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Why Do Some Agents Succeed in Any Market and Others Falter?

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Part II

RISMEDIA, August 16, 2008-What’s the recipe for success? According to Realtor Mary Beth Lake, she’s found her route to success thanks to the combination of determination, personality and having the right tools all contribute to the success or failure of agents…with a little luck mixed in. Continuing in our six-part series industry, Philip White, chief operating officer of Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates gives us his take on how and why some agents thrive more than others.

Philip White
Chief Operating Officer
Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC

There is a reason some agents manage to succeed-despite the market-and that reason is not luck. The best agents achieve and maintain success thanks to hard work and determination, skillful marketing and by making the most of the tools available to them.

Great agents are determined to succeed, and as a result of that singular focus, they are able to persevere. They set realistic expectations for the seller and strive to exceed them. Moreover, they have a follow-up system that allows them to communicate regularly with clients and build those relationships in a professional but empathetic manner.

Successful agents continually align their clients’ expectations with current market conditions. They do the due diligence and preparation on the properties they choose to represent. Thanks to their knowledge and careful watch of the markets they serve, they are able to advise their clients with certainty on the current market value. They also bring to the table strong negotiation skills that they utilize on their clients’ behalf. Successful agents set themselves up for success-not failure-by being well informed not only about market conditions but also competing properties.

Successful agents also cultivate a diverse sphere of influence and create a system for maintaining a connection through communication. Top agents are using technology to keep their clients informed on a more consistent basis. Thanks to new technology tools, a top agent’s list of prospective clients can be much larger than in the past. Therefore, they should develop extensive contacts and creative marketing campaigns to connect with future clients.

Today’s successful luxury agents are prospecting outside of their own market. For instance, top agents in New York, Florida and California spend time in Europe and Asia attending trade fairs and other events showcasing their properties and taking advantage of the strong euro relative to the dollar. For example, the Sotheby’s International Realty® brand hosts two major events a year for its brokers and agents that provide valuable networking opportunities. In addition, our international events in Hong Kong and London offer additional venues for the promotion of top properties.

At the Sotheby’s International Realty brand, we also have a host of marketing, educational and business development tools available to our brokers and agents, as well as an international website that further extends their global reach. Those that embrace and make the most of these tools and systems have seen their businesses expand, proving that in any market, success is attained by those determined to achieve it.

Next week, Richard Ruff, senior vice president and general manager of Group RCI gives his take, pointing out that in challenging times, success requires some thinking outside the box.

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