You are viewing our site as a Broker, Switch Your View:

Agent | Broker     Reset Filters to Default
EXIT Realty Supports Creative Solutions to Help People Afford Homes
With U.S. housing prices rising exponentially faster than incomes, EXIT Realty is driving creative solutions at local, state, and even national levels to make housing affordable for all. Recent reports show stark disparities between people's income and the cost of homes. The median sales price of homes nationwide has nearly doubled in the last decade, to about $408,000, while incomes from 2010 to 2020 increased just 15%, to about $67,500. That means buying a home is more challenging than usual. The traditional rule of thumb is that a home's price is about two and half years of income. Now, on average, it's six times a person's annual income. "Over the last 30 years, the median income really hasn't gone up that much for a household or a family, compared to how much housing and the cost of living have increased," said Tami Bonnell, Co-Chair of EXIT Realty Corp. International. "On top of that, housing prices increased even more during the pandemic and rent costs are higher in many places than owning homes. Simply put, safe, affordable housing is an urgent need." "However, as we look around America, there is hope for solutions to this problem, and at EXIT Realty, we are helping to lead these creative solutions that can get more people into homes they can afford." Individual real estate agents can make a difference, Bonnell said, such as EXIT's Corwyn Melette, broker and owner of EXIT Realty Lowcountry Group in North Charleston, South Carolina. Melette grew up in the rural South at a time when tobacco farming was declining and military bases closing, so he has been dedicated to finding affordable housing solutions and helping people build the dream of homeownership, especially first-generation homeowners. In a webinar interview with Bonnell, as seen below, Melette shared teaching moments, including the importance of exposure through experience, the first places people should look for affordable housing options, success stories and next steps. Bonnell also points to bigger system-level fixes, like a California Association of REALTORS'® plan, in partnership with various nonprofits, to close the gap that impacts the state's underserved communities regarding homeownership, and the National Association of REALTORS' call for measures to develop affordable housing. EXIT also supports measures to encourage the construction of what Bonnell calls the "missing lane" to homeownership: the multi-family duplexes, triplexes, four-plexes, and townhomes, traditional affordable starter homes that have dropped out of favor with builders. Local and state governments can promote their construction with remediation, zoning changes, financing adjustments, tax credits, and other programs, Bonnell said. "We're extremely encouraged by the creative solutions we're seeing enter the marketplace and by seeing organizations join together to create affordable housing," Bonnell said. "We're also proud of our real estate professionals who are educating potential buyers on financing the homebuying process in their local communities and helping them become homeowners. EXIT was founded on the idea of helping people — both our agents and their clients — to live their dreams, and so we are dedicated to homeownership, the traditional number one way to build true family wealth and stability."
MORE >
Big Data Solves the Lead Quality and CRM Problems in Real Estate
Remember years ago when conferences had sessions and tracks on big data mashups? It was a headliner topic that led to a bunch of companies proclaiming that their predictive analytic algorithms could tell Realtors when a consumer had a high propensity to buy or sell. Investors backed these companies with millions. Also, agents and brokers jumped in to find better, faster, and cheaper methods for finding customers. It failed, and they are all gone now. As it turns out, those people who were in a good position to buy or sell were not actually as likely to buy or sell as the data suggested – but big data is still around, and at least one mashup is making remarkable strides. Last week, WAV Group was given an update from Darr Aley, co-founder of Aidentified, to gain an understanding about the status of big data and mashups. Aidentified refers to their mashup as an identity graph. Today, the data market is divided into consumer data (Experian, etc.) and professional data (ZoomInfo, etc.). Aidentified's identity graph combines those two and adds a relationship mapping cloud (social media connections) along with events (when their customer has an IPO, investment received, stock transaction, management changes, news mentions, etc.). Lead Quality Improvement Agents and brokers spend a lot of marketing dollars on digital lead generation. The goal is to get a consumer to raise their hand by providing their name, email, and phone number on a lead form. At best, lead generation companies use big data to validate that the phone number and email address is valid. Other than that, agents get very little information about the lead. To improve the value of a lead, Aidentified uses a process called "match and append." The integration with Zillow will add more than 150 possible attributes to the lead – household information, spouse information, wealth category, income category, etc. On top of that, Aidentified will tell the agent how they are connected to them (social media – first- or second-level connection). A Compass agent received a Zillow lead on a $15 million property. The agent was able to see that the lead was a teacher, but also that her husband was an executive at Apple and that they currently live in a $10 million home. This completely changes the picture. CRM Problem There is a numbers game to CRMs. It is a sales funnel. A new term coined by leading real estate coach Tom Ferry is "clients under management." In the CRM game, contacts matter. The more quality contacts that an agent has, the more transactions and referrals the agent will get. Five-hundred high quality contacts that are routinely worked by the agent should yield about 12 transactions a year. On the surface, the math seems straightforward, but when you dig in deeper you find that most agents' CRMs are a leaky bucket. The leaky bucket is caused by people moving (ouch – lost deal and direct mail bounces), changing phone numbers, or changing email addresses (email bounces). But there is more than that. Most agents do not have spouse information, do not know about the household's career or wealth, etc. A different Compass agent was notified about the news announcement that Charles Schwab was moving their corporate headquarters out of San Francisco to North Texas. He used Aidentified to find all 17 executives at Schwab and started marketing to them, securing two very high-end listings and referrals to a Compass agent in Texas. To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
MORE >
Which of These 3 Reasons Convinced You to Use THE Software Tool Brokers Encourage Most?
MORE >
LeadingRE Adds Milestones to Solutions Group Program
Leading Real Estate Companies of the World announced that it has selected Milestones for its Solutions Group program, a collection of preferred business resources for the global network of 550 real estate firms. Milestones offers technology solutions that allow real estate professionals to continuously create repeat and referral business through enhanced customer lifecycle management. Milestones creates private client portals ("hubs") for real estate professionals to collaboratively guide clients to buy, sell, move, and manage home ownership. Hubs connect to a brokerage's existing tech stack – CRM, websites, transaction management, etc. Hubs are designed to provide a comprehensive and personalized customer experience throughout the decade-long transaction and home ownership journey. The Milestones platform also allows brokerages to deeply integrate in-house ancillary services such as mortgage, title, and insurance into the client experience, creating new revenue sources and enhanced brand awareness. "Buying real estate is a complex process. Milestones puts the entire customer experience in one place — including searching homes, scheduling events, signing contracts, hiring service providers, and more," said LeadingRE Vice President, Sales/Partnerships Jeff Kennedy. "Agents can guide clients to buy homes, sell homes, and get financing, from start to finish, in one central hub. We are excited to share this platform with our membership." "We are thrilled to join LeadingRE's Solutions Group and for the opportunity to partner with their network of industry-leading independent brokerages. We share a mutual vision of helping these brokerages serve the next generation of homeowners and agents. The Milestones platform not only allows agents to deliver personalized client service before, during, and after the transaction, but also provides brokerages with a marketplace platform for seamlessly integrating ancillary in-house services to create enhanced revenue opportunities," said CEO Dustin Gray. Learn more about Milestones at www.milestones.ai. Learn more about Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® at www.LeadingRE.com.
MORE >
Realogy to Rebrand, Change Name to 'Anywhere Real Estate Inc.'
MORE >
RealScout Wins Realogy's FWD Innovation Summit 2022
Realogy Holdings Corp. announced that RealScout, a real estate technology company that provides a full-featured search platform for real estate agents to collaborate with their clients during the home–buying process, was selected as the winner of the FWD Innovation Summit (FWD) 2022. Realogy's annual FWD competition is designed to accelerate technology innovation and help shape the future of the real estate services market. RealScout will receive $25k and prominent placement in Realogy's Open Ecosystem, a technology platform that brings together agents, brokers, partners and developers to enable choice, flexibility and customized solutions for home buying and selling and beyond. "Our team loves this industry, and we are steadfast in our commitment to supporting it," said Andrew Flachner, president and co-founder of RealScout. "One of the most exciting parts of our plan involves the integration of our platform with Realogy's open ecosystem. We believe that's the way the industry is heading, Realogy is leading the way, and we're excited to be a part of that story." FWD, Realogy's one-of-a-kind pitch competition, highlights forward-thinking technology, ideas and solutions to unlock opportunities for agents, brokers, and the consumers they serve. There were five finalists who presented their products and innovations to a panel of Realogy executives, brokers and agents. Runners up include Earnnest, Elm Street, Likely.ai and MaxaDesigns. "All of the finalists of this year's FWD Innovation Summit presented rich and meaningful technology that aid in various aspects of the real estate market and services, so selecting a single winner wasn't an easy task," said Kacie Ricker, senior vice president of Product, Realogy. "RealScout has a consistent track record of delivering a high-quality product, which is proven by successful implementations throughout our brokerage network. Even better, their product strategy is strongly aligned with our Open Ecosystem vision, so we're very excited to add this powerful tool to our Marketplace. Working seamlessly with our existing tech tools such as MoxiWorks, RealScout is going to be a powerful tool in our agents' arsenals." For more information about RealScout and their winning solution, please visit www.realscout.com.
MORE >
The Ultimate Guide for Real Estate SEO: Tips for 2022
MORE >
RPR Commercial: Trade Area Reports
If you're a commercial real estate practitioner, you need as many commercial tools in your tool belt as possible. That's because your clients look to and lean on you for expert recommendations and guidance. For the best tools, look no further than RPR (Realtors Property Resource). This digital platform, provided by the National Association of REALTORS®, offers a wide range of commercial data-based tools, analysis capabilities and reports. This includes the ability to run a trade area analysis and create Trade Area Reports. These reports allow you to deliver a summary of the demographics, economics and data tapestry segments for a defined area. A breakdown of a community and its residents' characteristics and spending habits are also explained in great detail. Of course, this type of information is crucial when advising your commercial clients on where to set up shop or renovate an existing property. Before we dive in on how to run Trade Area Reports in RPR, here's a quick primer on exactly what a trade area is and how it can help you (and your clients) make better commercial real estate decisions. Trade Area 101 Straight to the point, a trade area is a defined geographic area which generates the majority of its customers. Figuring out the size and scope of a trade area is a vital piece of the puzzle, because these boundaries help determine how we can measure the number of possible customers, their demographics, and their spending power. Knowing a community's customer base allows commercial agents and RPR users to approximate how much demand there is (or will be) for stores and services. This basically means: how many people (shoppers) are in a given area and how much do they spend on products and services? Knowing this data goes a long way in determining whether your clients' business is a good fit for success and growth. Contributing Trade Area Factors Many factors go into determining trade areas, especially when you're trying to map out convenience versus destination shopping habits. Some things to consider: Population size: The bigger the community, the bigger the trade area. Nearby competitors: The cutoff point where customers are drawn to a competing area. Destinations: Big box stores or discount department stores usually attract customers from a long distance. Business mix: A cluster of popular businesses tends to pull customers from a distance. Large employers: A business with lots of daytime employees means lots of lunch, snack and beverage dollars being spent. Traffic: High traffic areas, either by foot or by vehicles, typically have an impact on visitors and sales. Trade Area Report How-to Now that we know what factors go into defining a trade area, we can use the RPR Commercial Map to select an area and extract the data. For example, let's say you have a client who is looking to open a new boba/bubble tea retail shop, and they have a general idea (neighborhood, ZIP code, town) of where they want to open their location. With an RPR Trade Area Report, you can scope out the area in a map, define the trade area, and see if this area is indeed a smart choice. Here's a quick and easy "how-to" to get you started: Start by going to narrpr.com, and then toggle to "Commercial." Put in an address, ZIP code, town name, etc. in the search bar, and hit "search" (the little magnifying glass icon). Next you'll be presented with a map view of the area. Click on the "Draw" icon (it's a pencil to the right), and choose a way to set your boundaries. Start with radius, it's the easiest. Click "search this area," then click "Create a Report," in the upper right navigation. Next step is to click "Run Report" and follow the prompts. Look at all that wonderful consumer profile data! Now's the time for you to crunch the numbers and review all the statistics and determine how right an area is for your client to open up their store. Trade Area Wrap RPR Trade Area Reports are packed with up-to-date consumer data, they look polished and professional, and they're ready to send off to your clients in seconds. For a more in-depth look at RPR Trade Area Reports and analysis, check out this article: Commercial Trade Area Details, which includes a short video tutorial. To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
MORE >
MoxiWorks Announces New Homeownership Portal
MORE >
How to Manage an Entire Real Estate Transaction in the Cloud
Cloud-based technology is revolutionizing real estate. In addition to saving brokerages money, transitioning to the cloud has: made brokerages more efficient by streamlining and automating tasks, and helped increase resiliency by letting entire teams work anytime, anywhere. Did you know every step of a typical real estate transaction can be completely managed in the cloud? In this post, we follow an entire cloud-powered real estate transaction, from generating the lead to closing the deal. Listing lead generation A seller in your city sees a Facebook post about a home for sale in their neighborhood that your social publishing tool posted automatically from your MLS. The seller clicks on the post and is brought to your personalized website. At the top of the page, the seller sees they can request a free home valuation, backed by the best MLS data in the industry. To access their report, they fill out a contact form that feeds directly into your customer relationship management (CRM) software, so you can follow up with them directly. The lead also takes down your contact information from your website, and they give you a call (if you haven't already followed up first!). Listing marketing You electronically sign a contract with the seller to represent them in the sale of their home. After entering all their property information into the MLS, your digital marketing suite automatically creates a customized property site and social media marketing campaign that starts getting posted immediately to Facebook. All posts link back to a customized virtual property tour, and potential buyers can create an account on your site to stay up to date about new listings. Buyer lead capture When a potential buyer conducts a saved search on your site, calls your office, sends you an email, or uses one of the myriad other ways to get in touch with you, their contact information is captured by your CRM and turned into a lead. You're notified and can get back to them quickly to help them find a house to buy. Recommended properties You can stay in touch with your buyer leads using recommended properties, which use AI to suggest additional listings tailored to buyers' saved search criteria. Every listing they see has the potential to be their perfect property, based on budget, location, number of rooms, and more. A prospective buyer who recently started receiving recommended properties emails through your website is interested in the listing, which could lead to a double-sided deal for your brokerage. Showing management Your listing has generated a lot of traffic and interest. You can keep track of everyone who sets up a showing using a cloud-based showing scheduler. Schedule push notifications to remind buyers of their appointments automatically and integrate with your TMS or accounting software. The buyer you're representing loves the listing and wants to put in an offer! Great news, you can manage all those steps in the cloud, too. Transaction and document management Instead of manually re-entering all the listing data into your transaction management software, you can import it from your MLS. Your TMS lets you set up customized workflows and checklists, so you never forget a crucial step. Best of all, you can ditch your scanners, copiers, and filing cabinets by going completely to the cloud with digital libraries and templates for every document you could possibly need. Accounting As the transaction moves forward, your team can track your brokerage's finances and manage all your invoicing, tax forms, credit card and ACH payments, and more from a single, web-based accounting platform. Intuitive dashboards help you with your weekly, monthly, and quarterly reporting and provide up-to-the-minute insight into your brokerage's finances. You can even automate your core bookkeeping tasks, freeing up time for your finance team. Electronic signatures Never let distance, business hours, or a lost pen keep you from getting the signatures you need to keep your transaction going smoothly. Electronic signatures are a secure, legal way to gather signatures from all the parties to a real estate transaction (and even your contractors, admins, and suppliers!). Both the buyer and the seller, as well as their agents, can keep the transaction flowing by signing documents from their phones to approve contingencies, inspection reports, deposits, and more. Commissions management Congratulations, you closed your latest deal and represented both buyer and seller! Now it's time to disburse the commission. No matter what split you use at your brokerage, you can set up, calculate, and pay out commissions and fees using the cloud thanks to new web-based commissions solutions. It even integrates with tools like QuickBooks and your TMS. Simply enter the splits, and when it's time to close, the tool does the rest for you. There you have it, an entire transaction flow completely in the cloud. To view the original article, visit the Constellation1 blog.
MORE >
Zillow Earnings Call: The Super App and Commission Revenue
MORE >
Howard Hanna Partners with Lone Wolf Technologies for Transaction Management, Digital Marketing and More
Lone Wolf Technologies and Howard Hanna Real Estate Services announced an expansion of their partnership that extends the broker version of Lone Wolf Transactions (zipForm Edition), as well as top digital marketing tools, Boost, Connect, and Spacio, and business intelligence from BrokerMetrics, to the entire brokerage. Howard Hanna's brokerage solution comes with a complete set of tools for agents, brokers, and staff, including built-in eSignature, a mobile application, and real estate's most robust broker file review process. Lone Wolf's digital marketing solution, Boost, delivers fast, easy, and effective digital ads to Facebook and Instagram, as well as to the most popular sites on the internet, while Spacio and Connect provide mobile tools for open house/event lead capture and client collaboration, respectively. The final piece to Howard Hanna's technology suite from Lone Wolf is BrokerMetrics, which delivers real-time data analysis on market share and market dynamics. These solutions combine to provide a complete experience from listing to close and beyond, putting leading technology in the hands of Howard Hanna's agents and brokers, so they have everything they need to run their business, improve profits, and deliver superior results to their buyers and sellers. "We're thrilled to partner with Howard Hanna, one of the biggest and best real estate companies in the U.S.," said Kyle Hunter, GM of Franchise for Lone Wolf. "This partnership represents the best of the real estate and technology worlds coming together to significantly improve marketing, transactions, and business management for everyone involved. Combined, these solutions offer Howard Hanna's agents and brokers a real estate experience like no other, which in turn helps them do the same for their clients." Howard Hanna is the largest privately held brokerage in the U.S. and the fifth-largest brokerage overall, with more than 125,000 transaction sides in 2021 and $36.5 billion in sales volume.* Since using Boost, Howard Hanna has seen over 337,000 leads generated a month, as well as a staggering 8.8% click-thru rate on their digital advertising efforts. In the last 30 days alone, Howard Hanna's advertising with Boost has netted over 15 million impressions and 94,000 total engagements from consumers. "We're excited to expand our partnership with Lone Wolf and extend these amazing solutions to our company," said Howard W. "Hoby" Hanna, IV, President of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services. "There are so many technology providers out there, but none can match the breadth of brokerage functionality of Lone Wolf. With Boost and Transactions already being used by our agents and brokers, the proof speaks for itself: Our partnership with Lone Wolf has already yielded significant results, and I'm confident it will continue to give our agents and brokerages a competitive edge in the marketplace in the years to come." *As disclosed by the RISMedia Power Broker Report
MORE >
Why Your Brokerage Needs to Move into the Cloud
MORE >
The Great Resignation Isn't a Threat for Top Real Estate Brands
Coldwell Banker Real Estate announced the results of its annual agent priority report, conducted by Quester among agents and brokers across top national real estate brands to keep a finger on the pulse of what real estate professionals value in their careers. In a time when the Great Resignation has posed a threat to many American workplaces, and competition for exceptional agent talent is substantial, the real estate industry may not be experiencing an exodus of current sales agents. The report's findings reveal that agent priorities among the real estate brokerage community are now more important than ever. Real estate is a desirable profession Citing work/life balance, increased income and gratitude for having a job, 60% of agents surveyed say the pandemic has had no impact on their future career plans as an agent, and about 25% say it has made them more interested in remaining an agent. For the third time, Coldwell Banker Real Estate ranked #1 in agent satisfaction. Coldwell Banker agents surveyed said they were extremely or very likely to recommend their current company to another agent. No need to leave A hot market makes for happy agents, with only 9% of all surveyed agents across all brands reporting that they plan to switch affiliation this year (vs. 20% in 2020). What matters most among agents open to affiliating with Coldwell Banker? Leading edge tech and tools: 98% A strong brand image: 97% Best equipped to navigate future of real estate: 97% Most knowledgeable agents: 96% Local expertise: 94% Recognized by buyers/sellers: 93% Coldwell Banker affiliated agents are less likely to change affiliation in the next two years than any other company's agents according to survey results. Agent Affinity Is Growing: Agents affiliated with the Coldwell Banker brand are less likely to change affiliation in the next two years than any other company's agents. Gold Star Opinion: Agents' opinion of the Coldwell Banker brand is higher than any other real estate brand. The top reasons for leaving For those agents not affiliated with Coldwell Banker who chose to leave their company, numerous factors were at play. According to the survey, reasons why agents who were not affiliated with Coldwell Banker left their previous brand included: Commission: 46% Referrals/Leads: 40% Team Support: 36% Better Tools: 31% Better Training: 27% Culture: 25% Local reputation: 20% Brand reputation is key Real estate brands have more competition than ever to retain and attract their top talent. A notable brand reputation will prevail, as most agents agree that their company's reputation is important to their business success. This sentiment is believed even more fervently among Coldwell Banker affiliated agents. Coldwell Banker brand tools and network support are unmatched, and affiliated agents surveyed have a lot to say about their experiences: "People trust the Coldwell Banker brand, and I get referrals because I work there. They also have a lot of training and support for new or busy agents. There are so many apps available, such as Listing Concierge, MOXI and InTouch that help me stand out from other agents." "Its reputation is unmatched. Everyone recognizes the brand and correlates it to excellence and professionalism," said one Coldwell Banker survey respondent. "I appreciate its reputation and Coldwell Banker has assisted me in my transactions and assisted me in gaining listings." "The company is very ethical, and the top people are great. They are very responsive to the agents' needs, and the company enjoys a great reputation. My customers and clients realize Coldwell Banker's reputation, so it makes it easy to do business. Survey methodology This survey was conducted online within the United States by Quester on behalf of Coldwell Banker Real Estate from Q4 2021 – Q1 2022, among 1,405 licensed real estate agents or brokers that work primarily in residential real estate aged 21-75. Quotes provided by affiliated agents are anonymous, but all interviewed consented to having their statements anonymously published.
MORE >
Our Top 10 Most-Read Articles of April
MORE >
Keller Williams Announces Diversity Certification
Keller Williams (KW) unveiled Agent of Distinction, a diversity certification for agents and leaders. "We're excited to announce Agent of Distinction, our new business certification that draws upon the power of diversity to fuel business growth and innovation," said Carl Liebert, CEO of kwx, an integrated home experience company. "We unleash unlimited potential when we lean into equity and inclusion." A five-module, professional education offering, Agent of Distinction provides the training, resources, and tools needed to tailor and grow a real estate business to appeal to a wider customer base. "The residential housing market is becoming more diverse and homeownership in America has an increasingly multicultural future," said Julia Lashay Israel, head of DEI, kwx. "With Agent of Distinction, our agents have access to the best tools to serve this ever-changing market," said Israel. "And it's all part of our strong commitment that the future of real estate has opportunity and promise for all." Agent of Distinction training modules: Grow Through Our Differences Dimensions of Diversity Inclusive Advertising and Marketing Grow Your Business Through Community Partnerships Create an Inclusive Business Plan Agent of Distinction benefits: Identify best practices for working with clients from various dimensions of diversity. Learn steps to build and implement a diverse business strategy. Learn about demographic trends affecting real estate. Locate community organizations to partner with to grow your business. Prior to registering for Agent of Distinction, agents are required to take two prerequisite DEI courses, "Unconscious Bias" and "Color of Real Estate," which are available to all industry agents free of charge. Available to KW agents, Agent of Distinction is offered in a self-paced, on-demand format. In 2022, KW has plans to open the new certification to all industry agents. Find more information here. Israel chairs the Social Equity Task Force (SETF) for associates and kwx's internal employee DEI committee. In 2020, KW announced the creation of the SETF. At that time, Gary Keller, executive chairman of kwx and co-founder of KW, charged the SETF to "come forward with recommendations for action to eliminate any racial disparity within our company, our industry, and how we can lead the way in the communities where we live and work." Agent of Distinction stems from those ongoing efforts. In 2020, KW also added a new core belief "Equity: Opportunities for all" to the KW Belief System.
MORE >
RPR Integrates with ClimateCheck to Offer Property Risk Ratings
MORE >
Redfin Partners with Constellation1 to Power Market Expansion
Constellation1 has been selected by Redfin, one of the most visible technology-driven brokerages in the industry, to provide MLS data delivery and processing via the Constellation1 Real Estate Data APIs. The deal reinforces the commitment of Constellation1 to providing top-tier data quality and services to brokerages, franchises, MLSs and vendors. Redfin relies on access to high-quality listing data capable of providing real-time updates to power its brokerage, website and apps, including popular consumer features such as instant home notifications, home recommendations and the Redfin Estimate. Redfin previously handled all MLS data syndication and expansion in-house. To expand its listing search experience to consumers across North America, it turned to Constellation1 Data Services, an end-to-end, best-in-class real estate data processing solution for MLS data aggregation and syndication. "Our partnership with Constellation1 will accelerate our market expansion, allowing Redfin to become a truly national search destination much faster than we could have via our own engineering resources," said Christian Taubman, Redfin's Chief Growth Officer. "Data accuracy has always been a core part of Redfin's consumer experience, which is why we selected a partner with a proven track record of data excellence and reliability." Constellation1 Data Services runs via a serverless cloud-based architecture to provide lightning-fast listing data and images. It allows for real-time automation of data processing and scaling capable of processing massive amounts of data quickly and reliably. The plug and play solution utilizes the latest RESO Data Dictionary and transport protocols. "Constellation1 recognized the need for improved access to and syndication of MLS listing data and began making investments for our own websites, leading to the Constellation1 Data Services center of excellence," said Andrew Binkley, President of Constellation1. "It's very rewarding that Redfin has recognized the value of our listing API and how Constellation1 Data Services can propel their growth strategy." Constellation1 has created the most comprehensive real estate data APIs with nationwide coverage and is recognized in the industry as the preferred data services team leveraged by brokerages, MLSs, franchises and vendors.
MORE >
Your Tech Provider Was Just Sold, Now What?
MORE >
What Are the Different Types of APIs?
API is short for Application Programming Interface. It is one of the most powerful and adaptable ways to integrate different software applications. APIs make it easier to embed content into your websites or other applications. As a result, you may provide the user with a seamless user experience and relevant and up-to-date information. That is why API is vital to everyone working in this business. MLS data is transferred through API to websites, apps and more. Without further ado, let's dive into our main topic for today—the different types of API. The Types of APIs There are four different types of API, namely: open API, partner API, internal API and composite API. Real estate pros require a real estate-specific API for their IDX and other listings data. Read on to learn more about the four different types of API and their traits. Open APIs Open APIs, also known as external APIs or public APIs, have no restriction to access, and developers from different companies can access them. They may require a registration API key, or be publicly open. However, they are meant for external use. Partner APIs Partner API is a lot like open API. The only difference is that it only is for business-to-business interactions. It requires specific permissions and licenses, and is not available to the public. Internal APIs Internal APIs are also known as private APIs. They are the opposite of external APIs and are designed for internal data sharing and connecting systems. Composite APIs Composite API is a more extensive API that connects two or more APIs to combine a series of connected or interdependent operations. It is responsible for creating better performance and speed, especially when dealing with complex API behaviors. Why Are APIs Important? Increases speed and performance Helps companies with data sharing and connecting systems Improves user experience Saves cost, and Creates new revenue opportunities What Are API-First Companies? "API-first" is a term that describes a new model of software development designed by connecting both external and internal services through different APIs. With API-first, developers can build convenient products with higher quality with better digital value. API-first companies use APIs to operate most of their data available to partners and customers. They help you manage all your data to complete various requests. Final Words Real estate professionals can now seamlessly integrate MLS listings on their websites with API while streamlining other company processes. For example, Organic RESO API Integration helps real estate professionals build flexibility and simplicity into their MLS connection while increasing SEO value. To view the original article, visit the Realtyna blog.
