Independent Salesforce Consultant Explains Why He Chose Rethink for The Whinery Group at Marcus & Millichap

When The Whinery Group at Marcus & Millichap decided to streamline their prospecting, lead generation, and pipeline management processes, they turned to Michael Brondello.

As an independent consultant and certified Salesforce Admin, Michael quickly identified areas for improvement.

“When I came on, the deal process was very Excel-driven and there was a lot of scattered information documented with pen and paper,” he said. “So, the first thing we worked on was finding a better system.”

After comparing several options, he identified Rethink as the best fit.

“With brokers, you have to keep it simple. It has to be easy to use — because as soon as there’s any friction, you’re going to lose them,” Michael said. “Rethink didn’t have that friction.”

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Below, we’ll cover the details of his evaluation, as well as the results he’s seen since The Winery Group implemented Rethink.

Rethink vs. Excel

Brokers that rely on Excel often wonder if there’s any need to find a high-tech solution to manage their dealmaking process in the first place.

For Michael, there’s no question.

“Most people in this space use Excel, and it blows their mind when they see what a solid platform can do,” he said.

He went on to explain that Excel fails to properly organize and relate information, leading to an overwhelming user experience.

“You can’t show or capture the relationship between a property and how it moves between sellers and buyers when you’re just in a standard table,” Michael said.

“Even when you’re capturing standard demographic information about a contact, you have to add a separate column for each piece of information,” he added. “But now, you’re looking at an Excel sheet where you have to scroll 50 pages to the right to try and capture everything.”

The other problem arises when people try to avoid this issue by capturing multiple pieces of information in one cell.

“As soon as you do that, you’re jeopardizing the integrity of the data because now you can’t easily find the information you need,” Michael explained.

Rethink, however, delivers the user experience commercial real estate (CRE) firms need.

“It’s such a clear difference,” Michael said. “You can relate objects to each other, so a company can own properties and a property can have a proposal attached to it. You just can’t do that with a standard table.”

Now that Rethink puts connected data at their fingertips, The Winery Group can focus on doing what they do best — closing deals.

“The ease of managing the prospecting process has been an absolute game-changer, and the level of clarity on the pipeline is unparalleled,” Michael said. “I can’t even imagine how broken it would feel at this point to use Excel because the way we use Rethink is just so intuitive.”

Rethink vs. Salesforce

Michael quickly decided that a Salesforce-based platform would be the best option for The Whinery Group.

And if you go with a Salesforce-based platform, Salesforce itself is the obvious answer, right?

Not so fast.

Because of its CRE-specific features and capabilities, Rethink saves firms tons of time and money on customizations and implementation when compared to Salesforce.

“The out-of-the-box capabilities of Rethink saved us a couple months of development, months of fine-tuning, and months of ironing out,” Michael said. “We knew that Rethink was a trusted solution in the space, and after attending the demos and seeing the platform, we knew it would be better to go with a best-of-breed solution, rather than trying to build our own.”

Rethink vs. Apto

Even when it comes to Salesforce-based platforms built specifically for CRE, Rethink stands out.

“I’ve used Apto before and have other clients that use Apto, and there’s just less unnecessary bulk built into Rethink. There’s less clutter to dig through,” Michael explained. “Rethink is a much friendlier environment.”

Rethink vs. The Real World

Standing out during the demonstration and evaluation process is great, but what really matters is how a solution performs once it’s deployed.

Once again, Rethink passed the test.

“Rethink struck the right balance between out-of-the-box capabilities and opportunity for our own customizations,” Michael said. “And it’s easy to use — that’s probably the biggest benefit of Rethink.”

That ease of use has led to high adoption.

“We took three reps who had never used a cloud-based system, and within two weeks, they had it down — prospect management, proposal management, logging their calls successfully,” Michael said. “It’s been fantastic.”

Rethink also gives brokers better visibility into their dealmaking process.

“Let’s say there’s a client who owns a property, and you’re issuing a proposal on that property,” Michael said. “The way Rethink works is you have a record for the contact that’s related to the record for that property, so when you create a proposal, it’s linked to both the contact and the property.

“Then, anytime you go to that contact’s page, you can see the property information and the proposal information right there.”

And moving deals through each stage is a breeze.

“After you submit the proposal, let’s say they want to go ahead and sell that building, now you can hit a button and create a listing based on the information already stored in your proposal,” Michael said. “That ease of use is exactly what we wanted.”

Leaders at The Whinery Group also enjoy the increased visibility.

“We can run reports and see the number of calls reps have made, the results of each call, and we can even look at listings and see the marketing results for each one,” Michael said.  “Because we’re capturing this data, we can zoom out and look at number of calls per week, month, quarter, or year, and we can build benchmarks and track progress over time.”

That’s led to greater competition among reps, with each one pushing the others to accomplish even more.

“It gamifies everything, so we’re able to continually motivate our reps,” Michael explained. “We’ll look at rep A versus rep B, and sometimes, they’ll even have a race to see who accomplishes more in a week. That makes a big difference.”

Ultimately, Rethink helped the Whinery Group streamline their dealmaking process … and Michael doesn’t believe their case is unique.

“If you’re considering Rethink, pull the trigger. You won’t regret the decision,” he said. “And the sooner, the better, because it’s only going to get worse if you continue to neglect proper data management.”

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