As a successful agent, naturally, there will a come a time when you’ll want to expand into a new area. Here’s how one agency approached the endeavor and what the process looked like.
Once you become one of the go-to agents in the area you serve, naturally, you will want to broaden your horizons and gain market share in neighboring territories and feeder markets. The desire to grow and build your business is a natural part of the evolution of a real estate career — and one that needs a great deal of thought, planning and strategy.
We’ve long been considering entering a new territory, and recently, we decided that we would be doing so in Pasadena. We have previously worked in the area and see incredible potential in the market. In order to make this a successful endeavor, we spent months planning our strategy. Here, we share a macro look at our approach.
Partnering with the experts
In order to enter the Pasadena market, we decided that it would be best to partner with two agents who have a deep understanding of the nuances of the market and knowledge of properties in the area. Gus Ruelas, who serves as the managing partner of The Agency Pasadena, and Danny Cerecedes are two agents we respect and admire.
To become a top agent in a certain region, it’s crucial to have a deep understanding of the market. It took us a long time to become familiar with all the aspects of our primary markets, which are mainly Bel Air, Beverly Hills and Holmby Hills.
By partnering with Ruelas and Cerecedes, we can deliver our clients the same world-class service, while having two experienced agents who know all about Pasadena on our side. If you want to start branching out and entering new markets, we certainly recommend partnering with experts in that area at the onset of the journey.
When choosing a strategic partner, make sure everyone involved can benefit from the unique skills and knowledge each person brings. If you are an agent starting out, partner with someone who can share their in-depth knowledge of the industry and market. In return, you can offer to be an asset to their operation by contributing to social media, marketing and other office efforts.
When partnering with agents in another region, all parties will benefit from the perspective each partner brings to the table, as well as the idea of having someone on the ground to service clients seeking properties in that area.
Knowledge is power
While having Ruelas and Cerecedes as our experts definitely helps, we also will need to get to really know the Pasadena market just as well as we know our primary markets. This means analyzing a lot of data, visiting a lot of houses and getting to know the amenities that the city has to offer.
The first step is to start monitoring the MLS and looking at trends — so we educate ourselves and our clients. The next step is touring properties. While it is hard to visit some houses in person at this time, due to health and safety reasons, many agents are offering virtual tours and Matterport tours on their websites and social media.
We’ll be looking at these virtual tours and videos whenever we can’t make it in person to familiarize ourselves with the styles and trends that apply to this market and become more well-versed with the properties that are out there.
And then finally, we will be learning more about the services and amenities the area offers — including schools, hospitals, fire and police, as well as top dining, recreational and sporting opportunities. When entering a new market, it’s important to immerse yourself as much as you can — because when it comes to selling real estate, knowledge is power.
What’s more, it’s also important to study the details of other homes on the market currently in the MLS. We recommend agents look closely at the description and details of the house when working in a new market. Make note of the square footage, acreage and condition of the property, and see if it will realistically fit your clients’ needs before presenting it to them.
Spread the news
If you want to gain market share and have a strategy in place, you need to let people know that you’re now serving that area. We’ve devised a strategic marketing plan that will include both traditional and digital media as well as a robust social media campaign.
When rolling out your plan, make sure all of your marketing materials are in order. Also, make sure you’ve done all your homework on the market, recent trends and projections for the foreseeable future.
The key to success is having an organized team and tight operation. This will ensure your rollout and expansion goes smoothly. Also, reach out to your current client base to let them know of your expansion into a region.
Word of mouth is one of the best ways to gain new business, so tap into your existing clientele which you’ve already worked so hard to build. Once your ducks are all in a row, you have to get out there and spread the word.