MORE >
Howard Hanna and MoveEasy Partner to Launch Hanna Home Concierge
MORE >
Bay Street Realty Group: From the Ground Up
Just 19 miles east of historic Beaufort, South Carolina, lies a place called Fripp Island. With its slightly whimsical name and miles of pristine beaches, it's not hard to imagine that Fripp Island is a place where Southern hospitality reigns supreme, where people smile and greet you as if you're an old friend. At just over six and a half square miles, Fripp Island is also the sort of place where the favored mode of transportation is a golf cart. Tourists — the thousands who flock to those beaches and restaurants and well-manicured putting greens — frequently rent them by the day or week. Fripp Island is a lot of things, many of them worthy of a postcard. What some people might not expect, however, is that Fripp Island is also home to the origins of the largest and most respected real estate company in the South Carolina Lowcountry and Coastal Georgia regions. What is now Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Bay Street Realty Group/Cora Bett Thomas Realty got its start on Fripp Island when partners Ken Willis and David Hornsby began developing the area in the late 80s. Turns out, a lot of those golf carts are the product of Willis and Hornsby's work. The pair turned the area into one of the best amenity-based community developments with a marina, two golf courses, a 1,500-member club, and 450 rental units. Since those early days, Bay Street Realty Group has grown by leaps and bounds, with highly-trained and successful sales associates and by uniting with other top brokerages, most recently, Cora Bett Thomas Realty. Through all those changes, one thing has remained the same: Bay Street Realty Group has never forgotten its start on Fripp Island. That small, picture-perfect island has served as the setting for thousands of family memories over the years, and, to some extent, the same holds for Bay Street Realty Group. The family-focused mindset that cemented itself in the core of everything Bay Street Realty Group does began on Fripp Island. That mindset has defined the company for over four decades. "It's all a big family feel, which is nice because that's the atmosphere that we create," Marketing Director Meg Wynne says. "Once you start, we want you to stay forever. We like to hold on to people and create that big family atmosphere." Expanding Horizons Growth has always been the name of the game for Bay Street Realty Group. Putting Fripp Island on the map by successfully developing the area wouldn't have been possible without a predisposition and obvious enthusiasm for growth. Still, growth without purpose has never had a place in the company's plans. Instead, the focus has been on meaningful evolution, on taking the next step because it makes sense. Not just because the company wants to keep on walking — metaphorically, at least. It's that philosophy that influenced Bay Street Realty Group's expansion over the last few years, and in 2017, the company acquired Island Realty, where partner Todd McDaniel was a managing member and one of the founding owners. Now, Bay Street Realty Group's South Carolina team has over 150 years of combined lifestyle-based community homes sales and development experience. Together, the group also has experience in more than half a dozen markets in and around the Beaufort area, providing would-be and current clients with the sort of knowledge they can't find anywhere else. "By acquiring and joining forces with some of the best brokerages around, we can offer more and keep our culture and mindset consistent, under one unified brand," says Willis, owner and South Carolina Broker in Charge. "We've worked very hard to bring everyone together and unify our processes and services." That hard work has paid off, too. By Q3 in 2021 Bay Street Realty Group had boasted 555 transaction sides in the Beaufort Market. But success is not confined to a single area. Or state, for that matter. In 2019, the company took its next step philosophy up a notch and jumped into the Georgia real estate market with both feet. Partner Will Thurman was placed as Managing Broker for Georgia, and Bay Street Realty Group acquired Southeast Coastal Property, Bob and Reba Laramy's successful Savannah-based real estate company, with 35 new agents. It was that acquisition that initially opened a conversation with Cora Bett Thomas Realty, a long-time market leader in the Savannah/ SC Lowcountry region. Talks progressed quickly, and by early 2020, the acquisition of Cora Bett Thomas Realty was announced. Suddenly, Bay Street Realty Group had 85 new agents, who collectively produced $291 million in sales in 2019. And they haven't slowed down. In November 2021, the Savannah market saw listings spend an average of just 53 days on the market, down more than two weeks from the previous month. It's those acquisitions and growth, seizing opportunities as they arose, that has quickly turned Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Bay Street Realty Group into the largest agency covering both the SC Lowcountry and Coastal Georgia. It's also ensured that the company has settled into its reputation as a trusted real estate partner, providing unparalleled service. "Our exponential growth in the Lowcountry displays the strength of our leadership and the trust and knowledge of our expert agents," says Thurman. "We promise trust, integrity, stability, longevity, and the highest standards of work." Georgia on Their Mind Combining two different things is never easy. Even the most basic recipes require a good bit of mixing to create the perfect batter, and matching prints is occasionally a fashion risk. But, more often than not, the mixing pays off and whatever comes out of the oven tastes delicious. The new outfit draws compliments and perhaps a social media post or two. When it comes to combining real estate companies, though, the technique isn't always as simple, and even the best-laid plans sometimes have to be altered in the face of an international health pandemic. Such was the case when, in 2020, Bay Street Realty Group and Cora Bett Thomas Realty joined forces under the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices umbrella. Discussions between the two companies in 2019 were positive from the start. Progress was made, and ideas were tossed around for the collective future of the pair. What they didn't count on was implementing all those ideas at the height of COVID-19 or the challenges that situation would present. "We went from 40 agents to all of a sudden, you have 100 agents, and you're trying to have everyone get along, work together, and it's COVID, so you can't get them together," Wynne says. "We had to do everything virtually. They were onboarded virtually. We had to turn to technology." Throughout the acquisition process, finding a balance between the companies was key. That also included Southeast Coastal Property, which came on board the year before. Practices differed from office to office, and establishing a new baseline for everything wasn't always easy when it couldn't be done in person. "Each office used different technologies for different things. South Carolina office was Google Suite heavy, whereas the Cora Bett Thomas office was not. The Southeast Coastal Property office had different processes and different technologies," recalls Lindsey Nix, Digital Director. "So you were taking everybody's day-to-day systems and saying, 'Okay, well what's working? What do we want to keep? If we want to change something, how do you change it without offending or disrupting?' Of course, bringing Cora Bett Thomas Realty into the fold wasn't simply about streamlining a single organizational system. Agents had to be quickly brought up to speed on their new normal, as well. "That took a good year of shifting things around and also people and job roles and saying 'Hey, we value you. We don't want to lose you, but things are going to look a little different,' Nix details. "Everybody did a fantastic job. Sometimes I feel like we're a whole different company a year and a half later. "You're trying to get everyone together," Nix continues, "and that's not always easy, but, like Meg said early on, we focused on keeping that family mentality because that's what is most important to the partners and staff." Zoom meetings became more than a trend throughout those early 2020 weeks. Bringing agents together required the technology, packing schedules and sparking introductions, even when it wasn't always the preferred method of communication. "That was a hard thing because in the South, I mean, it's all about connections and talking face-to-face with people and who you know," Wynne says. "We had to remove that part almost, which did make it hard to get to know the agents, but over time it's all worked out." Among those things that technology helped work out was adding an almost surprising sense of scheduling ease to the entire endeavor. Yes, Zoom meetings meant less in-person communication. What it did do, though, was, as Nix details, allowed the companies to "hold things more frequently, hold training more frequently." "If we were doing something with all 100 agents or encouraging all 100 agents to participate, we didn't have to worry about finding a venue that would accommodate that," Nix adds. "There were some pros, definitely, of having it done virtually. Of course, with COVID, in the beginning, that was a big concern. We didn't want to jeopardize anybody's health or put anybody at risk. It made it easy for us to maintain speed, but take into account what was happening in the world." Despite the myriad of challenges and, sometimes, surprising victories remote work presented, the acquisition did have two rather prominent silver linings. First, this was a move borne of collective desire, with both Bay Street Realty Group and Cora Bett Thomas Realty striving to ensure it happened. Second, it came with the bonus of Cora Bett Thomas' incredible real estate reputation. "Cora Bett Thomas Realty left a legacy in the Savannah Lowcountry region, and instead of stifling that force and brand, we wanted to bring the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices brand and support into the mix," Thurman says. "We looked at the strengths and weaknesses of both brokerages and adapted what we felt was the best of each." One of the most recognized names in the market, Thomas first came to Savannah in 1969 and immediately became active in historic home restoration before turning her attention to real estate in 1976. In 1994, she decided to start her own agency on her dining room table. Thomas has been nationally featured in the Wall Street Journal and New York Times for her luxurious listings, and it was that background that helped spark interest and enthusiasm across the board when it came time to get the companies up and running together. "We were all very excited about it," Wynne said. "Even though you're working hard, it was fun and a great learning experience, and we gained from the strengths of those around us, as well." Brand Power Through all of the changes Bay Street Realty Group has undergone in the last few years, perhaps one of the most impactful was the decision to, in 2018, align with the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices brokerage network. Joining the network gave Bay Street Realty Group access to one of the most trusted names in real estate, with thousands of offices across the United States and worldwide. "We're backed by one of the largest and most successful global real estate networks," Hornsby says. "When our name goes on a real estate sign, it means something. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices is the name buyers and sellers trust." With Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices in their corner, Bay Street Realty Group has built up its training programs, providing agents with the latest updates and information to keep them at the top of their game. Because when they're serving a market as large as the one Bay Street Realty Group agents are, there's no room for missteps. "All of our agents stay informed on the latest market trends and technology, ready to equip [their clients] with the knowledge [they need in their] next real estate transaction," Hornsby says. "Working diligently behind the scenes is the region's most comprehensive support staff, dedicated to assisting our agents and customers every step of the way." And while Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices provides a global scope for real estate success, Wynne is also quick to point out the network's personal touch. "I've felt this since the beginning, we have our family atmosphere within our brokerage, but at a larger level, we also have that," Wynne says. "[Corporate is] always just a call away. There's always someone to reach out to, no matter what the problem is. [Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices] has almost 1,700 offices now across the United States, and you think you'd be lost in that and you're not at all." Buoyed by that confidence, training throughout the Cora Bett Thomas Realty acquisition was another victory for the brand-new collective company. "From the Cora Bett Thomas side, we were LeadingRE and luxury portfolio, and that had great training," Nix says. "It built a good network, but I think Berkshire Hathaway offers so much more, so we were very excited about that potential. I know as staff, as well as the agents, once they learned what was available under the Berkshire Hathaway name and network, it became, 'Oh, this is going to be a better situation. This is going to be an improvement. We're going to have access to so much more.'" Now, more than a year removed from combining forces, training remains one of the most consistent practices across the company's offices. Agents can fine-tune their approach with a host of learning opportunities, and, as McDaniel says, the company prides itself "on our agent support in both staff and technology." "Whether an agent is new to real estate or has been practicing for years, when they come to our brokerage, it's the common trait of hard work that adds to our overall culture and success," McDaniel continues. "Being a part of such a great network, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices already offers a great resource for agent training. As a brokerage, we've taken it a step further to offer brokerage-level training and one-on-one training to ensure our agents understand all the tools available to grow their business. We have found that continual and consistent training yields the best results and growth for our agents." Cultivating Culture From the very first day in the company's history, Bay Street Realty Group has built its success on the foundation of a strong family atmosphere. People are more than the next transaction opportunity they represent or the numbers they bring in, and every acquisition, every next step, has been a way to expand that family. But, just like any good family, combining different traits and traditions has required a bit of balance, a hint of patience, and a little determination to see it all through. "We have a running joke," Nix says, "Chatham County is the county we live in, in Savannah. We always say, 'Oh, well, that's just the way it's done in the state of Chatham.' Some of the things and trends do cross state lines. But sometimes, Meg and I will have a conversation and be like, 'Well that's not how we do it in Beaufort,' and I'm like, 'Well it's never going to fly in Savannah like that," so that does have an impact on our agent culture as well." Although there are differences between offices and past trends, Nix adds that the biggest similarity is also the most important, saying, "[Everyone] is so hyper-local in a lot of ways." Finding common ground hasn't always been easy, but Wynne and Nix have prioritized it. The family mindset hasn't changed, but the family itself has, and that's required some getting used to. "It's almost like Savannah is a New York City compared to Beaufort sometimes, but then there's a perfect middle too," Wynne says. "It's different, but between the two of us, we have done a great job to make sure that the cultures fit together and that we have a happy medium for all of our agents, too." And when it comes to finding agents who mesh with the Bay Street Realty Group culture, it all comes down to initiative — much like Willis and Hornsby had when they first started on Fripp Island. Bay Street Realty Group is looking for agents who want to put in the work, who understand the markets and the areas, who want to foster relationships. Because it's those relationships that make all the difference. "People don't often realize that real estate is an entrepreneurial business. You're running your own little business," Nix says. "Of course, there's support from your brokerage, and that's why we're the best because we offer that support, but it's a two-way street. We want agents to show up. You have to produce and do things like that. For us, we're looking for the agent who wants to learn, who shows initiative because if not, there's going to be another agent who's going to come along, and they're going to have that, and they're going to be better." Bay Street Realty Group has also welcomed the youth movement amongst its agents. Real estate is a constantly-evolving industry, so it only stands to reason Bay Street Realty Group has embraced every shift. Growth is something of a tradition within the company, after all. And by bringing in new agents, those who want to make a name for themselves, agents Wynne describes as having "the drive... the want...and the sales ability," Bay Street Realty Group has built a corps of consistent producers. "That's one of [our] favorite things, to see when brand-new agents come in, and we get to watch their growth," Wynne says. "I'll get a text and be thrilled because it says, 'Meg! So-and-so just put $2 million under contract.' These young agents in their twenties, you watch them grow from coming in and not knowing anything to being successful and making more money than they have in their entire lives. That's one of the coolest things to see, in my eyes." Don't forget about that family-focused mindset, though. As new agents stretch their wings with Bay Street Realty Group, they can do so knowing they have the backing and support of those who have been there for years. Experienced agents often serve as mentors and advisors for the newcomers, offering suggestions and cultivating a sense of camaraderie that's apparent in every corner of every one of the company's offices. "We see a lot of teamwork," Wynne explains, "where we can get an experienced agent who knows the tricks of the trade, knows the language. They can mentor younger agents, but the younger agent can help them with technology or other things, and we see great relationships form that way too." Creating a Sense of Community Melding companies, finding similarities between first-time and experienced agents, and setting a tone that crosses state lines has been the driving force behind Bay Street Realty Group's success over the last few years. And that success is clear in just about everything the company does. Boasting a diverse group of agents — ranging from 25-75 years in age —who know the SC Lowcountry and Coastal Georgia region like the backs of their hands, Berkshire Hathaway Homeservices Bay Street Realty Group/ Cora Bett Thomas Realty finished 2020 with combined sales of $320 million. But while the numbers are impressive, this is not a company that has ever spent too much time focusing on the numbers. Instead, it's that family focus, the need to provide every client the best experience possible, and to be a constant presence in the communities it serves that stands as a marker of success for Bay Street Realty Group. "We think long-term and want [our clients] to be our friend and neighbor, not just our most recent sales transaction," McDaniel says. "Our desire is to be your forever agent and help you for decades make the wisest real estate decisions." Building that sort of company-wide attitude comes from years in the business and by bringing in the sort of people who share a similar point of view. Life beyond the transaction is important, as is remembering that agents are people who have interests in things outside the scope of their desk and real estate CRM. With that in mind, Bay Street Realty Group has focused its social media efforts on more than just simple new listing posts. Agent spotlights fill the company's Facebook page, alongside posts touting the beauty and opportunities the South Carolina Lowcountry and Georgia Coastal region presents. "We call [the area] our slice of heaven," Nix says. "We want to showcase that it's not just about the house. If you move here or if you live here and you don't know about some of these opportunities, how can you get plugged in in this community? How can you, again, go beyond that transaction?" The work is important, naturally. Berkshire Hathaway Homeservices Bay Street Realty Group/Cora Bett Thomas Realty has filled decades with successful work, helping couples find their first homes or families find their forever homes, working on the commercial and luxury side of the industry, and even teaming up with new developments across the 100 Mile Coast. But the work has always been the starting point, a stepping stone for something bigger and, often, better. Because it's by doing the work that the company can build those all-important relationships and become more than a realty company. These days, it's a group of like-minded individuals with a common goal and shared beliefs. "We still believe in showing up at the office to work, monthly sales meetings, and time together outside the office for company events," Willis says. "With four offices and two states, we couldn't achieve unification without our yearly brokerage event and holiday parties that keep the lines of communication open to all. Our agents carry that sense of family and honor over to their business relationships, and the Bay Street Realty Group local brand shines. The sense of community we've built within the office is mimicked in each transaction." Community has always been an important facet of Bay Street Realty Group's company-wide personality. This all started by building the community on Fripp Island, and, really, the only things that have changed in the ensuing years are the location of the communities and how Bay Street Realty Group is giving back. "Service is at the heart of real estate, or at least it is for us," Willis says. "We know it's just as important to serve our clients and our community. Between both states, we are involved in monthly community events that allow us to give back beyond property transactions. We can't live up to the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices brand without a sense of community." The company regularly partners with area schools, helping with athletics and school programs. This past holiday season, agents adopted a local child, purchasing items off their wish lists. Cora Bett Thomas Realty also recently served as the primary sponsor for the American Red Cross in Savannah, participating in the organization's annual golf tournament. No matter what they're doing, Wynne says the most important thing is that it's being done, and someone benefits from it. "We engage our agents," she adds. "It's important that we don't just write a check. We want to be out there, doing what we can." Taking Tech to the Next Level with Delta Media Group® Bringing together two of the most prominent real estate names in the SC Lowcountry and Coastal Georgia region during the COVID-19 pandemic required Bay Street Realty Group to depend on technology more than ever before. And with more moving pieces than ever before, Bay Street Realty Group needed a tech provider who could meet its every need, for every office, in two different states, as soon as that need arose. That's where Delta Media Group came in. Before the acquisition, Cora Bett Thomas had worked with Delta, Nix says, while Bay Street Realty Group was partnered with a different company. When the two joined forces, both providers were looked at, as the company's newly-melded leadership team examined what sort of tools and products each offered. "We said, 'Okay, which [company] is going to serve our new mass?'' Nix recalls. "Somebody was making a transition, one way or another." In the end, it was the Delta CRM, DeltaNET® 6, and website offerings that stood out. The easy-to-use technology within the DeltaNET gives Bay Street Realty Group agents a stress-free way of staying top of mind with clients and providing current listing information to prospects. And Nix adds that the "pairing of a website and a CRM" has been especially beneficial for agents. No matter what their experience or tech know-how may be, DeltaNET 6 gives them a one-stop shop to maintain all their information, allowing them to take stock and tackle to-do lists with ease. Training has also been key, with both Nix and Wynne utilizing Delta-provided resources, as well as Tech Tuesday videos and YouTube how-tos, to get the entire Bay Street Realty Group on the same page. "We take time on an individual level with each new agent to make sure they know the in's and out's of the CRM and website," Thurman says. "With a wide variety of technology skills within our brokerage, agent adoption ranges, but Delta does a great job of providing something for every skill set. Agents are becoming more and more accustomed to using technology in their everyday business." And, should an agent encounter a problem or a tool they aren't quite sure how to use, Nix credits Delta's industry-leading tech support for answering the call. Sometimes literally. "That constant communication was a big pro for [Delta] versus another third party company where they were like, 'I don't know, I haven't talked to so-and-so. I don't know how to do this,'" Nix details. "[Delta has] more internal resources." Change has become a habit for Bay Street Realty Group, and with one of its biggest changes — acquiring Cora Bett Thomas Realty — came another: Redesigning the company's website. Updating the site was, as Nix detailed, one of the main reasons Bay Street Realty Group opted to partner with Delta, and, months after making that decision, the company has never second-guessed itself. Filled with new features and designs, the site embraces Bay Street Realty Group's need to showcase everything the company offers. From history to property searches, relocation resources, and the company's blog, the retooled site gives would-be, past, and present clients everything they're looking for. "When Delta Media shared some of the new features and design updates, we were quick to make sure these changes were implemented on our website," McDaniel says. "Not only are the new changes going to improve our overall look and feel, but they will also make the user experience better, which is most important. We want our clients to feel at ease navigating our website." Staying current with their tech is always Bay Street Realty Group's goal, and, with Delta, that's easier than ever. Just like Bay Street Realty Group, Delta has long embraced that family focus and families often share. Even the tech-based ones. Because if a certain update can benefit more than one client, Delta is quick to implement it for everyone. "One of the things that I've always loved and still love today about Delta Media Group is when a thought process from one brokerage comes out, and it can make the site as a whole better, Delta adopts it for all," Nix says. "It's not, 'Oh, we're just going to give brokerage A this neat thought and this custom whatever. We're going to make it where we take that, and we put it into all of our websites or all of our CRMs because it's going to better the whole real estate industry.' That's one of [Delta's] better qualities." Looking Ahead There are plenty of ways and words to describe the last few years for Bay Street Realty Group. Growth, of course, immediately springs to mind. Change, too. Occasionally hectic, with jam-packed schedules and brand-new mindsets, using tech in brand-new ways — those all fit the description bill. But there are good words, too. Decidedly positive ones like exciting and new and plenty of opportunities. Together, all those words make up a mindset that is as focused now as it was during the early days on Fripp Island. Because while the markets have expanded and the world itself has changed, Bay Street Realty Group is still a company built on the idea of family, on offering the best possible real estate experience for clients and a professional home for agents to flourish. And that won't change anytime soon. "Beyond the obvious answer of keeping up with and exceeding our sales records, we want to continue to find more opportunities to aid agents in their marketing efforts and community involvement," Hornsby says. "Agent success is ultimately what creates brokerage success!" To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
MORE >
Howard Hanna Real Estate Announces Merger with HER, REALTORS
MORE >
Brokers Use Loft47 to Automate their Real Estate Commissions
The real estate industry relies heavily on integrations from its technology partners, even if it is just the ability to have a single sign-on (SSO). As a result, very few proptech firms do not have Open API to allow others access to information on their platforms. The challenge is finding a firm leveraging those Open APIs to solve a business problem. Then along comes Loft47, whose main objective was to solve a problem by providing a modern commission management tool and simplifying the flow of transaction information from contract to close. Loft47's approach is to create a "best of suite" tech stack for brokerages. It is a strategy that leverages Open APIs from other products to build SMART integrations and allows brokerages to focus on their business. Please see below for the full press release. Loft47 Leads Real Estate Back Office Accounting Innovation with Smart Integrations Brokers use Loft47 to automate their real estate commissions using SMART Integrations and Data Driven Dashboards Vancouver BC, CAN – April 6, 2022 – WAV Group, Inc. released a detailed report for real estate brokers in need of a modern and robust back office solution. WAV Group's report Smart Backoffice Integrations Saves Brokers Time & Money describes how Loft47's integrations with industry standard transaction management platforms and accounting systems are SMART and create a highly flexible technology stack that can accommodate the complexity of any individual brokerage. Loft47 is a modern commission management and accounting platform integrating with other key back office technologies and growing rapidly across North America. WAV Group went beyond the buzzword "integration" to find out how Loft47's smart architecture is a solution that goes beyond checking the integration box. These high-quality integrations with bountifully-functional APIs drive a seamless brokerage back-office from contract to close. The increasingly rapid adoption of digital tools for real estate operations has spurred on the introduction of new and modern software in the space. Brokers rely on a number of these modern tools to streamline data flow for the back office which will include any combination of listing management, form generation, e-signature, transaction management, commission management, payments, and accounting. Brokerages can also strategically grow their operations by adding goal setting, metrics and reporting tools to their technology stack. While many companies are attempting to introduce a one size fits all product, choice still reigns supreme in real estate. Getting agents to adopt a single transaction management platform or requiring an accountant to use a real estate specific accounting ledger can be near impossible. WAV Group found that Loft47 elegantly ties together a brokerage's transaction management, commission management, payments, accounting and reporting into one cohesive solution. Saving time and money at each step. The efficiency gains of modern platforms are often lost in systems that do not connect to each other. These systems have proven to be plagued by redundancy, which results in rounds of data entry errors. Wav Group's report specifically addressed the strength of Loft47's transaction management platforms SkySlope, Dotloop, and DocuSign Rooms. Loft47 is the leading commission management engine architected with SMART integrations as part of its core offering. WAV Group validated that Loft47 can accommodate flexibility and choice in technology tools without losing functionality, "If you are a broker who likes to provide agents a choice of which product to use in managing transactions, Loft47 is an excellent fit. A broker may have all three transaction management products configured simultaneously; thus, allowing their agents to use any one of them." Sasha Hryciuk, Founder and CEO, felt strongly about building Loft47 to connect to other best-in-class tools right from the beginning. "Loft47 is an accounting first, commission management platform, designed to support simple data flow." Hryciuk continues, "We believe that Brokers and Agents should have the ability to choose the tools that suit their business needs while continuing to enjoy the benefits of connected, seamless workflows. Integrations shouldn't be an afterthought." WAV Group Head of Technology David Gumpper has a vast history in back office technology. He understands the need for seamless dataflow. "My expertise has led me to consult with many small and large brokerages to pull data together similar in the way Loft47 facilitates out of the box. If you're already using some of the most common tools on the market like Dotloop, SkySlope, or DocuSign, then Loft47 is an ideal choice and a game changer for your operations." Learn more about smart integrations by visiting Loft47's website. About Loft47 Loft47 is the complete back office solution for real estate brokerages and agents. Loft47 integrates with other real estate tools to efficiently manage transactions, commissions, fees and communication with closing parties. More information is available at loft47.com. About WAV Group WAV Group is the leading consulting firm in the residential real estate industry, serving many of the largest and most successful small businesses, including real estate brokerages, technology companies, and local, state and national real estate associations. WAV Group helps each of its clients evolve and grow by delivering an unsurpassed depth of experience in technology, strategic planning, research, business development, sales, product development, marketing and communications in the real estate industry. The firm's diverse collection of global industry experience allows it to cross-fertilize ideas and bring best-of-breed solutions to its clients. More information is available at wavgroup.com. To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
MORE >
How Do Interactive Touch-Screen Signs Help Market Properties?
