How Zephyr Real Estate moved to Google Apps for Work and utilized WiseStamp for Business to brand their company email communications.

Employees:

300

Founded:

1978

Industry:

Real Estate

The largest independent brokerage in the San Francisco area

Founded in 1978, Zephyr Real Estate is now the largest independent real estate brokerage in the San Francisco area, with nearly 300 full-time real estate agents. Whilst other independent real estate operations have been swallowed by large corporations, Zephyr has flourished, growing steadily over the years, now claiming 12% market share in the San Francisco area.

Bill Drypolcher, President of Zephyr Real Estate and one of the original founders believes the key to Zephyr’s success is that they treat their agents as an integral part of the team, not just company employees. Zephyr is constantly looking for creative new tools and technologies to help their agents to achieve their goals, and make more sales.

A complete rebranding

Zephyr recently went through a rebranding process, and at the same time moved over to Google Apps for Business, now Google Apps for Work. Previously they had tried to implement email signature solutions for all company agents and employees, but had found it technically difficult and time consuming to implement. With the move to Google Apps, Zephyr wanted to implement their new branding across all their email signatures through an easy to manage, central solution.

One of Zephyr’s technological problems was in being able to provide an electronic signature service to their agents. According to Hud Bixler, Zephyr’s Director of Technology, “we had just rebranded our entire company, so it was important that we could implement this branding into our email signatures.” With close to 300 agents working for them, Zephyr needed a solution that could be personalized according to their needs, and the needs of their agents and teams.

Moving over to Google Apps for Business

Hud Bixler, Zephyr’s Director of Technology moved the entire company over to Google Apps for Business, after years of using Outlook. He decided to implement this massive change in order to improve the workflow of their agents, as well as take advantage of extra online tools and applications which had not previously been accessible to them. “We took a risk a few years ago and moved everybody over from Google Apps. Not only would it be a better experience, because agents never throw any email away, so it was frustrating for them to find their information, but we would have cloud storage and multiple applications were available, like WiseStamp. Making that transition really pushed us to adopt new technologies that we were not already familiar with.”

By moving to Google Apps for Business, Zephyr’s agents could work within the easier and more intuitive system of Gmail and the collaborative system of Google Drive. Zephyr teams and individual agents can now easily collaborate on documents, without creating an unnecessary backlog of email correspondence, and quickly find the information that they are looking for. Moving to Google Apps for Business, now Google Apps for Work,provided  a renewed creativity in finding technological solutions to increase productivity, marketing leads and sales, both within teams, and for individual real estate agents, that were not previously available in Outlook.

Zephyr’s Director of Technology had attempted in the past to initiate a team email signature solution, but had struggled to fully utilize it within Outlook. Moving their whole team to Google Apps meant that they could implement WiseStamp for Business,and their new branding across all external email communication. By using WiseStamp for Business they could utilize a personalized branding solution via every email that their agents sent out, with different signature options according to individual different teams and their personal needs.

ֵA service that helped our agents, and helped us too

One of the features of WiseStamp for Business that Zephyr Real Estate found invaluable was the ability to customize different versions of their corporate signature for different teams.

“Zephyr has six different custom templates for WiseStamp. We have individual agents and we have teams.  All of our agents are both employees of our business and independent contractors, so we have to be able to think in those terms.”

By using a WiseStamp corporate signature Zephyr could incorporate their branding across all forms of communication, whilst still retaining the individuality of their agents. Zephyr agents have the corporate branding on their signatures, and their contact details, but they also have their own details on their signature, allowing them to simultaneously promote the company they work for, and their own personal brand. This reflect Zephyr’s focus on the importance they place on their agents as individual business members, who are also a part of their company efforts.

Zephyr Real Estate also used their team email signature as a marketing tool to promote their real estate listings. Listings are displayed on all email signatures, and are easily updated from one central dashboard, saving agents time, and helping them to promote their listings. Agents automatically promoted their listings, with every company email that was sent out. With a 300-strong team, that is a lot of corporate emails being sent out on a daily basis, with each one being a tool for promoting listings, and increasing sales.

Hud Bixler has been pleased with WiseStamp for Business as a service for branding and marketing Zephyr and their real estate listings. “We gave our agents a service that not only helped them but it helped us too. “It helped promote our branding, and it helped promote their listings, and their personal social networking links. This allows us to have brand compliance whilst also giving them a useful tool for promoting themselves.”

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