The FORT Podcast: Sam Sawyer

Sam Sawyer is the Founder & CEO of Archetape, a full-service cloud brokerage for real estate agents. Before founding Archetape, Sam worked for the Y Combinator graduate and venture-backed start-up ZeroDown in Silicon Valley as their VP of Real Estate Operations.

On this episode, Chris and Sam discuss the issues facing real estate agents and how Archetape is working to transform their experiences. They also discuss Sam’s vast experience in real estate and tech, trends in home buying, major players like OpenDoor & Zillow, the process of building a remote company during COVID.

(02:15) – Sam’s Story and Career

(03:54) – What was the acquisition from Compass like?

(06:05) – What was your experience like working for a PropTech company ZeroDown in Silicon Valley?

(08:07) – What was it like going through Y Combinator?

(09:26) – As the only one in the field, were you bringing back all of your experiences and data to share with the software teams to build out necessary widgets?

(10:14) – At what point did you realize you needed to go and start your own deal?

(11:44) – Was there a co-founder involved?

(12:33) – Did you raise any funding?

(13:21) – What is Archetape? What’s the spin on brokerage?

(16:48) – What software are you building that would make an agent want to come work for your company?

(22:03) – Technology Partnerships at Archetape

(24:55) – How do you identify what partnerships are needed? How do you vet suitors?

(26:53) – Is there any training involved for new agents?

(30:47) – Do you use any software to gather Net Promoter Scores?

(31:40) – How do you find new agents?

(32:51) – Are you looking to recruit seasoned agents or newcomers?

(35:35) – What advice would you give to folks looking to become agents?

(37:38) – Building Smaller Teams Within Archetape

(38:44) – When was the first transaction at Archetape?

(39:16) – How are you ending the year as opposed to what you thought it would be like? What’s it like launching a company in the middle of a pandemic?

(41:59) – Deeper Dive into the Compass Experience

(44:05) – Why would agents be more likely to use the software that’s used at Archetape if they generally aren’t open to changing their software habits?

(45:49) -How are you thinking about growth?

(48:32) – How are you partnering with lenders?

(50:25) – How do you use a startup mindset without getting distracted from your core product?

(53:12) – What are some trends that you’re seeing in home-buying?

(55:33) – What are the top reasons someone buys a home besides location & affordability?

(56:46) – What is iBuying?

(58:24) – What do OpenDoor and Zillow do when they buy a home?

(1:00:10) – Is OpenDoor a direct competitor to you?

(1:01:03) – Is the open house experience going to die?

(1:01:56) – Did you know that you’d be building your company on the back of platforms like Slack?

(1:05:07) – How do you build strong relationships with a fully remote company?

(1:06:49) – Do you have a morning routine?

(1:07:55) – What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

Book – Ruthless Elimination of Hurry

(1:10:01) – What’s a great book you’ve enjoyed?

Built to Sell – John Warrilow

Elon Musk Biography

(1:12:26) – How can people find you and Archetape?

Items Mentioned & How to Contact Sam

Medium Article – Gatekeeper to Superhero


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The FORT with Chris Powers is produced by Straight Up Podcasts