If you pursue international clients, be prepared to serve them

Traffic from overseas may say more about aspirations of the real estate broker or agent than the market

Learn the New Luxury Playbook at Luxury Connect | October 18-19 at the Beverly Hills Hotel

I had just asked my client if her brokerage was doing much business with Chinese customers. I could see the machines starting to gear up in the back of her mind. I knew what was coming next. "I would totally do business with Chinese customers," she said. "I know it's a growing segment." I would have to press her to answer the real question: Was she doing business with Chinese clients right now, or had she in the past? I'd have to ease into it a little bit though. These kinds of conversations are delicate. Separating the aspiration from the real, without crushing hope or innovation, is tricky. Every now and then, when reviewing the geography of traffic for a client's real estate website, I notice a large volume of visits coming from Asia -- China in particular. I've been told that Asian buyers are a growing part of certain segments in the real estate market. Since I don't sell real estate that's the best I know. But I do know that, globally, in a number of industries, the...