Brandon Brittingham // Long & Foster
Why Real Estate Teams are Outperforming Brokerages
Brokerages claim massive resources. They have supporting personnel. And they certainly see more transactions. So, how did a real estate team like the Maryland & Delaware Group of Long & Foster perform better than their counterpart? Today, we look at Brandon Brittingham’s strategy and success story.
Defending Against Competition
Competition in real estate is always focused on one thing: Who gets the lead? And it’s always done through one, primary tactic … “by being the best.” Brokerages, real estate teams, and even individual agents are all familiar in this fashion. They create a zero-sum war, where someone has to lose.
Brandon Brittingham chose a different strategy. His is a case-study as to why real estate teams are dwarfing brokerages (at their current pace), and why there’s disruption in the industry. To begin, you need to understand where Brandon put his priorities.
Where Real Estate Strategy Begins
Strategy explains how an organization, faced with competition, will achieve superior performance. It’s not a competition to be the best. Here’s the reason: How do you define “best?” Everyone — even your clients — have a different interpretation (based on their needs). Fighting to be #1 cuts into profits and value. It reduces innovation when your particular market continues to evolve.
As an example, look at the airline industry. All year long, each company tries to one-up each other, forcing them to battle on one thing: ticket prices. Now, America is looking for new modes of fast-transportation, like the Hyperloop.
Compare 1996 to 2016. How do people find homes for sale today? The journey of the homebuyer sits online. Brokerages and real estate agents compete for leads via websites, digital ads, and social media. Nothing is particularly different in the strategy. They purchase good-looking websites. They post on Facebook. They advertise on Google.
So, how do you beat a brokerage, who typically has a bigger budget and more resources? Brandon Brittingham did it by wrapping those activities with a different process. He built a different chain-of-activities around the usual tactics (i.e. to generate and convert leads).
It’s not just generating leads anymore. It’s about the process. How you handle the lead and the process to them becoming a client is what becomes different. This is how Brandon separated his team from the competition in Maryland. He made the process more efficient by partnering with technology. The differentiating key for him was data-insights on leads. He then tweaked his lead follow-up process to fit that.
Hiring the Right Agents for the Team
Brandon Brittingham had a clear goal: Close 500+ deals and surpass $100 million in production volume. His strategy was to adjust his business model to the evolving consumer experience. This meant re-defining the value of the real estate agent.
Brandon analyzed his market. Everyone was competing to be the “local area expert.” The opportunity he saw was doubling up and making his agents become the “consumer expert” with the help of data and technology. He wanted his agents to know the client better than they knew themselves. So, he adjusted the process on how a real estate agent handles a lead. To rally people behind this model, he began hiring.
Seal Team Six — it’s the title Brandon’s real estate team likes to refer to themselves as. To them, culture is everything. It aligns people based on core values. It sets the right expectations and prioritizes their actions. When hiring a new agent, if they don’t fit the culture, Brandon doesn’t hire them.
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