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When looking to widen your company’s reach, it can be smart to team up with agents who specialize in a variety of niche markets. In the following interview, Cara Pierce of Fonville Morisey Realty discusses how her team stays on top of their game in North Carolina by tightening their team.

Pierce_CaraYears in real estate: 10
Region served: Greater Triangle area focusing on Raleigh and Cary, N.C.
Average market time: If the house is priced right and staged properly, it can sell in two days.
Team members: 3

How has having a team enabled you to increase profitability?
It gives me flexibility. We get a great deal of Internet leads and many of those people want to see houses immediately. I can’t drop everything and do a showing at any given moment, but I can send a teammate. And very often that lead and showing become a sold customer.

What sets your team apart in the marketplace?
My team is very specialized. It is a small team with just three team members at this point in time, but we offer amazing service. I am a licensed structural engineer; I have a teammate who has a background in banking/finance; and a third teammate is a general contractor, so our team can give very broad, comprehensive service.

How do you differentiate your team from others in the marketplace?
Because of our three separate specialties, we have a special base that we can offer people. It turns out that we are great for investors, so we have a solid base of young investors.

What is the biggest challenge to having a team?
We are very busy so communication can be challenging. We try to use shared Cloud space to stay in touch with each other.

How do you recruit new team members?
Right now, we are looking at adding one more team member—either a buyer’s agent or a transaction manager. But because of our backgrounds, we are very picky. We have an idea of what we want and we do not want to waste time doing a search that could be meaningless, so we find it is best for us to rely on our network. We put the word out and people respond.

How do you market the benefits of working with an agent team to clients?
People love the fact that we have team members who specialize in different areas. They also love that there is coverage at all times. Our clients are going to get great customer service. We are a very productive, efficient team and we get the job done.

What are the two or three pieces of technology that you and your team can’t live without?
There are really great apps that help with file management. Cloud sharing is essential because you can use it from any device. For instance, at a closing, if we realize we don’t have a document, I can say, “hold on,” download it, have the attorney print it, and we go on. I also have to add that the Raleigh Regional MLS is fantastic.

What type of advertising demonstrates the biggest return on investment for the team?
We do not do advertising. Our philosophy is if you do a great job the first time, you will get more clients. We talk to our friends and our sphere of influence and remind them to call us if they need a REALTOR®.

What is critical to success in real estate?
Time management. It’s all about learning how to keep all your balls in the air at all times, which is definitely an art.

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