Many commercial real estate sellers simply post their properties online and then play a blind game of wait-and-hope. Specifically, they are waiting for the attentions of a buyer while hoping they have more than just a passing interest in their properties. Often, investor interest can’t be gauged accurately, despite repeat visits to the broker’s Web site.
To bridge that gap, Littleton, Colo.-based Reaction Web has devised a cookie-based technology that uses unique visitor “identifiers” to give Web property-marketers a better picture. These allow brokers to better determine buyer interest by tracking those visits. Each listing that buyer’s view, along with information they download, can be seen and analyzed by the broker.
Reaction Web, a 10-year-old marketing and multimedia Web design company, is headed by managing partner Michael Mockus, 28, a former Direct TV business analyst. Reaction Web now boasts 70 broker teams at CB Richard Ellis who use the Web platform, as well as clients at high-profile firms such as Apartment Realty Advisors and Grubb & Ellis.
NREI: Tell us about your services.
Mockus: Our core product is a Web site that allows commercial brokers to showcase an unlimited number of property listings. Once those listings are posted, the broker can control access to those files with a registration system and see who’s coming to the site, how many times they’ve looked at a particular property, and what files were downloaded. The reports they get are very in-depth. The broker knows when a customer this guy has a strong interest because he’s been watching movement on the site.
NREI: What are some of the side benefits of this platform?
Mockus: Brokers can spend more of their time talking to genuinely interested investors. Before, brokers were pushing out hundreds of leather-bound, hardcover property books [to investors] costing $50 apiece and another $25 for overnighting. Before investor tracking, the only feedback available to the broker was what a potential buyer decided to share with the broker.
NREI: Who uses your services?
Mockus: We’re focused solely on commercial real estate. Eighty percent of our customers are on the brokerage side, although we do some work with real estate owners and investors.
NREI: How did you roll out this product?
Mockus: It started out as a grassroots movement among individual broker teams in large national groups. Our differentiation in the market was that we were a custom Web development firm. As we got going, we would hear: “We wish our site did this.” A week later, we would make “this” happen. That got the attention of other brokers in the same company. Our first team was from Grubb & Ellis and they had success with us. Today, we have 70 broker teams alone onboard with one large national firm, CB Richard Ellis. On the flip side, we have one two-member teams at some small companies.
NREI: What other related services do you offer?
Mockus: We have a standalone email marketing template, our BeRT e-mail blast, that allows brokers to go into an account that’s very much like Microsoft Word, load up photos and text, then link it anywhere they want. As soon as they send that information out [via email], they’re able to determine who opens the email, what link they clicked and who opted out. That way they are not sending out unwanted emails. Everybody seems to be hungry for this.
NREI: What kind of support team do you have?
Mockus: Every one here has a tech background. While we are small – we’re a five-man shop - we do big business. Because of our size, it makes us very nimble in responding to customer requests. No matter whom you contact, they can help you out.
NREI: How much does your service cost?
Mockus: Our email blast is a standalone product with a one-time set up fee of $250 with a charge of 2.5 cents per e-mail, so it doesn’t require a Web site from Reaction Web. A standalone, custom-designed listing Web site with investor tracking costs a one-time set-up fee of $150 per page. Our listings database typically costs a onetime setup of $5,000.
NREI: What’s next for Reaction Web?
Mockus: We are devoting ourselves to improving some of the desktop application processes we already have in place, continuing to eliminate any redundancies and making the registration process easier and our reports more user-friendly.