Commissions Inc – Real Estate Lead generation platform. Pros and Cons after an end-user run through
I was granted access to a live use CINC pro account in 2019. When I reviewed this article recently I changed it slightly to make it relevant in 2020. Here is an index to my review categories. Some of these categories are covered exclusively in the video below. (It’s just easier to review doing a live walkthrough than using screenshots). This website/CRM combo falls under the Real Estate Lead Generation website category. If you’re interested to know how I define the various website categories in the real estate marketing space please check out the first three paragraphs of my Real Estate Website Provider comparison article.
- CINC Lead Generation Platform Explanation – What is this real estate marketing platform supposed to do?
- Commissions Inc – History and Founders – Who built CINC and more importantly who did they build it for?
- Website – an example of the public-facing CINC lead generation platform. I DON’T cover this in my video so scroll down to see what the CINC websites look like.
- CRM – A look at how this tool manages contacts from an agent and team perspective. (VIDEO REVIEW ONLY)
- Lead Funnels – How does this tool apply funnel methodology and the basic pros and cons list (VIDEO REVIEW ONLY)
- Video walk-through with in-depth Pros and Cons of the entire system.
- Summary | BASIC PROS AND CONS LIST
What does the CINC lead generation platform do?
A damn fine question. CINC is by far and away one of the more complex lead generation tools available in the Real Estate Marketing space. The tool has A LOT of different functions. Here is a BASIC list.
- Provides a website set up for direct advertising campaigns.
- Provides a CRM that manages customer records
- Provides TEAM management features that track agent productivity
- Provides Behavioral messaging. If your client clicks on A then B happens (text or email is automatically generated)
- Tracks and sorts listings. Easily categorizes pocket listings, agent listings, and MLS listings. (among others)
- Provides a basic CMS (CMS = Content management system, put simply allows you to create add and subtract pages from your website)
- Agent Permissions – Allows you to easily add or subtract functionality from agent profiles. Laymen’s terms what that agent can or cannot do with your CINC account.
- Agent Website – Allows the agent to have their own template website.
- ISA Integration – A separate service that calls your leads for you.
- Integration friendly. You can integrate a ton of real estate marketing specific tools.
The CINC pro account I used had a ton of other functionalities I’m just covering the main ones.
Commissions Inc – Leadership/Company Summary
DISCLOSER: I did not use CINC in a production capacity. Unlike some of my reviews where I am literally in charge of the marketing campaign soup to nuts, this review is based on ACCESS only.
CINC was founded on January 3rd, 2011 in Marietta GA. Conceptually CINC was born in 2006 but took years to turn the idea into reality. The IDEA behind the platform was to give real estate brokers an end to end solution for running the digital elements of their business.
CINC was founded by two partners.
Matthew Swanson – Identified on social media as the chief software architect. In laymen’s terms, this would mean that the blueprint of the CINC concept was Matthews. “Blueprint” in this case is exactly what you think it means. A lot of whiteboards with graphs and notations next to those graphs. As your hammering out a “virtual” concept it becomes very important to create mock-ups of pages that look EXACTLY like digital blueprints. Your making a lot of notes like “this button does that function” etc. Having a guy in the room that can roughly estimate the amount of work it would take to bring these “blueprints” to life is extremely important in tech ventures. According to Matthew’s Linkedin profile, this is exactly the kind of experience he had prior to co-founding commissions inc.
Brian O’Neal – If Matthew designed the framework then according to Brians CrunchBase profile he would be the guy that designed the “intelligence” of the platform. Just like contractors or builders technology operators have different areas of specialty. Mattew would be front end development (website stuff) and Brians would be backend or software development. (Application functionality)
Interestingly Matt and Brian appear to stick to the technology. They have not one but TWO non-founder CEO’s.
Alvaro Erize – a former VPO for Serent Capitol.
Jason Hoback – Sales guy extraordinaire with a resume to prove it. Almost all of it in SAAS technology products (That’s the category CINC falls into)
Commissions Inc is one of the few Real Estate Marketing companies that I have reviewed that has an almost perfect reputation as an employer. They have 26 glassdoor reviews that all basically say they are awesome to work for. You can see those HERE. Also not for nothing one of the employee reviews about some of the good acts CINC gets up to made me tear up. Not joking.
Also worth noting about the founders. In 2016 they sold CINC to Fidelity National Title. That means all the people holding stock in the company either sold their shares or got an exchange for the parent companies’ shares. In other words, they could have walked away very very wealthy men. But they didn’t. They continued to work with and grow the company they founded which sends a pretty strong signal about their core values and their belief in the service.
Commissions Inc. company summary:
How a company treats its employees is a pretty good sign about how they will treat their customer which is why I delve so deep into who owns these real estate marketing companies. They are the ones that are calling the shots on the services that YOU are going to be buying. You may or may not get the result you want from purchasing these services. But in either case, it’s good to have an understanding of how you will be treated during the process of these services being rendered. This company treats their employees pretty damn good. Top 1000 in the nation (rough guess). Pretty good chance they will treat you with respect and consideration regardless of the results you get from the real estate lead generation platform.
COMMISSION INC REVIEWS
Want to do your own research? I suggest you start with reviews by end-users and employees. Here are some starting links.
KNOWN PRODUCT ISSUES:
In taking the time to read the hundred or so reviews you can find online I discovered some known product issues that seem to be universal with a little commentary from CINC saying that they intend to fix these issues. Here they are.
- Not able to use the dialer on manually entered or imported leads (Public cases I found = 2)
- Problem importing leads (various issues 4 reported cases)
- I did find other complaints but nothing that repeated themselves or sounded legit. The two above seem to indicate a possible problem importing leads and having those leads be usable in the CINC system. That might be important for a small handful of you.
Commissions Inc – Website Examples (Home Page and Search Results Page)
Commission Inc Pricing:
Commissions Inc licenses its platform from $900-1500 m/o. There are MANY optional add on services. Here are a few that I could find pricing for.
PPC Features $500 m/o
Training of all types that range from $20-$500 per class. Some of these classes can be found on CINC’s facebook page.
Additional budget: Paid Advertising. Minimum would probably be about the amount your spending on licensing.
TOTAL ESTIMATED BUDGET = $1800 to $3500 on the low side.
The summarized PROS AND CONS of the commissions inc lead generation platform
- Great Company/Company Culture
- Design for Small Brokers(good team management features)
- While it’s an additional expense in-person training options are plentiful
- Almost All in One CRM|Lead Management|Website
- Huge track record of fairly reliable results
- Good Internal and External Reviews
- The system is complicated requires a huge time commitment
- Expensive. At $1800-3500 m/o, this is one of the more expensive RE marketing solutions
- No free ONLINE training provided by CINC(and little by their clients)
- You don’t own the domain OR the website (This is a HUGE con)
- Publicly owned by Fidelity National Financial
Do you need some help deciding on the real estate lead generation platform that is right for YOUR business?