They are the visionaries, the forward-thinking, the stubborn, the obsessed, the tech-savvy, the creative minds always pushing boundaries. They are entrepreneurs pushing the old ways aside, data scientists discovering new ways to examine behavior, marketers inventing new ways to showcase properties, agents developing new ways to reach clients, companies building new technologies, brokerages creating whole new ways of doing business. They are the Inman Innovator Finalists, and they’re leading us into the future of real estate.
He’s an entrepreneur who made himself into a media brand. She’s an agent who landed a $20 million listing after just a year in the business. It’s a company that developed an augmented-reality tool to show prospective buyers what an interior-decorated home might look like — during a showing, on their phones. They’re all finalists.
“We are honored to celebrate so much creativity and invention,” said Inman publisher Brad Inman. “Never in the history of the Innovator Awards has there been so much innovation and, therefore, never has our list of finalists been so large — these are exciting times.”
Who will win? The 2017 Inman Innovators will be revealed at Inman Connect in San Francisco the week of August 7-11, 2017, followed by the not-to-be-missed party that’ll wrap up Inman Connect San Francisco and celebrate the Inman Innovators.
As part of its “Meet The Intern” campaign, tech company HP filmed a series of commercials showcasing Fox Sports host and Extra co-host Charissa Thomson interning at four companies.
Two of them were Giveback Homes and The Boutique Real Estate Group — two hallmark brands within the real estate industry.
The campaign ads, which began airing on Super Bowl Sunday, show Thomson helping craft a travel packet for Giveback Homes and organize a swanky open house for The Boutique RE Group, all while showing off HP’s newest OfficeJet Pro printer.
Giveback Homes co-founder Caroline Pinal said HP found them through social media and noted Giveback’s “authentic social media presence,” and that the company was captured by co-founder Blake Andrews’ story and mission to spread the message of social responsibility to the real estate industry as a whole.
Pinal says the feedback on the ad has been positive, with supporters inside and outside of the industry giving their kudos.
“Giveback Homes Members are thrilled to see the Giveback Homes movement taking on a consumer-facing approach and proud to be part of it,” she said.
“Giveback Homes has also received online support from their friends like Toms Founder Blake Mycoskie, TV host Charissa Thompson, and animal conservationist Black Jaguar White Tiger.”
Raj Qsar, the principal and owner of The Boutique Real Estate Group — who is known for his vibrant digital presence and strategies — said HP reached out to him via social media as well.
“It was a super fun project,” said Qsar, and the ads have brought amazing feedback and robust traffic to his brokerage.
The ad campaign is only the beginning for both companies.
Giveback Homes is taking their relationship with HP offline by hosting a “Build Day” on April 21 in Los Angeles, with Thomson continuing her “internship” by helping to build a home.
As for The Boutique Real Estate Group, Qsar says the brokerage will be working with other big name brands in the very near future.
This year’s competition was steep. Brokerages, firms and coaches all came out swinging in hopes to be recognized as a 2016 nominee and ultimately the winner for social media.
Let’s walk you through the criteria.
These days, it’s easy for anyone to hop onto a social media platform, create an account and post their lives away. It’s these special few that are able to keep their growing audience engaged by dishing out valuable, share-worthy content.
Let’s have a closer look at the criteria we used to shortlist our nominees.
Someone that knows their way around social media knows how to expand their reach through their social media presence.
Are they active on multiple social media channels?
Here’s a brokerage that just gets it. The Boutique RE Group makes an effort to use their social media marketing to its full potential – posting beautiful photos, high-quality videos and selling a luxury lifestyle through their content. Let’s not overlook their hashtag game. Boutique RE Group makes great use of hashtags on each one of their listing photos to increase exposure of the neighborhoods of their listings.
The Inman Influencers List salutes industry professionals who shape, change and influence the industry. They bring a mix of credentials, viewpoints and backgrounds from all walks of the real estate business. Some are creative, intuitive and gifted. Some have power, reach and charisma. And some are controversial, rabble-rousers and disrupters.
All of our influencers contribute to change in one way or another.
The list is both young and hardened, made up of connectors, power brokers, high earners, CEOs, hackers, troublemakers and startup founders. It’s a list of entrepreneurs, big and small; the old-school and the new; controversial and quiet plodders.
“They are not cut from the same cloth, they do not speak the same language and they do not always necessarily share the same values. But they influence the industry by their work, through their followers and by expressing their opinions,” said Inman publisher Brad Inman.
In selecting this year’s Inman influencers, we considered recommendations from Inman readers, editorial staff and outside suggestions. Yes, thousands of real estate professionals make a difference in the real estate industry every day, but these are some we believe stood out this year.
Corona del Mar High School ranked as the 40th best public high school in California in U.S. News & World Report’s rankings released this week.
