June 16, 2020
What you should consider before you hire an ISA
You’ve set up your real estate business, and it’s booming; your firm is growing at such a fast rate that following up with leads is becoming more challenging to fit into your schedule, and you’re becoming increasingly overwhelmed. You now realize that you need some help to convert those leads, but it should be cost-effective too. As days go by without any help, you’re losing money.
This is where a virtual ISA (insides sales agent) can help. Having a great, effective follow-up system is vital for a real estate firm, so if you’ve frequently been missing calls, then it’s time to look into hiring an ISA.
An ISA is known by many names; a phone crusher, telephone salesperson, telemarketer, and so on. Essentially, the purpose of an ISA agent is to follow-up old leads and prospect new ones, too, whether on the phone or online.
When it comes to hiring an ISA, you must ensure that the potential candidate is comfortable with spending most of their time on the phone as they will be taking calls from leads and making calls to prospects, following up with leads assigned to them, and making appointments.
If you have a small team, you will be just fine by hiring one person who can handle all these tasks. However, if you are a bigger team, then ISA roles can be split into outbound and inbound. So, while your best cold callers focus on outbound, those who are comfortable with relationship building can focus on the inbound work.
To make it more clear, for a large team, you need to hire someone who can do the tasks that come with the respective job. For instance, if you’re hiring an inbound ISA, then you should look for someone who can respond to incoming leads, follow up with them, and set appointments. Meanwhile, a candidate for outbound ISA should be able to prospect FSBOs, listed clients, and past clients.
Here are some tips to keep in mind to ensure you hire the best virtual ISA for your business.
When it comes to what makes a good ISA, there’s a big difference of opinion from one real estate agent to another. So, when it is time to hire one, make sure to keep in mind the needs of your team. Think about who would make a good fit for your company values and culture. Also, before posting an ad, list down the exact duties that you would want an ideal candidate to cover.
As mentioned earlier, the role of ISA should be taken on by an individual who doesn’t have problems with spending the day making calls and meeting sales targets. Thus, it might be better if your preferred candidate has experience working in a rigorous sales environment. In addition, he or she should be able to convey the benefits the client would get to enjoy by hiring your team.
Start looking for potential candidates within your circle of influence or ask for referrals in a networking group. Post your ads on different job sites like Craigslist and Indeed.com or social media websites such as LinkedIn and Facebook.
Fiverr and Upwork are also two excellent freelance websites that can aid your hunt. Both platforms have a plethora of talented individuals from across the world. Go onto these sites, post your job description, and once you hire the ideal candidates, you can train them to fulfill their duties as you want them to. Hiring from such platforms is also quite cost-effective and impacts your ROI (return on investment).
If you’re unable to find a virtual ISA, it can help to look for individuals from other industries such as insurance sales and mortgage loan officers. Since they would already be familiar with the rigorous environment, you can train them to be an ISA for your team.
It will take a bit of trial and error until you find the right candidate. Ensure that candidates are tested on their ability to handle cold-call situations and to deal with objections with customers. To do so, you can set up a simple role-play situation as a part of the initial interview. In fact, you can continue with this practice even after.
If you’re hiring one person for both inbound and outbound, they need to be an expert in all the skills. If you separate the two, then look for a slightly aggressive and more sales-driven personality for outbound, and customer-service orientation for inbound marketers. Generally, people are either of the two, so it might be a bit of challenge to find someone who can do both.
Before you send an offer to a candidate, make sure they are comfortable with their conversions being monitored against the goals and their activities being tracked. Not to forget, they should be tech-savvy and must have the ability to interpret data and take suitable action.
Successful ISAs must be trained regularly with activities such as object handling, scripting, and, as mentioned earlier, role-play sessions. You can help your ISA to stay motivated and work in improving his or her skills by using conversion ratios like contacts-to-appointments as key metrics.
To teach them how to nurture leads, track and make notes about their conversations, follow-up attempts, and response time. Compare these to pre-set goals and then give out pointers on how they can improve. But to be able to do all this, you will have to ensure the candidate is open and willing to learn while working.
When hiring multiple agents to build a team, make sure to hire people who can work the day shift as well as those who are fine with the night shift. Since consumers expect you to help them or talk to them whenever they’re ready, you must have a team available 24/7 throughout the year. Whether it’s 10 in the morning or 2 at night, someone should be available to talk if a customer is ready. It’s essential to not have any gaps in coverage.
Hiring an ISA can be a great decision on your part because it would give the rest of the team time to focus on other things instead of following up leads and performing admin tasks like CRM updates. In fact, doing so can even produce great ROI for your firm. If there’s a system in place that can promptly follow up old leads and prospect new ones, then you are bound to be successful!