MORE >
DeHoff Realtors: When Opportunity Knocks
It started with an opportunity. And perhaps, just a hint of hope. Hope that purchasing a small real estate company in Northeast Ohio was the right choice. Hope that the venture would succeed. Hope that all the work would turn into something wonderful. Turns out, all that hope was well placed. More than 50 years after Ardis DeHoff decided to buy what would become DeHoff REALTORS®, the North Canton-based company continues to thrive. "[She] decided that this'll be fun, let's try it," President Linda DeHoff says of her mother-in-law's initial decision. "Then my father-in-law, who was with the Hoover Company for many, many years, decided that choosing between Hoover and his wife, no problem. So, he joined her, and the two of them built the company. We were so blessed to have the right foundation." At DeHoff REALTORS®, that foundation has rested on the principles of uncompromising ethics with a dedication to serving every client, customer, employee, and sales professional the company interacts with. This is a local, family business, yes — and it likely always will be, but there is more to DeHoff than its name. There is always the next opportunity, the next chance to provide exemplary service, and it's the drive to seize both that has defined the company for generations. "The brand, the name, has been built, is known, is respected, and it works," says Dave Maltese, General Sales Manager. "It's who we are. What we do, how we do it, and how we're connected to our community so much, it works because it is local. We think local, but still are global in our outreach." "[CEO] Robert DeHoff uses that quote a lot," Technology Coordinator Ty Colucci adds. "Live locally, think globally, and I'd say that's on point with our brand." Setting a Foundation Quality is key when it comes to DeHoff REALTORS®. Whether it's maintaining the company website, designing the FOR SALE signs that sit on lawns across the greater Canton area, or even deciding how to bring new agents into the fold, the dedication to quality is persistent. In fact, it's right there in the company's mission statement: "To provide high quality, ethical service to you, our customers, and clients that exceeds their expectations." Building a brand and a company-wide culture is never easy. Changing with the times is a prerequisite for success — especially in an industry as constantly evolving as real estate. What might have worked in the early 60s wasn't feasible in the 80s and is little more than memory now. But what doesn't change, at least for DeHoff REALTORS®, is that commitment to quality service, striking a balance between a local real estate office and big-scope business. And while the line can be a fine one to walk, DeHoff has managed to, all while maintaining a focus on the inherent humanity of the real estate industry. Because, at its core, real estate is about people. "Can a big corporation have the core values of a small family company? Yes," Linda DeHoff says. "They don't have to be different. If we think about them, they're the same. It's just the mechanics of it all." "It's in the DNA of who we are," Maltese adds. "Our core values have been around since the start. We haven't strayed from those. We're always looking to do the right thing, be involved in the community, and encourage our agents to be involved. It's about doing the right thing." Finding agents who mesh with that DNA has made all the difference for DeHoff REALTORS®. As Linda DeHoff explains, "this is not a headcount company." And, of course, it always comes back to quality. "We look at quality characteristics, and I think because of who we are and our reputation in the community, we attract those types of people, and it's a nice blend," Maltese says. "We're a large company, but yet still a family company." Part of DeHoff's family feeling comes in the form of training — the kind that Colucci says is "constantly evolving." "We are always reviewing our training, talking about our training, if we're fitting the needs of our agents," he adds. "And so, that training process is constantly evolving with the industry." Much like DeHoff itself — striking that blend of family and far-reaching — the company's training is a well-balanced mix. New agents can shadow those more experienced, getting a hands-on look at the ins and outs of the markets DeHoff serves and how best to interact with clients. By the same token, more experienced agents, those who didn't start their careers with technology as it is now, may get some tips and tricks from DeHoff's burgeoning real estate stars. "We provide a lot of different levels [of training]," Maltese says. "Which is also the way the consumer likes to receive it. We have consumers that are going to want to see a piece of paper and sit down and talk, and then we're going to have the other spectrum where it's like, can you email me that, and I'll sign it electronically, I'll get it back to you, and I don't need to see you today. So, we as a company try and deliver those same services to our agents so that they can, in turn, do it to the consumer." From the Ground Up Ardis DeHoff used to have something of a motto; one Linda recalls she would share with her quite often. She'd say, "Linda, don't worry. You get the car and worry about the garage later." What did that mean, exactly? It meant that concerning yourself with where to put your new car wasn't the most pressing issue. First, you had to get the actual car. The same held true for real estate and, in the case of DeHoff REALTORS®, growing that real estate business. Since first opening its doors in 1962, DeHoff has embraced growth and change in stride, but the key to successful growth came from a natural progression. Much like the company's beginnings — needing a new owner before Ardis purchased it — DeHoff's view on growth is a mix of organic and opportunistic. "Growth, oftentimes, comes not just organically, but from a need," Linda DeHoff says. "Somebody will come to us and say, 'There's a couple of people that want a certain product here that we are not delivering yet,' and that's almost how we grow. By people coming to us and saying we need this or need that. Obviously, we're looking out for opportunities too." From its beginnings with only a handful of agents and a brand-new name, DeHoff REALTORS® has grown with, as Maltese details it, "quality in mind," adding that "we've adapted along the way to market factors." In addition to buying and selling residential homes and consistently bringing in new agents, DeHoff has also developed 20-plus residential neighborhoods, plus apartments, and shopping centers, while offering multiple real estate services, including buying, leasing, and investing. Offering so many services to so many people not only allows DeHoff to become a one-stop-shop for clients' real estate needs but cements the company's reputation as a partner and presence in the community. For years, the DeHoff name has been synonymous with the Northeast Ohio real estate world, and that's only become more obvious with DeHoff Developments. Currently, the development division has about half a dozen people who work on commercial and residential projects. As part of those residential projects, DeHoff has literally been on the ground floor of single-family houses, condos, villas, apartment complexes, and assisted and independent living centers. Working on these projects offers DeHoff the opportunity to be part of the communities and neighborhoods from the very start. Same goes for the commercial side of the division; these buildings will become businesses that all those people in all those homes will visit. And for as much as it's been a natural part of DeHoff's growth to venture into development — including over 3,000 acres of land in Stark County the company developed for neighborhoods — it isn't an opportunity taken lightly. There's a certain responsibility that comes with building; one DeHoff is more than willing to shoulder. "I give the DeHoffs a lot of credit because they give thought to their developments: sidewalks, street trees, street lighting," Maltese says. "You go through a development that's ours, it has a look and a feel, and they, over the years, have looked at what characteristics people like. It almost goes back to, well, we're not just building a development, we want something that we can be proud of that is going to serve the community well, and it's going to be here a long time." DeHoff developments also add to the Northeast Ohio community in a way that some may not expect — with job development. Someone has to build those buildings, after all. "Even in the residential realm, it creates jobs," Colucci says. "Then when you get into industrial parks, and they're putting up these buildings, they can say, 'Well, listen, this is going to bring 600 jobs to the area. This is going to bring 900 jobs to the area.' So, I think that goes back to the community deal, and it's cool to be part of job creation in the local market." Building Together Those metaphorical people who come up with clichés say that home is where the heart is. For DeHoff REALTORS®, the cliché might be true. Home is where the heart of the company is, and that home is a 20,000 square foot corporate center in North Canton, Ohio. Built about 20 years ago, the office came from a need for a centralized space, one that allowed everyone associated with DeHoff to work side by side, building relationships, and that all-important company -wide culture. Executive offices are few and far between here, and if they do exist, their doors are often made of glass. Open floor plans create a sense of community as soon as someone crosses the office threshold. "When this [space] was developed, we did a little research and found that salespeople, in general, tend to be social," Linda DeHoff explains. "We developed that. And you'd never know necessarily the number one agent by where that person is positioned. "We did a lot of observation, and we have four rooms that are for conference centers. And one of them has an attached children's room," she continues, "so this room is attached with all kinds of things to play. The other rooms were developed in other styles. And the lobby was designed so that everyone is welcome. Agents see each other by means of the design. We wanted it to be friendly. It's developed by style and not production." The DeHoff office provides plenty of what Colucci calls "congregation areas," making it easy for anyone to sit down, start a discussion and form some sort of plan. What that plan centers around is constantly changing, but the most important part is that it's being talked about and worked on together. "This is not an 'I'm going to come in here and sit down at my desk, and I don't want to talk to anybody' place," Colucci says. "Part of the magic here is that we all can communicate. We all hang out together and talk business, and I think the development of this building allows us to do that." With so much going on, DeHoff's office allows the company to keep everything on track. Clients can be brought in to detail their real estate transactions, agents can work as a collective unit, and the DeHoff leadership team is only a few steps away. "Linda, Robert, and President Dan [DeHoff] are all in here every day, so if you have something that you need to go to them with, they're here," Maltese says. "It's not like we have a hundred offices, and Linda's here once a month, and we've got to wait for her to reply, so it certainly has a family atmosphere." The office is also another way DeHoff can give back. Opening the corporate center to the public simply made sense, with two conference rooms that area non-profits use as often as three to four times a week. And it's not just organizations using the space, either — one of DeHoff's agents recently hosted his family's Thanksgiving meal there. A Pillar in the Community For decades and multiple generations, the DeHoff family and the business that bears its name have become synonymous with Northeast Ohio and the communities that make up the area. Service, as far as the DeHoffs are concerned, is simply another facet of the real estate industry. To some extent, it's the company's invisible partner, and the company has long made good on that partnership. "We've said meaningfully that the career is an excuse to do what we're supposed to do anyhow," Linda DeHoff explains. "In many ways, certainly financial, [the career] helps us keep these lights on, but we're compensated in other ways, as well. By friendship, by support, by seeing that the family's happy, if it's a client in retail, that they're successful. "It's not an obligation; it's an opportunity," she continues. "We feel an opportunity to support those who helped us become who we are." DeHoff agents and leadership team have lived up to that mindset for years. A survey of those agents found that over 90% were involved in not-for-profits, either participating by giving of their time or money. As a company, DeHoff REALTORS® also regularly works with the United Way of Greater Stark County and Arts In Stark, which uses the arts to inspire local children, create new jobs, and establish healthier communities. "We've been successful raising funds for the United Way through our agents and staff," Colucci says. "As long as I've been here, 100% of [DeHoff has] given something to the United Way." In addition to Arts In Stark, DeHoff's corporate center is home to its own art gallery, showcasing the works of Lowell Ellsworth Smith. The 50 or so original paintings showcase the greater North Canton area going back almost a century, providing a window into the area's history. No matter how DeHoff is giving back, the crux is that the company is giving back. Service has always been part of the company's very fabric, and that isn't about to change anytime soon. "We care about people, and it starts there because we can teach [agents] how to sell real estate, we can teach them how to do certain things, but you can't teach people to care," Maltese says. "And if you have your heart in the right place, things are going to evolve in the right direction." Tandem Tech: DeHoff & Delta Media Group® Live locally, but think globally has been DeHoff REALTORS'® unofficial rallying cry for years. It's also one that Delta Media Group shares. And that's what ensured the duo's technology partnership has worked so well for over a decade. "Delta has continued to expand their services with the real estate community," Maltese says. "They're real estate focused, and we're real estate focused. It started with a website many years ago, and then they've added client follow-up and call services and showings and everything else. They're progressive, and we feel we're progressive, and that has blended well." Together DeHoff and Delta Media Group have paired up on the company's website, providing detailed information on everything DeHoff offers prospective and current clients. The DeltaNET® 6 CRM also provides DeHoff agents a simple, user-friendly way to organize and maintain all the information that goes into a successful real estate career. And with Delta's regular updates, DeHoff REALTORS® is confident the technology it's using is as good as can be. "We get the updates in our emails from [Director of Partner Success] Harley [Wolfarth]," Colucci says. "And occasionally I'll call [Dave] like, 'Do you see that new thing that they put in there?' So, I think one of the key things for us is that they're constantly evolving and upping their game." Growing with the technological times is more a necessity than anything else these days, but DeHoff, as usual, takes the twists and turns in stride — especially when it comes to social media. With a diverse group of agents, there's plenty of know-how to share, and that's led to plenty of success. "It's formed this unique partnership [between agents]," Maltese details. "On the surface, way back five years ago, it seemed like, well, that may not work, but then it does, and we embrace it, and we figure out how to leverage it to grow our business and service." Taking the Next Step Looking to the future of DeHoff REALTORS®, there is no specific plan. No blueprint for what comes next. After nearly 60 years in business, the best way to prepare for what comes next is simply to embrace it. Because, at its core, DeHoff is a people-focused business, and while anything else may change, that certainly won't. "It's about relationships, absolutely," Linda DeHoff says. "But maybe all businesses, if they meet their potential, are relationship businesses." In the end, it's not about the money. Not really. Or the business cards handed out. Or the social media interactions. It's about providing something for someone to call their own — a home, a business, whatever the case may be. It's about building, sometimes from the ground up, and giving dreams a bit of a shape with the four walls around them. "We had a campaign once, called buying a home is like falling in love, and it is," Linda DeHoff says. "There's a lot of parallels that go with that, and no one, I bet, has ever looked back and said, 'Oh, I had such a big family room!' That's not what it's about. It's not the mortar but the neighborhood. It's the memories. It's all the other things that go along with it." To view past Real Estate Marketing and Technology articles and read more from the February 2022 issue, click here. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
MORE >
Home Inspections Finally Wakes Up with Booking Tech
MORE >
The Hanna Family of Companies Top Industry Lists of Largest Privately Held Real Estate Brokerage Firms
The Hanna Family of Companies has once again been named the No. 1 privately held real estate brokerage firm in the United States, accordingly to the recently released 2022 RealTrends 500 report and the RISMedia Power Broker Report. The Hanna Family of Companies is led by Howard Hanna Real Estate Services and includes their partner companies of Allen Tate Realtors, Howard Hanna | Rand Realty, and The F.C. Tucker Company, as an integrated family of real estate companies. Together, they form a strong brand across the East Coast and into the Midwest, reliably serving clients with best-in-class agents and offerings. By rounding out 2021 with $36.5 billion in closed sales volume and 125,482 closed transaction sides as reported to RISMedia, the Hanna Family of Companies experienced yet another banner year of growth and success. These 2021 closing numbers earned the group a #5 ranking among the lists of the largest real estate brokerage firms.* Both the RealTrends and RISMedia lists are full of Wall Street-funded and financially supported entities, and yet, the nation's largest family-owned and -operated real estate firm continues to be ranked high among the top firms in the industry. "As a privately held company, we have made hard decisions and realized the challenges and opportunities along the way," said Helen Hanna Casey, Chief Executive Officer of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services. "As we continue to grow and evolve to achieve continued success, we realize that investing in our partners, our agents and employees, and the support we provide through innovative technology and marketing services, will allow us to continue to be a differentiator in the industry." Growth and Evolution While Howard Hanna Real Estate Services was built on a legacy, the company has grown and evolved in a way that has allowed the business to lead the industry, in the good times and in the challenging times. The continued success of a family-owned company among investor-funded organizations is a testament to the strength and business acumen of the leadership team and throughout the organization. Throughout the past few years, Howard Hanna has had a deliberate growth plan, focused on increasing its footprint through strategic partnerships and organic growth. The opportunity for meaningful partnerships with other family-owned companies who have similar goals and values is key to the growth of the Hanna Family of Companies and success in their markets. "By partnering with like-minded companies, we encourage the exchange of concepts to find the best possible solutions and progressive ideas for the future," said Howard W. "Hoddy" Hanna, III, Chairman of Hanna Holdings, Inc. "We stand on integrity, pride, performance, and enthusiasm – and these principles have helped us withstand the test of time and will see us far into the future." From industry-leading marketing technology to unique agent benefits and incentive programs, the Hanna Family of Companies supports more than 13,000 agents across their 13-state footprint. Their best-in-class marketing and productivity suite provide agents with the tools they need to get ahead and stay ahead of the competition. "By leading through innovation, we provide our agents with a commitment to help them achieve success," said Howard W. "Hoby" Hanna, IV, President of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services. "We invest in the resources, time, programs, and talent to ensure that every agent in the Hanna Family of Companies has the tools they need to succeed. Our commitment to innovation continues to be the differentiator for Howard Hanna and we look forward to what the future holds." Through the combined strength and continued efforts of each of these companies, their leadership, and their sales associates and employees, 2022 is poised to be a banner year across the Hanna Family of Companies. *RealTrends 500 ranking report by 2021 closed transaction sides. RISMedia Power Broker Report by 2021 sales volume.
MORE >
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Launches 'Be Better' Podcast
MORE >
Our Top 10 Most-Read Articles of March
Ready for the spring and summer real estate market frenzy? If our list of March's most popular articles is any indication, our readers are definitely getting ready. Working with buyers? Check out article #1 for insight into what message the car you drive sends. Or check out #2 for checklists you can use with your clients, including sellers. If sellers are more your thing, article #4 offers advice on growing your listing business. And #9 pulls back the curtain on the intriguing differences in marketing spend in red versus blue states. What else were agents and brokers reading in March? Check out the full list below to find out! 1. What Type of Car Should Realtors Drive?You've probably asked yourself, "Does it matter to my clients what car I drive?" There are many sides to this argument and many points to be made. We've listed these considerations agents should make with regard to their set of wheels, as well as a list of dos and don'ts. 2. Friday Freebie: 8 Homebuyer and Seller ChecklistsTo help you and your clients stay on top of everything during the home sales process, we're highlighting a collection of eight buyer and seller checklists that will keep everyone organized all the way through moving day. 3. How to Convert an Internet Lead via PhoneThe strategies you use to successfully convert leads are a big factor in your level of productivity. One traditional, yet effective way to move an online inquiry into the pipeline is to make contact by phone. Here's a roundup of wisdom on the subject from four real estate coaches. 4. Tips for Growing the Listing Side of Your Real Estate BusinessBuilding the listing side of your business will help you become a more balanced agent that can thrive in any market, whether it's favoring buyers or sellers. Here are essential tips that can help agents expand their listing services to grow in their markets. 5. 9 Best Apps for Real Estate AgentsLooking to use the best apps for real estate agents? We've identified nine apps that help agents generate leads, organize tasks, and run an effective business. Use these nine real estate apps to increase your number of clients, close more deals, and run the strongest real estate business possible. 6. RPR: Your Open House Secret WeaponEvery state has lifted pandemic restrictions. That means everything is open! If you're thinking of holding an open house, this article is for you. We'll tackle the basics of prep and planning, and tips for how to promote and host. We'll also cover important ways that using RPR can help you sell this listing. 7. TikTok: Video Makes the Real Estate StarTikTok became a rising star in social media at the start of 2020, and it has been going strong ever since. With more than a billion active users, it has quickly become one of the most popular social media platforms in the world, and creative real estate teams have found many interesting ways to integrate TikTok into their social media marketing. If you're new to TikTok, consider this your introduction to the platform and your guide for how to get started. 8. How to Use Digital Flyers to Market Your Real Estate BusinessThere are several ways to use flyers for marketing your real estate business effectively. We'll discuss how marketing through real estate flyers has evolved in the digital age and how you can effectively use this strategy to generate more leads and create new business opportunities for your real estate brand. 9. New HomeJab Study Reveals 'Blue vs. Red' State Agent Marketing SpendAfter studying more than 43,000 professional real estate photography assignments over the last five years, HomeJab discovered a significant difference in the amount of marketing dollars agents spent for listings before the pandemic and what they spent coming out of the height of the COVID-19 outbreak. There was another significant difference in spending by agents in prominent "Blue states" versus "Red states." 10. 5 Ways You Can Help a Non-digital Client Go DigitalIt's likely that even if you work primarily with younger home buyers and sellers, you will find that not all your clients are digital natives or tech-savvy. For these clients, technology can feel intimidating or make someone feel like they are failing if they can't get it to work. How can you help a non-digital client go digital?
MORE >
Engel & Volkers and Pacaso Form Strategic Partnership
MORE >
Dreaming of Home: Many Gen Z and Millennial Homeowners Plan to Sell in the Next 12 Months
2022 is shaping up to host another hot real estate market with more than two in five (44%) of Gen Z homeowners (age 18-25) and over a third (35%) of Millennial homeowners (age 26-41) saying they plan to sell their homes within the next 12 months, according to the latest survey commissioned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate, and conducted online by The Harris Poll among over 2,000 U.S. adults. With so many young American homeowners planning to sell in the next year, they need tools and guidance to navigate the tight housing market. Meeting Consumers Where They Are The survey found that 59% of Gen Zers and 65% of Millennials say they expect good real estate agents to use social media (e.g., Facebook, TikTok, Instagram) for marketing purposes (e.g., to sell themselves as an agent, to post their home listings). Coldwell Banker commissioned the survey to understand how much they value a real estate agent's social media presence. Findings include: Older Americans Value Social Media, Too: 58% of Gen Xers (age 42-57) and 60% of Baby Boomers (age 58-76) strongly or somewhat agree that they expect good real estate agents to use social media for marketing purposes. A Majority of Americans Agree: 61% of all Americans would expect good real estate agents to use social media for marketing purposes. The Social Generation: Nearly two thirds of Millennials (65%), and nearly half of Americans overall (48%), would think more highly of a real estate agent if they had a strong professional social media (e.g., Facebook, TikTok, Instagram) presence. "With more than two in five Gen Z and over a third of Millennial homeowners planning to sell their homes in the next 12 months, reaching these generations is key to unlocking inventory in 2022," said M. Ryan Gorman, CEO of Coldwell Banker Real Estate.
MORE >
Display Listing Broker Attribution at All Times
MORE >
Multiple Brokerage Applications Break the Consumer Relationship
Brokers use a variety of tools to connect to the consumer. They have a CRM from the agent, they have Buyside, they have transaction management like DocuSign, they get emails from drip marketing tools, and on, and on, and on. Imagine the experience for the consumer: you buy or sell a home, and you get bombarded every month with pieces of information from each of these broker and agent applications. Whereas the real estate company actually values each of these point solutions for the benefits they offer to the business, this viewpoint often neglects to understand the experience of all of them. To the consumer, your email barrage looks like a hodgepodge of information. These emails come in, and they are appreciated, but there are two problems: The information is not delivered in an organized way. The information is often irrelevant to their interests or needs at any given time. How to fix it Set yourself up as a customer on all of your software applications. You may want to use a special, separate email address for this purpose. You can share the address with your team so everyone has the experience. You will become a human integrator, determining what has value and what does not. You can add/remove/edit messages. Use this process to refine your message, and make sure that it sounds like your brand. Try to develop machine learning, and put consumers in stages. Customers who are buying, selling or closing/moving have different information needs than customers who are living in their home. The information that your firm (and the agent) is sharing with the customer needs to consider the status that they are in. For customers not transacting, use a service like Milestones or MooveGuru to deliver valuable homeownership information. Move them into a smart newsletter service that bundles information together rather than spamming the customer to no avail. Be careful whenever you reach out to a client—you DO NOT want your efforts to stay connected to result in a negative experience and ultimately being spam blocked. Whenever you are spam blocked, contact the customer and ask them if they would consider a different type of communication once a month or even quarterly. To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
MORE >
Redfin Launches Rental Search
MORE >
More Funding in Client-for-Life Category for Brokers
The real estate industry has been plagued with something akin to bad breath when it comes to staying connected to customers. After the trade, the agent and brokerage disappear. They do not even provide helpful services to help with the move. A number of companies are supporting brokers with concierge solutions that solve this problem – and it's a big problem. Up to 45 million consumers move a year, and the real estate industry is the tip of the spear that can connect their customers with service providers. Updater is the leader in providing moving and utility connection services. Ramping up behind them is MooveGuru, followed in a smaller way by MoveEasy. In the release below, MooveGuru just announced a $5 million raise on top of the $3.6 million from their earlier round. WAV Group's founders are investors in MooveGuru and Updater. We believe that this is an enormous opportunity for our industry to create Client-for-life programs. Consumers want homeownership applications that allow them to track and manage their most valuable asset. Today, they can look at their home valuation, but there is no consolidated place for ordering and storing records of home services and improvements or filing and executing transactions as a buyer or seller, etc. Consumers access a bunch of disparate systems being used by the listing and selling agents that mainly go dark after the closing. Real estate agents, brokers, mortgage, title, insurance, and the hundreds of thousands of home service providers need to stay connected to the customer. The Race is on NAR consumer satisfaction studies say that consumers are more than 90% likely to use their agent again in a future transaction. Unfortunately, only one in five actually do. The top reason why consumers do not use their agent again is because they did not stay in touch. This is the problem that these services seek to solve. With MooveGuru, the entire move and all of the services related to homeownership are in the YourHomeHub portal. From a distribution perspective, MooveGuru is gaining a ton of traction with more than 316,000 agents across over 2,000 brokerages accessing the platform and inviting their customers. I do not know who is going to win the race. We are investing in all of them. These companies are likely to battle for market share. Milestones is also coming online with a very competitive product along with some strong partnerships. The Zillow Risk Zillow is coming. Zillow also has a major advantage over real estate. Over the decades, they have collected identity information on homeowners. We really do not know what their super app is going to do, but we encourage all brokers to get a strategy with a vendor in place now and tow in their customers. Congratulations to the MooveGuru team. Keep on crushing it. Please see below for the full press release. MooveGuru announces equity raise of $5 million Victorum Capital and two other undisclosed parties invest in fast growing proptech startup; MooveGuru has raised a total of $8.6 million Atlanta, GA — March 22, 2022 — A fast growing Atlanta proptech company continues its rapid growth plans: MooveGuru has just closed on $5 million in new equity raised from Victorum Capital and two other undisclosed parties. To date, MooveGuru has raised a total of $8.6 million. The mover engagement platform MooveGuru, operators of the YourHomeHub and HomeKeepr brands, has been expanding its reach both with consumers and realtors in its network over the last year. 320,000 real estate agents now use MooveGuru and their wholly owned company HomeKeepr. MooveGuru also has exclusives with ERA Real Estate, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, Exit Realty, Realty Executives, Vylla, and HomeScout. More than 110,000 Keller Williams agents are on the network. Additionally, MooveGuru has preferred vendor relationships with REMAX and Berkshire Hathaway. MooveGuru's owned and managed network of over 350,000 local home professionals are all referred by real estate agents. "We own our home professionals network and that helps us maintain customer satisfaction with the consumer," said Scott Oakley, CEO and founder of MooveGuru. "Some other platforms use a third party. Honestly, I wouldn't want the consumer in the hands of a third party where you cannot control the experience." MooveGuru just launched YourHomeHub, an "everything home" platform that allows homeowners to manage both the financial details and physical elements of their home. It includes the most effective features from MooveGuru and HomeKeepr—hundreds of thousands of consumers already trust these solutions for moving and home maintenance—and adds additional functionality to help people manage all parts of their home. About MooveGuru MooveGuru Inc. is based in Roswell, GA. In 2016 the company launched a free mover engagement program to real estate agents and brokers with the idea of connecting home buyers and sellers to convenience and savings on moving services. Using just-in-time delivery through artificial intelligence algorithms, MooveGuru Inc. ensures consumers receive agent-branded savings and convenience from national and local retailers and utility connections as they step through the relocation process. Today, more than 2,000 brokerages, 316,000 agents, and millions of homeowners are connected to the MooveGuru and YourHomeHub platforms. Learn more at MooveGuru.com. To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
MORE >
What Did Year-Over-Year and Q4 2021 Comparisons Show Us?
