Luxury Real Estate Marketing Tip: What is your “VA” (Value Added)--Part 2?

Services for Real Estate Pros with Napa Consultants


To distinguish yourself as a luxury real estate marketing professional you must be able to instantly articulate how you stand out from your competition You must be able to answer the question: What is your “VA” (Value Added). 

Most of what used to differentiate you,  such as  integrity, competence and local market knowledge is simply not enough. These attributes have become the commodities of the trade in the same way MLS search, via IDX, has become a commodity on any broker or agent website. 

For purveyors of luxury goods and services the #1 challenge is commoditization.  Sooner or later, without offering a strong Value Added service, you will have to resort to competing just based on price.  Look what is happening in retail!

An increasingly large numbers consumers are doing their shopping research at retail stores but do not actually buy there. Instead, they comparison shop for the best prices online (sometimes right in the store with their smart phones).  At sites such as Amazon, they can purchase the same product for less in one click and also get free 2-day shipping. Or, perhaps, the consumer discovers that the same item is on sale at a competing store just a few blocks away.  


During a recent business trip to the East Coast we were able to spend some time  checking out the specialty shops and boutiques in Georgetown, Washington D.C.. There, we discovered the Keith Lipert Gallery who specializes in contemporary, affordable fashion jewelry and decorative art. Lipert travels the fashion and cultural capitals of the world to find distinctive pieces that are often crafted by small family-owned businesses.  His clientele is both sophisticated and international, people who not only appreciate his adroitness at discovering unique hidden treasures, but also appreciate his extraordinary personalized service.

As customers peruse the displays of fashion jewelry, Lipert will approach them with an item that he feels would suit them and insists they try it on with his assistance.   There is no pressure here. He just wants to make your shopping experience extraordinary, like it used to be in Europe and still is in some cases.  It allows him to engage his customers in a dialogue that does well beyond self-service. 

This “back to the future” customer service approach plus his offering of unique items that cannot be found elsewhere is his VA.  What is yours?

To read what is your value added, Part 1, click here.


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Written by Ron & Alexandra Seigel-




ABOUT:  Luxury Real Estate is a high stakes game. Commissions are substantial! We help luxury real estate professionals get to the listing table more often and win listings more frequently.  If you want to be the market leader, the personal or company brand that your target market thinks of first and refers most often, you need an Elevator Statement to accelerate the process.  We can get you there!

Your Elevator Statement is a succinct and persuasive summary of your extraordinary promise of value, your unique selling proposition.  In a time-starved world the attention span of your target market is shrinking.  To instantly convey what sets you apart from the crowd you need to be able to answer EACH ONE of these 3 questions in less than 30 seconds.: 1) What Do You Do?; 2)  How Do You Do It?, and;  3) How Are You Different?.  Can you state how you are different and better than your competition in under 30 seconds?

Watch the video above to see and hear how we do it. 


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Dick Greenberg
New Paradigm Partners LLC - Fort Collins, CO
Northern Colorado Residential Real Estate

Hi Ron & Alexandra - Great post. Commoditization has been gnawing at the edges of the real estate industry for years now, seeking a way in, with minimal success so far. But someday - maybe soon - someone is going to figure it out. And when that happens, our only defense is solid value-added client service, of a nature and quality that the client will value and pay for. That is the real coming challenge.

Jun 26, 2012 01:04 AM #1
John McCormack
Albuquerque Homes Realty * - Albuquerque, NM, Albuquerque Homes Realty

Good morning Ron and Alexandra -  Another good post my friends.  Always putting the luxury spin on each and every post.  Driving home your marketing niche.  Very smart.

Jun 26, 2012 01:46 AM #2
. 4Terra Land Brokers .. 828-776-0779 Asheville NC
What's Most Important to YOU? Call(828)-776-0779

Hi Alexandra and Ron,


I wish you were able to hop on over to the mountains of NC while on the East about "value -added"..(I'm smiling~) I was drawn to your statements: "...without offering a strong Value Added service, you will have to resort to competing just based on price...."

Jun 26, 2012 02:04 AM #3
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD
Roy and Dolores Kelley Photographs

Excellent post.  All of us should be asking ourselves our our clients view their shopping experience.  Having comprehensive websites and automated email is not enough.

Have an outstanding week with your camera in hand.

