Consultant Diana Zaya writes that establishing a structured recruitment process, utilizing diverse sources for finding potential agents, and effectively communicating your brokerage’s value proposition, you can attract agents who are ready for change and set them on a path to success.

The real estate industry will experience a normal seasonal slowdown as winter nears. During this time of the year, it’s common for agents to pause, reflect on their past year’s performance and strategize for the year ahead.

This unique window of opportunity allows brokerages to identify and recruit agents ready for a change and looking to set themselves up for success in the coming year. For brokers aiming to achieve agent recruitment success, adopting the following strategies will bring about the desired outcomes. Here’s how to do it.

Create a recruitment process

Building a robust recruitment process is the first step in creating an agent recruitment program that produces predictable and reliable results.

  1. Implement a CRM system: Invest in a good and easy-to-use customer relationship management (CRM) system that can efficiently track activities, manage contacts, and nurture relationships with potential recruits. We stress “easy-to-use” because this is a component many firms get wrong. It’s often said that “The best CRM is the one you use,” so pick a platform your team can adopt easily.
  2. Obtain comprehensive agent data: Gain deep insights into potential recruits by obtaining comprehensive production data about the agent’s real estate business and performance metrics. This data-driven approach will lead to more meaningful interactions with agents. Using production data to approach agent recruiting meetings as business planning sessions will go a long way in recruiting agents for your firm. 
  3. Multipronged marketing campaign: Craft a multifaceted marketing campaign that utilizes email marketing, digital media advertising, and referral programs. Ensure your messaging is clear, consistent, and resonates with potential recruits.
  4. Craft your sales process: Agent recruitment is a sales and marketing function. Developing a structured process supported by compelling case studies, testimonials from existing agents who have thrived after joining your brokerage, and other such materials helps highlight why your firm is the best choice for agents.
  5. Regular follow-up: Consistent and meaningful communication is key. Stay engaged with potential recruits, provide value with each interaction, and be careful to respect others’ time in the process.

Creating agent personas

Tailoring your recruitment efforts to specific agent personas is a strategic approach that involves several key steps. Firstly, it entails carefully analyzing transactional data to pinpoint common characteristics among potential recruits. This analysis should begin with examining their years in business, production levels, price points, top markets, and other more nuanced data points, such as list side percentage and median price point. 

Once agent “types” are isolated from the production data, we can take it a step further to think about what type of messaging would resonate with that persona, considering what their challenges may be or what opportunities may excite them. It’s essential to convey how your brokerage can effectively meet their needs, emphasizing the value and benefits they can expect when joining your team.

Having a deep understanding of an agent’s needs will go a long way in recruitment and agent retention.

Nathaniel Richards from Keller Williams Professionals is a newer agent who realized that to reach his goals, he needed to align himself with a firm that would provide education, community, accountability, and support. He says, “I chose to join this team because my colleagues bring out the best in me. The energy here is very motivating.”

Clearly communicating the value your firm provides to agents will help to progress conversations. 

Where to find potential agents

 Locating potential agents during the winter season requires a multifaceted approach:

  • MLS data: Leverage MLS data from reputable data vendors to identify agents and gain access to their production statistics. This data-driven approach allows you to target high-performing agents.
  • Licensing schools: Forge partners with real estate licensing schools to connect with newly licensed agents who are eager to embark on their real estate careers.
  • Job boards: Cast a wide net by posting recruitment advertisements on job boards, attracting a diverse pool of new talent.
  • Agent referrals: Tap into your existing network of agents to seek referrals for potential recruits. Agents who have worked with these recruits can vouch for their competence and compatibility with your brokerage’s culture.
  • Social media presence: Establish a strong presence on social media platforms to showcase your brokerage’s unique value proposition and culture. Use these platforms to attract agents who resonate with your brand.

Strengthen your offering

To gain an advantage, it’s important to strengthen your offering and tailor it precisely to the unique needs of potential recruits. Agents typically make brokerage decisions based on a mix of compensation, lead availability, training and education, community and culture as well as marketing, administrative, and technological support.

In terms of compensation, while brokerages don’t necessarily need to compete to have the best splits or lowest fees, firms should adjust their models to stay competitive. Considering what other firms in your market are offering as well as the additional benefits your firm offers is a great starting point in assessing your firm’s competitiveness in the marketplace. 

While agents generally have a large sphere of personal contacts they typically work with, it’s a nice value add to offer high-quality leads to agents. There will always be times when an agent can experience a slowdown or a quiet period in their business. Offering good leads can serve as a springboard to jumpstart their real estate business when sales are lagging.

Underline your commitment to ongoing education by showcasing various training and professional development opportunities. The real estate industry is in constant transition. Helping agents stay ahead of the latest news, emerging trends, and best practices will help to create a thriving brokerage that agents will flock to and remain affiliated with for years to come. 

Lastly, detail the administrative and technological support your brokerage provides to streamline agents’ daily tasks. This support system ensures that agents can focus their energy on what truly matters — serving their clients and growing their real estate careers. By strengthening your offering across these dimensions, you create a compelling proposition that resonates with potential recruits and sets your brokerage apart in a crowded marketplace.

Address the current climate

There are many obstacles agents need to navigate in the current landscape. Brokerages that proactively address these challenges and lend insight, support, and training to agents will set themselves up as a go-to resource for agents, leading to better agent attraction and retention.

In the face of high interest rates and lagging sales, your brokerage can distinguish itself by providing agents with effective strategies and valuable resources to support their business. This includes providing guidance on creative financing options and strategic market positioning, helping agents maintain their competitiveness.

Furthermore, recent lawsuits within the industry should be addressed transparently. This transparency underscores your brokerage’s unwavering commitment to ethical and compliant business practices. Teaching agents how to handle emerging buyer-broker relationship complexities helps agents achieve the best possible outcomes in their real estate business.

Lastly, agent safety concerns should be paramount. Demonstrate your dedication to ensuring the safety of your team by outlining the comprehensive safety measures and protocols in place. This proactive approach safeguards your agents and instills trust and confidence in potential recruits, knowing they are joining a brokerage that prioritizes their well-being. By acknowledging and addressing these industry challenges, your brokerage exemplifies professionalism and strengthens its appeal to prospective agents.

Winter is not a time for hibernation but a season of opportunity for residential real estate brokerages. By establishing a structured recruitment process, utilizing diverse sources for finding potential agents, and effectively communicating your brokerage’s value proposition, you can attract agents who are ready for change and set them on a path to success in the upcoming year. Stay proactive, professional, and focused on meeting the unique needs of potential recruits to build a strong and dynamic team for the future.

Diana Zaya is the founder and president of MaverickRE Consulting. Connect with her on LinkedInX and Instagram.

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