Bellingham WA Real Estate Phone System Success Story
RingCentral Professional spoke with real estate professional Eric Badgley of Bellingham WA Real Estate about how he uses RingCentral to reach potential buyers.
You wrote a blog post recently about using RingCentral to provide listing information to potential customers. Can you tell us about it?
EB: Yes. I'll make prerecorded messages about listings and assign them to about 10 different extensions. At the bottom of my listings it'll say, "for more information, listen to the prerecorded message..." This feature is something that you should promote more often because some companies out there offer prerecorded message deals for $50 a month and I'm paying $20 a month and getting much more. The blog post that I wrote, which is about prerecorded messages for Realtors, is on ActiveRain.com.
What response did you get to the post?
EB: It's kind of cool because RingCentral ranks number one for prerecorded messages. You can go on the site and read about it and learn about how I set it up (Eric's post, Prerecorded Messages for Realtors). I wrote about RingCentral because when I was trying to get a prerecorded message service for myself, I couldn't find the right tool. I'm not providing this information for money, I just want to help other people.
So can you tell us briefly how it works?
EB: I include our toll-free number and the corresponding extension on all advertising. When potential buyers dial the number and the extension they can hear a prerecorded message about the property, and the system then automatically sends a text message alert to me telling me that somebody called, which captures the lead. This is important since a lot of buyers are scared to call the number on a sign because they don't want to talk to an agent, they just want to get the price.
Where else do you advertise the number and the extension?
EB: Print and Web advertising, flyers. This way potential buyers can call and they're not intimidated...if they want to speak with a live agent, they can, or they can leave a message. It's really cool.
What other features do you enjoy using?
EB: The RingMe click-to-call me button is on our Web site.
And how is RingMe working out for you?
EB: It's working alright, I'm getting more calls per week from my Web site. What makes RingCentral even cooler is that you can do so many things with it.
Where do the calls go, and are you using Answering Rules to set office hours and route calls to different phones during different dates and times?
EB: The calls are forwarded to our cell phones. Calls are forwarded to me and if I'm not available they're forwarded to Angela, my partner, then they'll go to voicemail. In this business, we have to answer the phones all the time.
And the faxing service, I guess this is also a critical tool for real estate agents?
EB: It's awesome. For instance, I went on vacation to Vegas and I was doing my work right in my room, faxing out. And that's a big plus, too. It's almost like a freebie because other internet fax companies will charge $15 just for that service alone, and I think yours is way cooler because it keeps a record of faxes in an online account.
You mentioned other prerecorded message services that real estate agents use. Can you tell me about them?
Yes, they provide a prerecorded message service without an 800 number and it is still expensive, $50 a month. I'm paying $20 with RingCentral and I'm getting 15 extensions, a 1-800 number and I also get a fax number. I think it's awesome and that's why I love it, and that's why I tell everyone about it.
Do you also use the Softphone?
EB: Yes. For instance, when you called I tried to answer the call on my cell phone but I didn't get it in time, but because I'm on my computer the Softphone was telling me who is calling so I could call you right back. I try to answer every call that comes in.
The fact that the calls are stored in your account, is that something that, as a real estate agent, you think is useful?
EB: Yes, because sometimes I don't know where the calls are coming from. In addition, when a call comes in and I pick it up on my phone, a recorded announcement will tell me who is on the line before I "press 1 to accept." It's nice to have it.
Do you work from home or do you have an outside office?
EB: Well, I have an office and then I sometimes I work at night at home. In my house, I don't have a fax machine so I love RingCentral because I can make deals in my home without a fax machine, and the paper and maintenance that goes along with it.