The beautiful and iconic Beverly Hills Hotel was the setting for Luxury Connect 2017. It was a memorable experience that I wouldn’t want anyone to miss out on.

Below, I summarized all my notes so that if you were not able to make this one, you can still at least feel like you were there — and learn a little something too.

About Luxury Connect

Luxury Connect annually brings together the most influential names in real estate for a high-powered event in the heart of Beverly Hills.

This luxury event, stacked with luxe style, caters to an elite group of individuals and attendees from across the country to network, learn and share their knowledge about the business. The event was attended by the country’s top real estate agents.

Opening reception

It was a beautiful L.A. night, a perfect setting for the opening network reception.

Brian and Nicole Hopper at the opening festivities at @inmannews LUXURY Connect in Beverly Hills. #luxuryconnect

The opening network reception was a super swanky party at a gorgeous $15 million dollar Beverly Hills home hosted by Hilton & Hyland.

The home was to die for. Opulence at every corner. The biggest surprise in the home, and something we have never seen before, was the “dual lounges” (his and hers) in the master bedroom! Yes, a full lounge where you just hang and chill in your bedroom!

The reception had no expenses spared, with an electric violist who played along with the poolside DJ, tons of photographers, tasting rooms, a red carpet “step and repeat” photo booth and a hair touch-up salon station in the master bathroom!

Party goers

Pool side

I was invited by Inman to do an Instagram “take over” of the opening party. We had so much fun doing all the stories for the reception, interviewing agents and meeting tons of people.

You can see all the Instagram stories, compiled on the video below.

The morning session

Although the opening party was extravagant, we couldn’t wait to dive right into the sessions of the event.

The morning session was full of a variety of topics including global economics, climate change and its affect on housing, and the crowd favorite of the morning, a discussion presented by Chris Voss of the Black Swan Group.  

Voss, a captivating speaker who spoke with authority and humor, is a seasoned hostage negotiator and former FBI agent.

He spoke on topics including pricing and commission rates and shared the secrets to artfully navigating client conversations. His military background and outsider perspective were refreshing.

See a short snippet of Voss speaking below:

Morning session key points:

  • “Stop saying yes.” – Chris Voss
  • Purchase the book: Kiss, Bow Or Shake Hands (a book on international greetings). – Michi Olson
  • “Could you sell your business?” – Sharran Srivatsaa

Lunchtime quickly approached, and attendees were given the choice to sit at a table with a topic or a table with no topic and just open discussion.

Topics ranged from wide variety of subject matter. I choose a table that the discussion was centered around ways to achieve media attention for listings, something we are always working on, and learned a ton.

Lunch session key points: 

  • Your media plan should include a local, national and news source (local newspaper, national publication and an inside news source like Inman).
  • Know who reports on real estate in your area.
  • Everyone is starving for content, give it to them.

The afternoon session

I was the first speaker to take the stage after lunch, which sounded daunting — trying to awake a post-lunch sleepy crowd — but with a little help from the Inman crew, the crowd was fired up ready to jump right into the content.

There was plenty of great content in the afternoon sessions, led by industry titans. Discussions on video usage on a listing, uncertain markets, listing presentation do’s and don’ts and much more.

A fad that has swept the L.A. market recently is extensive listing videos. One video discussed had a budget of over $60,000; it included models, helicopters and Lambo’s.

The discussion, led by Rayni Williams, affirmed my suspicion: that type of listing videos are not sustainable. Having done them herself for her own listings, Williams spoke of the theatrical home mini-movie as neat and fun, but admitted she had stopped doing them because they aren’t effective at reaching buyers.

One of the last speaker panels was led by Tomer Fridman, Gary Gold and Joyce Rey. The three shared “war stories” of listing presentations they have experienced.

Gold, known for selling a well-known mansion owned by the late Hugh Hefner, talked about the work put in and what it required to obtain and ultimately sell the famous Playboy mansion.

Rey spoke about how she likes to have the comparable properties printed to present as well as an electronic copy emailed to the client. Joyce Rey is an Instagram beast, and you should follow her.

Key points from the afternoon session: 

  • Don’t spend big bucks on listing videos. – Rayni Williams
  • Never skip the hustle, put in the hard work. – Gary Gold
  • Top 10 productivity hacks.

Closing reception

The grand reception was held at the newly developed Mr. C Residences. The Agency rolled out the red carpet to highlight these spectacular brand new four-story town homes.

Living room of one of the Mr. C residence’s.

The very best part of Luxury Connect was meeting so many amazing people. People who are in this business, doing their very best for their clients and willing to share their knowledge to make us all better.

Brian Hopper is a managing broker with Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty in the Greater Seattle Area. Connect with him on Instagram or Twitter.

Email Brian Hopper

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