Three schools in Irvine cracked the top 100 statewide again this year: University High at 46, Northwood High, at 68, and Beckman High, at 74. University and Northwood are in the Irvine Unified School District, and Beckman is in the Tustin Unified School District.
Troy High School in Fullerton came in 69th – up from its 97th spot last year. Orange County School of Arts, in Santa Ana, placed 72nd in the state, four paces ahead of its No. 76 ranking last year.
Noticeable in its absence was Oxford Academy in Cypress, a magnet school that has consistently ranked among the top schools in the state and even in the nation for the past decade.
“We believe there was some kind of glitch,” said Michael Matsuda, superintendent for the Anaheim Union High School District.
There were no drops at Oxford in any of the metrics the magazine considers, and in some cases, Oxford ranked even higher, Matsuda said. Last year, the school was second best in the state, and 16th best in the nation.
U.S. News was unable to compute the school’s college-readiness index because Common Core data collected by the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics did not include necessary information, such as grade 12 enrollment numbers, said Robert Morse, chief data strategist at U.S. News.
Other Anaheim Union districts schools that typically garner silver and bronze medals got none this year and according to the rankings, some of the data also appears to be missing from the magazine rankings published online, said Manuel Colón, the district’s chief academic officer.
Only two of Anaheim Union district’s high schools netted a silver medal: Kennedy, ranked 298 in the state, and Cypress, ranked 236.
No Orange County school ranked among the top 100 nationally.
Whitney High School in neighboring Cerritos ranked top in the state and 19th best in the country.
Another area school that ranked high was the California Math and Science Academy, part of the Long Beach Unified School District, which came in as 10th best school in the state.
The magazine evaluated nearly 20,000 schools in 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Analysts looked at various measures, including whether each school’s students were performing better than statistically expected for students in that state and whether disadvantaged students – black, Hispanic and low-income – were outperforming disadvantaged students in the state.
Another consideration was how well schools prepare students for college, based on scores of Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate exams. For the first time, graduation rates were added as a measure.
“Parents should look at multiple indicators always … but certainly the U.S. News and World Report is another benchmark of how healthy a school district or specific school is,” Matsuda said. “In this case … there was a mistake.”
Get out of the office and make personal connections that generate leads.
Starbucks and other places like it are great locations to generate leads.
Be consistent and focus on creating relationships that build credibility and lead to sales down the line.
Always bring marketing materials and discreetly advertise yourself with branded accessories, such as a laptop cover.
Starbucks isn’t only the place to pick up your daily triple nonfat latte with a drizzle of caramel and extra foam on the side — it’s also a great place to find leads.
In Lab Coat Agents, James Michaelin recounts how he got two leads in one morning at Starbucks thanks to good listening and quick action.
“I overheard a business meeting that someone was starting a business and they brought up needing to find a Realtor for a location,” he wrote. “Well, [the] keyword Realtor was said so of course I introduced myself, gave my card to both of them and they [wanted] to get together soon.”
Twenty minutes later, James got another lead from a man who overheard his conversation with the two businessmen.
As it turns out, Michaelin isn’t the only agent who uses Starbucks as a lead-generating tool. There’s been a lot of chatter online over the past two months about the power of Starbucks and other places like it, such as Panera Bread or even Dunkin’ Donuts.
Here’s some of the advice agents gave on how to make Starbucks work for you:
Agents aren’t the only people who use Starbucks as a second office. Most of the people are there are to get work done and rarely look up from their phone, tablet or laptop.
So how do you let people know a Realtor is in the room? JT Takacs suggests telling the cashier to write “Realtor (insert name)” on your cup, so when the barista calls your name, everyone will know your profession.
3. Discreetly advertise yourself with branded accessories
Order a customized laptop cover that has your name, logo, website URL and a great call-to-action. Amanda Miller Hudson says: “I have the Realtor ‘R’ logo in sticker form over the apple on my MacBook Pro. It works! I picked up a seller lead last November at Panera.”
4. Focus on making personal connections before generating leads
What agents love about Starbucks is the chance to get from behind the tech wall and make real-time, face-to-face connections. Don’t stop in with the expectation that you’ll walk out with a handful of deals each day, because as many will attest, there will be days and weeks when you won’t.
But you will build the relationships and familiarity crucial to establishing your brand and long-term success.
5. Offer on-the-spot advice
When Zillow evangelist Jay Thompson goes to Starbucks, he brings a sign that says: “Have a real estate question? Fire away!” And he buys a cup of coffee for those who are brave enough to take the offer.
6. Bring marketing materials
This seems like a given, but some may feel apprehensive about bringing their regular marketing materials with them into Starbucks. David Fresquez suggests having a set of “ready-made buyer or seller folders that includes information about you, your latest accomplishments along with some social proof.”
Keep these folders in your briefcase, backpack or bag and give them to your potential lead once your conversation is done.
