RISMedia's Real Estate Magazine

NOV 2014

Real Estate magazine is the industry's leading source for real estate news and information since 1980. Published monthly by RISMedia, Real Estate magazine offers timely and relevant real estate news to the industry's top brokers and agents.

Issue link: http://remag.rismedia.com/i/402040

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Page 20 of 142

16 November 2014 RISMedia's REAL ESTATE {REBAC Report} 8 Follow your brand. Whether you're an offce of one or 500, you have a brand. The No. 1 role of a brand is to communicate your company's values in a way that differentiates it from the competition. If you haven't looked at your materials in a while, it might be time for a review. Ask yourself these questions: Are your materials con- veying who you are as a broker, as a frm, as an organization? Have new opportunities presented themselves that might make a rebranding effort worthwhile? Review your business plan to make sure it's speaking the same language as your brand. 8 Make sure your offce is follow- ing you. You've spent signifcant time and money developing, testing and advertising your brand. Make sure your agents are taking advan- tage of that work by using the bro- kerage branding on their business cards, signs and other materials. Confrm that your offce understands your brand strategy and uses the tools you provide to help convey that message. 8 Maintain a personal touch while leveraging technology. Customers want to be able to reach their agent, understand the transaction and know where they are in the process with ease. Take advantage of tech- nology, whether it's e-signature tools or the latest CRM software to help your agents provide state-of-the-art service. And make sure the human touch is there with follow-up phone calls or texts, customer satisfaction surveys and face-to-face interaction. 8 Communicate your value in your own way. Not everyone has to have a blog; not everyone has to tweet. If your real strength lies elsewhere, trying to fake it isn't going to help you communicate your value. Un- derstand that what you're selling is knowledge, service and the value you and your frm bring to the deal over and above what the competition can provide. If that's best presented through cold-calling, community in- volvement, or more traditional mar- keting channels, then don't shy away from the tried and true. 8 Encourage lifelong learning through professional development such as designations and certifca- tions. By committing to continued study, you and your agents are dem- onstrating a desire to provide a bet- ter class of service to clients. And the results bear this out: Surveys consistently show that agents with designations and certifcations have higher incomes than those without. A great place to start is the Accred- ited Buyer's Representative (ABR®) designation. Not only will the train- ing enhance the skills and knowl- edge of your offce, an ABR® desig- nation comes with membership to REBAC that provides specialized marketing tools and continuing edu- cation resources to leverage your skills down the road. Professionalism is essential for growing your business. Understand yourself and what you're good at, create a plan, work hard and be con- sistently customer-focused. Soon enough, you'll be on the path to fol- low your colleagues in the REBAC Hall of Fame. Be sure to check out the latest inductees featured on page 57. RE Marc Gould is vice president, Business Specialties, for the National Association of REALTORS® and executive director of REBAC. A wholly-owned subsidiary of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), The Real Estate Buyer's Agent Council (REBAC) is the world's largest association of real estate professionals focus- ing specifcally on representing the real estate buyer. With more than 30,000 active members, REBAC awards the Accredited Buyer's Representa- tive (ABR®) designation to REALTORS® who work directly with buyer-clients. To learn more, visit REBAC.net. Professionalism Is the Key by Marc Gould W hen buyers are looking to hire an agent, what tops their list of criteria? According to the National Association of REALTORS®' Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, not surprisingly, the answer is 'honesty and integrity.' And with statistics showing that over half of all business comes from either referrals or previous experience, good brokers know that professionalism is the key to growing their business. But how do you demonstrate and market your professionalism? How do you communicate your value proposition? Here are some ideas:

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