Jun 26, 2012 02:22 AM #4
Sharon Lee
Sharon Lee's Virtual Assistance - Jonesborough, TN
Retired and loving life

Customer service and going above and beyond is definitely VA and there is a need for it in the world. Love the post. Have a great day.

Jun 26, 2012 02:58 AM #5
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Gnawing is a good word for what is happening in the real estate industry.  Why use a particular agent when the consummer perceives that all agents are the same and all the listings are out there.  We have to be special from the get go and maintain that regardless of the changes that are coming.  Personalized and superb service have to be our way of selling real estate. A


This is not just a selfish endeavor here.  Yes, I want to drive people to us, and very special ones at that.  What we also want to do is teach real estate professionals how to better their practices and themselves, so it reflects in their bottom line.  What I know and have witnessed is that in the worst of times our clients have made as much money if not more than their previous years...Our niche of people we work with is teeny/tiny, and it represents 20% of the 20% of those who are doing all the deals. A


We are planning to return to DC at some point, and perhaps we can add a trip your way...We would be delighted to work there.


We are all in some sense being disenfranchised by the digital world.  Touch is super important.  A

Jun 26, 2012 03:05 AM #6
Patty Da Silva, Davie, Southwest Ranches Cooper City, Plantation, Weston, REALTOR
BROKER of Green Realty Properties® - 954-667-7253 - Davie, FL
Top Listing Broker

Great points in this article. Not only do we have to distinguish ourselves from everyone else, but we have to dispell all the bad experiences and assumptions people have of our profession. Certainly a challenge at times.

Jun 26, 2012 03:46 AM #7
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Caring for your clients and the people around you is the oldest recipe for success.


You are right about that, however, I believe that everyone has had some difficult experience with every profession.  Real estate is more visible as we are all surrounded by it.  A

Jun 26, 2012 03:55 AM #8
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

You always offer food for thought, a feast for the eyes, or some other valuable experience with your blog posts. This is no exception. Many of the real estate pros left standing offer great service, etc. So, you are right, it's imperative to keep exploring the "value added" concept and staying ahead of the crowd.

Jun 26, 2012 08:08 AM #9
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Thank you for your kind words.  It is good to be understood.  Yes,  the real estate pros left standing understand the value of great service and great people skills.  A

Jun 26, 2012 08:50 AM #10
Don Sabinske
Don Sabinske, Sabinske & Associates Inc. - Zimmerman, MN
Sabinske & Associates Inc.

Your value-added is the personal touch that you put into each and every post.  You have the gift of being able to convey your message as if you were standing right in front of each person who reads your exceptional content.  Kudos to you!

Jun 26, 2012 11:10 AM #11
Wanda Kubat-Nerdin - Wanda Can!
PK Real Estate Utah South - St. George, UT
So Utah Residential, Referral & Relocation REALTOR

Alexandra, I do like the Keith Lipert Gallery business model and personailzed customer service with a unique product is a guarantee to an enjoyable shopping experience. THAT is something to strive for everytime! 

Jun 26, 2012 12:18 PM #12
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Thank you, I appreciate your kind words and kudos.  We absolutely love what we do, we love sharing what we learn and we love the people we work with, our team and all of you on Active Rain who take the time to comment on our blogs.  We also appreciate the experience and the wisdom you all impart to us also.  We are all in this together, learning and teaching and that is the beauty of this community.


Me too, and we learned from walking in, watching and I ended up buying a remarkable set of earrings from them.  The ambiance and the service was remarkable, and I can apply it to what we do.  There is never an end point,  but it seems always an opportunity to begin again, and again and do it better.











Jun 26, 2012 02:41 PM #13
Patricia Feager
Selling Homes Changing Lives


You nailed it again and I had to suggest once more. If I had the power, I'd give you a Ph.D because you're so knowledgeable and willing to share. Everything has education and good intentions for all of us here on ActiveRain.

Because of you, I consider myself lucky. I always learn something new, just because of you.

Jun 26, 2012 05:09 PM #14
Toni Weidman
Sailwinds Realty - Trinity, FL
26 Years Selling Homes in New Port Richey, FL

Alexandra - I never thought of that as VA; just as what an agent is supposed to offer a customer. I love the luxury spin on it and it opens up all kinds of avenues of thought. suggested.

Jun 27, 2012 09:55 AM #15
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Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy
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