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Consumer confidence in our industry has plummeted and brokerages of all sizes are having a hard time maintaining their relevance. We need help, and we need it now. So what can the real estate industry learn from Apple and Steve Jobs’ tremendous impact on other industries? Lots, if we pay attention to what he did.

– He gave consumers an engaging way to acquire products that were completely different and changed the way things had been done before.

– He created must-have products that were streamlined, engaging and simple to use.

The products Apple introduced changed the world and how we interact both with it and each other. The New York Times recently quoted Robert W. Pittman, chief executive of Clear Channel Communications and a former top executive at MTV and AOL regarding Steve Jobs:

“The cautionary tale in music was not how they did business but that they waited. Music executives didn’t realize that in the digital age, the consumer can get access to content in other ways they had no control over.”

Sound familiar? Independent of any real estate brokerage or agent, consumers can now get information about properties, taxes, schools, restaurants, neighborhoods, etc. Many prospective clients question whether they even need us at all…even for the transaction.

So what makes the difference in creating consumer confidence? An engaging, entertaining and easy-to-use consumer experience will help keep you relevant and attract new business.

To get full-service in our business, you must have a real estate professional who is trained, has designations and high standards, follows systems, uses technology to enhance the consumer’s experience, and is willing to be held accountable.

The brokerage who hopes to hire these professionals has to support them by providing lead generation, a social media strategy, an engaging Web presence, rapid response, systems and the necessary training to deliver this level of service. Don’t wait for someone else to figure it out and dictate to you how it needs to be done.

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 jperez@pcmsconsulting.com.