Inspired after four days in San Francisco – The Inman Conference and what we learned.

Its been more than a month since I have been back from the Inman Real Estate Conference in San Francisco and I am still processing all of the amazing things I learned. Inman News is the Real Estate industry’s most authoritative source of market conditions business trends, technology and Real Estate news. The majority of their information focuses on the U.S. Real Estate market but there is still very much that Canadian agents can learn from them. The conference took place at San Francisco’s Union Square Hotel and over four days I listened to speakers discuss everything from building your brand, the mindset of the next generation of buyers to watching a panel of current buyers and sellers answer questions about their experiences to a room of over a thousand agents. On top of this I got to learn the latest technologies in Real Estate and met some amazing and hard working agents from across Canada and the U.S. It was especially interesting talking to the U.S. agents as their experiences vastly differ from State to State, from the average price of $200,000 for a home in Missouri to crazy bidding war scenarios in the San Francisco Bay area that can rival Toronto any day.

Most of all I walked away with a lot of insight of what the W & Y Homes Co. Team was doing right, what were were doing wrong and what we really need to improve on. We take huge pride in making sure every transaction goes smoothly for all of our clients but like anything you can always step it up a notch or look for things that can improve our business and make life easier for our clients.

In this blog I want to share two things. First, some things I learned at Inman that I felt would be really great to share and secondly, new personal action items that the W & Y Homes Team is going to commit to doing.

Enchantment – The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds and Actions. 

Inman was full of great speakers and one of them was Guy Kawasaki. Guy was formally Chief Evangelist at Apple and he has since moved on to Canva which is an online graphics tool. He spoke about Enchantment – The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds and Actions and here is his advice:

*Read the book How to Win Friends and Influence People
*Have a Duchenne smile, stay away from the botex and show off your crow’s feet
*Always default to YES – yes, how can I help you
*Be a baker but not an eater – always know you can make other things for people
*Learn to accept others for what they are, no matter what
*Always agree with someone on something
*Remove speed bumps, having a captcha on your website is a great example
*Enchant everyone – Figure out who the influencer is and make sure you enchant them even more
*Build an ecosystem – Create a package of great people that work on your team, developers, consultants, websites, etc.
*Reciporcate, do something nice for someone and when they say thank you tell them “I know you would do the same for me”
*Get on your knees to help in anyway – Guy Kawasaki told a hilarious story about Richard Branson getting on his knees begging him to use Virgin Airlines
*Have the likability of Richard Branson and the quality of service of Zappos

1000 Things Real Estate Can Learn from Surfing

Matt Beall, the President and Principal Broker of Hawaii Life Real Estate Services gave a wonderful speech that used surfing as a metaphor for Real Estate.

*Learn to Swim - the board is the only technology/tool you have in surfing – we spend so much time obsessing over the tools we want to use but we must always be ready and capable if we don’t have those tools.
*Paddling Matters - so much in surfing is positioning, how much time we spend maneuvering and building up to the deal, we spend so much time preparing.
*When in Doubt, No Go Out - If you are a residential real estate agent, don’t sell commercial. Don’t “go all out”.
*Don’t Leave Waves to Find Waves - focus on where you are and ride the waves you have got.
*Waves Come in Sets, 3-5 wave sets then lull, during lull, paddle, position, prepare for next sets of waves, it is the same way when it comes to deals.
*Don’t Fear Technology - evolution of the board is a constant progression. Find your niche and go paddle and don’t be afraid of new technologies.
*Don’t Get Caught Inside - Timing matters. Trying to get someone to buy when they are not ready or not having respect to what matters to your clients will cause the waves to “crash down on you”.
*Don’t Drop In - Find your own way and get your own stuff (clients, content, way of doing business).
*When the Water is Murky, Don’t Go Out - when you are starving, everything looks good, don’t take on every deal that comes your way, wait until you are comfortable.
*You are not Laird Hamilton – Nowadays, everyone is a “luxury agent”.  Pick your spots and where you fit in best and concentrate on that.

Some Amazing New Technology:
Here are some of the latest technologies that I learned about.

*Leap Motion – A tool that senses how you use your hands so you no longer need to use your mouse.
*FIN A wearable ring that allow you to use the palm of your hand as a numeric keypad and gesture interface.
*Eye Tribe - Use your eye to track things on your computer or turn a page when you hands are too busy.
*Matterport 3D Camera - Create amazing 3D renderings and floor plans with this incredible camera.
*Piper - A smart and elegant home monitoring system.
*TrackR Bravo - A small coin size device that helps you track lost items, perfect for missing keys.

Some Interesting Facts about the Millennial Buyer Mindset:

*40% of millennials are planning to invest in a home in the next 3-5 years
*75% believe owning a home is a fundamental indicator of success
*Nearly all are willing to adjust their lifestyle to save for a home
*Majority prefer owning multiple lifestyle homes
*87% would not consider a home that is not “tech-friendly”
*93% believe their home is the best on the block
*77% prefer an essential home compared to a stereotypical luxury home
*1 in 3 would prefer a fixer upper to a house with minimal repairs needed

Baby Boomers and Moving: 

*57% plan to move out of their current home
*70% believe the house they retire in will be the best
*39% will most likely move to a rural community

This is only a small portion of the amazing things I learned but I thought it would be really fun to share. I’m looking forward to attending the Inman Conference again next year but in the mean time…

The W & Y Homes Co. Team new actions steps:

*A new website that is much more user friendly and straight forward about our team and the type of service you will receive from us.
*If our client has called us for an update we have lost. We were reminded of the importance of phone/email/texting sellers daily for at least the first two weeks. It is much better to over communicate than to have a seller wondering.
*Video Testimonials are hot and it is something we are going to incorporate much more frequently going forward.
*Overpriced listings won’t even be in our vocabulary.
*Continuously build our referral community and only surround ourselves with people that are excellent in their field.
*We will obsess about efficiency.
*Continue to stay up to date with the new tech trends and how they can better help our clients.
*Personalize Blogs – we are going to try to stay away from posting blogs about articles we find and instead share more insight on our day to day activities as Toronto Realtors.

Written by April Williams