By Jose Perez
• 87% of consumers start their search online, yet 48% of Internet leads are not responded to
• 90% of consumers would use the same agent again, but only 11% do
• Add these, and other equally dismaying stats, to the ability for consumers to access information without our involvement, and then mix in our industry’s reputation for less than stellar professionalism, and you come to an undeniable conclusion: to be successful in the future, you will either have to compete on price or you will have to deliver an incredible consumer experience.
If you choose to deliver on consumer experience, keep in mind that consumer experience begins before that consumer meets you in person and extends beyond their first transaction with your firm. Does your company deliver an amazing consumer experience?
• Do you have a truly integrated Internet marketing strategy that includes SEO, blogging and social media? Do people like you and find you interesting even before they visit your website?
• Is your website easy to use? Is your content relevant to the real estate consumer? Do you provide useful information and an engaging experience? If not, your potential client can easily type in the next URL and you will never see them again.
• When someone fills out a form on your website, do they receive a professional and courteous response in less than 15 minutes? If you are not responding in less than 15 minutes, you severely jeopardize your chance of doing business with that consumer and give them an unfavorable view of your firm.
• When a client comes to your office, does it look fresh and exciting, or does it look tired? Remember, the average home buyer is a lot younger than you and most of your agents. They are used to going to the Apple Store or Starbucks—not their grandmother’s house.
• When your agents are going to an appointment, are you confident they are capable of delivering an amazing consumer experience worthy of your brand? When they blog or post things on social media, are you confident they are properly representing you in the space consumers start their home search?
• After you close a transaction do you stay engaged with that consumer in a relevant and professional way until they are ready to buy another house? If they started their relationship with you online, they may want to continue that relationship online as well.
If you want to differentiate yourself, you must accept that the consumer experience starts way before they ever express interest in doing business with you and extends way beyond the closing. Your ability to deliver the experience will set you apart and put you in a position to succeed versus those in your market who choose to keep doing things the same way.
Think of brands like Zappos, Starbucks and Apple. They are known for the experience they are delivering…are you?
Jose Perez is the founder and chief visionary of PCMS Consulting. PCMS provides innovative solutions leading brokerages require to enhance their market position and profitability. For more information, please visit www.pcmsconsulting.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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