Zen and the Art of Attracting Agents

By
Home Inspector with Texas Inspected TREC # 20406

If you are a broker looking for agents, have I got a post for you!

I spent the last three weeks broker shopping and I'd like to share what worked for me (and what didn't) while it's still fresh in my memory.

For the purposes of this post, I'm going to say that I started with 150 potential brokers in my area and I want to narrow that down to 1.

The biggest factor in getting on my short list of brokers was the broker's website. Does that seem shallow? Good, because it is shallow. We are in a shallow industry where you have to sell yourself in the first 30 seconds to potential clients.

  • If I go to your site and the content is set to be viewed on a 640 x 480 monitor, I'm out. What is this, the 90s? 
  • If your color palette make's my teeth hurt, I'm gonna pass. Bright green is not your friend.
  • Pictures of grandkids, kittens, or grandkids holding kittens are awesome, but not on your home page.
Unless you have a high Amish client base, your web presence is vital as a first point of contact to customers. I can't be associated with a broker that doesn't appear to know how to hire someone to make a decent website.

So let's say I started with 150 potential brokers in my area. After looking at websites I'm down to 20. Yes, it is that big of a deal.

What's next? Information. You have it, I need it.
I don't have time to interview with 20 brokers to find a fit. So I'm going to look at the careers or agents section of these 20 websites that I like to see if I can get information to help me decide who I want to interview with. You do have a career section on your site, right? Oops, we're down to 10 brokers.

All agents have specific things they are looking for in a broker. New agents want training and systems that allow them to hit the ground running (or at least walking briskly). Experienced agents want a good commission and to be left alone. You can't be all things to all agents, but if you give me a general idea of what you can do for me, what I can do for you and what your company specialties are, it will go a long way towards us not wasting each other's time. Think back to when you were an agent and you would take your list of questions to an interview with a broker. Now see how many of those questions you can answer on your website.

So after seeing what you have to say on your site and reading your ActiveRain posts, I now have five brokers. I can handle five. Of the five brokers, one didn't call me back for three days and one has yet to call me back (it's been two weeks). If you aren't going to be responsive to me at this stage, how are you going to be when I'm sitting at a closing table and things are blowing up and I need your help NOW! I don't need you to follow me around or hold my hand, but when I need you, I'd like to think you'll be there.

So of the three brokers, I picked the one that I meshed with the best. By narrowing my search down based on what I need right now, I was able to give all three brokers a fair and honest shake and make a decision I was happy with. I can only hope that with time and therapy, the brokers I didn't choose will find a way to go on without me.

As a real estate professional, you are told to market yourself to the types of client's you want to attract. That rule also applies to attracting agents to your company. With brick and mortar brokerages becoming the exception rather than the rule, the "field of dreams" theory (if I build it, they will come) doesn't work as well as it used to. Figure out what you want in an agent, then figure out what that agent wants in a broker. Then let it be known on your website and social media that you are that broker.

FYI, my broker (Josh Harley of Fathom Realty) has a great website, a ton of info for potential agents, and he called me back within 15 minutes while he was skiing in Utah.

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Rainmaker
1,451,329
Rick Obst
Eugene, OR

I'm surprised at how few brokerages are actually ActiveRain members, let alone actively posting.  You present a nice summation of your thought process and experiences in evaluating prospective brokerages.

Dec 23, 2010 04:30 AM #1
Rainmaker
1,176,167
Adrian Willanger
206 909-7536 AdrianWillanger-broker.com - Seattle, WA
Profit from my two decades of experience

Scott-thanks for breaking it down, great way to do the weeding.

Best,

Dec 27, 2010 08:46 AM #2
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Rainer
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Scott Cotton

Texas Inspected
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