As a consultant and long-term marketing and PR professional, I am very passionate about finding ways for Associations and MLSs to find more effective ways to communicate with their customers to engage them and help them take full advantage of the services, training, support and business generation potential. Without client relationships, any one of our companies can be wiped out by competition much more easily. The right mix of marketing messages targeted to the right customer segments in increasing engagement which can make all the difference in gaining customer loyalty and satisfaction.
Every MLS and Association we work with believes their communications can be more effective. Placer County Association of REALTORS® seems to have found a tool that not only simplifies the methods for sending out communications, but also makes it easier to communicate with members in multiple channels. Sounds like a win/win to me. Gotta love those!
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MMSI’s new Communication Center is a much-needed, much-appreciated resource for Associations and MLSs striving to continuously improve their member engagement. The new Communication Center easily segments your membership into smaller, more targeted groups so you can tailor your messaging. It eliminates the need to use a separate email marketing application, and all of the exporting and importing involved, streamlining your marketing operations whether your team sends out one email weekly or several emails to different audiences each day. An AMS industry first, the Communication Center combines texting with email messaging, so you can easily broadcast important announcements, billing notices, and event reminders to members on their preferred channel.
The Placer County Association of REALTORS® (PCAOR) shares their first-hand experiences working with the MMSI Communication Center, first as beta testers and now as loyal users relying upon it multiple times daily.
PCAOR has been working with MMSI for about four years and eagerly awaited the chance to beta-test the Communication Center after hearing about it last summer. Jessica Morales, PCAOR’s Chief Administrator, says, “Sending emails to our member lists used to require using a desktop-based mass-emailing application requiring one staff to use a dedicated computer at the office, which proved very challenging during the pandemic. By contrast, the MMSI Communication Center allows the PCAOR team to send emails from any computer, anywhere, anytime.”
Easy to Create/Edit Email Blasts
Morales also appreciates the intuitive drag-and-drop interface that allows her to create beautiful, engaging, and mobile-friendly marketing messages simply and easily. A template manager lets the creative team create functional templates that any staff member can use. “It’s been completely amazing, seamless,” she said. “It’s really easy, just what you see is what you get. It has allowed us to produce more professional-looking, image and video-based email templates.”
PCAOR uses the MMSI Communication Center to email individual customer segments, including brokers, agents, affiliates, new members or staffers, or even multiple groups at once. It also simplifies communications with members that need to pay their bill, vote in an online election, or that have registered for a specific education class or event. It allows PCAOR to customize each message to make it easier to get members’ attention and break through the clutter.
The Communication Center adds a brand new channel to an association or MLS’s engagement toolbox: Text Messaging. With the Communication Center, members can opt-in to text alerts that can be scheduled alongside email messaging. Mark Richburg, President of MMSI explained: “Our omni-channel approach is rooted in the belief that members want to hear from you, but they want the agency to decide the ‘What’ and the ‘Where’. Our Member Portal empowers members to choose their specific topics of interest and whether they want to receive emails, text messages, or both.
“Oftentimes, a member needs to hear the same message a few different ways before it takes root and triggers the desired member engagement. Between email, texting, and our dynamic Member Portal notifications, members are hearing our customers’ messages in surround sound.”
Morales said the Communication Center provides useful engagement information after emails go out as well. “You can get reports to see how many emails you’ve sent out, how many have been opened, and even what (recipients) clicked on, so it’s pretty cool,” she said. This extra information has proved immensely helpful to PCAOR, helping the team determine which emailed information is most interesting to those on the receiving end. “We have just begun to use this functionality but envision a time when we will be able to critically evaluate the success of each of our subject lines, graphics, and copy to continue to make it easier for our members to engage with each of our services, education, events and technologies.”
Built with 30+ Years of REALTOR Association/MLS Knowledge
PCAOR appreciated working with the MMSI team to pilot the Communication Center. MMSI has been in the REALTOR AMS industry for 36 years and they leveraged that deep understanding of AOR and MLS Communications workflows to build a system that makes sense for the unique nuances of the industry. They have a solid understanding of the time constraints Association and MLS staffs deal with to deliver effective communications to their customers while handling so many other daily tasks and requirements.
Examples of predefined segmentation for REALTOR Associations and MLSs:
Members that need to take Code of Ethics
Members with Outstanding Invoices
Huge Time Saver
“The Communication Center has saved us an enormous amount of time,” said Morales. She also described it as “a relief” to use compared to their former ways of sending out important communications. “We would recommend it to every one of our Association/MLS peers,” said Dean Anderson, CEO of PCAOR. “It prevents anybody from having to do a lot of extra work; you don’t have to use MailChimp or Constant Contact and try to keep your lists updated; you can do it straight through (the Communication Center).”
“The MMSI Association Management System, Membership Director, seamlessly connects the member record into the Communication Center, so we don’t have to download the database from one source and then re-upload it into another source. As soon as a member record is updated, those changes automatically pass through to the Communication Center. If a member updates their email address and two seconds later we hit send, that message is going to the new address automatically with no staff involvement. That’s the advantage of having a completely integrated solution. Other systems require an Association to purchase an add-on product to send out communications. By definition, an end-to-end solution is going to work better and be simpler for Association staff to use. The MMSI Communication Center is so much faster and more robust than any 3rd-party tool could ever hope to be. ”
MMSI – Focused on Keeping Associations/MLSs relevant
“We just finished attending MMSI’s virtual 2021 User Group Meeting”, said Anderson. “After seeing what they’re doing and how many people were engaged in each of their presentations, it really made me feel good about the future of their product,” he said.
If you would like to learn more about the new MMSI Communication Center, please click HERE.
To see the original article, click here.