Powerful Real Estate Advice from REAL Trends Top Agents & Teams
Every year, REAL Trends releases lists of power rankings, highlighting the most successful agents and teams in the industry. Broken down by transaction sides, sales volume, team size, etc., the list celebrates real estate’s top performers and it’s an incredible accomplishment to rank.
BoomTown clients tend to dominate the REAL Trends list, year after year. Fortunately, that gives us inside access to the expert advice and strategies of these top teams.
Expert Insights from REAL Trends Top-Rated Agents & Brokers
This year, we asked a few of these powerhouse agents and teams to share their most valuable insights for anyone aspiring to make the REAL Trends top 250.
Real estate is the industry of a thousand unique stories. We know that there is no mold or one-size-fits-all plan for success. That’s why it’s helpful to pool the knowledge of your peers, soak up advice and expert insights, and piece together your own unique path to success.
Question 1: What sets you apart from the competition?
Gina & Jeremy Miller, LocAL Realty: We focus on each other within the team as it pertains to supporting one another. If a need arises we find a way to meet it at all costs. This creates a culture that allows for the needs of clients to be exceptionally fast. Our Best of Zillow customer service ratings consistently are in the Top 1-3% as a result of the “Heart of a Servant” mindset we consistently give to each other and our clients!
Kathleen Kellet, KK Homes Team: Staying ahead of the curve, no matter how successful I become in this business, I never get complacent, I believe in karma and putting out what you want in return and taking care of people is the priority and when you do that the financial benefits will come.
Jeff Cohn, kwELITE: First off, I don’t see anyone as competition. As a leader, what sets me apart: I focus on what makes an impact on my organization and people. Impact and influence actually creates change in someone’s life, which gets them the results they want, which is what I want. It creates a win-win for everyone.
Our sales goal and aggregate goals is simply based on taking each individual’s goals and combining them.
#1: we help those within the organization to define the life that they want to live and lead! By creating a vision board that represents what they want to accomplish over the next 12 months to 5 years.
#2: We help each person customize their income goal per year based on their life goal per year.
#3: We help each person define how many homes they would need to sell per year. In other words, their sales goals.
#4: We help each agent allocate their time to dedicate to their highest income-producing activities, surrounding their sales goals.
Example: if they want to work open houses, we can design their activities & work around doing that to the best of their ability.
• We call these activities their KPIs. Then we train them to become their best version of themselves in that activity. We hold them accountable to going to the training and doing the activities they set out to do.
• We place them in a culture of success by putting them with other like-minded people.
• We provide them with the best systems, strategies, and technologies today. And that’s why we’ve partnered w/ BoomTown!
Andrew Undem, SURE Sales Group: Our team culture is built around sales training and constantly evolving marketing techniques.
Kenny Klaus, Klaus Team Real Estate Solutions: We do more. At 211° water is hot, but at 212°, it boils, and boiling water can power a locomotive. We put the extra degree into everything we do. We know that there is not just one way to buy or sell a home, so we provide multiple buying and selling solutions to meet each client where they’re at and help them accomplish what they need to in their own situations.
Keith Beatty & Drew Pittman, The Keith Beatty Team, Intercoastal Realty Corporation: First of all we are Broad-Based General Brokerage Agents. What I mean by that is that we try not to pigeon hole ourselves into a certain price point or specific neighborhoods. We deal with all price points within a 40-mile radius of coastal southeastern NC. One of our mottos is “Big and Small Transactions, We try to help them all.”
Additionally, about 1/3 of our business comes from our new homes division where we currently represent 7 different communities in the Wilmington Market (onsite agents at those communities). We sell and close approximately 175 new homes each year. This helps generate additional leads and listings back to the general brokerage agents, as referrals from the onsite agents.
Brandon Brittingham: We build agents from the ground up, almost all of our agents started new and were trained and ingrained in our culture, this has led to producing large number with small amount of agents
Question 2: Are you doing anything differently now versus early on in your business that has been a major driver of your success?
Gina & Jeremy Miller, LocAL Realty: For years I was successful with my own efforts and effectively was ignorance on fire. Flying by the seat of your pants will only get you so far. I’ve learned time and again to put people in place for areas I am weaker in or simply do not have a passion for. Becoming reliant upon systems that create a smooth flow behind the curtain while we maintain a high level client interface has truly elevated us. We are constantly seeking to add only systems that simplify our way of doing business while improving the client & agent relationship!
Jeff Cohn, kwELITE: Putting an emphasis on ancillary businesses that run parallel to the real estate transaction. Including mortgage, title, insurance, digital marketing, virtual reality, and more.
Andrew Undem, SURE Sales Group: We are leveraging social media and high-quality video production to promote ourselves.
Keith Beatty & Drew Pittman, The Keith Beatty Team, Intercoastal Realty Corporation: We started with Boomtown in 2009 and at that point we had 8 agents on the team, since then we have grown to 25 agents (which is about where we have been for 5 years). The Boomtown platform has not only grown our business but also has helped retain quality agents. About 7 years ago we made a decision to eliminate all of our print marketing, with the exception of some of our team branding ads.
Additionally, as our business has increased and with the team concept, we are able to do a lot more to generate exposure for the team, one example of this is that we do three real estate shows a year in the Northeast where we generate approximately 4,000 couples that are interested in retiring or relocating to the Wilmington, NC area. This is expensive to do but has been very successful as we are a second home and retirement destination.
Brandon Brittingham, Maryland and Delaware Group of Long & Foster: Larger focus on digital marketing, online is where the consumer is going so we doubled down in this area
Question 3: What would you say to other businesses aspiring to make it to where you are?
Gina & Jeremy Miller, LocAL Realty: Be where you are and understand everyone is very different. There are far too many variables to take someone else’s business mindset and model and replicate it. Find areas you can improve and seek out those who are doing it at a high level. Once you’ve gathered information implement what you’ve learned within your structure and approach. Never get comfortable though as change is inevitable.
Kathleen Kellet, KK Homes Team: Don’t have a backup plan, put in the time, make the sacrifices, do it for the right reasons. If you do it only for the money, eventually the flame will fizzle.
Jeff Cohn, kwELITE: I think that COVID 19 has created a new norm in which the present-day agent & consumer demand a virtual option for things that were once only available physically. Every business in America should have a focus on making everything they offered physically to have an option to make virtual options. Such as physical showings, offer virtual showings. Closing on a contract virtually vs driving 40 minutes across the city to sign papers for 2 minutes. The world is moving a much faster pace than ever before. If you’re not on board, you’re going to get lost in the dust.
Andrew Undem, SURE Sales Group: Focus on doing the right activities with the right attitude and the right technique. And stick to the fundamentals!
Kenny Klaus, Klaus Team Real Estate Solutions: It’s not about transactions – it’s all about relationships. Referrals and repeat business come from being relational and ensuring each home sale or purchase is a powerful moment for someone who is a real person and not a number.
Keith Beatty & Drew Pittman, The Keith Beatty Team, Intercoastal Realty Corporation: I’d say we are a 27 year overnight success. Be committed, stay the path, never give up, and build your reputation one closing at a time. There is no secret to success except for hard work and time. Hire good people that are willing to work, that come from diverse backgrounds, from different age groups that live in different areas, this allows the team to meet many more people than if everyone were going after the same type of client.
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