind and full actionability around your research data, tools like Buildout Connect that combine market research and CRM functionality in one place are your best bet. 

And stay tuned for our game-changing release coming May 2024 that goes even further toward making sure your research and nurture workflows meet you everywhere you need them.

Centralizing property and portfolio details

Managing all your property data in one location allows you to dive deeper into the details. If you’re managing investment or listing projects in different systems, comparing process timelines, lead trends, or marketing ROI, is like looking at apples and oranges. Working with a team where everyone has different definitions or approaches is another way to guarantee murky details.

At Buildout, we use our Property Edit Form as a single source of truth to power property websites, marketing documents, and listings on the largest syndication network in the country.

This ensures that the smallest change is broadcast across every touchpoint with the lightest lift possible. If you list on a website that requires working with a representative, we even help send emails with the changes lined up for approval.

Never miss an opportunity to spot the deal in the details

Find a way to pull all the meaningful details of your work into one location and they immediately become more valuable. You lose time when you have to search for or redefine your insights for a new tool or collaborator: time that could be spent learning from those details instead.

When you have an optimal system for collecting all the details in your contact and deal history, that experience becomes a series of patterns for you to analyze and discover new opportunities.

Highlighting the CRE details that matter most

Part of building success in commercial real estate is creating a network of professionals with different skills that share your understanding of certain details. Accessibility and alignment aren’t always available together when selecting your partners.

One of the things we stress in our media evaluations is checking that any contractors you’re pulling in for photography or design work have proven experience in CRE.

Anyone can fly a drone these days. But smart photographers know how to capture your retail center when it’s busy on a Saturday morning rather than scheduling themselves when it’s dead on a Tuesday afternoon and solidifying the wrong message as part of your property’s story.

Building community over call lists

Understanding these nuance points starts long before a go-to-market strategy. Year after year, building relationships and repeat business are rated as the top contributors to success in our DNA of #CRE survey. Delighting your customers to turn them into referrals and recurring partners depends on small touchpoints over time. Prospecting is all about planting seeds that produce possible deal opportunities.

In our recent webinar on leading with authenticity in CRE, Glen Boehm highlighted the difference between developing lasting client relationships and hijacking a community for a quick deal:

You reach out to call lists when you have something.

You build community by being there when they have something.

What are the small details about that multifamily owner that create opportunities for outreach and relationship building? Baseball season opens and you know that his son is working towards starting pitcher: send a baseball card of your favorite all-star wishing him luck in his first game.

Technology and new prospecting tools are going to open up access to new deal partners that you never thought possible, but human connection will always be key in keeping them coming back for more business.

Use your CRM and research tools to keep track of all the little things that can keep you connected over time. Go beyond investment criteria or rep specialties to include birthdays, favorite restaurants, sports teams they follow, and more.

And as you’re getting to know them, let them get to know you with leave-behinds.

Leveraging the lost art of leave-behinds

Even as the advance of technology is all-consuming in our industry, it’s still one of the easiest things to ignore. You are always one click away from being an ignored call or an unread, deleted email.

You want prospecting to lead you to in-person meetings, and one way to leave a lasting impression is to leave a lasting piece of collateral. Physical printouts create reminders of your meeting that they have to carry with them—and if you’re successful, tuck away for later.

Deliver a recent market report you’ve done or even just information about you and the resources you bring to the table. An extra detail touch is creating the asset in your brand.

Buildout Showcase users can easily pull pages together for a “Why Work with Us” package that highlights recent sale, lease, or development successes, introduces your team and partners, demonstrates the reach you have with Buildout’s syndication network, and your easy access to Buildout Media’s nationwide network of media professionals.

Show off your own story as a way to prove your ability to handle theirs.

Make sure anything you’re mailing or bringing to a potential client is useful to them and you’ll start planting seeds for them to see you as a knowledgeable resource to return to over and over again.

Small touch, big difference

The deal is in the details. That’s why it matters to work with tools and professionals that maintain the value of even the smallest datapoint or insight. At Buildout, we want to give you the upper hand with access to all these insights and the ability to activate them at a moment’s notice.

Because it can be the smallest touch that signals big success. Like the sight of a luxury watch as you lean in for a handshake.

That’s why we’re giving one away as part of our new, game-changing product release coming 5/19. Join our watchlist now for details on joining our sweepstakes.

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