Real Estate is changing, and most agents & brokers are stuck in a century-old business model that simply doesn’t fit today’s world. We talked with legendary real estate icon Gary Keller and came away with new insights into how world’s most successful real estate franchise is responding to the change and adapting to the changing market.
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Learn his thoughts on the web, teams, the market, and technology – along with Tim Harris thoughtful insights on how this fits in modern real estate:
1) Agent Sites are DEAD. Broker Sites are DEAD. Online home search is changing – people are moving their entire online experience to a handful of sites and soon…a handful of apps. Online experiences are no long dashtop focused, the prime mover is now mobile. The competition is what the single app to use for home buying will be, because most consumers won’t use more than one. Most people have ONE app for shopping (Amazon), ONE app for news – and Gary believes ONE app for Real Estate.
2) Control the first conversation or someone else will. Zillow knows this and plans to make agents into mere functionaries – so do the ibuyers. Zillow plans to shift to a ibuyer model – the new CEO has basically told us that selling buyer leads to agents was never their mission, just the means to an end: controlling the market.
3) Artificial Intelligence will replace most of the tasks that an agent does, and it will control the relationship with the consumer. You need to ask yourself whether this is inevitable, and which AI do you want to trust? Whatever AI you use will ultimately be your boss. The AI (and who controls it) will own your client relationships – not you!
4) Keller Williams goal with AI is to control the conversation on an ongoing basis with the client directly.
5) Keller Williams AI will ‘monitor’ the customers use of the app, home searches, notifications about home maintenance. Amazons AI knows everything about you based on what you are searching for…so does Google…
6) The flood of CEOs being fired will continue. Old ways of thinking being replaced with new ways. Expect major shakeups at every brokerage. The change in the market will be blamed, but the truth is that if the folks leading the brokerages aren’t tech heads now they will be fired and replaced.
7) Tech matters, and it’ll matter more in the future. All brokerage USPs to agents are so similar that they have become the same. Tech offerings will be the differentiator for agents.
8) Keller Williams app and YOUR contacts belong to Keller Williams. You leave the relationships – the leads stay with KW, they own the data.
9) Gary is NOT a proponent of what has become of the team model. Teams have turned into bloated “brokerages within brokerages”, and make little to no net profit. They won’t make it through the downturn. His description of an ideal team is exactly like Tim & Julie Harris – built around profit first!
10) KW is a tech company that happens to be in the real estate business. That’s how you stay relevant in today’s industry. Embrace technology and create a stellar user experience.
11) Gary told me point blank that the CONSUMER is his focus…not the agent.