Realync is helping multi-family and real estate professionals streamline the touring process by providing a way to instantly connect with them and show the individual exactly what they want to see.
Product / Service Offering: Real Time Video Platform for Real Estate Touring
Co-founder Interviewed: Matt Weirich
This article is part of our Business Startup Spotlight series featuring entrepreneurs and their companies. We hope that these founders’ interviews will inspire and motivate you as you undertake your own entrepreneurial journey.
Tell us a little about yourself with a focus on what motivates you.
I am Matt Weirich, the co-founder of Realync since 2013. Prior to that, I was a Management Consultant at Accenture, where I focused on corporate strategy and contract negotiation.
When it comes to motivation, I am fueled by challenges and overcoming obstacles. I have never had an easy path with anything laid out for me. I am pushing for more; pushing to achieve that next milestone has always been a major driver for me.
When did you establish your company and where did the idea originate?
I had the idea for Realync in 2011, when I was moving from Purdue University to Chicago. I was looking for a place to live and had to drive to Chicago six weekends in a row to look at properties. What I saw on-line rarely ever translated into what I saw in person. This led to a terribly frustrating real estate search process, with a lot of wasted time and energy. It was then I had the idea for Realync and started pursuing it in late 2013.
What need or needs does your company seek to fill for its customers?
Realync is helping multi-family and real estate professionals streamline the touring process with prospects by providing a way to instantly connect with them and show the individual exactly what they want to see. The relationship is building at the same time. Those live interactions are helping real estate professionals by decreasing overall sales cycles with prospects and increasing their conversion rates too.
What is the one thing that sets your company apart from its competitors?
Realync is built for real estate touring.
The only other live stream options that real estate professionals could pursue would be FaceTime or Skype, which doesn’t have the catered experience built for real estate touring. Realync’s platform has integrated maps controlled by the host, the ability to take photos and notes, and saves the entire tour to the cloud. It also integrates into existing CRMs and LMS, while also providing a full analytics platform to see touring metrics and data.
What was the biggest challenge you faced while getting your company up and running, and how did you overcome it?
The biggest challenge while starting Realync was getting our end customers to understand that there was a better way of doing things. Real estate has a lot of people that are doing really well with their status quo way of doing things. It was hard to change their perception of how their work could and should be done.
The biggest thing that helped us overcome that obstacle was seeing success. Once we were able to collect use cases and success stories, those quickly became our biggest resource to proving replicable results, building trust within the industry, and scaling beyond initial pilot partnerships.
Are there resources you have utilized that other founders might find compelling or useful?
Our biggest resource while building out Realync was other people who have already done the same thing. When it comes to starting a B2B SaaS company, there are plenty of people who have done it before and were willing to help along the way. Those mentors or formal advisors helped us make fewer mistakes or deal with the ones we did make. They helped set our sights on what was important and what would help us continue growing.
What steps have you taken to secure funding for your company and what, if anything, would you do differently if you had to start over?
We have formally raised two rounds of funding for the business. The first was a friends and family round and the second was a venture-backed seed round. We worked with Elmspring Accelerator. The only thing I would do differently is ensure we had proper legal representation during our first fundraising. That is the foundation that every fundraising then forward is built upon, so getting the legalities right the first time around is super important.
Have there been any questions you have had as an entrepreneur of a fledgling startup that you had a particularly hard time finding the answers to?
There have been many tough questions we have had to find answers to during our time as a fledgling startup and many times you receive different answers to the same questions depending who you ask or where you look. The hardest questions to answer are when you are asking for the ‘right way to do X’ or ‘best way to do Y’ because everyone has an opinion. You need to find your own best when it comes to doing certain things.
What challenges, if any, are you grappling with?
Our biggest challenge that we are grappling with is new sales. Sales continue to be the hardest part of the business to truly accelerate and see hockey stick growth. We are landing great clients. They are seeing great success on our platform. Without a full sales development team, we are always looking for/needing ways to increase the size of our funnel and number of leads we have to work with and close.
What is the most helpful tip or “hack” you’ve ever learned, stumbled across, or been given?
The most helpful tip we ever received is one that led us to ultimately finding our product-market fit. Once we found that, everything became easier. Looking back, the hardest thing when starting out was how many different directions we could have gone with the business. Each path was pulling on us and demanding our attention. Once we dedicated our efforts on one direction and focused solely on that with a clear vision and path forward, things got much easier and really started to scale for us.
Is there anything else you would like to share about your company?
Realync is currently working with five of the fifteen largest multi-family companies in the world. We have already hosted tours for consumers in over thirty different countries searching for an apartment in the United States.
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