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Loopnet’s Pro Tools. All You Ever Need?

Chris Clark along with many other wonderful things is at present an IT manager for a commercial real estate brokerage. She brings her unique  point of view to commercial real estate as the CREoutsider. She had the chance to get a live demo of Loopnet’s new marketing platform Pro Tools. Here is her insightful take on what the products bring to commercial real estate.

LoopNet has taken another step in becoming a single marketing resource for commercial brokerages and agents. With the acquisition of ReactionWeb ( http://www.reactionweb.com ), LoopNet ( http://www.loopnet.com ) has modified that platform specifically for LoopNet enterprise subscribers. What’s an “enterprise subscriber”? It’s a brokerage who has a multi-agent deal with LoopNet so that the agents have premium access to LoopNet’s listings. So, no, Pro Tools are not available for individual premium members – but LoopNet is considering it.

Premium members all ready have the option to create a Flash website for a premium listing, but Pro Tools’ Pro Site component is an alternative with significant differences. First, the site is not written in Flash – so you can see it on most cell phones. Enterprise subscribers get custom designed templates to match their company branding which can include Flash elements (like menus) if they want. The interface is simple to use even with all the options you have. Select your listing then add your pages and content and you’re done. Sample sites I saw looked good and were easy to navigate.

Pro Vault adds even more functionality to your custom site. Described as a “due diligence war room” it’s actually a set of options that allows you to password protect confidential documents and require registration (automatically approved or not). The best part is how easy it is to add documents and provide access on a per user or per document basis. You can even secure the entire site if you want. You also have the option of creating a portal where users log in to access documents.

The final ProTools feature is Pro Blast. In its current form, you design an HTML email for your listing then copy the HTML code into a mail service like Constant Contact. Or, email it to yourself so you can send it out from your own email app. Planned for later this year , you’ll be able to email directly from Pro Blast doing away with the two step process – plus providing email list management and mailing metrics like open and click through rates.Overall, I was impressed with how the Tools were organized and the straight forward presentation in a familiar tab format. No steep learning curve required…

For enterprise users, the advantages are huge – a totally outsourced yet customizable/branded marketing platform that integrates with your company’s listing in LoopNet. Between the features all ready in the premium membership package (like flyer/report creation) and these new Pro Tools, there’s not much more you need to market exclusives. Looking forward to ProTools being offered to individual users. In the meantime, you can try out the tools at ReactionWeb ( http://www.reactionweb.com ) where you can purchase and use them without the LoopNet integration.

Interesting to say the least. Great post from Chris.What experiences have you had with Pro Tools. I would love some real world feed back and comments. Thoughts?

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