7. Small sacrifices can hook a big fish
At Luxury Connect in October, Josh Altman shared a story about how he was able to snare a sale at Starbucks. He frequents one Los Angeles store in particular and had purchased his coffee when he saw a well-known celebrity join the line.
So Altman threw out his just-procured drink and stepped in line behind the celeb, struck up a conversation and discovered he was looking for a home. He offered the star $1,000 to come with him to a place he thought would fit the bill — certain it was perfect. And it was. Being willing to throw out the coffee and offer money to show sincerity generated a happy ending to the story, a $12 million sale.
Do you have any extra advice for getting leads at Starbucks? What are some other places you like to hang out? Share them in the comments below.
GivebackHomes is a trusted network of real estate professionals dedicated to creating social change through the act of buying or selling a home. By simply choosing to work with a Giveback Homes real estate agent, you will help build a home for a family in need. People want to work with people who are doing good, and Giveback Homes is making it easy to find them. Founders, Blake Andrews and Caroline Pinal were recently named to the prestigious Inman 101 List highlighting the Most Influential 101 people in real estate for 2015.
The Boutique Real Estate Group, a worldwide luxury real estate brokerage, with national & international recognition and known for its brilliant design, beautiful marketing, luxury services and world class technology has made a commitment to partner with Giveback Homes for their Orange County build day. “Our goal of raising $5,000 to help build a home for a family in need is our goal for 2016,” says, Founder/Owner Raj Qsar. “Our brokerage is motivated and so encouraged by the work that Giveback Homes has been doing in the real estate industry,” says agent Christina Boladian with The Boutique.
Joining The Boutique in the cause are other celebrity and well known Real Estate Companies and personalities including; Mauricio Umansky with The Agency, Madison Hildebrand with Partners Trust, Joyce Rey with Coldwell Banker Previews International, David Parnes & James Harris with Million Dollar Listing Los Angeles and Roh Habibi from Million Dollar Listing San Francisco.
The next international build project for Giveback Homes is in Nigaragua from March 1st – March 5th 2016 and they only have 4 spots left. To register see below.
Champagne, Hot Chocolate, Donut Bar and Open Air Photo Booth with Mrs. Claus & her Elves!
The Corona del Mar Chamber of Commerce is proud to present the community’s most popular event of the year! This is an absolute can’t miss special event filled with holiday festivities for family, friends, residents and visitors looking for a spectacular way to ring in the holiday season. Each year “The Walk” brings together thousands of fun-loving people into the Village of Corona del Mar for live entertainment, food, prizes and games in true holiday spirit!
>Toys for Tots Drive
>Corona del Mar merchant promotions throughout Corona del Mar’s Business District
>Live Entertainment with over 12 signature bands in strategic locations
>The popular Fireman’s Grill BBQ provided by the
NB Fire Department
>Restaurant tastings and celebration parties.
>Kid’s entertainment including snap shots with Santa Clause, bouncy houses, bungee jumping, holiday characters, a petting zoo and more.
>Unique vendor exhibits in the popular vendor faire at the center stage.
>Beer & Wine Garden located in Bandera’s Lower Parking Lot with Signature band “Pinch Me”
>Famous Opportunity Drawing with over $15,000 worth of prizes.
>Langford Properties Raffle, stop by their booth
>Performances by High School and community organization
Win Great Prizes!
Christmas Walk Opportunity Drawing
Langford Properties Raffle: Enter your name at their booth 11-4PM
Pre-sale tickets Avail / Winner Need not be present:
Each year local merchants donate prizes for the popular Christmas Walk Opportunity Drawing and the odds are spectacular. Purchase tickets to win unique gift items, hotel stays, restaurant dinners, spa packages, gift certificates, services and more than $15,000 worth of prizes. Winner need not be present so get your tickets in advance. Tickets also make great gifts for clients.
Ticket prices = $1 ea.
11 tickets for = $10
25 tickets for = $20
In our latest #SindeoSitDown, Owner of The Boutique Real Estate Group and video guru, Raj Qsar, sat down with us to talk about how and why realtors everywhere should be leveraging video to grow their business.
So…what did we learn? For starters, if you’re not already using video to market your listings you should be! Listings that use video receive 4x as many leads as those without. Video has become the #1 ROI for money spent and returned for Raj and his team, as is the case for most realtors doing video successfully.
What kinds of things can you add to video to make them exciting and “sticky”?
Add a human element – Create videos that are about more than just the property. Feature pets, give the house a story, include actors that “live” in the home, find ways to make it feel real so viewers can relate.
Include the community – B-roll footage is key. Buyers aren’t just moving into a house, they’re moving into a community. So, show it to them! Shots of local businesses, parks, beaches, and amenities go a long way. Plus, this content is evergreen, meaning you can use it again and again.
Make it cool – There are so many hi-tech additions you can incorporate to put your video above the rest. Use hyperlapse, add filters, film aerial shots with a drone!