15 November 2013

6 Best Practices of Successful Next Generation Brokerages


At this year’s NAR Conference, I had the opportunity to moderate a panel of dynamic residential real estate leaders who have built what we like to call next generation brokerages. Each of these panelists represent a firm that Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate has recognized as a Beta Brokerage – they are companies that approach business in a new way to best serve today’s and tomorrow’s consumer and are throwing away the rules of tradition to move the industry forward. We were honored to have these forward-thinking talents share their best practices and key insights into what it takes to build a real estate company of the future.

Today, consumers look to real estate professionals for much more than transaction execution in the home buying and selling process. They seek consultants who provide valuable lifestyle and community content to best serve them. And this generation is seeking information in different ways, checking their mobile devices for the latest news, their tablets for ideas and tips on their homes, and connecting with people who share their interests.

This evolution in consumer behavior means we must adapt how we do business.

For a Beta Broker, there is no “secret” to success. There are out-of-the-box ideas and calculated risks that have established them within the industry. The sign of a true leader is the willingness to share for the common good. This is a glimpse into what they shared:

  1. Create a unique culture
    Defining the core values of your company will go a long way in creating that unique brand culture that will distinguish you in a crowded market. Part of that culture could even be defined by your office space, whether it’s an Airstream trailer in a rural area or a funky loft in San Diego.
  2. Attract talent through new channels, with new value propositions
    Attracting the best, brightest, most resourceful and productive agents are keys to success.  That’s always been true, and it’s even more so today.   Whether it’s Yelp or Glassdoor, or through personal referrals, agents will gravitate to your brand if they see you have the tools they need, the knowledge they seek and the culture they covet.
  3. Keep your technology simple
    Complex legacy technologies need to go; adopt simple and easy-to-use cloud offerings.
  4. Integrate your marketing strategies
    Shore up your branding activities with a strong, integrated presence. Supplement traditional media, such as postcards and advertisements, with robust social media posts (photos, videos, infographics) on the most popular networks (Twitter, Facebook).
  5. Focus on local content
    We’ve all learned about the importance of location, location, location.  Practice that knowledge in the information you share.  In tandem with the regular industry news, updates from the local school district and community events are extremely important.
  6. Provide exceptional customer service
    It sounds simple, but paying meticulous attention to detail and anticipating the needs of your customers is what’s expected of you. Showing that you care and that you remain on top of your game will keep your customers feeling positive about their experience. That means being available when they need you and communicating the way they want (text, email, in person, phone). It means proactively arming them with information that they didn’t even know they needed, or couldn’t get on their own.

We’re always on the lookout for brokers who share an innovative way of thinking and who are doing great things in the industry and local markets in which they serve. Let’s connect on the Clean Slate Blog in the comments below, on Twitter (@SherryChris or @AllThingsBHGRE), or via our Beta Brokerage site.

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