MORE >
Real Estate Brokers Identify Potential Trends in Spring Selling Season
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate LLC is thinking spring -- spring selling season, that is. A recent roundtable discussion with several Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate brokers across the country revealed that historic seasonality patterns have been affected by today's market conditions. Most notably, record low inventory levels could provide to have an impact on this year's spring selling season. "Real estate professionals are highly adaptable and the last two years of the COVID-19 pandemic have proven that our industry is resilient in the face of change," said Sherry Chris, President and CEO, Better Homes and Gardens® Real Estate. "As we enter the third spring selling season since COVID-19 emerged, the BHGRE® brand wanted to explore what our affiliates were experiencing in different parts of the country. The broker panel observed that strict seasonality is seeing signs of change. However, it is important to understand all of the underlying factors contributing to this significant shift in real estate market dynamics. What is clear is that a lack of inventory stemming from stalled new development is setting the industry up for continued disruption. Identifying and overcoming barriers to building new homes will be critical in meeting the incredible demand for housing that now exists in our country. In the short term, buyers and sellers can follow the advice of their agents on how to best position themselves for success." Timing Trends According to the brokers interviewed, the timing of the spring selling season varies. In Northern New England, the spring selling season typically kicks off in March, but with only 30 days of supply, there aren't enough homes to create a seasonal sales "spike" this year. People also appear to be waiting out January and February to see COVID-19 cases go down to reduce potential exposure. In Portland, Oregon, spring selling season usually starts at the beginning of the year, although it was observed that 2022 activity was stalled by the omicron variant surge. Brokers are seeing some traces of seasonality, but it's not full-blown. People will move as soon as the opportunity presents itself, which means for sellers, there's never a bad time to sell anymore. "With just one week of inventory, an uptick in seasonal activity is not possible here in Portland," said Danielle Bade, principal broker and vice president, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Realty Partners and Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Northwest Living. "Homes sell as soon as they come on the market. People aren't waiting for a traditional season to enter the market." "Despite having low inventory in our market, we may still see a surge across Sonoma and Lake County, California as some real estate professionals push their sellers to bring their homes onto the market to get the most value," noted Randy Coffman, president, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Wine Country Group in Northern California. Pricing Fluctuations According to the brokers interviewed, in Northern New England, prices are still considered moderate compared to urban areas. However, they are increasing, which puts pressure on local residents looking to buy in-market. In Lehigh Valley, Pa., which sits between New York City and Philadelphia, home prices are lower compared to the major cities. In Northern California, prices are flattening out somewhat, but are still higher than expected due to low inventory. In Portland, prices are not expected to come down this year. Despite double-digit price increases, the brokers interviewed are confident this is not a real estate bubble. Appreciation rates could moderate a bit, but prices won't come down. Panelists reported they are staying attuned to consumer tolerance for rising prices, and seller greed, which could cool the market. "This is an entirely different dynamic from 2008, which was driven by lax lending," said Chris Masiello, CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate The Masiello Group in Northern New England. "This is a supply and demand issue that is being guided by demographics: millennials and baby boomers are orbiting the market for the same housing stock. These first-time homebuyers and downsizing buyers are vying for the same properties." "There is a potential for prices to plateau and then return to a more normal appreciation rate," said Jack Gross, owner of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Cassidon Realty in Lehigh Valley, Pa. "We might also see buyer frustration cause people to leave the market because they are tired of not getting a home. But consumer confidence in the housing market is high, which makes them open to overpaying." "We are starting to see home price increases flatten out somewhat, but it is still higher than expected due to the low inventory," shared Randy Coffman, president, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Wine Country Group in Northern California. Shifts in Buyer Mindsets Brokers interviewed are seeing an increasing sense of urgency from consumers to "win" the home, bidding up the price beyond normal appreciation rates. This means they are paying now for what a house could be worth in two years. As a result, the phrasing has changed from "I bought a home" to "I won the bid." And for those unable to "win," buyer fatigue has kept people out of the market in recent months. Another shift noticed by the brokers who participated in the roundtable is that people are not interested in homes requiring significant sweat equity. Instead, they are more focused on their careers and don't want to invest significant time or effort time in fixing up an outdated house. Further, the brokers observed that living with COVID-19 has worn down the psyche. Depending on the region, consumers are either tired of the coronavirus and moving forward with plans or still in a holding pattern created by health anxiety. "Despite home prices increasing about 30% in Central Florida, the market is not slowing down, although the lack of inventory is discouraging for buyers, particularly first-time buyers who are contending with rising rents," said Dana Hall-Bradley, Broker/Owner, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Fine Living in Celebration, Fla. Seller Mindset Participating brokers report that current inventory conditions are giving new meaning to the term "seller's market." In some cases, sellers are becoming irrational on pricing, insisting on list prices well above current market values. In other instances, sellers are getting more cautious with pricing too high. However, brokers report that homes are still getting multiple offers over list price when priced right. According to Chris Masiello, CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate The Masiello Group, "For most sellers, the biggest deterrent is 'Where will I go?'" Brokers shared that people in Portland are going to Arizona for some sun, often retiring a few years earlier than planned. Urban dwellers in California are moving north, while people in Pennsylvania are heading south to Florida. People in New England are selling their family homes and taking up primary residence in their second or summer home until a suitable primary home becomes available. Others are downsizing to a tiny home or RV. "We are hearing more from sellers that it's not always about the highest price – offers with contingencies are less desirable," said Danielle Bade, principal broker and vice president, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Realty Partners and Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Northwest Living. Interest Rates The brokers interviewed observed that the increase in interest rates from 3.5% to 4% is not a real financial driver. They noted that they do not envision it having a substantial negative impact on the market. It may, however, be an emotional one as people get off the fence and try to beat the market. Interestingly, the participating brokers are noticing a shift in the historical relationship between inflation and interest rates, which is now inverted. "Buyers may initially see the rates as higher, but remember — historically, they are still low, and there is bound to be a little give and take," said Randy Coffman, president, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Wine Country Group in Northern California. "Prices go down a little; rates go up. It evens out." Migration According to NAR, as more people can work from home, city dwellers are moving to the suburbs. Participating brokers report that those who come from New York City can sell a $2.5M townhome and move into a $600,000 4,000 square foot Colonial in Lehigh Valley, Pa. Similarly, people who move to rural Vermont from Manhattan still earn city wages. As a result of migration, primary markets are becoming saturated, making secondary markets the main focus, and tertiary markets secondary. As inbound moves from higher-priced markets drive up prices, the dramatic double-digit price increases serve to rise all tides. The brokers interviewed believe that local residents get an economic lift as more people migrate to the area, bringing their city spending habits and salaries, likely creating more job opportunities in the next 12-18 months. Brokers also report seeing a shift in priorities as people are no longer tied to a geographic area for their job. "We are seeing heavy migration patterns from the metro DC/Maryland regions, along the coastal corridor to Northern New England, including Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont," remarked Chris Masiello, CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate The Masiello Group. "In lesser populated, rural areas, people are now buying property and land that hasn't transferred in 30 years or more, which is creating a lot of title issues." New Construction According to participating brokers, permit logjams, supply chain issues, and lack of builder confidence have created a dire shortage of new homes. COVID notwithstanding, significantly fewer new homes are being built while populations are increasing. For example, between 1950 and 2010, the number of new homes built in each decade ranged from 10 million to 14.5 million. But from 2010 to 2020, just 7 million homes were built, while the number of new households formed during that same time period exceeded 10 million. The brokers interviewed advise that communities need to decide how to help the new inventory issue, which requires cooperation at the local level. "Overcoming the inventory shortage will be the responsibility of local planning boards. They need to assess the needs and act. We are not seeing the supply chain issue or labor shortages as bad as they were last year. There is so much cash in the market now just looking for a place to go to work to get a return," according to Chris Masiello, CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate The Masiello Group. "Developers got caught in 2008, so they are not eager to jump back in," said Jack Gross, owner, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Cassidon Realty. "In Lehigh Valley, it takes 3-5 years to approve a subdivision, which is a significant deterrent when you can get an immediate return in the stock market." Tips for Sellers and Buyers According to the panel of BHGRE® brokers, here are a few suggestions and tips that real estate professionals can share with buyers and sellers in today's dynamic market. Tips for Buyers Get preapproved. Have a substantial down payment saved. If you can pay cash, do so and refinance later. Be flexible on the closing date. Always make your best offer first and resist the temptation to hold back your effort upfront. Be willing to waive the inspection. Have the means to make an "additional down payment" if the appraisal comes in low. Line up short-term interim housing between sales to put yourself in a better position to compete in a multiple offer situation. Tips for Sellers Even in today's tight market, it is still important to put your best foot forward, so don't skimp on staging, home repairs and cleanliness. Prepare your home for the market by hiring a professional cleaning crew and professional handyman/repair service to perform paint touch-ups, fixture upgrades, etc. This will encourage buyers to make their very best offers and result in fewer days on the market. Offering a home warranty can help encourage buyers to waive their inspection. Ensure all potential buyers are financially qualified. Consider the terms offered as just as critical as the price. A cash offer with fewer contingencies may be better than a higher offer with many contingencies.
MORE >
MooveGuru's YourHomeHub Now Available in HomeKeepr
MORE >
Victor Lund to Present at Future City in the Bahamas, March 20-22
WAV Group and RE Technology co-founder, Victor Lund, will be traveling to the Bahamas to present on the topic of web3 in real estate. Future City 2022 is hosted by leading real estate publisher TheRealDeal. Future City 2022 is an exclusive retreat for C-suite executives, principals and partners who are learning of all the ways how PropTech is revolutionizing development, management, construction, design, marketing and finance. Topics range from how FinTech is disrupting homebuying to the AI and data platforms transforming CRE from hard assets to the metaverse; these are all discussions during this three day, two-night retreat at the Baha Mar in the Bahamas, and will be held off-the-record and kept exclusively for executive attendees. "I am very excited to make the journey to the Bahamas and workshop the future of real estate with more than 200 C-level executives who can make a difference across our industry," says Lund. "We are less than two months away from the release of our metaverse tied to a real-life adventure resort that we are developing with partners," continued Lund. "For the first time, we see the emergence of web3 being used to provide financing, a sense of community, and connectivity that promises to have an impact on how people consider shelter options – blending IRL and URL." WAV Group announced last week that Nelson Diaz has joined the firm to provider advisory services to clients who are developing web3 strategies. Today, most of the work Diaz is focused on is outside of real estate. One of the most significant trends in the web3 space today is the launch of virtual reality worlds – or metaverses. This fundamental shift away from Web 2.0 invites the opportunity to reimagine how companies and their communities of employees and customers can develop stronger, more authentic relationships. In the metaverse, the social walls between people defined by roles in society are replaced by a virtual person-to-person connection. If you are making the journey to the Bahamas for Future City 2022, or would like to have WAV Group facilitate a discussion for your organization to bring you up to speed on web3 and strategize about your potential, contact us. To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
MORE >
Keller Williams Partners with RealNex on Exclusive Commercial Real Estate CRM
MORE >
ERA Brokers and Executives Offer Insight and Ideas for Advancing Women's Leadership in Real Estate
ERA Real Estate celebrates Women's History Month by identifying growth opportunities and how overcome professional barriers for women aspiring to leadership roles in real estate. ERA's Hera Society, the brand's dedicated group focused on advancing women leadership within the affiliated network and the industry, hosted a roundtable discussion to uncover actionable insights to advance greater inclusion for women in real estate leadership. Representing more than 130 years of collective real estate experience, ERA Hera Society's panelists explored an array of topics from responding to recent events such as the COVID-19 pandemic to redefining mentorship. "When I started my real estate career over 30 years ago, there were very few women in leadership roles across the industry," said Sherry Chris, President and CEO of ERA® Real Estate. "It has been my personal mission to champion and mentor women who are passionate about our business and have a desire to become future leaders. The benefits of increasing women's leadership in our industry are clear: we innovate faster with greater diversity and an infusion of new ideas and perspectives. The vast experience and perspectives of the many women leaders not only in the ERA network but the entire industry can help prepare and pave a path forward for aspiring women. The ERA network's collaborative culture creates a unique environment where we can draw on insights, wisdom and ideas of our esteemed ERA® affiliated women leaders to help us all further this effort in meaningful ways." Impact of COVID-19 on Women in Real Estate Many from ERA's Hera Society observed that the pandemic brought to the forefront several adjustments, whether it was working virtually, navigating childcare or the accelerated adoption of technology in real estate. The COVID-19 pandemic forced greater adoption of technology and consumers ultimately welcomed new approaches. The panelists did note that the integration of Zoom into everyday business made it easier to expand networks in ways that didn't happen pre-Zoom, providing women greater access to ideas, advice and support. "The full impact of COVID-19 is yet to be seen. What we do know is that COVID-19 has proved that real estate is an essential business. It accelerated the use of technology to connect and serve clients and facilitate and speed the transaction while still maintaining the fundamental human nature of real estate. Overall, I think women will be beneficiaries of this evolution in our industry as it offers more flexibility to serve their clients differently in ways that fit their multi-tasking lifestyles," remarked Anna-Marie Ellison, managing partner of ERA King Real Estate headquartered in Anniston, Alabama. Actionable Insight: Take advantage of technology to serve your clients in the ways they are looking for and use the flexibility of new ways of working to address your specific lifestyle needs. The Necessity of Challenging Societal Norms The discussion uncovered observations on how societal norms still play a role in how girls are raised and educated, and as adults, how women perceive their options and expectations. Considering that women couldn't have their own credit card until 1977, women are still catching up financially with men as they overcome past prejudices and limitations. This is further compounded by the fact that earning gaps may impact women's access to the capital needed to start a company. Additionally, a huge psychological barrier to opening and operating your own brokerage is taking on the financial risk – whether that's as a couple or as a sole proprietor. "In today's business environment, women have every opportunity to be the leaders and owners they want to be. Demands on time and resources can be daunting, so it may require finding creative ways to balance both professional and personal priorities. I think any woman who has made it a choice to own a brokerage should be empowered to pursue that opportunity. Traditional roles of yesterday no longer apply. It's about surrounding yourself with the right support systems to help you achieve your goals," shared Diana Wall, SVP of Strategic Growth for ERA Real Estate. Actionable Insight: Create more leadership pathways to enhance and expand growth opportunities for women. Committing to Challenging Ourselves Setting the bar higher as a path to increased self-confidence is critical to fueling the desire to pursue leadership roles rather than waiting to be asked. Confidence may also play an important role in taking on the financial risk of ownership. Moving into leadership roles means letting go of many day-to-day things and trusting someone else to do them, often a challenge for multi-tasking women. "The first sale you have to make is to yourself. In other words, no one will buy into you, your abilities, until you do. Be your biggest fan and your own worst critic," stated Diana Wall, SVP of Strategic Growth for ERA Real Estate. "Dream bigger, set your bar higher and don't doubt yourself because today's doubts are tomorrow's limitations," advised Haley Burlage, Broker/Co-owner, ERA MyPro Realty. Actionable Insight: Define your value, own it, and leverage it. Adding Business Courses to Real Estate Education If agents are taught to run their business like a business, they will be better prepared to run and lead their own company. Offering more business education classes aligned with real estate schools and continuing education offerings — such as P&L management, accounting principles and ROI — could better prepare women for owning a business. Additionally, the discussion emphasized helping future leaders understand the differences between managing employees and independent contractors, which is critical to success. "The most highly attended classes offered at our company are the ones presented by outside business experts, reflecting the desire to elevate the business of real estate. It's time to respond to that desire and position everyone for greater success," said Cathi Sullivan, Broker/Owner, ERA Shields Real Estate. Actionable Insight: Local, state and national associations should incorporate business courses in licensing and continuing education requirements. Recognizing the Importance of Mentors – Even if We Don't Call Them That Mentors are another significant factor in promoting confidence for women in that they have an unwavering belief in their mentees. Many mentor relationships often occur naturally, growing out of mutual trust. However, women searching for a guide or counselor may need to actively expand their networks to increase the chances of finding a mentor. Some people are taken aback when asked to be a mentor, perhaps because of the commitment it implies or the formality of it. Reframing the formal term mentor as having an open-door policy for those looking for advice or guidance can increase opportunities for these types of fruitful relationships. "Creating a personal board of directors or what I call my 'tribe' has proven to be a more effective path to reaping the benefits of learning from others," said Gloria Frazier, Broker/Owner, ERA American Real Estate. "Nothing in my career came without mentorship. Someone was grateful enough for what they had achieved to pay it forward and share what they had learned. Now I am a mentor to people open to such a relationship. Mentorship is the key to moving women forward," shared Kim Luckie, Director of Business Development, Marketing and Innovation for ERA American Real Estate. Actionable Insight: It's the job of the person who wants a mentor to find one. Seek mentorships with the same thoughtfulness and dedication that you would seek a new career opportunity. Best Advice Given and Received When asked for the best advice they had received and given, the ERA affiliated women leaders had a great deal to share: Always be looking for where your advantage exists. Find your voice and use it loudly. There's a big difference between self-centered and self-focused: it's okay to be self-focused. Be authentic. Your authentic self is the best version of you and the one that allows you to lead in what you love. Stay true to who you are, no matter what. Speak up. Dissent. Disagree. Silence is agreement with the status quo. Ask for what you want. Be your own advocate. We all have skills. We just need to showcase them. Participants: Haley Burlage, Broker/Co-owner, ERA MyPro Realty Haley started her real estate career as a transaction coordinator and was told she would never earn more than $40,000 a year. Inspired to break that financial barrier, she became a real estate agent and is now a co-owner. Anna-Marie Ellison, Managing Partner, ERA King Real Estate Anna-Marie started as a real estate agent after a short stint in customer service. She sought counsel and advice from seasoned professionals and built her career. She lobbied to manage an office and based on her success, was ultimately asked to become a managing partner. Gloria Frazier, Broker/Owner, ERA American Real Estate Gloria grew up in an entrepreneurial family and never really imagined working for anyone. After a decade abroad selling land to people in the military, she returned to the states and started selling residential real estate. When her broker's business started to fail, she decided to open her own brokerage and has never looked back. Kim Luckie, Director of Business Development, Marketing, Innovation, ERA American Real Estate Kim started her marketing career in the 1990s, working for Young & Rubicam, one of the country's largest advertising agencies. Working in a male-dominated field, she quickly learned how to find and leverage her advantage. Lee Ann Roughton, NVP, ERA Real Estate Drawing on over 25+ years of experience, Lee Ann focuses on driving growth and development for ERA affiliated brokerages. From business planning to recruiting and retention, her results-driven approach helps companies achieve their goals. Cathi Sullivan, Broker/Owner, ERA Shields Real Estate Cathi leveraged a career in technology and the dot.com vertical to a CFO role at a large real estate brokerage, which she eventually bought from the founder and now runs with her husband. Diana Wall, SVP, Strategic Growth, ERA Real Estate Diana has devoted the majority of her career to franchise sales, serving as a consultant and mentor to entrepreneurs looking to build their businesses. Her ability to excel in a male-dominated field is a testament to her own mentors who gave her the confidence to pursue this career path.
MORE >
3 Unconventional Ways to Measure Tech Stack ROI
MORE >
Coldwell Banker Launches 3 New Tools to Empower Home Sellers
Despite the current seller's market, nearly half of American homeowners (46%) are unsure of the current value of their home. This is according to the latest Coldwell Banker survey, which launches today alongside a refreshed ColdwellBanker.com and the newest "Dream" ad campaign. Part of the brand's 2022 Seller Strategy, this campaign will give potential home sellers the tools and help they need to navigate today's market -- and to dream big. The Dream ad campaign airs March 15 during March Madness and features an unveiling of ColdwellBanker.com and three new Coldwell Banker products: CB Estimate℠, Move Meter℠ and the Seller's Assurance Program. Paired with the brand's 100,000 world-class agents, these products help ensure that Coldwell Banker Real Estate is delivering something for every step of the seller journey, from inspiration to action. Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC, a Realogy company, commissioned the survey conducted online by The Harris Poll among 2,000+ US adults to understand the ways Americans assess their real estate dreams and what support they value during the selling process. Findings include: Opportunities for home sellers are ripe as the COVID-19 pandemic has made younger generations more likely to think about pursuing their dreams, and for some this includes home ownership. Over a quarter of Americans (29%) who experienced the pandemic – especially GenZers and Millennials – are more likely to think about pursuing their dreams. Pursuit of happiness: 39% of Gen Zers (age 18-25) and 41% of Millennials (age 26-41) say they are much or somewhat more likely to think about pursuing their dreams (e.g., making a housing move, pursuing a passion project, making a career change, expanding family) after experiencing the COVID-19 pandemic. Location, Location, Lifestyle: When it comes to home, more than 4 in 5 Americans (87%) say it is important to them that the location of their home (rural, suburban or urban) aligns with their lifestyle. Dreaming about everywhere: Not all Americans agree on what the ideal dream home looks like. Top dream home locations include: In a location with warm weather (33%) In the suburbs with ample space (28%) Remote and off the beaten path with a large plot of land (25%) Americans need help selling and finding their dream home. According to this survey, nearly half (46%) of American homeowners say they are unsure of the current value of their home. That number increases to 52% among Gen Z homeowners and 54% among Millennial homeowners. With the new CB Estimate℠ tool, Coldwell Banker is making it easier to find out what a home is worth with a free and instant online estimate. Sellers can browse at their own pace, without having to fill out a form or provide data. What's more, sellers still have the upper hand as two thirds (67%) of Americans have not yet found their dream home. That proportion is even higher among Gen Z (72%) and Millennials (75%). Many Americans use home price estimate calculator tools as a first step for selling a home. More than a third of Americans (35%) would go to a real estate website with a home price estimate calculator tool as their first step to sell their home if they were looking to sell, and younger Americans are more likely to take this as a first step versus using a real estate agent. The new CB Estimate℠ and Move Meter℠ tools will help kickstart the process of a home evaluation. From there, Coldwell Banker affiliated agents are ready to take a sale to the next level – by getting the most for a customer's current home and bringing them one step closer to finding that dream home. In fact, Coldwell Banker affiliated agents have achieved a 20.7% higher U.S. sales price than the National Association of Realtors® average. Online shopping: If they were looking to sell a home, more Gen Z (ages 18-25) and Millennials (ages 26-41) would go to a real estate website with a home price estimate calculator tool as their first step to sell their home (44% and 43%) versus contacting a real estate agent directly (30% and 35%). But when it comes to selling a home, agents are still key. Proving just how valuable a human approach is to the selling process, 60% of Americans would trust a licensed real estate agent to accurately estimate the value of a home more than an online valuation tool. That's why Coldwell Banker's Estimate tool is designed to be paired with one of our star agents, who can verify a home's true value. License to sell: Nearly half (45%) of Americans say if they were going to sell a home, contacting a licensed real estate agent directly would be their first step. The "Great Resignation" continues to impact home. Compared to a fall Coldwell Banker survey, people are increasingly willing to take a pay cut or accept a new job with a lower salary if it meant moving to a more affordable location. Thanks to the "Great Resignation," the movement of people leaving the workforce during the pandemic, Americans feel empowered to make these moves. In fact, housing affordability and cost of living are factors that are important to an overwhelming majority of Americans when considering a move to a new location. Employed Americans are increasingly willing to take a pay cut or accept a new job with a lower salary in order to move to a more affordable location: The percentage of those willing rose from 41% in October 2021 to 46% in February 2022. A significant increase (21% change) was seen among employed males aged 18-34 (53% to 64%). Getting out of town: Of American homeowners who plan to sell their home in the future, 44% plan to move to a different city or state. That proportion increases to 58% among Gen Z and 54% among Millennial homeowners who plan to sell. Americans aren't moving on a whim, though. They value data that help them gain a fuller understanding of a new real estate market. Researching the right way: When considering a move to a new location, Americans say the following factors are at least somewhat important to them: Quality of Life (lifestyle and/or environmental elements): 94% Housing affordability: 93% Cost of living affordability: 93% Job market strength: 70% With these desires in mind, Coldwell Banker Real Estate created the Move Meter℠ – a proprietary tool built to help people dream differently by comparing various data points to evaluate a move from one place to another, including: housing affordability, quality of life, job market strength and living affordability. When one is ready to sell, the Seller's Assurance Program, developed to make home selling easier and more rewarding than ever, articulates the seller benefits available through working with a Coldwell Banker affiliated agent to sell or list a home. The Seller's Assurance Program is intended to spotlight the tailored offerings each Coldwell Banker affiliated agent provides their clients. "With today's lack of inventory, how do we inspire homeowners to consider listing their home for sale? That's where the Coldwell Banker 2022 Seller Strategy comes in, and along with it the Dream campaign, survey and refreshed ColdwellBanker.com," said David Marine, CMO of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. "We've given our website a new and refreshed look that is complete with intuitive tools designed to make finding the estimated value of your current home seamless. With more Americans willing to take a pay cut to move to a more affordable location, we saw a need for tools that let them dream differently." Visit coldwellbanker.com to see the new look and feel of the Coldwell Banker website and explore the CB Estimate℠, Move Meter℠ and Seller's Assurance Program to see the current worth of your home, find an agent and prepare for your next move to your dream home.
