Bloggers often talk about “finding your voice.” It is a way to say that each of us will probably have our own style, our own way to communicate with our audience. While this blog may, in fact, be a great way for real estate agents to find resources or to view a particular writing style, I want to talk about an entirely different type of voice.
If you haven’t heard of Google Voice, I hope you will take some time to check it out. While I was admittedly slow to realize just how powerful this application can be to the real estate industry, once I started “playing” with it, I quickly understood that some of the features are GREAT for agents to use in their everyday communication. For agents on the go, Google Voice can be quite useful. Some of these cool features are available at very low or NO cost to you. (You can also visit this YouTube page of Google Voice videos.)
Transcribed voicemail: Your voicemail can be sent to you via email or text message.
Think about it. How cool would it be to have a way to easily save and search voicemails? Ever had a client, a business associate or even a teenage child that left you a message that you wish you could print out or save for future reference? Many cell phones make it difficult to store a large number of messages for later use. The scenarios are endless.
One number: A single phone number that rings all your phones.
I didn’t realize how cool this feature was until I started playing with it. Imagine being able to route your calls to different places at different times. Going out of town? Send your calls to your assistant or to another agent covering for you while you are gone. OR, maybe you want to send them to your cabin or hotel room?
Record calls: Record phone calls and store them online.
This feature is really cool. If you are having a conversation with someone and want to recall the conversation for another time, just record it and Google will save it for you. Again, many uses for this feature.
Free SMS: Send, receive and store text messages online.
What else can I say? Free is good!
Custom Greetings: Imagine a different message for different callers.
OK, this one has some serious power behind it. Think about different messages for different people. Now that you realize how cool that can be, think about taking it a step further. How about a different voice message for each listing you take? Why not? Have you ever built a “single property web site” or a specific landing page for a listing on your web site or blog? How about making a web page about a subdivision or a part of town? On that page, enter a customized voicemail thanking the caller for inquiring about 123 Main Street or for calling about the coolest neighborhood in the area. Each caller can be given specifics about the area or the property, and each caller will KNOW that YOU are the expert when it comes to that particular property or area.
How about using this as a listing tool? You might tell Mr. or Mrs. Seller that each caller will have detailed information, and at the same time, you will have a way to capture their name, number and information. Once the voicemail is left, you can forward the text of the message to the seller as feedback, etc.
Serious, folks. The real estate uses for Google Voice are endless. A “widget” can be placed on most websites or blogs and can be customized to your liking:
Google Voice has MANY more features than what I have listed above. Give it a try and please feel free to leave a comment here telling us your thoughts.