When your real estate clients buy a home, they’re making one of the most expensive decisions of their lives. As you know, having a foundation of trust and comfort throughout that process is non-negotiable.
And more often than not, your clients end up building a strong relationship with a specific person on your team.
For clients that visit the Portland branch of Guaranteed Rate, that person is usually Julee Felsman, Senior Vice President of Mortgage Lending. Julee has been both the face and the leader of their local Workshop Team of loan officers and mortgage consultants for over 28 years.
Most clients prefer working with Julee directly. Fortunately for Julee, however, she doesn’t need to carry out all of her client work solo — thanks to OpenPhone, her team of 10 can easily take over all aspects of her communication behind the scenes. Here are four key things they can do through OpenPhone that let Julee seem like a superhuman broker.
1. Working together behind the scenes
To get everything done for clients, Julee frequently passes work on to her team, from answering emails to researching. “We have all these other people doing a lot of these tasks that don’t require her mortgage genius,” says Beth Hergert, who leads Production and Development for the Workshop Team.
Using OpenPhone, everyone at the office can work as “Ghost Julee” behind the scenes — multiple team members can answer calls and texts for Julee, all from the same number using shared phone numbers. Every team member on the line can see the history of calls and texts with a contact inside a shared inbox. When someone ghost texts as Julee, they have all the context they need to provide excellent customer service.
“There’s really no gap when Julee’s unavailable,” says Beth. “We’re all on the same page, and any loan officer can pick up your loan if you have a question about it.”
2. Teammates can follow up on her behalf
OpenPhone’s internal threads also make it easy for team members to tag one another into conversations as needed. For instance, if Julee has an in-person conversation with a client, she can tag a team member behind the scenes in OpenPhone and ask them to send a follow-up text to the client later.
3. Sharing contact information across the team
Beth is a self-professed automation nerd. One of the first things she did was automate data entry using the platform’s Zapier integration.
The Workshop Team gets leads from a variety of sources, including texts, emails, and phone calls. Using OpenPhone’s Zapier integration, Beth ensures that as soon as any team member adds a new contact record to Salesforce, that contact also automatically goes to everyone’s address book in OpenPhone.
“Nobody’s spending time entering [data],” says Beth. “Once one of us has it, all of us have it, and that’s awesome.”
4. Working where the team is
The fact that OpenPhone integrates with all of the Workshop Team’s existing tools means when there’s an unread text or incoming voice message to attend to in the platform, the team also gets a Slack notification about it.
Then a teammate comments in Slack, letting everyone know they’re working on following up with the customer. That way, no one’s duplicating the same work.
“We’re Salesforce users. We’re Slack users. [OpenPhone] talks to everything and that is huge,” says Beth. “Being able to push information between the different systems so that everybody’s on the same page is really, really helpful.”
On the horizon: Automating thoughtful text messages
Today, about 95% of the Workshop Team’s business comes from referrals, thanks to Julee’s name recognition and the team’s commitment to serving as their clients’ trusted partners.
“Making sure our clients are educated is a huge part of what we try to do, and that’s what makes us a bit different,” says Beth. “A lot of people in the mortgage industry can just throw a lot of numbers and information at people without explaining them well; we make sure that people have the entire picture.”
As the Workshop Team carries out tasks for clients each day, they track their work in Salesforce — checking off certain boxes in a client’s contact record if they order an appraisal for them or if their mortgage is approved.
Using another Zapier Automation, Beth has figured out how to turn these completed action items into automated — yet personalized — text messages to clients. These texts will keep clients in the loop without taking time out of busy team members’ days.
Aside from these status updates, Beth hopes to start using similar texts to build stronger relationships. For instance, if a client closes on a home on a certain date, she wants an automated text to go out a year later, wishing them a happy “house anniversary” and asking them how their first year in their home has been.
The Zapier integration makes it possible for Beth and her team to send texts from Julee based on important dates captured in Salesforce — allowing for a personalized communication experience at scale.
“We don’t want to mass text anybody, but we do want to reach out on an individual texting basis and have something come from the phone number somebody’s familiar with,” says Beth.
OpenPhone lets the Workshop Team put the time, energy, and expertise of a full team behind the face of their brand — supporting seamless communication and gaining more referrals from happy customers.
Looking to build better relationships with your customers? Find out how OpenPhone can help your team by signing up for a free trial.