New Luminary of Distinction honorees share their wisdom
Luminary of Distinction is the highest career award that RE/MAX bestows. The following Associates earned their place in this prestigious group in 2014 for reaching $20 million or more in total commissions in 20 or more years with RE/MAX:
David Banks, RE/MAX By the Bay, Portland, Maine
Al Cosentino, RE/MAX Escarpment Realty, Hamilton, Ontario
Bill Goold, RE/MAX Real Estate Services, Vancouver, British Columbia
Marti Hampton, RE/MAX One Realty, Raleigh, N.C.
Jane Kelly, RE/MAX Lake of the Ozarks, Osage Beach, Mo.
Leslie McDonnell, RE/MAX Suburban, Libertyville, Ill.
John Postma, RE/MAX of Grand Rapids, Grand Rapids, Mich.
Denise Reich, RE/MAX Central Alliance, Denver, Colo.
Priscilla Sookarow, RE/MAX Vernon, Vernon, British Columbia
Angelo Toscano, RE/MAX Metro-City Realty, Ottawa, Ontario
Bruce Tyburski, RE/MAX Executives, Springfield, Va.
Tim Walsh, RE/MAX Fort McMurray, Fort McMurray, British Columbia
Len Wong, RE/MAX House of Real Estate, Calgary, Alberta
Several of them share their best strategies for long-term success:
Learn as much as you can
“The first order of business is to get an education – take every class and attend every convention that you can find. Online is good, but in person is better, because this presents an opportunity to build referral relationships. The second word of advice is to effectively leverage your time with administrative assistants and support staff. We have a full-time marketing director, for example, who concentrates entirely on the latest innovative ideas of Internet and mobile marketing, which are clearly our most effective means of advertising. Our customer service includes constant communication with our past clients, client appreciation parties, email alerts – at least 15-20 touches a year. The referrals are constant, and we treat them like gold. Define your revenue-generating activities and focus on them at all times. Every minute of every day, no matter what you’re engaged in, can be productive if you remain aware.”
– RE/MAX Lake of the Ozarks, Osage Beach, Mo.
– Jane Kelly, RE/MAX Lake of the Ozarks, Osage Beach, Mo.
Target your marketing
“Use direct target marketing and networking through email and your website to attract top agents and serious qualified buyers. For example, I’ve optimized my website with Google keywords to set myself apart from the rest. I also post videos and listings to my YouTube channel, and of course I’m active on social media. Don’t neglect traditional marketing methods. I also run billboard campaigns, deliver postcards to 37,000 homes once a month and use print ads to drive potential buyers and sellers to my Website. I employ support staff to monitor our direct phone line and strive to provide valued service.”
– Al Cosentino, RE/MAX Escarpment Realty, Hamilton, Ontario
Surround yourself with the right people
“The biggest factor contributing to my success is the strength of my team. Structuring and maintaining a high-level, functioning team has been critical to my growth over the years. I employ a business coordinator, whose main job function is to communicate with clients, the team members and me. Additionally, I have an assistant who shadows me throughout the day and can help me address urgent priorities between appointments. Having dedicated team members focused on every aspect of our business gives us an advantage in marketing, market knowledge and customer service, which allows me the time I need to focus on strategizing with clients and negotiating on my clients’ behalf.”
– David Banks, RE/MAX By the Bay, Portland, Maine
Prioritize marketing and negotiating
“An agent with a good marketing plan and negotiation experience will typically sell a home quicker and at a higher price.”
– Len T. Wong, RE/MAX House of Real Estate, Calgary, Alberta
Be willing to adapt
“Change is the only constant in real estate. Be consistent in your willingness to adapt. The market and our profession go through changes and cycles. Staying on top of the variable is key. That said, most of our financial success stems from our personality and our ability to communicate, negotiate and lead. Very little is due to technical knowledge. Always smile. Clients are more inclined to do business with happy people. Also make sure to effectively manage your time and life. Prioritize and then get after it with a positive attitude!”
– Angelo Toscano, RE/MAX Metro-City Realty, Ottawa, Ontario
Earn your success
“The key to my success is humility. Always be a student, continually learn about yourself and others, and strive to make improvements. I’m grateful to people like Richard Robbins – and his father, Larry – who gave me wonderful coaching tips and mentorship along the way. Success is earned, and real estate is a service industry. A willingness to serve people is essential. Do your best to listen and give them the guidance they need. It’s also important to have a strong team, because no one can be good at everything. As Richard Robbins says: “Why not do what you do best and delegate the rest?” While a good team with the right dynamic takes a long time to build, having the right team in place is paramount to success.”
– Bill Goold, RE/MAX Real Estate Services, Vancouver, British Columbia
Create your system and use it
“Systems are the key to success in real estate. From my first day in real estate, I came up with a plan and implemented it on a daily basis. Use a database with plans that are specific to each client. Regular interaction is also critical. In marketing, choose two or three things that you like and stick with them long term.”
– Leslie McDonnell, RE/MAX Suburban, Libertyville, Ill.