MORE >
Vylla Home: The Power of Technology Partnership
MORE >
Web3 and NFT Professional Nelson Diaz Joins the WAV Group Team
Real estate technology is an important, strategic decision and a key differentiating factor for many of WAV Group's clients today. With the development of Web3 -- and the growth in that community -- we are confident that real estate technology has a prominent place and a bright future with Web3. It is important that we establish this new division and center of excellence to help our clients navigate the opportunities that lay ahead — and practically limitless inventory. Also, in case you missed it, WAV Group held a highly informative webinar last month that barely touched the surface of what we know to be the future. Marilyn Wilson, Nelson Diaz and Victor Lund lead a phenomenal discussion introducing this world called the Metaverse. You can watch it here. Please see below for the official press release and join us in welcoming Nelson Diaz, WAV Group Web3 and NFT Strategist, to the team! WAV Group Stakes Claim to Web3 Territory in Real Estate Web3 and NFT Professional Nelson Diaz Joins the WAV Group Team Arroyo Grande, CA – March 3, 2022 – The birth of Web3 has become comparable to the emergence of the internet or the industrial revolution. This is not just another technology or an evolution of the internet; this advancement is bringing a scope of technology and changing social norms together to create a new way for brands and brokerages to deepen the engagement and relationships with their customers. Recognizing the importance of Web3 and its potential impact on the real estate industry, WAV Group is launching a Web3 division, headed up by Web3 pioneer and NFT strategist Nelson Diaz. Nelson has led Web3 initiatives to expand highly respected global brands into the Metaverse including Deepak Chopra, Christie's Auction House, and a host of well-established streetwear and luxury brands. He is also working on a soon-to-be-announced real estate initiative. Marilyn Wilson, Managing Partner, WAV Group, says, "We see so much potential of Web3 for real estate and know we have to help our clients figure out the digital real estate path. Nelson, a trailblazer for taking well-established companies into a new realm, is going to help our clients craft the path to Web3 profitability and achieve first-mover status." Nelson Diaz says, "I see expansive opportunities for real estate in the Metaverse. There is a digital land grab happening right now, and I'm here to help real estate companies figure out the best way to expand their scope and capture a whole new way to engage with real estate consumers. I have been friends and colleagues with WAV Group for many years, and I welcome the opportunity to bring my knowledge, passion and experience to their real estate clients." The pioneers of the Web3 movement are creating massive online communities through selling digital land, digital properties, and even digital rentals. Fueled by $35 trillion in cryptocurrency wealth, there is a brand-new set of buyers for a brand-new type of real estate available. High net-worth individuals and companies are engaging in NFTs and cryptocurrency as a hedge that benefits tax strategy and currency fluctuations, too. Others are reinventing business operations in the Metaverse. Victor Lund, Managing Partner, WAV Group says, "Nelson possesses a unique blend of creative vision and business development talents, coupled with proven success in taking a Web3 project from its ideation to a highly successful launch. He knows how to create energy and bring attention to a project to provide huge returns. I believe the opportunities that lay ahead are incredible, and bringing Nelson onto the team will help our clients stake a profitable claim in the digital real estate space." Click here to learn more about WAV Group's Web3 division. About WAV Group WAV Group delivers innovative and effective guidance to help each of its clients continually evolve and expand. Specializing in the real estate industry, WAV Group is a full-service consultancy and trusted advisor for many of the industry's most successful brokerages and Proptech and Fintech firms. The company's breadth of veteran executives deliver breakthrough, yet achievable solutions for better understanding customer need, gaining insightful competitive intelligence, setting strategic direction, launching new businesses and technology solutions, and building market share with engaging storytelling and targeted promotion. Learn more about WAV Group at wavgroup.com. To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
MORE >
Coldwell Banker Releases 'The Report,' an Extensive Outlook on the 2022 Global Luxury Real Estate Market
MORE >
Our Top 10 Most-Read Articles of February
What did RE Technology readers learn about showing their businesses a little love in February? According to our monthly top 10 most popular articles list, readers' interest ran the gamut from cold calling (#1) to high-converting emails (#7) and even to the ins and outs of the blockchain for real estate (#5). To find our what else RE Technology subscribers were reading in February, check out our full list below: 1. Is Cold Calling Still Effective in Real Estate?The closing ratio in the real estate industry will assess the effectiveness of a marketing strategy. It is not that cold calling won't produce any results, but rather that the cost of the lead and the sale may be achieved more efficiently through alternative techniques. This article explore how effective cold calling actually is. 2. The 1 Thing You Must Do After Every TransactionAlthough research also says 90 percent of sellers and buyers say they would recommend their agents, fewer than one in five do. The challenge for agents is staying top of mind, and one of the best ways to do that is to build into your closing process this one task: provide your clients with a complete set of documents related to their transaction. 3. Smartphone Running Slower? Here Are 4 Helpful TipsWhether it happens suddenly or gradually, a slow smartphone can be detrimental to your workflow. But don't panic, as there are a few simple fixes that can help speed up your smartphone without resorting to sending it in for a repair or replacement. Here are four ways to speed up a slow smartphone. 4. How to Get Seller Leads in a Sellers' MarketThere's no need for more than a few words on just how much of sellers' market we're in. Home prices are at record highs. Inventory is at a record low. And, to make matters worse, there are more agents than ever competing for clients. So what can you do to win more seller leads? 5. Blockchain and Its Impact on Real EstateConfused by terms like cryptocurrency, blockchain, NFT, bitcoin, and Metaverse? Wondering what the heck Elon Musk is talking about? View this exciting one-hour, on-demand webinar on the current state of cryptocurrency in real estate. 6. Friday Freebie: 52 Lead Gen Ideas for 2022In this week's Friday Freebie, we're highlighting an ebook with 52 lead generation ideas. That's one lead gen idea per week for a year—not too tough a pace to try out new strategies and figure out what works for your business. 7. 4 Real Estate Emails that Convert Like Crazy (+Templates!)How do the emails that you send out to your leads look? The key to successful email campaigns is to share relevant content in an attractive format. These email templates are perfect for catching your audience's attention and prompting them to actually click your links and follow your call-to-action. 8. Guess What's the Most Popular Day for Taking Real Estate Listing Photos?What's the most popular day of the week for real estate photography? HomeJab just completed a new study of real estate photography, which looked at nearly 60,000 real estate photography assignments placed by real estate agents between 2018 and 2021 on HomeJab.com. Here's what the study discovered. 9. 4 Lessons Real Estate Agents Can Learn from TinderOnline dating and real estate marketing have some surprising similarities. Here are four lessons that agents can learn from searching for "The One" online. 10. How to Master Video Content with Little InvestmentCreating video content is more accessible, more affordable, and easier to do than ever before. Getting started will still require some effort, but you really can master video content with minimal investment and the potential for major returns.
MORE >
[WATCH] Capitalism 2.0: The next generation of real estate success with web3, NFTs and the Metaverse
MORE >
Technology: The Cutting-Edge
It was about 35 years ago when Jeff Pust was a young man, newly married and starting a career in real estate, working on mortgages and appraisals. He transitioned into sales, and 15 years ago, along with his wife, took over Van Dorm Realty from his in-laws. Today, the Olympia, Washington-based firm has over 120 agents and has remained an independent brokerage. "We're a large independent, which is rather unique," says broker/owner Pust. "The way we provide tools for our brokers is also unique for an independent, as we invest a great deal in technology. We are recruited heavily by franchises, but we have all the tools they have." That's where Constellation1 comes into play. Van Dorm Realty utilizes the software tech company for its CRM, websites, marketing services and back-office management. "We became a Constellation client when they acquired a tech firm we worked with a number of years ago. Since then, they have morphed into Constellation1. We have stayed with them the whole time and found success working with them," Pust says. "They have grown from providing our website to CRM and all types of other contact management systems they have, and now we're working in their accounting module." In 2021, the firm became a Constellation1 Commissions customer, which helped integrate all of Van Dorm Realty's back office tools and have them work together. The firm even used it with a different provider's transaction management platform, and it worked perfectly. It's just another way Constellation1 partners with its customers to provide what's best for the brokerage. "The reason we went with Constellation1 Commissions is to simplify our bookkeeping," Pust says. "We have this transaction management system, and we needed a way to link that information to our accounting system, making us more efficient and providing more tools to our brokers in a way they can track their income, and perhaps set goals for themselves." Still in its infancy launch stage, Pust notes that so far, it's doing exactly what he hoped, and he foresees it saving the firm a tremendous amount of time. The firm has about 25 brokers who use Paradym by Constellation1, a digital marketing tool, to help them with their social media platforms. The tool assists those who aren't as adept at the process of managing a social presence, which has been a big plus for those taking advantage of it. Another reason Van Dorm Realty has stayed with Constellation1 for so long is because of its commitment to providing the best service possible. "We've always been able to call them and talk about what we're seeing with our competition and ask if they can make it happen for us. And they've always been able to find a way to accommodate our requests," Pust says. "We have a lot of tech firms up here in the Northwest, especially in real estate, and Constellation1 has been able to keep up with the cutting-edge changes, keeping us cutting-edge as well." With more than three decades in the business, Pust has seen real estate transition from brokers coming into the office to working from anywhere, a change made more impactful by the pandemic. For that reason, innovative technology has been a big part of the firm's strategy. "Our mission along the way has been, 'How do we provide systems where brokers can get that same level of service and attention and not have to come into the office but stay just as efficient?' Constellation1 has been a great partner in helping that transition be a success. They help me be competitive in the tech part of the business," says Pust. To view the original article, visit the Constellation1 blog.
MORE >
RPR Commercial: Exploring Data Layers
MORE >
5 Things Agents Hate to Hear (But Need To)
No one grows from fluff and feel-good falsities. Agents who want to reach next-level success need tough love, no B.S., real-talk tips. Disclaimer: If you get fired up while reading this, read on. Let's dive into some things you don't want to hear, but need to. #1. (Most) Agents Suck at Tech Adoptions and Follow Up Consider what Chris Stuart called "The Loyalty Gap": According to NAR's Buyer and Seller Trends Report, 91% of buyers surveyed said that they would use their agent again. However, only 13% actually used the agent from the previous transaction. Most agents aren't great at following up with past clients to generate further opportunities, or adopting the tech that will empower them to make outreach easy. When agents work with a platform, many don't actually use it and log on. BoomTown's data found that 59.4% of platforms have 75% of users logged in the past month. Even though we know that working leads yield consistent results, we still see that the majority of users do not log in regularly. However, there are agents that are fantastic at following up with leads. When you poll top producers about their pillars of business, past clients and SOI are a top source of transactions. The agents that are good at tech adoption and follow-up are: Self-aware and intentional with their actions, investing time into adopting technologies. Aware that tech adoption and lead follow-up have a symbiotic relationship, meaning that adopting tech should facilitate more seamless and efficient communications. When you sign up for any tech service, go into it with humility and a real hunger to figure it out. The more you work at tech adoption and follow-up, the better and more efficient your business becomes. #2. Complaining About "Exclusivity" and "Limitations" in a Platform is a Cop-Out Oftentimes, when agents evaluate a service, they ask if they will be the only ones in their market using it or if there are limitations. Instead of asking about whether or not a platform is "exclusive" or "limited," focus on asking questions about adoption and usability. Questions to Ask on Usability: How do you all help ensure that my agents have the resources to succeed with your product? What kind of staff do you employ to focus on usability of your product? When it comes to leads, focus more on how the leads are generated — typically, it's through Google Ads, Facebook, and Instagram. 3 Questions to Ask on Lead Generation: How are the leads routed to me? What are the costs? What sources are contributing to the prices? Asking these questions can help you make the best decision for your business. #3. Internet Leads Don't Suck, You Might Just Suck at Working Them If you think that internet leads suck, you might just suck at working them. Internet leads are important because everyone looks at listings online nowadays. Besides the traffic potential, internet leads are an incredible way to build your database. Keep in mind the lead funnel. Just because a lead is at the top of the funnel doesn't mean it's bad — you just need to focus on the long-term future. Leveraging technologies and services will help create a system for your follow-up. #4. Commission Compression is the Natural Selection of Real Estate Agents Have you felt the screws tightening on your commission? You need to start evaluating your value proposition if you want to grow and attract talent. Otherwise, you will lose out to online models, and ultimately give those organizations more strength. This will have an impact on your ability to command specific commissions in the future. To compete with the Zillows and Redfins in the market, you need to be able to attract top talent. Evaluate your value proposition as an organization: What does onboarding look like? What kind of tools am I providing to help new agents succeed? #5. Zillow Isn't Going Anywhere Zillow's advertising budgets are astronomical, they dominate real estate SEO, and they have a 23.9 billion market cap. Consumers aren't just going to stop leaning on Zillow. If Zillow is a concerning competitor, all you need to do is level the playing field. Create an amazing consumer experience. Be an incredible source of local real estate knowledge to become indispensable. Have your own branded consumer app. Provide convenience, speed, and white-glove service. Work with leading technologies To view the original article, visit the BoomTown blog.
MORE >
Zillow Launches Homeownership Strategy
MORE >
How Your Brokerage Can Leverage 3 Tech Trends Driving Innovation in Real Estate
Three major tech trends are driving real estate innovation in 2022. While these trends aren't exactly new, real estate companies are starting to harness their power more effectively and achieving transformative results. Learn more about these trends below. Open software architecture Traditionally, software companies have walled off their applications, trying to be the one and only solution for everything. This made more sense in the era of server-based computing. But in the era of the cloud, this has proven to be an outdated and inefficient way to run things, especially since no one company can be the expert in everything. With open architecture, APIs (application programming interfaces) allow different applications to integrate and communicate seamlessly, without sacrificing security or robustness. Open architecture promotes creativity, collaboration, and flexibility, allowing companies to tailor their tech stacks to their business, not the other way around. You can read more about open software architecture in our post about the collaborative future of real estate technology. Data reservoirs or data lakes The idea of data reservoirs is nothing new, but the availability of cost-effective cloud computing has made maintaining one easier and less expensive than ever. As a result, more businesses are jumping on board. A data reservoir, or data lake, is a centralized repository of unstructured data (think of all your past sales data, stretching back decades). In the past, you might not have had a specific use for this data, but in fact, this information is true technology gold! Why do you need a data lake? Simply put, it's good for business. According to an Aberdeen survey cited by Amazon Web Services, businesses that can successfully generate value from their data outperform their peers in organic growth by 9% on average. Real estate runs on data, and data is very powerful, especially when it's unique to your brokerage. Data lakes are a relatively simple way to use data you already have and pair it with other data types from public records or your MLS to gain valuable business insights. The right partner can help you find ways to do just that. AI-powered analytics Twenty years ago, artificial intelligence (AI) made us think of The Matrix, robot armies, or facial recognition technology in a spy movie. Not anymore. In fact, the availability and low cost of AI-powered analytics are one of the most incredible (and valuable) business developments of the 21st century. With AI, you can take your data lake (your own data) and complement it with data from other sources: Your CRM Website Public records MLSs Other available data sources (free or paid) The resulting data insights will take your comparative market analyses to the next level, help determine the best agent for a particular lead, and even figure out which past customers are likely to sell before they even know themselves, so you can target your marketing to earn their business early. The future applications of AI in real estate are endless and will only get more powerful and advanced. Make marketing technology drive revenue Technology is the key to working smarter, not harder. When you're building your tech stack, ensuring the solutions you choose create a real impact, both on your team and on your customers, is crucial for picking the right ones. Constellation1 is your source for real estate technology. If you're looking for a true partner with the expertise, flexibility, and creativity to put together the perfect tech stack for your business, we're here to help. We work with your team to tailor your tech to your business and your future goals, putting your team on the path to success. For even more tech insights from three real estate industry leaders, you can watch the recap of our Inman Connect event below. To view the original article, visit the Constellation1 blog.
MORE >
zavvie reveals new iBuyer and Power Buyer Report
MORE >
The Color of the Year is 'Very Peri'
In describing the selection of the Color of the Year 2022, Pantone notes, "We are living in transformative times." Like the hue of the newest color of the year -- Very Peri, a muted purple tone - that may be an understatement! For those needing the Pantone number for their next printing project (wait, does anyone print much anymore?), it is Pantone 17-3938 on your Color Guide. Don't have your formula guide? You can get this special edition "Color of the Year" one at B&H in New York City for just $188 plus shipping. Back to the newest color of the year, Pantone also writes to introduce its 2022 color selection: "Displaying a carefree confidence and a daring curiosity that animates our creative spirit, inquisitive and intriguing Pantone 17-3938 Very Peri helps us to embrace this altered landscape of possibilities, opening us up to a new vision as we rewrite our lives. Rekindling gratitude for some of the qualities that blue represents complemented by a new perspective that resonates today, Pantone 17-3938 Very Peri places the future ahead in a new light." It looks a lot more purple than blue to me, but okay, perhaps blueish purple. Or are all purples blue to designers? Call me confused. Then Pantone goes a little too deep for me with this descriptive insight: "Very Peri is a symbol of the global zeitgeist of the moment and the transition we are going through. As we emerge from an intense period of isolation, our notions and standards are changing, and our physical and digital lives have merged in new ways. Digital design helps us to stretch the limits of reality, opening the door to a dynamic virtual world where we can explore and create new color possibilities." Get the picture? If not, they even created a video of the color, I-kid-you-not, because you have to have a video for a launch, right? Here is the video: Finally, except for the fact that no one in the world should have in their quote a product number – twice ­– I do admire the intent of the view from Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute. She says, "As we move into a world of unprecedented change, the selection of Pantone 17-3938 Very Peri brings a novel perspective and vision of trusted a beloved blue (sic) color family, encompassing the qualities of the blues, yet at the same time with its violet red undertone, Pantone 17-3938 Very Peri displays a spritely, joyous attitude and dynamic presence that encourages courageous creativity and imaginative expressions." Who knew you could get all of THAT from a color called Very Peri? Now you know. Check out more thoughts on the impact of color here. Pantone's original Color of the Year 2022 post is here. To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
MORE >
Embrace Your Company Culture
MORE >
Create Community in Your Company Intranet
The pandemic has created the best of times and the worst of times for real estate firms and their agents. It was not long ago that we were helping firms to engineer more welcoming, collaborative, and efficient office environments for agents. A great manager and a cool space attracts new agents and retains existing ones. The cadence of remodeling the office every five years is as relevant today as it was before the pandemic, but the new focus needs to be on creating better community on your intranet. Your intranet is the private and password gated back-office website that you provide for your agents and staff to communicate with each other and access the software that you make available. WAV Group studied a handful of leading intranets to determine if they were good at building community. The results were pathetic and respondents proved to be yearning for improvement. The importance of this is increasingly relevant, given that more agents are working from home than ever before. P.S. These tips would apply to MLS systems too. Here are a few tips that you can use to bolster your community: Add Music Create playlists on Spotify and stream them to your intranet. If you are using Wordpress, here is how to embed a Spotify playlist. Beyond music, you can also add some podcasts or short training snippets. I especially enjoy motivational podcasts and comedy. Add User Profiles and Chat Usernames are fine, but avatars are way better. When people are chatting, a little effort to see a photo of the person you are chatting with goes a long way. And chat is great. One of the things we really like to see in chat is a multi-threaded chat. There can be a general chat where people will feel comfortable posting something as simple as "GM" – Good morning! Other channels can be dedicated to chat about specific things like marketing, prospecting, listing presentations, etc. The list goes on. Add Voice and Video Chat Text chat is good, but if you really want to build community, you can add voice chat and video chat. Not surprisingly, voice chat is the most popular. More community members will feel comfortable listening in and occasionally joining the conversation. Video chat is great too, but less popular because people are often fatigued by experience of being in front of a webcam. Stream Events Many firms did a great job during the early days of the pandemic of having virtual meet-ups on Zoom. As the world opened, many firms stopped this. Bring these virtual meet-ups back and also think about extending the programming to have guest musicians, DJs, coaches, or anyone else that might bring interesting flavor to your livestream. Hire or Appoint a Community Manager Having a dedicated community manager (or a few of them) who is online 24/7 is a fantastic best practice. There is nothing more disheartening than a shoutout by an agent on your company intranet that goes unanswered. This person can also focus on your social media presence. It's a full-time job. Real estate firms need to wake up to the recognition that it is as important to develop a digital community for your company as it is to develop real-life community. If you look at the most remarkable growth companies over the past decade in real estate, such as Keller Williams and EXP, you see one defining feature that separates them from everyone else – community. If you do it, they will come. Need help? Contact WAV Group. We can assist you at evaluating the opportunities that you have with your current intranet. We are happy to work with your existing vendor to discuss enhancements to their platform to enable these features. If necessary, we can also support you at building or replacing what you have. To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
MORE >
How to Create a Customized Tech Approach that Supports Your Agents
MORE >
FREE Recruitment Strategy Guide
What's the secret to long-term, sustainable growth? A strong, year-round recruitment strategy is a key element for any successful brokerage, yet many brokers struggle with the time and resources to create, execute and manage an intelligent, thoughtful recruitment program. At Elm Street and 3sixtyfive.agency, we believe that there are five foundational elements of a brokerage that needs to be in balance to drive success: Staff Finances Brand and Marketing Systems and Processes Recruitment and Retention We all know the saying, "You're only as strong as your weakest link," and that's 100% true here. All five of the key elements above need to work in harmony in order for a brokerage to build and maintain long-term, sustainable growth. It's not uncommon for brokers to be strong in several areas, but not all five. If left unaddressed, this can cause an imbalance that can result in larger systemic problems inside of an organization. Therefore, whenever we consult with a broker on recruitment and retention strategies, we start with a batch of exploratory questions, such as: Do you have a strong grasp of each of the five key facets of your business? Where are you strong? Where are you weak? Do you have the right administrative staff around you to balance your strengths and weaknesses? Are you properly leveraging technology to accomplish your brokerage's goals? What value proposition are you offering prospective agents, and is it competitively attractive? What is your brokerage's overall reputation in your market, and is it accurate? Another important part of the conversation is understanding your "end game": Where do you want your business to go? How will you get there? And, how long until you arrive? These types of questions lead to conversations that help determine the amount of financing you may need, the administrative staff you'll hire, and the number of agents you'll recruit. Once we have an understanding of who you are, what you do, and where you are going, we can start to build an intelligent recruitment strategy that's designed to bring you and the right prospective agents together in meaningful ways. We believe that there are many different agent personas and that not every agent is meant for every brokerage. Determining the ideal candidate is an important part of the recruitment process, and can save valuable time, money and resources—as well as help curb agent churn later down the road. In our complimentary Recruitment Guide, we break down more considerations when developing a successful recruitment initiative, and offer up some great tips, tricks and insights from some of the top recruiters and thought leaders in the industry. From Tami Bonnell, CEO of EXIT Realty Corp. International, suggesting that recruitment needs to be "personal" to ideas about creating unique connections and building trust and rapport, this guide is designed to spark questions and ideas for even the most seasoned recruiter. [ DOWNLOAD FREE RECRUITMENT GUIDE ] Bondilyn Jolly is the Chief Marketing Officer of Elm Street. Elm Street's portfolio of products and services allows busy real estate professionals the ability to streamline and automate their marketing and day-to-day business objectives by offering high-end IDX websites, lead generation tools, a powerful CRM, email, social, text and blog marketing automation, recruiting and retention tools, and more. 3sixtyfive.agency is the high-end consulting and marketing arm of Elm Street that works with brokerages, teams and professionals to help businesses accelerate growth through thoughtful marketing and intelligent technology. To learn more or to schedule a consultation, visit 3sixtyfive.agency or elmstreet.com.
MORE >
Revive and zavvie Partner to Give Brokerages a New Way to Help Sellers Get the Highest Price for Their Homes
MORE >
4 WAV Group Executives Named to RISMedia 2022 Real Estate Newsmaker List
2021 was a busy year for real estate, and, as always, the team at WAV Group was right in the middle of it all. We are humbled and grateful to be recognized by RISMedia Newsmakers for our contributions to the real estate industry. However, it is our forward thinking-clients who trust us to help them with their goals and projects that are really behind all the progress we have seen over the last year. They continue to innovate and lead the industry to new heights, and we are honored to help them along the way. WAV Group Communications division has been doing such great work. Kevin Hawkins and Myra Jolivet deliver unmatched experience and expertise to their clients. We are extremely proud of the work they accomplished in 2021 and are excited to see what they can continue to do this year and in the future. Victor Lund, Managing Partner Named to the Influencer list, Victor was recognized for his continued work with the Broker Public Portal and his real estate policy advocacy, including Clear Cooperation and DEI. Marilyn Wilson, Managing Partner Named to the Achievers list, Marilyn's achievements in 2021 included the launch of a statewide broker-owned MLS and the creation of the Broker Resource Network, which helps brokers from across the country share ideas to build better businesses. She continues to push the MLS industry forward with the recent launch of a new customer experience program and in depth strategic planning. Kevin Hawkins, President of WAV Group Communications Named to the Trendsetters list, Kevin helped clients such as zavvie and Ben Caballero position their companies as leading experts in their fields, generating massive news coverage and dramatically increasing their visibility and brand recognition. Myra Jolivet, PR and Communications Strategist Named to the Trailblazers list, Myra has helped clients, throughout the added challenges of the pandemic, craft the compelling stories they need to stand out in the crowded and noisy real estate space. Her ongoing efforts helping many organizations with DEI and continuity plans continue to raise the industry standards for inclusion. We launched WAV Group because of our passion for real estate. All these years later, we remain dedicated to the goal of helping our clients move the industry forward with the power of knowledge. If we can assist you with your next project, please contact us to learn more. See full press release below: Managing Partners Marilyn Wilson and Victor Lund are joined by WAV Group Communications President, Kevin Hawkins and PR and Communication Strategist, Myra Jolivet in this year's exclusive group of industry leaders who have made newsworthy contributions to the real estate industry Feb 2, 2022—WAV Group is honored to announce that Victor Lund, Marilyn Wilson, Kevin Hawkins, and Myra Jolivet have all been selected as RISMedia 2022 Real Estate Newsmakers—a dynamic group of key influencers making headlines as a result of their newsworthy contributions to the real estate industry and their efforts to positively affect the consumers and communities they serve. RISMedia, the leader in U.S. real estate news and information services, announced its more than 300, 2022 Real Estate Newsmakers on Feb. 1, in both an online directory on RISMedia.com and in the February issue of its flagship publication, Real Estate magazine. RISMedia's 2022 Real Estate Newsmakers were nominated in 2021 by RISMedia readers and editors and are showcased in the following categories: Influencers, Trailblazers, Futurists, Achievers, Crusaders, Motivators, Luminaries and Trendsetters. "From records being broken, to the glass ceilings being shattered and the creativity and technology innovation being implemented through our changing times, to the always-inspiring and wonderful charitable work being done across the nation, we continue to be amazed by the incredible ingenuity and success of the professionals in the real estate community, over 300 of whom we are celebrating our fifth year of Real Estate Newsmakers," said John Featherston, CEO, president and publisher of RISMedia. "Once again, we are proud to recognize the hard work, dedication and determination of real estate's finest professionals—the 2022 Real Estate Newsmakers—who went above and beyond in 2021 amid the challenges and opportunities of this historic market. Help us in celebrating their hard-earned recognition," Featherston added. Within RISMedia's Newsmakers showcase, you'll also meet this year's "Hall of Fame" class—a select group of 10 industry icons who have gone above and beyond toward the betterment of the real estate industry. RISMedia will honor this year's Real Estate Newsmakers, including the 2022 Hall of Fame, at RISMedia's Newsmakers Reception & Dinner, being held Sept. 7 at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C., in conjunction with our 2022 CEO & Leadership Exchange. About WAV Group WAV Group is a premier business and marketing consultancy serving the nation's leading real estate brokerages, real estate technology firms, Multiple Listing Services (MLS), and real estate Associations. For over 20 years, WAV has embodied an unmatched passion for real estate and a unique depth of knowledge in the industry. The WAV Group's C-level professionals provide world-class strategic planning and business advice to individuals, organizations, and companies seeking to grow and improve within the real estate industry. Learn more at wavgroup.com. About RISMedia For more than 40 years, RISMedia has provided the residential real estate industry with news, trends and business development strategies through its flagship publication, Real Estate magazine; its leading website, RISMedia.com; its award-winning Housecall blog; and its iconic networking and educational events, including RISMedia's CEO Exchange; RISMedia's Power Broker Forum, Reception & Dinner; and RISMedia's Newsmakers Reception & Dinner. Through RISMedia's content programs—including ACE, a turn-key social media content system—real estate professionals share thousands of articles, infographics and videos each day created by RISMedia editors and contributors, helping them influence hundreds of thousands of consumers as they consider buying and/or selling a home. Visit RISMedia.com and ACESocial for more information. About RISMedia's Real Estate Newsmakers RISMedia's Real Estate Newsmakers is designed to recognize those individuals making headlines as a result of their newsworthy contributions to the residential real estate industry, and their efforts to positively affect real estate professionals and the consumers and communities they serve. RISMedia's Real Estate Newsmakers were chosen based on nominations received through an online nomination process on RISMedia.com, and by nominations from RISMedia's in-house editorial team and other industry sources. Nominations for RISMedia's Real Estate Newsmakers are collected on an ongoing basis throughout the course of the year. There is no fee to nominate a Newsmaker or be recognized/featured as a Newsmaker. Due to deadline and production criteria, RISMedia's 2022 Real Estate Newsmakers Online Directory may not currently be in its final format. Please check back for ongoing updates.
