We are on the brink of the ultimate ‘shift’ storm - yes, that pun is intended. Is your real estate team ready to face it?
We all remember 2008, and we all know that it’s guaranteed to happen again - and soon. Some people are calling for the end of 2019, some say 2020, but either way means we are staring down the barrel of buyer hesitation, market shift, uncertainty, and discomfort.
So what are you doing to prepare for it? Are you still spending tons of money on Zillow leads? If you’re paying 20-30% for a referral, you’re losing the game, plain and simple.
The 'shift storm' will have 4 parts.
Only one part is the actual economic shift. The next shift has been happening for years and years, right under our noses - the consumer shift. How are you operating your business? Are you acquiring agents and throwing them in, hoping they’ll do a good job? Or is your business truly consumer focused? Are you interacting with them in a way that they’ll engage with your brand? If you have this as a priority, your consumers won’t only stay with you, they’ll sing your praises from the rooftops.
The third part, I like to call the “i-Buyer shift”, or the business model shift. You probably know what I mean - companies that now get you offers in an hour, the big players like Zillow, Knock, OpenDoor, moving towards this ‘instant’ model. In my real estate company, we’ve moved away from this, as a matter of fact. We used to offer guaranteed sale, but to some, it actually felt inauthentic.
Our solution to this was to restructure our message around Story brand. The gist is this - do such a good job that your customers will give you authentic, powerful testimonials, or ‘social proof’, which you then use to get more business. It’s a virtuous cycle, and that’s the focus of what we do. We need to lean more into the consumer experience in the midst of this shift.
The fourth shift is the technology shift. Companies offer a technology driven solution or platform to do business with them. A good example of this is Redfin. They use technology in response to the consumer shift as part of their solution - even using AI-driven technology to help get in front of consumers.
The response to that is high value ad services. Not unlike a financial advisor - they’re there to represent and grow a chunk of your net worth. They take a cut of whatever you make - for instance, mine takes 1% of my earnings, paid quarterly. In order for us to do business, I have to feel like he’s truly advising me - not like he’s trying to peddle me a product. That’s the only way you can respond to how our industry is changing in this shift storm.