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Secrets to Making Market Analytics Work For You

November 11 2010

michelle carter picIf you are looking to add a new tool to your arsenal that could be the difference between winning a client and being side-stepped by another agent, consider market analytics.  The local variability of the real estate market has created uncertainty and hesitancy with many consumers. Have you ever considered learning about these trends and being able to calm buyers and sellers with local market awareness?

This week I spoke with Michelle Carter, VP of Sales & Operations at Trendgraphix and we discussed the value of real estate agents using market analytics to drive their business.  Michelle is clearly passionate about the value of market statistics to the agent.

Real estate markets vary constantly both regionally and across the country.  As a real estate agent, if you don’t understand what is happening on the local level you can’t compete as easily,” explains Carter.

If we are considering the average home buyer, there are a lot of companies providing housing statistics to consumers without agents.  Statistics are not hard to come by.  An informed, trusted real estate advisor is.  Real estate agents using market statistics to educate and guide their clients generally are more successful than those that do not.

Looking particularly at Gen X and Gen Y, the desire for proven facts and credible advisors is paramount. NAR recently released data from 2010, where 42% of all home buyers where in this demographic (under 34 years of age). 

NAR 2010 home buyer ages

*This graph was taken from the 2010 NAR Profile of Buyers and Sellers.

Targeting this audience and being able to answer their questions and concerns is vital to long term success in this industry.

Gen Y clients look to establish a relationship founded on trust.  Gen Y is tech savvy, but they are searching for a personal relationship.  An agent can walk into a meeting and use market statistics to educate themselves and the client, thereby establishing credibility, and use their personality to sell their service. This is the goal of market statistics,” Michelle observed.

Certainly being educated on local housing market trends helps the real estate agent position his or herself as the trusted advisor younger generations are looking for. Home buyers are looking at putting a ton of money into a house.  Before doing this, they need to know their money and financial decision is in good hands.  Providing third party data can certainly help the buyer and seller come to the point of sale with more confidence, especially as it relates to advertising through education.  WAV Group calls this “edutizing”.

I asked Michelle to outline the top three benefits she saw in utilizing market statistics for growing a real estate business.  She gave the following tips:

1.)    Local Market Opportunities - An agent can use market statistics to look at their local market and see which areas/farms are most active right now. Where are the REO’s? Where are buyers buying? Sometimes you may need to change your farm to keep in business. Simply adjusting your farm by focusing on more active neighborhoods can make or break your sales year.

2.)    Getting the Listing - Market statistics are valuable to use in a listing presentation.  You walk into this presentation knowing and being able to showcase local trends and neighborhood patterns, and it buys you credibility.  You show professionalism, which leads to trust.  Understand how their home stands on the current market.  Knowing where the current homes are on the market, how they are priced and more are big selling points.  It puts you at an advantage for winning the listing.

3.)    Edutizing Campaign - Publicizing this useful data on your website, through social media channels and more can generate leads. Place county level statistics online and ask the buyers to call you for more information.  By doing this, you’re engaging the customer, and giving them another reason to contact you.  You are becoming the trusted advisor. You can talk beyond the statistics, explain them and predict more effectively.

Certainly Michelle is the first to admit statistics are just statistics, but that it takes a sales person to sell the service.  An agent does not always benefit from relying on one tool too heavily.

She and I discussed the importance of reading your client.  Not all clients want to have graphs shoved under their nose in a listing presentation.

“Some people are number people, engineers at heart.  These clients do well with numbers and enjoy seeming the ebbs and flows presented as data. Others are more visual and like to see colorful charts and interesting graphs,” explains Michelle.

She goes on to say, “My advice is to educate yourself, look at the graphs before and then sit in front of the customer and just talk to them.  If you want to bring out the graphs, they are there for you.  But if the person isn’t interested in quantitative evidence, put them away. It’s all about reading the audience.”

Market statistics can be an influential tool to utilize in your business.

When considering market statistics, Michelle is quick to note that, “Agents do not need another complicated service to bog them down.  Agents don’t have time to sit down and figure a program out. If I were an agent, I would look for a product that is quick and easy to understand.”

Michelle works with Trendgraphix, a market statistics provider based in Sacramento. If you are interested in learning more about their products, please click here.

If you would like to look at market analytic products, please click here.

If you would like to read the WAV Group Edutizing whitepaper, please click here.