By Marc Gould
Each year, the Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council (REBAC) conducts a survey to gauge member satisfaction and stay ahead of the current tips and trends related to buyer representation. This year’s survey showed us that from text messaging to mobile websites, today’s agents are incorporating the latest technology to reach a hyper-connected consumer. And agents who specialize in buyer representation seem to be leading the way. The 2011 survey showed that nearly 75% of buyers’ agents are now using smartphones, making it much easier to communicate with buyers in real-time.
While social media and new tech trends are filling the headlines, the most recent survey shows that many agents are finding success through a balance of traditional and new technology. This month, we highlight a few of the ways buyers’ agents are using these tools, both old and new, to build their buyer business:
Most agents know that the key to building buyer business is connecting with them online. It’s no surprise then that when surveyed, 75% of members reported using one or more social networking sites regularly. Facebook topped the list with 65%, citing it as their preferred social network, while LinkedIn and Trulia were used monthly or more.
Consumers may begin their home search online, but many are turning to qualified real estate professionals to help them through the process. REBAC members named negotiating skills as a top benefit gained from their Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®) designation training.
Whether they are keeping buyers updated on happenings in their community or browsing industry trends, buyers’ agents are making the most of the blogging trend. Over half of REBAC members reported using blogs to help them stay current in their buyer business, with RISMedia and Inman topping the list this year.
With the use of mobile devices quickly approaching that of desktop devices, there is an increasing need for today’s real estate websites to be viewable on handheld devices. Fortunately, there are plenty of online sites designed to help agents get their websites mobile-ready.
From charitable donations to delivered dinners, buyers’ agents are coming up with new and creative ways to thank their clients after a transaction has closed.
For many agents, dedicating time to advanced education is the key to differentiating themselves in today’s market. Eighty-three percent of those surveyed promote their Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®) designation through marketing materials to distinguish themselves from other real estate agents in their area.
With technology evolving at an increasing rate, many agents are learning to adapt quickly. Fortunately, there are a number of resources available to help them along the way. Agents who earn the ABR® designation have access to the latest news and events related to buyer representation through popular social networks as well as customizable marketing materials and home-buyer resources.
As a member benefit, REBAC shares the results of the member survey each year with members in the Today’s Buyer’s Rep newsletter. To learn more about earning your ABR® and the benefits associated with being a member of REBAC, visit rebac.net.
Marc Gould is the executive director of The Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council (REBAC). A wholly-owned subsidiary of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), The Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council is the world’s largest association of real estate professionals focusing specifically on representing the real estate buyer. With more than 30,000 active members, REBAC awards the Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®) designation to REALTORS® who work directly with buyer-clients. To learn more visit REBAC.net.
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