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If you are not using Cloze, with its off-the-charts artificial intelligence and business management functions, you simply are a glutton for punishment! This CRM is a game changer for our business. Get on Cloze or be left behind.”
Brown Harris Stevens – Brooklyn office
When New York-based brokerage Brown Harris Stevens (BHS) hired Chris Reyes as its Chief Technology Officer in 2022, the company had in its sights a new digital hub called BHSOne, a one-stop shop that would maximize agent productivity, enabling them to spend more time on business development and less on inefficient processes.
Designed to make it simpler for agents to use technology and collaborate more efficiently with corporate marketing, BHSOne also introduced agents to Cloze CRM, an AI-driven CRM and marketing platform, that not only furthered the desired collaboration but also gave agents time every day to connect authentically with a wider slice of their sphere.
Cloze has made my life so much easier! From custom templates to daily reminders, not to mention how it’s completely organized my database. Lets me manage my business effortlessly.”
Brown Harris Stevens – Village office
When high-touch doesn’t mean high effort
According to BHS Chief Marketing Officer Matt Leone, “BHS has the highest average sales price achieved per agent in the country. Our agents are highly experienced, successful, and incredibly knowledgeable. When you have those types of agents, you need to give them technology that helps them concentrate on where they make money.”
Given BHS’ high average sales price, BHS agents rely on high-touch, highly personalized communications to their contact sphere. In Matt’s words: “Providing clients information that feels like it’s customized for them so they can make an educated decision about their next buy, rent, or sale is very important.”
But historically customization takes a tremendous amount of time and effort, and both Matt and Chris agreed that agents need technology that allows them to personalize client experiences efficiently. “Agents can’t spend all their time marketing and prospecting or sending handwritten notes,” explains Matt.
In a recent study by the National Association of Realtors, only one in four agents pointed to customer relationship management (CRM) as being a top source of quality leads – despite more than 80% of buyers and sellers coming from repeat clients and referrals — and even fewer said the same about digital ads or email marketing. And yet, Cloze CRM achieved 25% adoption at BHS within just six weeks (a month earlier than projected), and continues to increase adoption as agents hear from their colleagues about Cloze’s ability to deliver value quickly.
Cloze is by far the best CRM I have ever used. The AI features are amazing. It reminds you each morning who you need to follow up with, logs and attaches all calls and emails to a contact and even writes emails for you with AI.”
Brown Harris Stevens – Palm Beach office
Prior to implementing BHSOne, the company had—repeatedly—attempted to roll out CRMs and other technology tools to their agents and staff, but met limited success. As Matt put it: “The CRMs we tried in the past were really tough for agents to adopt. They were hard to learn and use, and they weren’t designed with a mobile-first mindset. This was a huge block because our agents do most of their work on their phones, not in front of their computers. They also felt the CRM was taking time away from doing their primary business. All this made onboarding much too hard.”
BHS’s experience isn’t unique. According to the National Association of Realtors’ 2022 Technology Survey, only a third of agents characterize their brokerage-provided CRM tool as “very valuable”. For BHSOne to work as a digital hub for their agents’ high-touch, customized interactions, BHS needed to increase CRM adoption rates. That meant a mobile-friendly tool that operated as a natural part of an agent’s day-to-day work, so that agents could focus on identifying and managing deals instead of continuously fighting with a CRM. It also meant proving quickly to agents that the CRM would deliver value from day one.
I love the incorporation of the categories from Ninja Selling to visually sort clients to easily follow their approach. It simplifies your life allowing you to ‘stay in flow’ with your database and get more done each day. I cannot say enough good things.”
Brown Harris Stevens – Palm Beach Agent
Cloze overcame the objections of skeptical agents by doing two things that other CRMs couldn’t: First by satisfying the hard-to-find requirements, and second, by using artificial intelligence (AI) to seamlessly increase agent productivity, automate client personalization, and derive insights that agents—and the corporate BHS team—didn’t even know they had buried in their communications.
“My favorite part of Cloze is definitely the daily agenda,” says Chris. “Cloze catches things I might miss. It’s reminded me on more than one occasion to catch up with a co-worker or a vendor on an action item.”
AI-Powered Personalization Uncovers Potential Deals, Deepens Relationships, and Increases Client Engagement
In contrast to typical CRMs that expect agents to constantly update and log their activities and contacts into the system, Cloze silently manages that busywork in the background without disrupting an agent’s daily workflows. Through the insights extracted from agent communications, Cloze CRM flags action items and due dates and recommends how, when, and with what to reach out to new and previous clients, highlighting special events, birthdays, or anniversaries, for example, or bubbling up contacts that could benefit from outreach.
