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Can an effective CRM tool help you predict your next home buyer? Marketing Blueprints interviews Lars Helgeson, CEO

I recently did some marketing consulting for a start-up firm who had purchased I loved having one central tool for capturing prospect brand touches and engagement, but I was stunned at the cost per subscriber, and unhappy with the price to "customize" for our business. That set me on a search for a CRM partner that would be nimble and easy on the budget. CRM is a business "must-have" when you are managing lots of prospects, and there are many options out there. When, I heard Lars Helgeson, CEO of GreenRope, speak at a Digital Marketers conference, I  knew I had found the CRM expertise I'd been seeking. I asked to interview him for Marketing Blueprints because our clients are managing a large segment of the nation's home buying prospects. Great CRM is paramount to the new home sales process. Here's our interview: Leslie:  CRM “Customer Relationship Management” has different operational meaning to different people. How do you define it? Lars: Salesforce dominates the CRM conversation, and that creates perceived barriers for mid-market and smaller companies who benefit from the efficiencies and expanded marketing capability of an effective CRM tool. Some people think CRM is the same as their contact database. Others think it’s synonymous with their email program. Within the framework of the Homebuilder industry, CRM is an eco-system that works to generate new homeowners. Leslie:  What specific features should a CRM tool encompass? Lars: It’s important to say that features are only as powerful as their ability to integrate and provide a 360-degree view of your prospect’s journey to purchase a new home. That said, an effective CRM tool needs to deliver:
  • Customer Relationship Management
  • Email Marketing
  • Social Network Marketing
  • Opt-in SMS Text Marketing
  • Real-time Tracking and Stats
  • Automated Sales Tools
  • Survey tools
  • Event Management and Calendars
  • Project/Task Management
  • Predictive Analytics
Leslie:  70% of leads generated by marketing efforts are not ready to make a purchase, and that makes a compelling case for the importance of Customer Relationship Management in any industry. Builder Promotions’ clients know that they have to educate and engage prospects to move them closer to purchasing a new home. Why do people stall their decisions to adopt a holistic CRM tool? Lars:  Our customers have told us that it feels like a big change, and that equates to time, which is scarce for Marketers everywhere. People don’t realize that it’s relatively simple to get started. Most marketers have a list of contacts or leads.  A smart CRM partner will get that data input for you during the onboarding process. You can start using the CRM eco-system immediately to segment and target your list. That drives conversion because you are relating to prospects more specifically and demonstrating that you understand what they desire from their new home community. Leslie:  GreenRope has built-in predictive analytics. It's an exciting area of CRM that has immediate application to the homebuilder sales cycle. Can you tell us about how that works?images (2)
Lars: Let's talk briefly about Analytics and its value to Marketers. Analytics is defined as the discovery and communication of meaningful patterns in data.  You look at any website analytics, and you can see how many people visited your website, who is referring to you and how people are searching. Ideally, analytics delivers actionable insights in service of your business goals.  That's what Google and other analytics services offer.  With the right CRM tool, you should get proprietary tracking that looks for specific contacts in your CRM to see how they are engaging with you.  Analytics offerings like Google and others cannot do this because they don't track individuals.  Only a good CRM can do this for you. Now, the next step is to understand Predictive Analytics.  Your CRM will capture data about your prospects and every engagement they've had with your brand. Predictive analytics looks at this historical data (tracking of homebuyers throughout the sales cycle) and builds a model around what causes conversions, or actions that lead to the purchase of a new home. We've made it simple to correlate conversions during the sales cycle, to home purchase behavior. Once you apply that model to people who have not yet purchased a home, you know exactly where to spend your Marketing and Sales energy.  It's empowering for Sales and incredibly cost effective for Marketing. Leslie:  Can you share some of the benefits of a good CRM system? Lars:  I always use GreenRope as an example. We are a company of 20 people supporting 1700 clients in 20 countries because of automation and the portability of information. CRM gives people a user-friendly way to view prospect demographics and behavior. The CRM eco-system tracks anonymous data until a prospect self-identifies through a conversion (registering, filling out a survey, taking a tour, etc.). When prospects do self-identify, the CRM tool back-fills all the data and Sales gets a map of the buyer’s journey.  It’s very simple and powerful. A sales person cannot find all the new homebuyers in a market. You need inbound marketing to fill the sales funnel and educate prospects.After a year on average, GreenRope’s clients are up 75% in revenues.  A good CRM tool makes it simple to centralize, organize and relate to your prospects. It then enables you to take historical information and apply it to future prospects in with predictive analytics. House-Sold-for-Happy-FamilyThe outcome should be more home sales, and referrals from long-term happy customers.
Thanks, Lars!  If you want to learn more, feel free to connect with the GreenRope team at   We know that builders are investing in quality content that invites prospects to tour their beautifully designed homes.  The right CRM tool won't break the bank, and it will expand your capacity to produce sales-ready prospects. Thanks for listening in. How are you supporting your prospects' home buying journey? Do you have a favorite CRM tool?  We'd love to hear from you! Cheers, Leslie Bridges, Chief Blogger
Marketing Blueprints is sponsored by Builder Promotions, a centralized procurement solution that delivers brand consistency throughout the new home sales cycle.

Leslie is a partner in Builder Promotions Marketing firm, a company devoted to making life better at work for the Marketing professionals who work tirelessly to deliver New Home Communities that provide a place for families to live and thrive. She loves being a Mom and keeps a suitcase packed for the next travel adventure with her family.

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