MORE >
5 Marketing Tips on Hiring Agents for Your Real Estate Brokerage
MORE >
Is Your Computer Dangerously Out-of-Date?
If your work computer is more than four years old, it's time for a replacement. You can blame it on "Moore's Law." American engineer Gordon Moore observed in 1965 that the number of transistors that can be packed per silicon chip doubles about every two years. Known as "Moore's Law," it helps explain why every couple of years, new models of personal computers and smartphones can do things that their predecessors couldn't do before and also can do everything faster and better. But there's perhaps a more important reason you should replace your aging desktop or laptop: it will make your work-life safer. The older your computer is, the higher the potential dangers. The problem is that when you use a computer with an out-of-date operating system, and that includes both Microsoft Windows and Apple macOS, you are putting work you have created on your computer at risk. Unfortunately, old computer use remains a significant problem. Yes, keeping your browser updated helps, but it won't fully protect your computer against hackers. Remember the WannaCry ransomware attack in 2017? More than 200,000 computers across 150 countries were affected when millions of Windows XP computers became vulnerable to attack. Mac users know that while Apple recommends using the latest version of their operating systems, as Macs age, they eventually don't meet the upgrade specifications. And that makes using these Macs with out-of-date operating systems more vulnerable as well. And the likelihood of an attack on Macs is increasing. The prevalence of Mac threats in 2019 was up over 400 percent from 2018, according to a study by Malwarebytes Labs. How can you check the age of your Windows computer? If you don't know how old your computer is, there is a simple way to discover when it was manufactured. For a Windows PC, you can check when the BIOS was installed via the command prompt, in three steps: In the Windows taskbar search box, type "cmd" and hit enter Once the Command Prompt window opens, type "systeminfo.exe" and hit enter Look for "BIOSVersion:" by scrolling down and you will see the date listed This should be pretty close to your manufactured date unless, of course, your BIOS has been updated. Another simple way to check a Windows computer's age is to look at the date of your files in your C: drive using these three steps: In the Windows taskbar search box, type "file explore" and hit enter Look on the left side of File Explorer for "This PC" and click on it Now double-click on "Local Disk (C:)" Click on the "Date modified" tab twice to find the date of the oldest folder This is likely to give you a date that should give you an idea of how old your computer is. How can you check the age of your Mac? On a Mac, it's also straightforward to determine its age in just a couple of steps: Click on the Apple icon at the far left top of your screen Select "About this Mac" in the pull-down bar, and the first line should show both the model and the year it was manufactured. Apple often uses one model a year and a time period – Early, Mid or Late – to distinguish between different Macs when there have been changes within that year. Three examples: MacBook (13-inch, Mid 2010) and MacBook (13-inch, Aluminum, Late 2008) and MacBook Air (Retina, 13-inch, 2018). Update for safety Buying a new work computer at least every four years can help protect your data and keep your client information safer. You'll also benefit from a vastly improved computer experience. And if you are like the majority of Realtors in North America and have access to Tech Helpline, owned and operated by Florida Realtors and available nationwide, our technical analysts are eager to help you get your new computer all set up. If you don't have access as a member benefit from your local MLS to unlimited free support from Tech Helpline, tell your MLS to check out techhelpline.com! Tricia Stamper is Director of Technology at Florida Realtors®, which owns and operates Tech Helpline and Form Simplicity.
MORE >
Metrics Are More Than Just Numbers
MORE >
Our Top 10 Most-Read Articles of January
What were agents and brokers reading in January? Our latest monthly list of the RE Technology's most-read articles spells it out. Check out the full list below to read articles on ever-rising housing prices (article #1), creating viral memes (#4), and scripts to convince homeowners that now's the time to sell (#10). 1. Will Housing Prices Ever Stop Rising?After nearly two years of soaring prices, buyers, sellers, and agents all may be wondering whether the price of homes will ever drop or even level off. We take a look at some of the factors affecting housing prices. Agents can use this guide to plan for this year and to answer inevitable client questions about how expensive buying a home will be in 2022. 2. 8 Rookie Real Estate Agent Mistakes You Should AvoidAmanda Thomas, a Broker/Owner from Plano, Texas, shares eight avoidable real estate agent mistakes rookies make early in their careers. Heed Amanda's advice and avoid your own agent mishap! 3. 5 Technologies that Increase REALTOR ProductivityBuyers and sellers expect real estate professionals to use the same sort of mobile and cloud apps that are transforming so much of everyone's daily lives. However, there are so many tech tools on the market today that it can feel overwhelming just searching for the right solution. Here's a short list of five tech tools that should be in the arsenal of every REALTOR® in 2022 and beyond. 4. 6 Valuable Tips for Creating Memes that Could Go ViralReal estate professionals can use memes to share branded content. But when you create a meme, you need to think first about your target audiences and what would compel them to share your meme with others. Here are six ways to create memes that have the potential to go viral. 5. What Is Email Etiquette and Why Is It Important in Real Estate?All of the emails we read and write each day might make us more susceptible to embarrassing mistakes, which can have significant professional effects. However, with good email etiquette, you can avoid all these setbacks. 6. An Agent's 2022 Marketing Guide (Free Download)‍The last few years have been a struggle for many, and have forever changed the landscape of how we do business. A strong online presence has become more valuable than ever before, but it's easy to get lost in the latest "gadgets" and lose focus of why we spend time marketing our business in the first place. The 2022 Marketing Guide can help you focus on what's truly important with your marketing initiatives. 7. How to Become a Neighborhood ExpertYour neighborhood is at the heart of your business and at the heart of each buyer's decision-making process when they're considering where to purchase a home. Becoming a neighborhood expert is ultimately key to your success as a real estate agent. It's a great place to focus your energy and put yourself in a position for success in 2022. 8. 5 Tips to Stand Out as a Real Estate AgentThe real estate industry is a crowded and competitive space. Having said that, unless you're carving out a brand new sector, so is every industry. In real estate, the key to success is not about reinventing the wheel but rather figuring out ways to get noticed and be remembered. Here are five tips to get you started on your standout path to real estate success. 9. 10 Ways to Pump up Your Prospecting PipelineAfter referrals and repeats, prospecting is the most effective way of generating leads and turning those leads into prospects. It's not necessarily easy: it takes patience, persistence and proficiency. These ten tips from RPR will help you get started, stay on track and prospect like a pro in 2022. 10. Talk Is Cheap, but Mortgage Rates Aren't: Scripts for Talking Sellers Off the FenceIf we have anything close to a sure-thing prediction for 2022, it's this: mortgage rates are going to rise. There's a silver lining, though. Savvy real estate agents can use this information to nudge hesitant sellers off the fence. In this video above, Tom Ferry and Jeff Mays discuss how agents can use rising mortgage rates as a talking point to convince hesitant owners to list their home.
MORE >
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Inks Data Aggregation Deal with Constellation1
MORE >
Independent Brokers: The Next Big Real Estate Trend?
I just met with potential buyers who found me on Google. When I asked how they came across my brokerage, they said they searched for an independent broker in Sonoma County. They found four in their initial search, and after poking around a bit, they decided to call me. "Why me?" I asked. This is how they explained it. 1. I'm an independent broker My new clients found me on Google because my title is one of the first things I state in every profile I have. That includes Active Rain, LinkedIn, Yelp—everywhere I can think of. And why does this matter to buyers and sellers? Because they know that an independent broker is free to negotiate. Buyers and sellers have figured this out, folks. 2. I have my own website. I'll be the first person to tell you that I have seen much better looking websites, but mine has two things going for me. It's mobile-friendly and it provides IDX that doesn't require registration. Visitors have the option to create an account, but they aren't forced to. This particular buyer seemed to be very tired of corporate provided websites that had pop-ups and prompts every two seconds. 3. I blog. And more importantly, I have blogged recently. I don't blog as often as some, but it hasn't been two years since my last post. By reading my blogs, this buyer got to know me. They had already figured out my personality and knew that I had robust knowledge of my local real estate market. So are independent brokers trending? You tell me. This is the third time this year that I have been chosen to represent a buyer or seller because of my independent broker status. I didn't see this trend coming, but I am so happy to be where I am right now. If you have been thinking about earning a broker license and starting your own business, I can't think of a better time to do so. If you ask me, I'd say independent brokers are definitely trending. Cynthia Larsen is an independent real estate broker based in Cotati, CA where she has lived and worked for over 30 years. One of her passions is to help the aging community plan for the future. Cynthia is knowledgeable about barrier-free environments, universal design and home customization that involves everything from widening doors and hallways to installing lifts and elevators. To view the original article, visit the Zurple blog.
MORE >
Decoding Real Estate Podcast: Building a Winning Real Estate Team
MORE >
Yes, SEO Is Still Important. Here's Why
SEO -- search engine optimization -- is a suite of best practices aimed at two goals: Raising your visibility in online searches relevant to your business Giving people who visit your website a better, easier experience Reaching the top of any significant Google search doesn't happen by chance. It's possible only when you practice search engine optimization throughout your website. Although it might seem like an intimidating prospect, SEO becomes much easier when you have the right resources in place. SEO Is Your Key to Affordable Organic Leads for Your Website Your real estate website is one of your most important assets. In fact, it's second only to you in its power to deliver business value. It's true! You're the star of your brand — and you'll always be at center stage. But there's one pesky thing about humans, even real estatepros: We have to sleep at night. Even when you're doing something else, your website is always hard at work on your behalf, introducing people to your brand. Making your website work for you should be one of your biggest goals in 2022, especially if you're early in your career. A website that attracts, qualifies, and converts leads helps take a lot of the pressure off your business. You no longer need to hustle constantly for new prospects. And that means you can spend time leveling up your skills and deepening existing relationships. All in all, real estate pros who don't find a way to create the right balance are on their way to burnout. The most reliable way to yield ROI from your website is to make sure it appears prominently in search, and the only programmatic way to do that is to practice SEO. In our SEO services for real estate, we've consistently seen small, mid-sized, and large agencies reach thousands of new leads after implementing best practices in search engine marketing. That adds up to less than $10 per organic lead, just 0.001% of what a single transaction could be worth. Even solo real estate agents can stand shoulder to shoulder with their larger competitors if they choose a long-term focus on SEO. Unlike online advertising, SEO delivers compounding benefits in organic traffic that are virtually free of charge. By comparison, ads stop working for you as soon as you stop paying. Use SEO for months and even the wealthiest rival can't come along and reproduce your success. And the sooner you get started, the sooner you'll see results. How to Get Started with SEO for Real Estate Even if you want to take a do-it-yourself approach, SEO isn't really as fearsome as it appears. By knowing some of the basics, you'll have much more power to influence your digital marketing's direction in the future. Here are the fundamentals that will turn you into an SEO-savvy real estate professional: Start by Understanding Who Your Ideal Client Is First and foremost, you have to know exactly what kind of client you want to attract to your doorstep. SEO requires content — helpful, informative material you publish on your website — and every piece of content is written for someone. That "someone" is your buyer persona. Who are they? What are their problems? What questions do they have? Write down everything you know about your ideal client. You'll use this information to help build out the strategy around your search engine marketing. Then, Figure Out What That Client Searches For The goal of any good SEO campaign is to help your website rank near the top of Google results for relevant keywords. Keywords are the specific words or phrases someone types into Google when they're looking for information — for example, "real estate agent Austin TX." The more specific a keyword is, the less traffic it tends to have. But that can also make it less competitive and more pertinent to you. It's much easier to rank for "first-time homebuyers Austin TX" than for "real estate agent." Publish and Promote Terrific, Keyword-Informed Content Keywords are valuable because they help Google understand the purpose of a piece of writing, image, or video. But they're also there for the convenience of real, human readers. Keywords often don't tell you exactly what your article should be about — you'll need to match each keyword with a topic that's useful to your ideal clients. As you publish more of this valuable content, Google takes notice. Sharing it on social media will also help you attract more backlinks to your site, which drives even higher visibility. Once you see results from SEO, you'll wonder how you ever did without it. Learn how DeltaNET 6 can give you a headstart on SEO with a FREE, 30-day trial. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
MORE >
How Do You Get Agents to Adopt Your Technology? Try These 5 Ideas
MORE >
RPR Commercial Maps: Using the Draw and Driving Tools
RPR (Realtors Property Resource) offers commercial practitioners access to a million active listings, 55 million off-market listings, and an array of data-driven reports and tools to help you advise and serve your commercial clients. One of those tools is Commercial Maps, where you can perform powerful, geographical searches. These digital map tools can help you in conducting research, figuring out proximites, setting boundaries for areas, and determining distances from a particular point. You can start a map search by clicking the Research menu (in the upper right navigation area) and selecting Commercial Map Insights. Commercial Maps Drawing tools From the RPR Map, select the pencil Draw icon to create a custom search area on the map. A new icon selection menu will expand to the left. You can choose to draw freehand or select a shape: radius, polygon or box. All the drawing tools work similarly, with each serving a different purpose: Radius search: useful if your search involves a landmark, or a property you need proximity to Polygon search: helpful when you have clear, linear boundaries for the area you want to search, for example a highway or river Box search: useful for finding a potentially representative sample of properties in an area you don't know well Freehand search: allows the most flexibility to draw your search area Once you've drawn a shape, select Search in This Area to search for listings within your custom shape or select Conduct a Site Selection to be redirected to the site selection search with your drawn area used for the search. You can also select Create a Trade Area Report to redirect to the reports generation page, and generate a trade area report for that area. Drive and Walk Time Search Sometimes you'll deal with clients or investors that need information about how close or far away a specific point is, or they might need statistics on traffic counts, etc. This is where the Driving tool comes in handy. (It's the little car icon.) With it, you can access Travel Time and Distance search tools, plus Traffic Counts. Here's how to navigate Drive in the RPR Maps… To get started, click the Driving icon (the car), then a new sub menu will be revealed. The Travel Time option uses data on traffic patterns to enable the display of approximate driving times, in average conditions. This is helpful, for instance, if a client is searching for a property no more than 15 minutes from a specific location, such as healthcare facilities, shipping ports, or a university. You can also use the travel time to create a custom Trade Area report to help promote a property, or provide your client with a better understanding of the community they're investing in. When you select Travel Time, it's easiest to move the pin to your location, but you can also enter a complete street address. Select Next to continue. Now you can adjust your Travel Time criteria. For example, are you looking for travel time by car or by foot? What time of day are you traveling? What day of the week and how long is the length of your journey? Select Next after applying your criteria. A window appears showing the custom area size. Select Search in This Area to search for listings within your custom shape. Click the highlighted area again to find your custom area options. Select Conduct a Site Selection to redirect to the site selection search or select Create Trade Area Report to redirect to the reports generation page. You can delete, edit or save the areas, too. Take the iconic pencil and car tools for a spin RPR Maps offer layer upon layer of data for you to research and share with your clients. And the pencil and car icons (Draw and Driving tools) offer smart ways of finding solutions for commercial property buyers and sellers. A perfect way to get started is to take a guided tour: RPR Commercial Maps Shortcut. Clicking this link will take you on an informative, step-by-step journey through the commercial map search process. Good luck and get mapping! To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
MORE >
Constellation Driving Innovation with Investment
MORE >
Building a 'Rinse-Repeat' Real Estate Business
Real estate is all about being in the moment -- being in the right place at the right time.  As you're focused on landing that next big win, your business can easily become fragmented. However, the best real estate businesses are able to establish an organized strategy for generating, engaging, and converting leads. This is achieved by repeating productive actions that push a business forward, ensuring success in both the "right now" moment and the long-term future. Ultimately, this sets an organization up for a continual stream of business. Optimizing your sales funnel through proper lead generation, engagement, and follow up: Builds brand recognition and a loyal customer base Improves the experience your clients have from first impression to closing Opens the door to opportunities for repeat business Invites referrals from past clients If you're interested in accessing these benefits, the first step is to create a seamless operations protocol for communicating with — and converting — your leads. Here are strategies for building consistency and establishing a "rinse and repeat" model for sustainable success. #1. Understand the Lead Funnel (and Work It Appropriately) How well are you working with your lead funnel? If you're only investing attention and outreach into the leads in your database that are conversion-ready, you're missing out on the chance to warm up colder leads. One of the best ways to keep your sales funnel running smoothly is to have a strategy in place to nurture the leads that are further out from buying. Even if a lead is not ready for business, you can become a pillar of support by sharing valuable information and relevant real estate advice. By doing so, you'll be building trust and staying top-of-mind — so that when the lead is ready to buy, they will choose you instead of a competitor. Pro Tip: Stay in touch with your leads by adding them to your email marketing campaign. If you tag your leads based on how far along they are on the conversion timeline, you'll be able to send targeted outreach emails for buyers in their position. Real estate teams who tag all of their cold and lukewarm leads will be able to curate bulk emails to engage buyers until they're hot. 8 Types of Content to Send Cold and Lukewarm Leads: Market reports Home buying guides Mortgage preparation packets Glossary of real estate terms Tips to prepare for a stress-free move Strategies for navigating a buyer or seller market Things to do in your community Small business shoutouts #2. Leverage Automated Marketing To save time, automate your email marketing outreach. Working with automated email campaigns allows agents to work closely with their current clients while still warming up their colder leads. This builds a cycle of momentum that can prevent "dry seasons" in your business — as deals close, other leads convert into business. BoomTown's SmartDrip reimagines traditional email marketing campaigns by: Creating more personable messages Optimizing email open rates Eliminating awkward experiences Grading effectiveness of the campaign Creating a "cheat sheet" for success based on your community of leads SmartDrip is efficient, allowing agents to engage their leads even if they're on vacation!  BoomTown's eAlerts introduce added value to your buyer leads by sharing instant updates anytime pertinent changes are made to listing data based on their customized search criteria. Your leads will receive emails on your behalf, alerting them to the most current listing updates relevant to their home search. This gives your clients a competitive advantage over other buyers in the market! #3. Train Your Team to Seamlessly Repeat the Process One of the biggest challenges to developing a true "rinse and repeat" real estate business can be adopting the new processes and technologies required to keep the flow going. Adopting new technologies and committing time to their use is the only way to activate the full potential of the tools you're investing in. As you're building the model that will result in noteworthy wins, make sure that you're training your team members and spending time working with the assistance teams from your new tools. The more your team masters the technology, the more seamlessly it can be integrated into your real estate workflow to generate the best results. Pro Tip: When it comes to engaging with leads and reaching out to your database contacts, consistency is the key to success. Agents and teams need to commit the time and effort required to warm up new leads until they're ready to convert, as well as stay in contact with past clients to gain repeat business and referrals. To view the original article, visit the BoomTown blog.
MORE >
Bisnow Ties the Future of Selling Real Estate to Blockchain and NFTs
MORE >
Ushering in a New Era of Real Estate in New York
Work hard, play hard, and give back. Simple and straight to the point, the words, and the meaning behind them, have served as a guidepost for Coldwell Banker American Homes' company-wide culture -- particularly this year. Because before this year, Coldwell Banker American Homes didn't exist. At least not in its current form. Following two and a half decades of success in the Century 21 system, as Century 21 American Homes, co-brokers and owners Michael Litzner and Thomas Gallagher, in April, announced the acquisition of Coldwell Banker Realty, a residential brokerage in New York owned and operated by Realogy. Suddenly, two of the top 10 companies in one of the nation's most competitive markets, Long Island and the New York metro area, were one. Coldwell Banker American Homes was born, and with it came plenty of changes. More than just the name. Agent totals nearly doubled, with more offices across Queens, Kings, Nassau, and Suffolk Counties, giving Coldwell Banker American Homes more opportunities than ever to provide clients with the best real estate experience possible. "We took two of the top companies and put them together, which is no small feat," Litzner says. "We went from 650 agents to [over 1,100] agents in 24 locations overnight. And here we are, learning and growing and continuing our path in real estate." Through all the headline-making changes, not one of their agents lost sight of the end goal or the simple words defining the company. And it's that mindset that's continuing to inspire the entire Coldwell Banker American Homes family as it settles into its new name and new position in New York real estate. Because culture is still culture, no matter what the name on the office door is. Even when there are two dozen offices. "We have a fantastic leadership team, and I think they do a fantastic job of extending those values into the local offices and bringing them down to the agents, the admins, the support staff," Litzner says. "So it's in every fiber of the company. It's okay to have fun while working; as long as you're not so busy having fun, you take your eye off the ball. The work hard always comes first, so we have a culture of hardworking people." Joining Forces The opportunity to merge two of the most prominent real estate names on Long Island only comes once a certain amount of work has been completed. Decades worth, really. In this case, Coldwell Banker American Homes began when an 18-year-old Litzner started taking classes to obtain his real estate license and, in 1983, began his career at a small independent company in East Meadow, New York. A short train ride from midtown Manhattan, East Meadow is still suburbia through and through, but it was more than enough for Litzner to get his real estate feet wet. Fast forward a year and a half, and Gallagher joined the company. As time went on, it became clear that the company's owner was looking to retire, and it didn't take long for suggestions to come regarding what should happen next. "One of the guys said, 'Why don't [you and Gallagher] buy the office?'" Litzner recalls. "That's how it started. We bought the first office in East Meadow, New York. I was 23. And we were learning the business, and we were pretty good producers, still growing into our roles and were now office owners." From there, the partners continued to hit their stride, buying a second office that Litzner calls "the big pivot" in their careers. "As we continued to find our legs and work our way through," Litzner says, "we started to generate a certain level of activity that caught the attention of a lot of the brands." One of those brands was Century 21. At the time, the company had been part of "a loose affiliation of brokers under this banner called Home America," but the chance to join their two offices under the Century 21 name was simply too good to pass up. With the move came a new name, Century 21 American Homes, and all the tools provided by a nationally recognized brand. "We got a lot of support and insight, many friends and fellow brokers that we've networked with over the years," Litzner says. "When you join a brand, you can have access to its branding tools. It could be technology; it could be training; it's numerous things, especially over the years. It's a matter of taking the best pieces of what they offer you and applying them to your company." With 10 offices and more than 650 affiliated independent sales professionals, Century 21 American Homes had grown into a dominant presence over its 25 years, but, once again, an opportunity presented itself that simply could not be ignored. Bringing together Century 21 American Homes and Coldwell Banker Realty made sense, a significant move not only on Long Island and the surrounding New York areas, but across the country. Combined, the two companies boasted 5,096 transactions and $2.7 billion in sales in 2020. Now, with two impressive names combined, Coldwell Banker American Homes is on the precipice of unparalleled success, with agents and a leadership team who are determined to stay at the top of their game. From October of last year to the end of this September, a 12-month span, the numbers were an astounding 5,975 sides and $3.5 billion. As of this printing, the 2021 year to date is $2.6 billion and 4,330 sales. "It's critical to have trust, loyalty, committed professionals as part of the whole team," Litzner says. "And we've exhibited or enjoyed the loyalty and commitment of many long-standing professionals in our company. I think two of our agents, or two of our management leadership team, have been with Tom and me for over 30 years now. That's a big part of it." Knowledge Is Power If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere. That's what they say about New York, after all. One of the world's most competitive and constantly evolving real estate markets, New York and its surrounding areas present a distinct challenge for sales associates and the companies they work under. The same holds for Coldwell Banker American Homes. To find success in a market like New York, the key is to use every tool at your disposal. Training at Coldwell Banker American Homes begins by making sure agents understand what their job entails. It's not just about helping a client buy a house. It's about helping a client find a home they love, about finding a foundation, both literal and metaphorical, on which they can build the rest of their lives. "We talk extensively about our tools, system, and support," Litzner says. "I need agents to be the most productive, with the most professional reputation. We often say the easy business for an agent to convert is the referral business, and referrals happen by design, not by accident. So again, part of our core value is it's a service industry." No matter where an agent is working, from the most competitive markets to small towns across the country, real estate has always been a deceptively human industry. Sure, there's plenty of money to be made. Properties to be bought and sold, too. But, at its core, real estate is an opportunity for people to help people. To be a partner in one of the biggest moments of their lives, and for Coldwell Banker American Homes, it's that opportunity that continues to be the driving force in everything the company does. "It's not about trying to sell [clients] something they don't want," Litzner explains. "It's about understanding what's important to them, and help them wade through the choices in the marketplace, and help them find the house that best meets their needs. "It's a rewarding business in many ways, economically, but also emotionally," Litzner continues. "When you're helping people, and you see the excitement when they buy their home or the relief when they sell a property. When you see that come to fruition, closings happen, and it's rewarding on many levels." Of course, there's more to Coldwell Banker American Homes than simply ensuring everyone's operating with the same mindset. That's where Coldwell Banker American Homes' comprehensive training program comes in. With support at all levels for both new and experienced agents, the company covers everything from the fundamentals of a career in real estate to deep dives into technology offerings and the ins and outs of the market. Coldwell Banker American Homes provides agents with marketing and technology-driven productivity tools, including those offered by Delta Media Group®, as well as professional mortgage and title services. No agent is left on an island to understand those tools, either. Support comes from the management and leadership team, assisting agents every step of the way as they find their niche. So, whether an associate wants to pursue residential or commercial sales, leasing, business brokerage, property management, branch management, new homes sales, or relocation, the opportunity to tailor their career to their interests is there. "The goal that we have for all of our tools, systems, and support, including our training, is to give our agents the highest rate of return on their investment, which is their time," says Chief Technology Officer and Associate Broker Chris Manteria. "That's their biggest investment at the end of the day. I don't care how much money you put into this business; you can't generate more time. You can generate more money. You can't generate more time." And training doesn't end with those initial instructions. Coldwell Banker American Homes' Educational Program offers multiple classes, allowing agents even more chances to learn and fine-tune their approach in the real estate world. From Agent Success, a weekly 2-hour module for both newly licensed and experienced associates, to commercial training and coaching, agents never have to worry there isn't an answer to whatever questions they may have. Soaring to Success, a 10-session program written by national real estate coach and speaker Debra J. Asher, now a member of Coldwell Banker American Homes' leadership team, is also a top-rated course and one that's relevant to agents with every sort of background and success level. "As an experienced agent, I took it after being in the business already [for many] years," Manteria says, "and I was able to capture a lot of different pieces of the puzzle that I had missed before, or it changed my thought process on how I presented information to my customers and clients, which allowed me to have a higher rate of return." In addition to company-wide training offerings, managers also do trainings in their specific offices. It's that sort of unique training that cements Coldwell Banker American Homes' support and allows agents to interact one-on-one with those they work