It’s true that the marketplace is always changing. But the last ten years or so have been truly transformative to our business—and greater society—in fundamental ways. Remember what life was like before you had a smartphone or a social media feed? Feels like another time, doesn’t it?
To help real estate professionals adapt to the demands of this new always-on era, Realogy has been hosting our Real Estate Expert Series, a collection of discussions with top Realogy and industry leaders on topics relevant to real estate agents and brokers. This summer, the series hosted a very informative session covering the topic of Elevating Your Brand in an Evolving Marketplace.
The discussion was moderated by Matt Ferrara and featured four of the top Realogy thought leaders in marketing and brand building from the corporate, regional, and local levels:
• Jen Marchetti, Chief Marketing Officer, Realogy Expansion Brands
• Tamara Robinson, Regional Vice President, Coldwell Banker
• Andrew Linn, Broker-Owner, Vice President, ERA Davis & Linn and ERA Kings Bay Realty
• Mark McDonough, President, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Winans
The Unique Power of a Differentiated Real Estate Brand
The discussion kicked off with a question on the power of real estate brands, and how that power has accelerated in recent years. Jen Marchetti has a unique perspective on this topic, as she spearheads the marketing for two Realogy brands: ERA® and Better Homes and Gardens® Real Estate. She noted that “Every single one of the Realogy brands has a thoughtful and purposeful swim lane.” Specifically, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate is a Lifestyle Real Estate brand, which leverages the reach and name recognition of the magazine.
At the same time, ERA is one of the brands that helped make the real estate industry what it is today. But what makes ERA a true innovator in the real estate space is how it inverted what was once traditionally a top-down approach. Instead, ERA takes the position that real estate is local, and built its business that way. “ERA is not a what, it’s a who. It is the network that brings the brand to life.”
Using the Power of a Brand to Recruit Talent
Although the real estate industry has changed so much in recent years, one aspect of it remains stubbornly stuck in place: the difficulty of finding and retaining top talent. Naturally, this was a hot topic during the discussion. Tamara Robinson, Regional Vice President for Coldwell Banker, touched on the essential role her brand plays in recruiting and retaining agents. “Brand confidence and brand consistency makes it easier to attract brokers and agents. We’re always innovating, helping agents to live their most exceptional lives. It powers everything we do.” The group agreed that innovation is the key to growth. It helps attract clients, public attention, and draws top talent, both brokers and agents.
Teamwork Makes the Brand Work
Representing local brokerages, Andrew Linn, Broker-Owner, Vice President, ERA Davis & Linn and ERA Kings Bay Realty stressed how much of a game-changer it is to have the full power and prestige of ERA supporting his brokerage. “If you want to go fast, go by yourself. If you want to go far, build a team.” He stressed how ERA has helped his organization develop their core voice that’s backed up by his brokerage’s deep roots in the community. Ultimately, he credits his success to his brokerage’s ability to harness the national trust and reputation of the ERA brand, and use it as a force multiplier to promote his team’s local knowledge and ties to the community.
Staying Relevant to Your Customers, 365 Days a Year
Mark McDonough, President, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Winans stressed the urgent importance of staying relevant to your customers, every single day. He said of BHGRE, “Never before have we had a brand that allows us to so seamlessly weave our way into the lives of our clients and agents.”
He had an interesting story of how Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate made an impact for his brokerage in an unexpected way. As soon as his brokerage signed on, they leveraged the power of the brand by having their entire office redesigned by the BHGRE office design team. Right away, he noticed that a new energy was present in the office. When recruiting, potential agents were struck by the décor, which was far different than the typical brokerage office. It made his brokerage stand out in a big way.
“Agents are constantly out there looking for new ways to stay relevant with customers, beyond interest rates and new listings. When they search for that stuff, it’s interior design, it’s landscaping, it’s recipes…it’s all the little things they can share with their clients. The resources they’re using are just better because it’s Better Homes and Gardens.”
Quick Tips & Takeaways:
Enable your agents with “Secret Weapons” to market themselves
- Ensure they have access to dedicated team focused on creating marketing materials
- Maximize their social media presence with professional photography
- Provide the resources they need to establish a digital presence
Leverage the power of your brand
- Channel your brand’s authenticity in a purposeful way
- Use the power of your local connections in tandem with a recognizable brand
- Make the most of your brand’s resources to take your franchise from good to great
Make sure your passion comes through every day
- Recognize that if you’re not passionate about your work, it will show
- Do whatever it takes to demonstrate to your agents how much it means to you
- Lean into your brand and the rest will come
Stay focused on your goals
- Don’t be afraid to retool your mission and/or vision statement
- Keep your team laser-focused on your goals
- Always look for a way to say yes
Want to see the whole discussion? You can find it in our Webinar Archive here. Let us know what you think! Did it inspire any ideas for you? Are you interested in participating in a future Expert Series Webinar? We want to hear from you.
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*Please note this document was published prior to Realogy’s rebrand to Anywhere Real Estate Inc. on June 9, 2022.