David Carner, the VP & Managing Broker of multiple Sotheby’s brokerages, has installed VR into his brokerages. We now have VR installed at brokerages at Wisdom Real Estate, Century 21, and Sotheby’s (it looks like Compass in NY and Coldwell Banker in SF want to install VR too).
Although we’ve made a lot of progress in getting realtors excited and installing VR into their brokerages, our next step is validating if brokers will bring in buyers to actually tour active listings and improving on that experience to drive user adoption.
For Jeremy & I, that is our sole focus in July.
Walkthrough is ending its free trial strategy on July 19th. It’s worked really well for us – it helped us get an initial foot hold into each market, it differentiated us from our competitors, it allowed us to get access to information on who the top producers are as well as it gave us a way to directly reach out to each top producer directly.
But why stop if it was working so well?!
As an acquisition strategy, free trials are brilliant especially in an industry where every single one of our competitors can’t afford to give away a free trial. It’s also great if we’re trying to get every agent on board to using our platform but each free trial we give away costs us a pretty penny and more of a strategy that we can afford to do with growth capital once we have our ducks in a row. Even though we become profitable within an agents’ next 2-3 listings, when you’re short on cashflow – we can’t continue to hand out as many freebies. On the plus side, we now have more open slots for paying customers to use our service.
Have no fear, free trials won’t completely end here.
As of now, we’ll keep doing free trials for the first month of each city launch and we’ll be using it as a tool in our arsenal to give out to top producing agents to give us a try. We’re just more short term focused on bringing in agents that do more than 6 listings per year.
Have you had the experience of looking at new homes or apartments and tried to imagine what the vacant space would actually feel like if you were to move in?
Will my couch fit? How will my bed look?
Yeah, us too. In an effort to drive user adoption with the VR headsets currently in Brokerages, when we scan your home, we can catalog your furniture so that you can view it at all of the other homes you’re looking at. Here is a full 2 minute video on how it works.
You know when you read a lot about a subject, and you think you understand it but one day you have a lightbulb moment and it all really becomes clear to you?
After an hour long call with Paul Sutter about growth & market size, a conversation with Rob Nievert from 500 Startups about the selling of data we collect, and Stephanie Mui from NEA about VR user adoption – I had that moment.
You all have given me more clarity on where we should be focusing our efforts.
Also thank you to Garrett Loh & Patrick Hillstrom for making several introductions on my last trip to San Francisco as well as Chandler Bolt, Garrett Loh & Jeremy Banonfor putting me up during my stay. I definitely appreciate the hospitality and am inspired to work alongside each of you.
**If you’ve bought a home, you should know at least 1**
I believe Mortgage Lenders will find the buyer leads we have more valuable than alternative sources. From the few conversations I’ve had, buyers who engage with our VR product should be more serious, qualified and further along in the buying cycle and there’s value in co-branding with realtors or even getting higher quality leads from Walkthrough than from Zillow.
We’re trying to see how true this is, would any lender be interested in the leads we collect and how valuable would they find each lead (whether it’s their contact info or advertising in front of them).
I can put together a clean email you can forward to them to see if they have interest in connecting (just click the link below).
Walkthrough replaces the time-consuming process of touring multiple properties with a simple and affordable virtual reality experience. (view investor slide deck)
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