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RISMEDIA, February 24, 2011—Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate LLC (“BHGRE”) hosted its first national brand conference last week in Las Vegas at the ARIA Resort and Casino. Named Fusion 2011, the conference was designed to help Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate agents be better prepared to meet the industry and market challenges ahead of them this year, be even more successful, network with colleagues and have fun. Hundreds of agents from BHGRE’s nearly 200 offices in 21 states attended the event.

“Our goal for Fusion 2011 was to give our community a forum to network and to learn. We brought together thought leaders in our industry to share best practices, trends and insights through our fast-paced, compelling agenda,” said Sherry Chris, president and CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate. “We also provided a conducive environment for hundreds of our agents and brokers to spend time together, learn from one another and strengthen our sense of community. The feedback we received, whether through face-to-face discussions, Tweets, postings, or e-mails was overwhelmingly positive.”

Highlights from the event include:

-BHGRE unveiled its new brand extension strategy intended to help expand the brand’s marketshare within the luxury, urban and commercial markets and enhance its network’s lead- and revenue-generation opportunities. The new brand tiers for luxury, urban and commercial markets will launch in Spring 2011.

-Alex Perriello, president and chief executive officer of the Realogy Franchise Group shared his thoughts about the housing market, along with his assessment of the real estate industry. When discussing the future of the industry, he said it was imperative for real estate agents to determine which services they need to provide to customers now and in the future so that the industry as a whole can continue to be relevant and provide value to consumers. This issue, Perriello said, is the industry’s biggest challenge and opportunity.

-BHGRE announced it is launching an innovative new Lifestyle Search functionality to in 2011. The new feature will allow users to search for communities that rank highly in terms of qualities they feel are important, including commuting options, schools, convenience to retail stores or health services, proximity to golf courses, or a number of other lifestyle ‘attributes’ that add a more personalized angle to their home buying process.

-Pat Shea, President, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Mason-McDuffie, Joseph Rand, Managing Partner of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Rand Realty and Summer Greene, Regional Manager at Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Florida 1st, all participated in the Fusion 2011 Owners Panel and offered a number of provocative observations about the business of real estate and how agents can be successful in the current market. Among the topics discussed were the importance of developing reciprocal mentoring partnerships between agents within the network, working from a plan and using social media tools authentically.

-Kara Swisher, technology pundit for The Wall Street Journal and co-producer and co-host of the media conference, “D: All Things Digital,” shared her insights into the top technology business stories she is currently following.

-Tom Ferry, a renowned trainer, motivator and coach for real estate professionals entertained the crowd with his no-nonsense approach to being successful and controlling one’s own destiny despite difficulties in the market.

-Herman Chan, a REALTOR® from Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Mason-McDuffie, Andrew Gaydosh, a REALTOR® from Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Big Hill and Jim Brooks, a REALTOR® from Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Desert Properties, three of BHGRE’s “Rock Star” agents (top producers), shared their sales and business building strategies in an engaging panel discussion. The one theme that came up over and over again was the need for agents to be authentic in their marketing and client relationships, and to be adaptable to new trends, products and market segments to stay ahead of the competitive curve.

-Gahlord Dewald, President/Janitor at Thoughtfaucet, Dustin Luther, Founder of 4realz Consulting and Jeff Turner, President of Zeek Interactive and the Founder and creative force behind Real Estate Shows, shared a number of best practices for building and measuring online influence, using social media to listen to customer sentiment and leveraging the power of smartphones.

-Stefan Swanepoel, CEO, Author & Speaker at RealSure Inc., provided an enlightening view of the biggest technology trends impacting the real estate business right now.

-Max Pigman, Vice President & National Speaker, and Top Producer Systems shared the latest trends and best practices for using video to sell real estate.

-Sherry Chris interviewed Brad Inman, Founder and Publisher of Inman News and technology entrepreneur. They discussed the importance of entrepreneurialism, and the themes of being a forward-thinker in industry, life and in the real estate profession.

-Keith Ferrazzi, one of the world’s foremost experts in professional relationship development closed the event by discussing how relationships are the foundation of all success, both in one’s professional and personal lives.

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