closest with. "There is a very personal touch, a high touch in all of our offices," Manteria says. "Every single one has a full-time non-compete manager, who takes the agents by their hands and walks them through the process. No matter what level they're at, whether they're a brand-new agent, experienced agent that needs to get to that next level, or the top agent that comes in or has been with our company for a long time, that just needs support. Those managers are there for them. I truly believe that our leadership team is top-notch." Litzner echoes the sentiment, adding that it's the ability to connect with agents that makes training all the more impactful. Providing that specialized focus, taking the time to truly understand what agents want out of their careers — that can make all the difference. "Where the rubber meets the road is on application," Litzner says. "So, by having centralized training, we can control the messaging, the information, the flow of information to our agents in scale. It's having those high-level professionals in our office work with those agents, saying, 'What did you learn? How are you going to use that in your business?' That's phenomenal." Success in a New York Minute Ask any person what they imagine when they picture New York City, and the odds are pretty good that you'll hear conjured images of Times Square. Flashing lights and yellow cabs, bumper to bumper traffic, and sidewalks covered in pedestrians and tourists. And that's true; Times Square does look like that. But that's far from all New York and its surrounding areas are. With so many different characteristics to define so many different boroughs and neighborhoods, every area Coldwell Banker American Homes serves presents its own distinct opportunities and challenges. In Brooklyn, clients may be looking for brownstones, or condos and co-ops, while Queens generally runs a bit more residential and rent-prone. Then, take a drive out on Long Island, and depending on what town or village you stop in, you'll find distinctly different real estate markets. Nassau County is full of suburban living, but keep going east out the Long Island Expressway, and you'll quickly find farms, vineyards, and the beaches of the Hamptons. "We have such a diverse marketplace," Litzner says, adding that the acquisition has only increased that scope. "We've acquired offices in some of the highest-priced, global luxury markets. So we have this North Shore/South Shore dynamic now that we didn't have prior. We also have unique markets. Like we have the leading REO guy on Long Island as part of the company. "We also have probably the top rental person," Litzner continues. "We have relationships with management companies that we control thousands of units of rentals and represent them in that end of the market." Learning what works and what doesn't in any given micro-market is crucial to an agent's success. Each area comes with its own idiosyncrasies, both good and bad. Understanding what clients expect and want when searching for a real estate partner in Brooklyn won't always be the same as someone in Suffolk County. Coldwell Banker American Homes' associates understand that, and thanks to the training they receive as soon as they join the company, as well as the individualized and hyper-focused information from their specific offices, those same associates have proven time and time again they're ready for the challenge. Then, of course, there is also Coldwell Banker American Homes' Commercial Division. What Litzner calls "a very different discipline," from working in residential real estate, the Commercial Division operates under Coldwell Banker Commercial AMH as "a separately licensed office with separate tools and systems." And while the Commercial Division adds another bullet point on the list of everything Coldwell Banker American Homes offers, it's also another chance for the company's agents to truly specialize their careers. Ultimately, no matter what an agent decides to do or where they decide to do it, Litzner says two defining factors will determine someone's success: Personality and passion. "They hold true in every single market," Litzner says. "Having the right commitment to professionalism. Do they attend training classes? Do they learn the tools and systems? When you partner with companies and vendors like Delta Media, who support us with their suite of websites, company, office, agents, the CRM at the center of their Open House App. It doesn't matter which one of those markets you're in; the fundamentals hold." Making a Difference in the Community Since first deciding to partner together, Litzner and Gallagher have made it a priority to provide every opportunity for anyone looking to begin their careers in real estate. With the Recruiting America's Heroes initiative, that also includes United States veterans. "It's about helping provide benefits to America's heroes," Litzner details. "That's the people that have served our country, and so it's about helping them transition back into a life and explore career opportunities and essentially the entry-level to a real estate career." Getting into real estate can sometimes be seen as an easy career move, but Litzner is the first to point out that there are a handful of steps that can quickly become obstacles. Thanks to the Recruiting America's Heroes program, however, those obstacles are a bit less intimidating for those who have previously served, ensuring veterans have a structured plan for the next phase of their lives. Complimentary continuing education courses are offered, as well as first-year registration for the Global Conference, a multi-day event that brings together some of the top Coldwell Banker names from around the globe, in addition to discounts on pre-licensing and new agent materials. "The concept was a way to thank the service members who are transitioning back, to try to reach out and offer them the ability to transition into a new career," Litzner says. "And they say that discipline, the service-minded mentality that service members have, translates well into the real estate business." Recruiting America's Heroes is just one instance of Coldwell Banker American Homes' core values in action. Work hard, play hard, give back. Those were never hollow words and, over the years, the company has made sure to place a clear emphasis on the last two in particular. "We've always been a service-minded company," Litzner says. "My business partner and I have been in our local Chamber of Commerce [for years]. We're very, very involved in the Kiwanis organization, a non-denominational charitable organization." Through their past affiliation with Century 21, the company frequently donated to Easterseals, a charity focused on responding to the needs of people with disabilities, their families, and communities, with a variety of services. Coldwell Banker also fostered a strong relationship with St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Giving back has long been one of the fundamental building blocks of the company that is now Coldwell Banker American Homes. Still, although Litzner says it's fantastic to work with national charities, the company's presence across Long Island and in the New York metro area makes it ideally suited to give back at home. Because Coldwell Banker American Homes helped thousands of people buy those homes. So, about four years ago, the Heart of American Homes Foundation was formed through a collaboration of like-minded individuals, both agents and brokers, who were working under the Century 21 American Homes umbrella at the time. "[The charity] is fully housed within our offices," Litzner says. "There are no paid employees, and a hundred percent of the money that we raise in that organization goes back into our local communities." The Heart of American Homes Foundation continues to host multiple fundraisers throughout the year, all with a specific hometown focus. For example, lottery fundraisers are held, as is the annual Night at the Races, and company-matched donations whenever an agent contributes a certain amount from their closed transactions. This year alone, Litzner says, Coldwell Banker American Homes has matched agents with $50,000 in donations to various causes — all as a result of closing transactions. Deciding which causes to highlight and how to give back is also a true company-wide effort. Each Coldwell Banker American Homes office elects an agent or office member to sit on the Heart of American Homes Foundation board of directors, so, as Litzner explains, "they all have ownership in it." Each member of the board has taken that ownership to heart with different programs and causes supported each year. Not every initiative has to be a $50,000 donation, either. Sometimes it can be as simple as putting in handicapped ramps or as impactful as helping people afford life-saving medication and assisting with funeral costs. So long as it benefits the community — the same one Coldwell Banker American Homes has helped so many find a home in — the company wants to ensure it happens. "It's had a profound effect on the agents and the culture of the offices," Litzner says, "because one hundred percent of that money goes back, and they see it. It's something that I'm proud to be part of. I believe every member of the American Homes family shares that sentiment." Coldwell Banker American Homes still regularly donates to those national causes, of course, but being active and present in the communities the company services, in the neighborhoods that, although so strikingly different from one end of Long Island to the other, are home to so many clients, is something that cannot be overstated. Nor can the impact this mindset has had. "The agents, since this has started, have entirely changed their engagement," Manteria says. "They've increased their engagement tremendously because [they] do want to give back to their communities. When we have fundraisers, we'll have a couple of hundred people at a fundraiser, and 90% of them are from our company." The Next Step in Technology Bringing in hundreds of new agents and combining the long-term successes of two dominant real estate companies may have become official seemingly overnight, but the path leading to the creation of Coldwell Banker American Homes was a much longer one than some may assume. "Realistically, we've been on this path for about a year and a half," Litzner says. "Something of this magnitude, you don't just wake up and say, 'I think I'll buy a billion and a half dollar sales company in the morning.' We took a long, hard look at our company, where we were, what we were doing, how we were doing it, where we wanted to go, and said, 'What's our vision for our company in 10 years?'" While preparing for the future, Litzner says the company that would eventually become Coldwell Banker American Homes also realized it needed a technological facelift. Calling their previous platform "outdated," Litzner adds that the tech "didn't communicate well; everything was separated. And we said, 'You know what, this is not good enough. We can do better.'" So, much like preparing for its headline-making acquisition, the company took all the necessary steps to find the perfect tech fit. Researching multiple platforms and vendors, Litzner says certain factors were "non-negotiable, and Delta Media Group® was one of them that checked every one of those boxes." Still, nothing was decided on immediately. Instead, a committee was formed, including Litzner and Manteria, and about 15 demos were held between a handful of companies to ensure that every aspect of the platform was worth the effort to implement, integrate and ensure adoption with the company's agents; what would be all 1,000-plus. Because, as Litzner put it: "If you do all this and the agents don't use it, what's the difference?" Luckily, Delta Media Group continued to stand out throughout the process, a platform that wasn't only an excellent fit for the company when it was still Century 21 American Homes but one that would be there every step of the way through this next stage. Combining companies is as challenging as it is exciting, and with Delta Media Group in its corner, Coldwell Banker American Homes knew it had a tech partner in the truest sense of the word, one that would operate within the framework of the company and assist, rather than hinder, throughout the hectic nature of the last year. "Since we've implemented our relationship, [Delta has] continued to work with us on further integrations," Litzner says. "We've laid out a wishlist, our roadmap, and Delta's at the center of it. Delta has been a partner that's developed their product to play nice, to communicate well with all the other technologies we're able to bring in. So we've been able to develop our own technology that works for us." Delta worked with Coldwell Banker American Homes to function with its Just Engage Today (JET) Platform, a company-provided turn-key productivity platform meant to propel agents directly into a profitable real estate career. With all of Delta's best features directly at their fingertips, agents have tech tools that are undeniably real-estate focused, something that hasn't always been the case. "One of the things that I've often found myself saying is that in the past, we knew technology would come in, but a lot of the technology came in, and it didn't work the way we work," Litzner says. "What we feel we've been able to do for the first time, through this transition, is get the technology to work intuitively and follow the natural transaction pattern that an agent goes to when generating a customer or client to converting that client, to signing up contracts to mortgage, title, closing. Delta has been a great partner." Ease of use has been a major factor in Delta and Coldwell Banker American Homes' partnership over the last year or so. Often, Manteria says, multiple agents work with the same client, and Delta allows them to do that without "any sort of cross-contamination." "[It doesn't lock] out the agent from being able to work with [clients]," Manteria adds, "and the open architecture, the ability for us to bolt on other technologies into it and have data transferred back and forth using APIs made a lot of sense." With so many agents operating in so many different markets working on so many different transactions, DeltaNET® 6's one-stop-shop format has also proved crucial. Instead of bouncing between X or Y to do multiple tasks, Delta has integrated almost everything an agent needs in a singular spot, allowing them to focus on the task, not the technology. "Let's be honest, our agents are good at selling real estate," Manteria says. "They shouldn't be worried about being technology experts. It's not their job. And Delta is the closest technology out there that lets our agents use their natural workflow and allows us to integrate multiple tools to work together." Manteria also commends Delta for its willingness to work with Coldwell Banker American Homes. If the company wants something new, Delta does its best to make it happen, a trait that isn't always true of other tech providers. "The reality is, we needed a partner in this and [Delta has] been a great partner," says Manteria, who also serves on Delta's Coldwell Banker advisory committee. "I can't tell you how many times I call [Product Development Manager] Harley [Wolfarth]. [Vice President of Sales] Franklin [Stoffer] hears from me all the time, looking at how we can make Delta better because the better you become, the better we become, the better it is for us. So the fact that [Delta] looks at this as a partnership, as opposed to a vendor-client relationship, that alone sets it apart." What's on the Horizon This has been a year of change for Coldwell Banker American Homes. Of embracing new and building on a reputation that was already impressive. It is also a jumping-off point for what comes next. With sights set on the future, Coldwell Banker American Homes has no plans of slowing down. How can it when the company is so firmly entrenched in the markets it serves? Listing Concierge, a new program that allows agents to access new marketing tools and professional photography for their listings, is already underway. Lessons learned during COVID-19 won't soon be forgotten, as agents took their marketing and engagement games to the next level even from a distance. In fact, throughout the pandemic and 2021, the shift to virtual has been a success, particularly when it came to things like training. Manteria credits Coldwell Banker American Homes' local leadership for keeping the company on track recently, "because many of them were quasi-comfortable with some of the technology going into COVID, but they stepped up, and they embraced the technology, and once they did, they were able to get that extra engagement from their agents." Having a manager for every office location provided personalized leadership and assistance that has become the norm for Coldwell Banker American Homes at a time when nothing was truly normal. Whether it was changing franchises or contending with an international health pandemic, every single person with Coldwell Banker American Homes on their business card was still able to work with confidence, thanks to the support they received. "We have engagement with a leadership team that cares about their agents," Manteria says. "And at the end of the day, everybody agrees that giving our agents what they need is what this comes down to. Having that support that you won't get in other companies, having that training, having that company culture, where we give back to all of our local communities." Getting the best of both worlds can sometimes seem like an impossibility when combining companies, but Coldwell Banker American Homes has made it a reality: Providing agents with the sort of professional home that inspires growth, backed by decades of experience with leaders who embrace the company culture every single day. And that won't change any time soon. "We are taking the best and picking and choosing and bringing it into the new ecosystem," Litzner says. "So I think our opportunity is to improve our company and transform it into something that is best in class. I'm excited about where we are and our opportunity to go forward. I think we hit it out of the park. And honestly, if I do say so myself, I'm excited about what the next 10 years bring." To view past Real Estate Marketing and Technology articles and read more from the December 2021 issue, click here. RE Technology readers can try the technology mentioned in this article, DeltaNET 6, FREE for 30 days. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
MORE >
The Children Are the (Technological) Future
MORE >
Sotheby's 2022 Luxury Outlook Report Reveals Return of International Buyer, Hybrid Work Model Fuels Real Estate Investment
Sotheby's International Realty released its 2022 Luxury Outlook report, which identifies the trends likely to shape the world's prime housing markets in the year ahead. The comprehensive report offers insight into the high-end real estate industry as the starts-and-stops of the pandemic's reopening fueled even stronger demand and inventory struggled to keep pace. The global report reveals that relief from the market frenzy may not happen quickly as prices are expected to rise in 2022. In addition, a shift to a hybrid work model is fueling more buyers to invest in real estate and seek larger homes that can accommodate remote work while remaining within commuting distance. "Once again, Sotheby's International Realty remains a trusted resource for buyers and sellers looking to navigate the luxury real estate market," said Bradley Nelson, chief marketing officer for Sotheby's International Realty. "It was important for us to offer our perspective on the trends ahead as luxury real estate remains a trusted investment amid relatively low interest rates and inflation. Now in its second year, the 2022 Luxury Outlook report offers expert insight following last year's frenzied housing market and what buyers can expect in the coming year as pent-up demand from international buyers is expected to increase." The Sotheby's International Realty 2022 Luxury Outlook report was compiled by surveying Sotheby's International Realty agents around the world who transact in the US$10M+ price category. This information was complemented by gathering supporting data from other leading industry experts, including UBS Wealth Management; Henley & Partners, a global citizenship and residence advisory firm; the National Association of Realtors; in addition to art and luxury experts at Sotheby's, the famed auction house, to round out luxury trends in the year to come. Key findings featured in the report include: 2022 is likely to be the year of the international buyer as borders open and vaccinations and boosters roll out Nearly half of respondents agree that a rise in interest rates might affect the market In North America, millennials and Gen Xers are expected to make up the majority of luxury-home sales in the coming year Between 2018-2042, nearly US$70 trillion will be passed down from older generations and millennials will continue to use their share for real estate, according to Cerulli Associates In the U.S., price appreciation of second homes is expected to continue even after the number of transactions slowed due to limited inventory The most important amenities for today's luxury buyers are a garage with storage, first-floor full bathroom, eat-in kitchen, and deluxe primary bedroom suite "Following another historic year in real estate, Sotheby's International Realty agents around the world continue to have their finger on the pulse on industry trends and market acuity," said Philip White, president and chief executive officer of Sotheby's International Realty. "Luxury Outlook heavily relies on the expertise of our network spanning 77 countries and territories to provide on-the-ground insight on the biggest stories in 2021, from the resurgence of urban cities to the role of cryptocurrency, and what it means for buyers and sellers in the short and long term." Click here to read the complete report.
MORE >
Explaining WAV Group and Web3
MORE >
Why Understanding the Homebuyer Journey Is Key to Nurturing Real Estate Leads
The needs of today's homebuyers are changing, so it's more important than ever to understand the journey your clients take when it comes to buying a home. In a perfect world, the process of guiding a potential client through a new home purchase goes something like this: You capture a real estate lead through your website (or get a referral), you make contact with them within a few minutes, and qualify them as an opportunity. Next, you set up a few showings you have something under contract within 30 days. Unfortunately, it's not that fluid. Nurturing a relationship with a potential home buyer requires much more time before they convert. Your lead nurturing plan could span several months or years (the homebuying journey takes around 11-27 months), so it's important to build a foundation for a long-term relationship. Here are the different stages of a real estate lead lifecycle and what you should know about nurturing leads at the right time and in the right way to maximize your pipeline ROI.‍ Consideration (2+ years before closing)‍ At this stage, home buyers are thinking: What type of home do I want? What areas do I want to consider? Is now a good time to buy? Leads in this stage have likely not actively pursued an agent. So, your first contact should be an introduction, letting them know you're available to answer questions without pressuring them to make a decision. Let them browse, but make yourself known. Remember, the first agent to make contact with a real estate lead is 238% more likely to convert, per a Market Leader report. ‍Online Research (1 year before closing) At this stage, home buyers are thinking: What can we afford in our area(s)? What are the demographics, schools, etc. like in the area(s)? Leads in this stage have started to browse listings, but are not yet ready to buy. Ninety percent of all home buyers start their home search online, according to NAR. They're also more likely to communicate via the web. Make sure your website is up to date and communicates your brand (you) and the unique value you offer. Once they've made contact on your site, send them relevant, helpful information to establish a connection and start building trust. ‍Active Search (4 months before closing) At this stage, home buyers are ready to start touring homes with an agent. They want to know: How many homes have you sold this year? How well do you know the area(s) of interest? How will you help make this process easier? Real estate leads in this stage are aware of what they want and can afford, and want specifics about the buying process. You need to make yourself available for showings and offer recommendations based on their criteria. Timely response in this stage is crucial, so be prompt in your communications. ‍Transaction (1 month before closing) At this stage, home buyers need an agent to negotiate contracts and guide them through the purchase process. They are thinking: How much should we offer for this home? What are the contingencies? Are we competing with other buyers? This is your chance to shine. Provide exceptional service and guidance, resources, and referrals. On average, it takes 23 days to negotiate a home purchase, so be upfront about the timeline and logistics. By establishing trust, you are giving them a reason to work with you again and refer family and friends.‍ Post-Sale (2+ months out) At this stage, home buyers want to know about changes in their home's value and what's trending in the marketplace. Keep in touch with your clients by sending information about the local real estate market and their home's current value. This helps to ensure repeat business and referrals when the time comes to sell or buy again, or when a friend is looking to purchase a home. Connect with them on social media and use automation tools to stay in touch via email and text. NAR reports that 90% of buyers would use the same agent again or recommend their agent to others, so put effort into generating repeat business. The important thing to remember about lead nurturing and the home buying journey is to engage in the whole journey, not just the transaction. Part of an agent's playbook for lead management should include using a tech platform that automates lead nurturing, so you're always engaging with clients and ensures you never miss an opportunity to convert. Because when it comes to engaging with homebuyers, trust and speed win. To view the original article, visit the Inside Real Estate blog.
MORE >
Is Your Business People-centric?
MORE >
NFT Art Traded for Home in Real Life
NFTs are tokens that allow you to own digital assets. In this example, I am going to be talking about digital art NFTs that are owned on the blockchain. One of the most famous of all NFT projects is arguably Bored Ape Yacht Club (a.k.a. BAYC, which also includes Mutant Ape Yacht Club and Bored Ape Kennel Club). These funky digital drawings sell for luxury art prices. Justin Bieber just purchased one for USD$450k; many believe that these pieces of art will hit $2 million by this summer. In a post on Twitter today, one of the better known artists in the space, @FVCKRENDER, a rare owner of four of these highly desirable pieces of art, is offering to trade them for a home in Vancouver. Well, hey, the Vancouver real estate market is hot and growing at double-digit percentages year after year—but Bored Apes are growing in value by triple digit percentages every quarter with no ceiling in sight. This exposes a problem with investments in Crypto and NFTs—how do you get your money out? I do not know this owner's story or what they purchased these for (side note: you can check this on the blockchain) or how much equity he has in the art, but this @FVCKRENDER clearly needs a home in real life. If this person minted these Apes, they were in at an initial price of $190. Imagine creating something that starts around that price and watch it grow to what it has become today—and they just continue to increase in value. WAV Group has been entrenched in researching the NFT ecosystem and has already initiated its first NFT project, set to launch in Q1 2022. There is no greater success story to understanding NFTs than that of BAYC. All of the 22,000+ owners of these pieces are part of a pretty small club. This club includes celebrities like Eminem, Jimmy Fallon, Rich the Kid, Steve Aoki, Steph Curry, Snoop Dog, Justin Bieber and more. The lowest price for an NFT in the Bored Ape family (at the time of this article) ranges from $26,000 to over $450K. A key feature of BAYC utility is the participation in their online community and gated Web3 experiences—a lot like a social club. A way to understand this is to think about luxury communities or, in this case, metahumans who are building relationships in a digital world. Huge brands are doing NFT collaborations with BAYC owners. In many cases, BAYC holders are gifted NFTs in exchange for helping to promote a new NFT drop. This social equity has been built from the BAYC value and hype. Some BAYC owners have literally become major influencers in the NFT space. If they give a shout out for a new NFT drop, their influence can move the needle on the promotion of the NFT and speculators will drive up the value of the new release. The success of BAYC has also translated into very cool IRL events (they actually rented a huge yacht in NYC for a party with BAYC holders). For example, Snoop may have a meet-up that he sponsors in L.A. for BAYC owners. They stream the meet up to Snoop's gallery in The Sand Box metaverse where Snoop has a digital twin of his real-life home. This is called a "gated experience" where only members of Snoop's metaverse can digitally join the party. What I am explaining here is something called the Utility of an NFT. NFT owners are offered perks in real life, or sometimes gifts. I had a hard time understanding Web3 out of the gate, but our research into the space and our experience launching our first NFT has become a bit of a rabbit hole of learning. If Web 1.0 was about brands shouting at consumers with information, Web 2.0 was about brands having an open dialog and interacting with consumers. Web3 is a shift to privacy, security and tight-knit digital communities that mirror interests, giving brands full ownership of the digital experience. We are receiving a lot of interest in a webinar to help people better understand this space. Keep an eye on our blog, newsletter and socials for an upcoming time and date. To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
MORE >
Web3, Decentraland, Crypto, NFTs and Virtual Real Estate
MORE >
Our Top 10 Most-Read Articles of December
Happy New Year! Before we dive fully into a new year and a new decade, let's take a look at the month and year that just passed. As our regular readers likely know, each month we publish a list of our most read articles. But every December, we go one step further and count down our 10 most popular articles of the year. You can see the full list of our best articles of 2021 here. Below is our final monthly list of articles from 2021. Check out what your fellow agents and brokers were reading during the waning days of the year just passed. 1. Friday Freebie: 2022 Real Estate Marketing Planner‍'Tis the season for... planning how to take your real estate career to the next level in the year ahead! Between holiday parties and gift buying, you've probably got a lot going on this season. Let us help you make planning for 2022 as easy as possible. In this week's Friday Freebie, we're highlighting a free real estate marketing planner, complete with worksheets to make setting and achieving your goals as easy as possible. 2. 3 Dumb Tech Mistakes You Should Avoid in 2022I am always looking for ways to grow and improve myself, both at work and in my personal life. What I have found is the most impactful changes to my life are not focused on doing good things, but instead focused on getting rid of the bad stuff. That's where this list comes in. Here are three dumb tech mistakes to avoid going into 2022 that will help grow your real estate business. 3. The Best Email Subject Lines: 11 Formulas to Use in Real EstateThe average person sends and receives approximately 120 emails per day. Most people won't open all 120. So how do you fight through the clutter, and get your audience to open YOUR emails? You have to master the subject line. It doesn't matter if your email contains the most amazing content if no one even opens it. 4. 8 Things Sellers Should Expect from You as Their Listing AgentJeff Dowler, a real estate agent in San Diego, provides insight as to what seller clients are expecting from you as their agent and how you can successfully assist them through the transaction process. 5. 10 Gifts for Real Estate AgentsReal estate agents are great at picking homes, perfect neighborhoods, and helping their clients through complicated contracts. And, of course, they're also great spouses, partners, friends, siblings, and parents! Got a real estate agent in your life that you want to spoil this holiday season? Want to treat yourself to something sweet? See these 10 gift ideas for real estate agents. 6. Friday Freebie: Educate Buyers and Attract Leads with this Homebuying GuideWe've got a two-fer for you in this week's Friday Freebie: a comprehensive (and brandable!) guide that you can use to attract new leads and educate first-time home buyers, all at the same time. 7. Using Facebook Live for Your Real Estate Open HouseFacebook Live brings your narrated property tour directly to consumers' screens, at home or while they're on-the-go. They don't have to make any time commitment other than setting aside time to watch your property tour. Agents are even finding it can help them close some clients. This article will show you how to get started taking advantage of this powerful marketing tool which will continue to serve you into the future. 8. 5 Tech Tricks for Better Real Estate Customer ServiceReal estate agents should always be focused on how to better serve their clients and prospects--but I'm sure we don't have to tell you that! What we can share with you, however, are the tech-based tips and tricks that will ensure you offer your customers the best service in your market. Here are five ways to do just that. 9. Top Real Estate Agents Possess These 4 Entrepreneurial TraitsSince agents are undoubtedly entrepreneurs, we identified four common entrepreneurial values and dissected how they relate to real estate. These four actions are standard behavior for successful entrepreneurs – and real estate agents. 10. Know Your Numbers: What do you really know about the software you use?Before you can determine if you have improved, made more money, or grown your business, you need to know where you started from and where you are at now. The end of the year is approaching fast, so let's take time to consider what software we use, how often we use it, and what other options are available to use.