“Cloze integrates artificial intelligence into the experience. That was a deal closer for us,” says Matt. “Cloze acts as a virtual assistant suggesting the proper prospecting steps and touchpoints with everyone in an agent’s sphere of influence, leading to a higher engagement rate. Even simple features it offers like auto-populating contacts when sending and receiving emails—it’s such a time savings that just keeps adding up.”
A Platform to Support Both Self-Service and Concierge Marketing Models
One of the challenges BHS faced was how differently agents like to operate. Explains Matt, “There are some agents that come to the corporate team for everything. There are others that want to do it all themselves, and they want to do it quickly and efficiently. We’ve built a system where an agent that doesn’t want to wait can still create beautiful materials without help or alternatively, if they’d rather have a designer build it, they can put in the request.”
Most importantly, Cloze’s template library combines automated processes and AI-generated insights to make it simple to provide highly customized content relevant to each client and to do so at scale. BHS agents that have adopted Cloze report being able to reach more people in less time with more authenticity.
Cloze CRM is now integrated into BHSOne and is an essential part of the BHS ecosystem, helping marketing and agents collaborate instead of working in separate streams. The BHS marketing team creates templates and content inside Cloze, which allows agents to efficiently personalize client experiences and boost engagement.
Chris says, “Our goal was to provide a tool that would make our agents and managers more efficient in communicating while helping them keep on top of tasks, even as they’re managing multiple deals at different points in the home-buying process. Cloze not only met those expectations, but exceeded them.”
Cloze has brought a level of organization that I have yet to see within a CRM. Setting reminders, creating templates, and organizing my sphere of influence automatically has allowed me to focus on growing business. I would recommend that anyone who wishes to become more successful in the real estate business create a Cloze Account.”
Brown Harris Stevens – Midtown East Office
Easy Onboarding and Mobile-First Experience Boosts Adoption Rates Quickly
Of course, great technology doesn’t matter if agents don’t use it. Because the CRM adoption rate in the real estate industry is so low, BHS set a target goal of 25% adoption within three months. Cloze shattered that goal by speeding past that 25% target in less than six weeks.
“We were amazed at how easy it was to log in to Cloze, begin your experience, and create an account,” said Chris. “There’s no barrier to entry. I talk to agents who are hesitant to use it because they’ve been so disappointed in past CRMs, and I sit down with them, have a quick conversation, walk through the setup, and it takes just a minute or two. I cannot stress how important easy onboarding is to adoption. I’ve been a part of other CRM rollouts that did not meet expectations for adoptions because onboarding was so difficult. Cloze has an unbelievably simple onboarding process, and that’s been a real game changer.”
That simple and easy onboarding process (which involves just installing the app on their phone and connecting it to their email) means that agents start seeing value within minutes. Meanwhile, Cloze’s mobile-first mentality drives usage even higher. BHS agents spend 100% of their time on their phones, and at least 90% of their activities are conducted through those phones. Cloze CRM has always been designed as a mobile-first application, which means that agents can access all its functionality through their phones 100% of the time. With Cloze, agents can not only be completely productive on their phones, but the CRM will automatically include text communications and cell phone logging as part of its analysis.
“That was amazing,” says Matt. “The only time our agents aren’t on their phones is when they’re sleeping, and probably not even then! Cloze’s approach to mobile access means that agents will use it faster and more often than with any other tool we’ve had.”
Chris explains further, “Early in the process, one of our managers came into my office just glowing. Cloze captured information and sent a reminder on an action item from a text message that he had received and would have otherwise missed. It was unbelievable. Cloze’s smart use of AI just sets the bar for the industry.”
Not Just For Agents:
Marketing Uses Cloze CRM to Drive Agent Engagement
One of the early success stories for Cloze at BHS comes from the marketing team itself. The rollout of BHSOne is much more than just a set of technology tools—it’s also a place for marketing, technology, and agents to collaborate consistently, quickly, and effectively.
The BHS marketing team adopted Cloze to strengthen their relationships with BHS’ individual independent agents and promote the value of BHSOne. Explains Matt, “Ultimately, our brokerage is about the 50/50 relationship between the brokerage and the independent contractor. Our job is to provide the services they need and to be a partner to help them be as successful as possible. We also need to be able to understand and help with the tools we offer.”
Before implementing Cloze, the team would send out one-to-many emails to their agents throughout the country that announced new content or services, and might get a 10-20% open rate. Now with Cloze, BHS can provide customized, relevant content to each of the brokerage’s 2,500+ agents. One example is the ability to segment brokerage content by region so it’s more relevant to agents, and they immediately understand its specific business value to them.
Matt continues, “By transitioning to individualized communication through Cloze, we can now make sure that each agent feels like they’re special, like we sought them out one-to-one. Our open rates are now at 80-100% because we’re sending agents messages that matter to them and help them increase business. We never would have been able to manage this kind of personalized attention without the help of Cloze.”
Learn more about how Cloze can help your company drive engagement rates by making relationship management easier and more effective than ever before.