What do you need in your listing toolbox for 2019 to ace out the competition? The winning combination is taking the best of the old and blending it with two cutting-edge tech tools that your competitors don’t use.

With more than 1,000 Inman posts, Bernice Ross is a long-time contributor whose weekly column on real estate trends, luxury, marketing and other best practices publishes every Monday.

What do you need in your listing toolbox for 2019 to ace out the competition? The winning combination is to take the best of the old and to blend it with two cutting-edge tech tools that your competitors don’t use.

There are certain real estate fundamentals that are just important today as they were 50 years ago. Among these are:

  • Building trust and connection with clients.
  • Offering concierge-level service.
  • Providing best-of-class tech tools that will help sellers get their properties sold.
  • Creating a “premium marketing plan” that differentiates your services from the competition.

How to construct a premium marketing plan

To construct your personal premium marketing plan, create a checklist of services like the one below. Included in your plan should be what all agents do, what your brokerage offers that is unique and what you do to help the seller obtain the highest possible price in shortest amount of time.

Please note the plan below allows the seller to compare your services to those offered by your competitors.


Below are two tech tools that can put your premium marketing plan on steroids.

1. IMRE.Ca

Quickly responding to incoming leads is a huge challenge. Rather than paying for an assistant or a service to field incoming leads, real estate chatbots are the hottest solution available.

Providers include Automabots, Ojo, Structurely and Roof.ai. These solutions can range from a few hundred dollars per month to well over a $1,000 monthly or more.

IMRE, an artificial intelligence personal assistant for real estate pros, is a Canadian company whose real estate chatbot has a wealth of functionality. I strongly recommend you watch this short video, especially when you see the price.

That’s right — it’s free, and the professional version is only $10 per month.

Using chatbots to capture the listing

Regardless of which chatbot you choose, here’s how to use these tools on your next listing appointment.

First, explain how your real estate chatbot is on the job 24-7 taking incoming leads, answering potential buyers’ questions, qualifying them and obtaining their phone number.

Next, show the sellers how your chatbot works by giving them the number to call on one of your other listings. When your chatbot sends you their phone number in real time, say: “This is how I never miss a lead.”

If the sellers still insist on interviewing other agents, have them call on the other agent’s listings to see how long it takes them to respond.

An additional benefit of using a chatbot is that you can list your chatbot phone number or SMS code on your print marketing. This allows you to track results, so you can spend your money where it yields the greatest results.

2. The WeissAnalytics Collaborative CMA

The Case-Shiller index was developed by three economists, Allan Weiss, Karl Case and Robert Shiller, and it tracks whether prices are increasing or decreasing in 20 “Metropolitan Statistical Areas” (MSAs).

The technology uses the “repeat-sales method,” which compares sales prices of the same single family homes over time.

Allan Weiss recently founded WeissAnalytics has created a new artificial intelligence (AI) pricing tool called “ValPal” that now provides this same type of data for individual houses. ValPal includes the following:

  • The current the price per foot of the property (single family and condos only) plus the predicted price per foot one year from now.
  • Separate forecasts for individual single-family residences and condos, plus ZIP code and MSA data.
  • Ability to adjust the algorithm by adding your own comparable sales, Zestimates, appraisals or even the seller’s opinion of the property’s value.
  • Because the algorithm constantly updates all prices, it can use comparable sales that are several years old.
  • Dynamic maps that are early predictors of market shifts.

The power of dynamic maps

The ValPal dynamic maps are your primary tool for creating a “wow” experience for your sellers on your listing appointment.

To begin open the dynamic maps for the subject property. In the example below, the Ashby property has increased by 5.7 percent. If you were to click on the one year forecast, the predicted increase is 4 percent over the next 12 months.

Second, and these are the most powerful pricing tool in your listing arsenal, are the dynamic heat maps by ZIP code. These maps show the market shifts dating as far back as 2000.

  • Bright green represents a seller’s market with price appreciation.
  • Bright red indicates a buyer’s market with price depreciation
  • A combination on light green with light red shows a transitioning or flat market with approximately equal amounts of buyers and sellers.

Watch the short video below for West L.A. ZIP code 90064 to see how the market has shifted since 2000, including the predicted changes for 2019.

How does this translate into a listing presentation?

What we know about shifting markets is that the inventory changes foreshadow price changes by six to 18 months. In the current scenario, 90064 has been in a strong seller’s market, so the current shift indicates a slow-down that may result in prices flattening by the end of 2019.

If the trend were to continue, 90064 could begin experiencing price declines within 12-18 months.

In terms of how to explain this to sellers, show them the heat map. As they watch it shift from 2000 to 2018, they recognize recessions and the booms. Then, when they see the dark green shifting to the light greenish-red, they have already seen two cycles where that change harbingered a downturn.

To close them on pricing their property correctly, here’s what to say:

“As you can see, the market has already peaked and has started to slow. If this trend continues, property values will flatten and may even begin to decline over the next six to 12 months. You now have an important decision to make. Will you position your property where it will sell at today’s prices or will you position it will sit on the market and may possibly lose value? It’s your choice, what would you like to do?”

Using ValPal and a lead conversion chatbot will kick up your listing appointment conversion ratio.

Sellers will be intrigued with the technology, but more importantly, it will allow you to convert more leads and in the process, help your sellers achieve the best possible price at sale.

Bernice Ross, President and CEO of BrokerageUP (brokerageup.com) and RealEstateCoach.com, is a national speaker, author and trainer with over 1,000 published articles. Learn about her broker/manager training programs designed for women, by women, at BrokerageUp.com and her new agent sales training at RealEstateCoach.com/newagent.

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