MORE >
3 Ways to Dust Off Your Sphere of Influence Now
MORE >
9 Things New Users Should Know About RPR Commercial
If you're new to RPR, welcome aboard! We know you have a lot riding on your next deal (maybe your first!), which is why we built the nation's largest property database for commercial practitioners. And we built it for one thing -- your success! Search on- and off-market properties through RPR You can now search any property right from the RPR Homepage. Simply toggle from "Residential" to "Commercial" and all the search settings change accordingly. This gives commercial professionals instant access to more than one million active listings from partnered sites such as Biproxi/OfficeSpace.com, Brevitas, CREXi, Catylist, and TotalCommercial.com—plus, the ability to search 56 million off-market properties, making RPR an indispensable asset. Use RPR to deliver data-backed advice and insight Here are some more highlights of specific improvements that RPR offers commercial users: The new shortcuts: Take guided tours of business-building features such as prospecting, mapping insights, reporting, investor analysis, Opportunity Zones and comp lists. Smoother navigation: Locate the tools you need from anywhere in the site by clicking one of the main navigation items. Need quick access to Commercial Site Selection? It's in a drop down menu on your homepage, under the Research tab. Market activity mapping: You can now set up "My Markets" that will be displayed right when you log in to your RPR account. Monitor selected geographies and specific properties to keep an eye out daily for client opportunities. Streamlined saves: Finding saved items clearly and quickly was a popular request from members. Now saved searches, properties and listings are easier to find and retrieve. Helpful details: Each Property Details page features call-outs to strategic, partnered commercial real estate resources, including national listing platforms. Just for you: The RPR New User Series These nine "how-to's" cover everything from simple searches, to how to trade areas and site selection, mapping, and our ever-popular RPR reports. Each article includes a breakdown of what you can expect from RPR and how to easily incorporate RPR tools and features into your every day business operations. Here's an overview of what you'll find in the RPR New User Series: Data Partners RPR has partnerships with various commercial data partners which help power the tools and reports you'll find inside of its platform. Commercial Search Learn how to get started searching for specific commercial properties or commercial areas in RPR, and how to view and refine your results. Commercial Map Insights Find ideal locations and set your listings apart by doing property searches and conducting research in RPR's Commercial Maps. Opportunity Zones Learn to use this powerful data layer to analyze and search for properties within the 8,700 Opportunity Zones throughout the U.S.. Property Details The commercial version of RPR's Property Details page is jam-packed with facts, stats and records that you can use to make solid commercial real estate recommendations. Trade Area Details The data found with RPR's Trade Area Details will help you measure, predict and target optimal locations for your business and investor clients. Site Selection Where are the right people for a business? Learn how to zero in on them with RPR's Commercial Site Selection tool. Commercial Reports RPR offers three Commercial Property Reports: the Commercial Property Report, the Trade Area Report and the Trade Area Analysis. Each one is an impressive deliverable to share with clients. RPR Mobile™ Download the free RRR app to instantly view on- and off-market properties. The app also provides a customizable feature that allows you to create, save and share reports with just a few quick taps on the screen. Designed exclusively for REALTORS®, RPR is included in your membership dues, and requires no extra fees or upgrades. Simply go to narrpr.com, and get the login process started. You'll soon be searching properties, creating reports and delivering data-rich, professional-looking materials to your clients. And in no time, you'll use RPR to "wow" your clients and close more deals. To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
MORE >
Real Estate Digital Marketing Trends that Will Make It to 2022
MORE >
BHGRE Emphasizes the Importance of Lifestyle in Buyer Mindset in Latest Industry Report
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate latest market trends report, "Lifestyle Leads the Way for Today's Buyers," examines how and why lifestyle is leading buyers' decision-making when it comes to purchasing their next home. Better Homes and Gardens® Real Estate affiliated brokerage leaders and agents across the country contributed to the report, providing a first-hand account of what today's buyers are prioritizing in their home search. According to the brokers and agents interviewed for the report, key observations included: Destination lifestyle markets are now more accessible than ever, thanks to the surge of Americans working from home. These markets are a reality for many working professionals, from the beach to the mountains to sought-after planned communities. The pandemic effects and intense market competition have redefined what a "dream home" could be. Buyers are prioritizing a lifestyle market and are willing to compromise on home features to live in their preferred location. Limited inventory has not been a deterrent for buyers' intent to get into the market they desire. Many out-of-market buyers are leveraging equity when selling their home to make their next house their dream home. Many professionals are pushing up their retirement move by a few years due to their ability to work from home until they are ready to retire. People are re-evaluating the function and features of their houses with the increase of time spent at home – both inside and outdoors. Inside the home, kitchens are still king, but there has been more emphasis on outside living areas featuring kitchens as well. With the growing demand for lifestyle locations, agents need to become familiar with larger service areas beyond their core market to help match buyers with homes. Current market conditions are prime for vacation and second home purchases. "We understand that our homes are more than a structure; they are where both the big and small moments in our lives take place," said Sherry Chris, President and CEO, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate. "Our affiliated network of brokers and real estate professionals have access to propriety tools, robust resources and dynamic lifestyle content to connect with today's home buyers and sellers every day, year after year. As homeowners across the country continue to embrace a new reality made possible by the increased ability to work from home, the importance of lifestyle will continue to be a significant factor in how consumers reimagine where they reside to live their best life." The report is available for download here.
MORE >
The Results Are in: 2021's Best Practices for CMAs and Listing Presentations Survey
MORE >
Think Like a Newspaper Publisher
A leading real estate brokerage in Southwest Florida generates nearly 200 visitors a month from a single blog post that provides reasons to move to the area. Another blog post filled with fun local facts from last April continues to drive nearly 100 visits to another Sunbelt-based brokerage. So, what's their secret sauce? They are all benefiting from the value of coupling content with SEO. Content is a crucial component of any SEO program for real estate. By providing content that attracts traffic to their website and engages visitors, brokerages can leapfrog local competitors in traffic and lead generation. Without a complete SEO and content strategy, you miss out on driving more prospective local home sellers and buyers to your brokerage website. That's why real estate brokerages benefit when they think like news veterans to drive more targeted and quality traffic to their websites. News publishers understand that nothing connects better to their audience than local news and information that provides value. Avoid Being Yesterday's News While you don't have a team of seasoned journalists who create content like big-time newspapers do, you can learn from how they do what they do. About a third of all traffic to one of the country's largest-circulation newspaper websites comes from search traffic, according to Alexa. In addition, the paper's reader engagement is off the charts at more than double their competitor's average. So, it is clear that newspapers care deeply about SEO and the insights it provides. For example, Search Engine Land notes that, often, data tools help shape editorial decisions. Newspapers closely monitor online reader behavior, which allows them to improve their content strategy, and, in turn, builds more trust with their readers. Newspapers don't think about SEO as a one-hit-wonder for their sites. They know building trust with their readers takes time, and rather than try to sell to their customers, they focus on informing them. Today's newspaper world offers content that connects, and readers keep coming back for more. Benefits of Content in Your Overall SEO Strategy Google likes websites that offer new and engaging content. The more frequently your content is updated, the more Google crawls and indexes your website. As Google begins to see your website as being authoritative, your ranking in Google searches improves. It's essential to provide fresh and frequent content that is distinct. Google does not like duplicate content. If you are repurposing the same content that Google is finding elsewhere, Google is less likely to come back and index your website. Google also will come back less frequently to a website when the content is stale. So you need to give search engines like Google something new to find. Delta Media Group regularly provides local content for brokerage websites that is distinct, with topics that spark curiosity to attract and then engage readers, and that helps ensure they spend more time on the broker's site. Examples of hyperlocal blog content include, "Top 5 Picnic Spots in Dayton," "Pet Parks of Portland," "Best Bookstores in Boise," "7 Fun Facts About the French Quarter," and "9 Reasons to Move to Naples." These are the type of evergreen posts that can drive more traffic to a website for years. In some larger markets, it is difficult for a brokerage to rank high in a Google search for a general home search, such as "Homes for sale in Miami." But by specifically building out hyperlocal blog content for these markets and optimizing these blogs for search, brokerages can increase their chances of ranking for the more competitive search phrases over time. Delta also provides industry-leading SEO software that automates the process of optimizing a brokerage's website. As a result, it helps brokerage websites grow immensely, creating tens of thousands of pages from MLS listing data – content a brokerage otherwise would not have. Plus, Delta's software provides Google with clean, more descriptive URLs for each page it creates, making it easier to index. This includes market landing pages, pages for local neighborhoods and subdivisions, school districts, brokerages, IDX listings results pages, and more — all optimized and updated for search engines automatically. Without this software, a brokerage would need a team of folks to manage this process. Combined with the regular blog posts Delta provides, there's always plenty of new content for Google to come back and index. Right Time, Right Content Real estate brokerages can leverage automation tools and deliver the right content to the right people at the right time. While you may not field a team of content creators like a major newspaper, the good news is that Delta Media already has one in place for you. Creating content of interest that is relevant and valued is what Delta does best, generating thousands of visitors to our brokerage clients' websites each month. For example, manually creating and maintaining social media channels, email marketing campaigns, and a blog can be challenging. Many brokerages don't dedicate the resources needed for an effective content marketing strategy because it can be overwhelming and often not deliver a return on one's investment of time and money. Delta Media Group helps brokerages overcome this hurdle by providing a robust content marketing strategy that leverages automated drip marketing email campaigns and social posting tools as well as hyperlocal blog content. Everything you do as a brokerage in leveraging content should be easy and help you better connect with the communities you serve. By delivering content that matters to your community, you can turn online prospects into closed transactions. For example, in New Hampshire, a monthly email that targets 22,000 individuals showcasing new listings, price changes, and a real estate article generates 53% of their website traffic and 33% of their leads. To drive more website traffic, major regional brokerages in North Carolina and Long Island, New York deploy automated marketing tools, including Market Watch reports, new listing alerts, push notifications, and the My Customer for Life drip marketing email campaign. As much as 10% of their total traffic comes from these automated tools. In fact, a brokerage can derive more than half of its website volume and a third of its leads from a well-crafted email campaign when the content is hyperlocal and seen as valuable. While the brokerage provides the content, the email goes out on behalf of agents to each agent's client and prospect database. Agents benefit from this strategy, as they don't have to lift a finger to touch both past and potential clients. They appreciate their broker giving them this type of marketing support that helps them grow their business. Over the years, one broker's email campaign has built an almost cult-like following, with recipients looking forward to their weekly email blast. Building Traffic and Leads Real estate SEO is a lot different than how SEO works for most other industries. Regular SEO typically is trying to build and drive traffic to products or services that remain the same. In real estate SEO, the product — a property listing — is turning over all the time, and every new home listing is a new product. A lot of brokerages struggle with SEO for this reason. But SEO done right can help brokerages dramatically increase traffic and generate more "ready to transact" leads. When compared with most other real estate marketing activities, SEO triumphs by delivering a stellar ROI, as it is one of the most profitable ways to market your brokerage website. And SEO isn't just for national brokerages or ones with million-dollar marketing budgets. SEO is achievable for brokerages of all sizes. Best of all, the audiences you reach on your website with the right SEO program are buyers and sellers who are more likely to transact sooner rather than later. Because Delta Media Group delivers the "under the hood" work that SEO requires, brokerages don't have to do the heavy lifting. As a leading real estate website and lead management developer, Delta has the programmers, system administrators, content creators, and web designers to help with the necessary website adjustments, maximizing the SEO of a brokerage site. Delta works within your real estate website, including the back-end code, to make the necessary programming adjustments, helping brokerages avoid using the services of a third-party SEO company. In addition, copywriting is done by a team of professionals so that SEO-based content creation is by writers who include graduates from top journalism programs and many former professional journalists. For SEO to remain effective, it also needs to be monitored and adjusted. Having a professional team that has your back gives brokerages peace of mind. Delta makes sure that your SEO investment continues to deliver traffic and leads through tracking and monitoring online behavior. As a result, brokerages get ongoing insight into their website traffic and lead generation because SEO transparency is paramount for its long-term success. The Big Takeaway It's a myth that SEO is only for the biggest brokerage firms, and SEO is anything but dead in real estate. The fact is SEO can provide one of the most significant returns on investment of any marketing expenditure by a brokerage. The right SEO and content marketing strategy can be a brokerage's secret sauce for driving more traffic and building more leads. When a brokerage thinks like a publisher by delivering hyperlocal, relevant and timely content, they will drive more traffic to their website, generate more actionable leads, and delight their agents. RE Technology readers can try DeltaNET 6 free for 30 days. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
MORE >
How to Get Your Team to Embrace New Tech
MORE >
Battle of the Real Estate Brands: Survey Finds How Well Consumers Recall Top Real Estate Brand Logos
Lucidpress announced the results of a survey showing how well consumers could recognize top real estate brands, as well as how real estate professionals ranked the industry's branding as a whole. When it comes to real estate professionals, they value their brand's position within the industry; they ranked it as the most important branding element of a real estate company's success, closely followed by user experience on the app or website. Only 11% of real estate professionals said the logo was the most important branding element for their company's success. When it comes to consumers, logos are crucial for brand recognition. The majority of respondents were able to correctly identify top real estate brands like Coldwell Banker, Keller Williams, Berkshire Hathaway and RE/Max by their logo alone. However, some elements of the logo were more identifiable than others: 84% of consumers correctly identified Berkshire Hathaway by its font alone. 91% of consumers correctly identified Coldwell Banker by its color scheme. 90% of consumers correctly identified RE/Max's imagery (colors and balloons), but without that imagery, only 63% could correctly identify its font. 81% of consumers correctly identified Keller Williams by its color scheme. Only 30% of consumers could correctly identify Century 21's current logo due to confusion over a recent rebrand. Century 21's recent rebrand didn't just throw off consumers. The majority (56%) of real estate professionals also did not think the rebrand was successful and expected consumers to be confused. The real estate professionals were also right about how well consumers know and can recognize these top brands: 84% of professionals believed consumers could recognize top real estate brands very well at a glance. According to the survey, here are how the top brands ranked in order of most to least recognizable: Coldwell Banker was the most recognizable brand with 91% correct answers. Re/Max was the next most recognized for its trademark at 90%. Berkshire Hathaway took the third spot with 84% of consumers recognizing its font. Keller Williams came in fourth with 81% correctly identifying it by color scheme. Century 21 was last due to confusion over the new logo, with only 30% of consumers identifying it correctly. Read the full results of the survey here.
MORE >
Are You Ready for Real Estate Investing?
MORE >
AVMs and the RVM: The 'REALTOR' Makes all the Difference
One of, if not the most, talked about subjects in real estate right now is AVMs (automated valuation models). More specifically, how Zillow's AVM and their reliance on it within their "Zillow Offers" iBuyer program caused them to fold the service entirely. If you're unfamiliar with this trending story, check out this article, this one, or this one to get up to speed. While many industry professionals have shown support for seeing the "Zestimate," it has also been criticized as to its accuracy in determining home valuations. This story has brought AVMs in general into the light as a hot topic as well. And that got us thinking about our version: the RVM® (Realtors Valuation Model®)... Not all AVMs are equal AVM technology sprang up just over 20 years ago, where its initial use occurred most often in mortgage lending and real estate investing. It uses a mix of algorithms, artificial intelligence and aggregated, public data to create digital comps and home value estimates. The tech graduated to pop culture status in 2006, when Zillow launched and put the word "Zestimate" into everyone's vocabulary. The challenges that these valuations have caused for REALTORS® has been written about extensively over the years, but the real point we're trying to focus on is the difference between AVMs and the RVM® (especially the "R" part of RVM®). First off, any AVM should be no more than a starting point. It's the human knowledge and market experience that needs to be added to any calculation to make it accurate. By looking at AVMs, but allowing customization tools that took that knowledge into account, REALTORS® have at their disposal a better, more powerful and more accurate tool for the task of pricing homes. Simply put, the RVM® is an AVM, but with highly accurate data and better tools to allow the REALTOR® to add their market knowledge. Here's a breakdown of the main differences: AVM = Automated Valuation Model: a value estimate calculated using publicly available information RVM® = Realtors Valuation Model®: a value estimate calculated using publicly available information plus MLS active, sold and off-market data The RVM® is available exclusively for REALTORS® via RPR (Realtors Property Resource) The RVM® pulls directly from the MLS, giving it the most up-to-date data, allowing for the highest accuracy of any valuation product available. It also displays a five star confidence score rating, which helps agents make better decisions. What's the RVM® secret sauce? It's you, the REALTOR®. As good as the RVM can be, current data, confidence scores and a product backed (and owned) by the members of The National Association of REALTORS® aren't the biggest factors that separate AVMs from the RVM®. The biggest point of differentiation is the name itself: "REALTORS®." Superior tech and tools are essential, but they'll only get you so far. What really counts hinges on the human element. Sure, REALTORS® use the RVM® as a starting point, but it's what they bring to the table in experience and expertise that really provides their clients with spot-on property pricing and home valuations. This "boots on the ground" approach is what truly separates the RVM® from all the others. For example, all AVMs base their evaluation on properties being in "fair" condition. But in reality, properties vary. With RPR's Refine Value Tool, a REALTOR® can walk through the home and make property condition assessments, up or down, in minutes. They can also correct outdated information, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, square footage, etc. They can include major home upgrades, as RPR takes regional home renovation data from Zonda and refactors it at a local zip code level. (Zonda is a housing market research and real estate data analytics company that helps home builders and developers make smarter decisions.) And if the home needs repairs, those can be included. too. All of these elements factor in to reflect a change in value. Additionally, REALTORS® have another resource in their tool belt, the CMA. After confirming or correcting a listed home's facts, they can search for and adjust comparable properties to zero-in on an estimate of the home's value based on recent sales in the neighborhood. AVM-RVM® resources/questions and answers For an in-depth look at how REALTORS® and the RVM® can work together, be sure to read: 5 Simple Steps to Building a Stunning and Compelling RPR® Seller's Report. And check out RPR's FAQs on AVMs and the RVM®. To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
MORE >
Divvy Homes and zavvie Team Up to Offer Innovative Rent-to-Own Buying Solutions to Brokerages and Their Agents
MORE >
How to Prepare for a Successful Meeting with a Recruit
Recruiting new agents to your brokerage is an essential part of growing your business. Whether you decide to cast a wide net and hope to catch the right talent, exclusively go after top producers in your market--or both--there's a lot of planning and strategy that goes into recruiting. Once you've identified a list of agents you would like to meet with, it's time to prepare to meet. Here are our top five tips to have a successful meeting: 1. Study your recruit's past performance. When a real estate agent is considering joining a new brokerage, they want to know that you are invested in them from the start. To gain their trust, do your homework so you can have an informed conversation with them. By looking at MLS data and sales history, you can learn what their production levels are, their market share, areas they do business, and if they work primarily with buyers or sellers. 2. Come prepared with a list of questions you want to ask them. At the end of the day, meeting with a recruit is essentially a job interview. You need to understand how they will fit into the culture of your brokerage and help contribute to your bottom line. The questions you ask should cover multiple areas of their business from working with clients, to lead generation, as well as their career goals. Some example questions* to ask are: How do you build rapport with new clients? What questions do you ask upfront to identify what your client is looking for? What lead generation tactics do you find most successful? What type of culture are you looking for? What do you want your career to look like in five years? *If you're interviewing a new agent, you will need to alter your questions to discuss future plans from market areas they want to focus on, needs for coaching, etc. Most importantly, now is the time to put on your listening ears and refrain from giving too much input. Let your recruit guide the conversation so you can decide if they are in fact a good fit for your brokerage. 3. Discuss your business with them—from your plans for growth to market share and culture. Being transparent about how your brokerage operates from the start is imperative if you want to successfully retain your recruit—at the end of the day, they are also interviewing you. Start by sharing the story of your brokerage. Share what you consider to be your strengths, while also being transparent about your weaknesses and how you plan to overcome them. Additionally, come prepared with market share reports and your business plan so you can clearly illustrate how and where their skill set will fit in. It's also a good idea to share agent and client testimonials so they have a clear picture of how others (not just you) see your brokerage. Once you've laid out how your business operates, open the door for them to ask questions... and be prepared to give honest answers. 4. Invite them to meet other agents, admins, and support personnel in your office. Since we all spend so much time at work, it's important for your recruit to enjoy the culture you've built at your brokerage. By allowing your recruit to interview or meet with other agents or admins in your office, they can get a clear picture of what their day-to-day will look like. 5. Explain the tech tools and coaching you provide. With real estate leaning more and more to digital processes, explaining which tech tools you provide at your brokerage is a huge selling tool. Whether you have decided to provide lead generation tools, a CRM, or transaction management—you want them to know these things upfront. This also lets them know what out-of-pocket costs they will incur to successfully manage and run their business. Another huge selling point for recruits is how and when you will provide coaching and training along the way. At the end of the day, they want to know how you intend to support their growth so they can also reach their goals for their own business. To view the original article, visit the Lone Wolf blog.
MORE >
Should Agents Be Working from Home?
MORE >
RESO Unveils 2022 Board of Directors, Executive Committee Leaders
Every December, the election results are revealed that announce the new Board of Directors for the Real Estate Standards Organization, or RESO. And every year, a stellar slate of industry leaders take the helm at RESO to help guide its vision for a streamlined real estate technology industry. The real estate industry is well represented by this group, which includes: Rebecca Jensen, MRED; Michael Wurzer, FBS; John Breault, State-Wide MLS; and Richard Renton, Triad MLS; Todd Carpenter, NAR; Jason Normandin, NAR; Matt Cohen, CoreLogic; Bob Evans, Move, Inc.; and Mark Lesswing, T3 Sixty; Turan Tekin, Zillow Group; Andy Woolley, Homes.com; Chris Carrillo, Metro MLS; Shayne Fairley, Stellar MLS; and Frank Major, Bright MLS; Marty Reed, CRMLS; Bill Fowler, Compass; Dan Troup, RE/MAX; Caitlin McCrory, Realogy; and Jeff Young, RPR. As a Charter Member of RESO, WAV Group looks forward to the contributions of the new board members as they continue to work hard to deliver RESO's mission: to create and promote the adoption and utilization of standards that drive efficiency throughout the real estate industry. Here is the full news release: RESO Announces 2022 Board of Directors Election Winners Raleigh, NC, December 9, 2021 -- The Real Estate Standards Organization (RESO) is honored to present the results of its 2022 Board of Directors election for nine open seats and other board appointments, as well as the industry professionals who will sit on its Executive Committee for the year 2022. "RESO is not only delivering unified standards and certifications to the industry, it is now providing the objective, transparent reporting that will spur technology innovation," said Rebecca Jensen, who was re-elected 2022 Chair of the RESO board and is President and CEO of Midwest Real Estate Data (MRED). "Leaders who see the impact of standards on their businesses are joining RESO's leadership in greater numbers, and we are lucky to have them on our board." With that, here are the new 2022 RESO Board of Directors election winners. Matt Cohen, Principal, Advisory Services, CoreLogic Bob Evans, VP of Industry Relations, Move, Inc. Shayne Fairley, COO, Stellar MLS Rebecca Jensen, President and CEO, MRED Mark Lesswing, CTO & SVP, T3 Sixty Frank Major, CTO, Bright MLS Marty Reed, Chief Innovation & Strategy Officer, California Regional MLS (CRMLS) Michael Wurzer, President and CEO, FBS – Creators of Flexmls Jeff Young, COO/GM, Realtors Property Resource (RPR) The following at-large appointments were made by the board: Caitlin McCrory, VP of Industry Relations, Realogy Richard Renton, CEO, Triad MLS Andy Woolley, VP of Industry Development, Homes.com and Homesnap The 2022 RESO Executive Committee: Chair: Rebecca Jensen, MRED Vice-Chair: Michael Wurzer, FBS Secretary: John Breault, State-Wide MLS Treasurer: Richard Renton, Triad MLS Continuing 2022 RESO Board Members: Todd Carpenter, Director, Strategic Investments, National Association of REALTORS®; Chris Carrillo, CEO, Metro MLS; Bill Fowler, Senior Director of Industry Relations, Compass; Jason Normandin, Project Manager, National Association of REALTORS®; Turan Tekin, Director, MLS and Industry Development, Zillow Group; and Dan Troup, Director of Data Operations & Strategy, RE/MAX. "We welcome our new board members, and we are thankful for the time that our directors who are moving off the board gave to building our success and will continue to give to the organization as leaders in our industry," said Sam DeBord, CEO of RESO. "We could not achieve the things we do without them." Departing RESO directors this year are Art Carter, CEO, CRMLS; Brian Donnellan, President & CEO, Bright MLS; Chip McAvoy, VP Emerging Products and Technology, Black Knight; and Liz Tewksbury, Industry Relations Director, Homesnap. About RESO RESO provides the foundation for streamlined real estate technology through the creation and certification of standards. Our member organizations include MLSs, brokerages, REALTOR® associations and technology partners serving more than one million real estate professionals. | reso.org To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
MORE >
How the 'Great Resignation' Is Sparking Real Estate Dreams across America
MORE >
Culture Is Critical to Success
What is your company culture like, and how does that culture impact the success of your team? These are crucial questions in any industry, and they're especially important in real estate. Building a strong culture starts from the top, but it also depends on every team member doing their part. Here's why culture is so critical to success and how you can foster a strong culture for your real estate team. Individual excellence may improve results, but team culture is the key to building a reliable, sustainable business where team members look forward to working each day and providing an excellent experience for your clients. A healthy culture makes it easier for your team to collaborate, support one another, and seamlessly integrate new members into the team. Your culture is reflected in everything that your team does. It makes your real estate business a more attractive place to work for top-performing agents and helps every team member perform to the best of their abilities. It's also reflected in how your clients are treated, how well your team helps them accomplish their goals, and how likely they are to generate referrals after those goals are accomplished. How to Build a Strong Culture with Your Real Estate Team As a team leader, other team members will naturally look to you as a culture setter and an example. When you bring a positive, team-focused attitude, a collaborative spirit, and a strong work ethic to the table, team members are naturally more likely to follow your lead. Establish Core Values That Your Team Can Be Proud of What motivates your team as a whole? Are the values of your team members aligned with the core values of your real estate business? Those values provide a guiding light for team members, both in how they treat clients and how they treat each other. Providing an outstanding experience for your clients is something that every team member should be able to get behind. It motivates them to work together to provide that experience and to make an effort to treat team members just as well as they treat each client. Learn What Motivates Each Team Member While team goals and values are important, it's equally critical to remember that every team is made up of unique individuals. Understanding what motivates each individual will help you create an environment that allows them to maximize their skills, work toward their goals, and understand how those goals fit within the larger context of the team. Take the time to get to know each member of the team and learn about their career goals. The more you know about your team, the easier it is to build a strong culture. Encourage a Culture of Collaboration and Respect The most successful teams work together toward common goals, with each individual doing their part. In real estate, collaboration comes in many forms – experienced agents helping new agents, buyer's agents helping seller's agents, and vice versa. In order to encourage collaboration and trust, it's important to foster an environment of respect. When team members treat each other the right way, respect the goals of each team member, and accept new ideas, it's much easier to succeed. Help Your Agents Learn and Grow The best agents never stop learning, are aware of how they can improve, and are willing to listen to advice from experienced voices on how they can grow their careers. Encourage agents to grow by providing learning opportunities and coaching. Make mentorship a priority so that each generation of agents can help the next generation thrive. Celebrate Team and Individual Successes Real estate is hard work. Agents of all experience levels invest extensive effort in achieving both team and individual goals. Celebrating those successes is a great way to bring your team closer together and remind them of why individual success is so closely linked to team success. Create an Inviting, Social Work Environment Even the layout of your office can make a positive contribution to team culture by encouraging agents to socialize and collaborate. An open floor plan makes it easy for agents to interact and connect. Regardless of the floor plan, you can create common areas where agents can easily meet up, discuss real estate matters, or even just relax for a few minutes and connect on a personal level. No matter the size of your real estate business, team culture is a key ingredient in your recipe for success. Whether you're launching a new brokerage or working to boost the performance of your existing team, actively building a positive culture will help you accomplish your goals. No two teams are exactly the same, but the core elements of a strong culture apply across the board. Set your team up for success with the right technology. RE Technology readers can try DeltaNET 6 free for 30 days. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
MORE >