Thinking about what technologies in invest in for your commercial real estate business?  I have outlined what are, in my opinion, a few necessities for the new year!

DropBox – I love DropBox so much it borders on a stalker ex-girlfriend kind of love.  For a measly $10 per month you get a whopping 100 Gigs of Cloud Server.  What’s a cloud server?  It’s a web server with special software to work like your home computer – I.E. you can add files, work off those files, and save them directly onto your cloud.  Why is that a good thing?  (1) How many important files have you lost in your last hard drive crash?  A cloud automatically backups your data to several servers throughout the country, making sure that no matter what happens, your data is safe.  (2) Clients ask you to resend files during the most inopportune time.  Access and send your files from any computer, tablet, or mobile device with your DropBox login info.  (3) Do you have a team?  Setup shared folder so co-workers and partners can work together on your cloud server.

Cloud Call Center – Let’s not sugar coat the obvious.  Cold calling is awful.  Hiring a cloud call center will weed out most of the bad-stuff when it comes to cold-calling.  Services like CallFire save you time by weeding out busy signals, bad phone numbers, and handling answering machines with broadcasting your pre-recorded message.  Agents can focus on speaking with live customers, leading to a 20-30 percent increase in efficiency over manual dialing.  At only $2 to $4 bucks per hour, it’s difficult to say no.

Email blasts – Following up with your prospects and leads is necessary for all commercial real estate agents.  Now-a-days, it’s very easy with email blast systems that will automatically send out a series of introductory emails to your new prospects and clients.  Mail Chimp has templates that are easily created (see our templates) and setup a system that emails your prospects immediately, then 3 days later, and 10 days later.  They’ll be so impressed with your follow-up, you’ll be much more likely to convert them into sales!

Laptop / Tablet / Ultrabook – I’ll be the first to admit, it took me a long time to buy into the mobile computing age.  Even today, I only have a laptop and none of that tablet nonsense (they can call me when they’re sophisticated enough to run Adobe software).  But as a sales agent, you really need to be able to access files, show presentations, and send files with ease.  If you’re still showing up to meetings with a notepad and pen, your clients may think you’re not quiet “with it” and look elsewhere.  Even if it’s just for show, it may be worth the investment.

Google Drive – Another great cloud-based way to handle your files.  Trading, emailing and saving files is really easy with Google Drive!  Here’s a great tutorial from Cloudwards on how to get started.