50 Years Later…

Everyone should know by now that the all-time classic car is a ’57 Chevy. As I realized that the car has now been around for 50 years, I began to think what it must have been like 50 years ago. There was a strong sense of community, soda-pop fountains (I recommend Watson’s in Orange, CA), hula-hoops, and service stations that actually offered service. Attendants would run out to your car to check the oil, air pressure, clean the windows, and fill it up. We all know about those feel-good days which are often referred as the “bubble-gum-era,” and the ideas of that era are forever immortalized in movie’s like “American Graffiti” and “Back to the Future.”

Similarly, as the real estate industries begins to descend into rougher waters, consumers will demand more for their dollar and will expect this high level of service for the commissions paid. Today’s consumers are far more tech-savvy than ever before, and over the past several years, I’m sure that they’ve noticed that agents’ websites have began to all look alike and offer the same content. Such similarities between sites allow those consumers to more easily differentiate agents when they stand out from the crowd, and with the recent turmoil in the real estate industry, it will allow them to choose an agent which they believe will offer them a higher level of service per dollar.

Additionally, consumers are also expecting that the latest in technology be a part of that service. The “salad days” of simply putting a listing on the MLS and having it sold within days or weeks with little or no marketing are a long ways behind us. Agents who intend to stay in business and do well in today’s real estate industry must also understand and effectively use newer technologies to their benefit. For example, agents must be willing to place their listings in Craiglist along with photos, links to their listing page, links to their blog, etc. What agents should not do is put their listings into Craigslist without putting photos or any other similarly important information. Otherwise, what’s the point?

Like I was saying, consumers are more tech savvy than ever before, and agents now have more technology available to them than ever before. The key to unlocking the relationship is to provide a 1957 service experience for the consumer. Your use of technology is a reflection of you and your service. That being said your website should provide a positive experience for the consumer with interactive maps and other useful content.

The lesson here is 50 years old. Take the time and effort to provide a sincere service to the consumer in order to making their experience a beneficial one and, in turn, both you and your client will be handsomely rewarded.