SUBURB SPOTLIGHT LAUNCESTON

This month Real Estate Business spoke to three agencies from Launceston to find out what techniques they use to grow their market share

SUBURB SNAPSHOT
LOCATED IN the north of Tasmania, Launceston is the state’s second biggest city. In the past year the housing market has been relatively tough, particularly in the top end. However, with the market now showing positive signs, real estate agents are feeling more optimistic.

MARKET LEADER

HARCOURTS LAUNCESTON INTERVIEWED: TONY MORRISON
PRINCIPALS: Tony Morrison and Kate Littlejohn
RENT ROLL SIZE: 600
FARMING AREA: 10km radius
SHOPFRONT? Yes

WHY IS HARCOURTS LAUNCESTON NUMBER ONE?
We have a great brand backing us, which gives us lots of support, training, systems and great technology, as well as the right people who are committed to offering great service and getting great results.

WHAT TECHNIQUES DO YOU USE TO ENSURE YOUR MARKET SHARE?
We secure the right people, give them the best training, which is ongoing, give them lots of knowledge, make them look and feel professional, provide them with the best tools and make sure the office is a fun and exciting place to work with a great team culture.

WHAT DOES YOUR OFFICE DO BETTER THAN YOUR COMPETITORS?
Our knowledge of market value and being prepared to tell our sellers the truth even when in today’s market, that is not what most of them like or want to hear.

HOW IMPORTANT IS REFERRAL_BUSINESS?
Repeat and referral business plays a big part in our ongoing success. Our strategy is simply to offer amazing service, which brings people back to you and motivates them to recommend you at every opportunity.

WHAT KIND OF COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT DO YOU HAVE?
We are big supporters of the Cancer Council. We also give to many worthwhile organisations in the community via our Harcourts Foundation. We are also the major sponsor of the Women’s 5km Breast Cancer Walk each year.

WHAT MEASURES DO YOU HAVE IN PLACE TO HOLD YOUR_POSITION?
We monitor our market share every month internally through our own means as well as through the Real Estate Institute of Tasmania statistics.
Each sales person has their own business plan which is reviewed quarterly, we do bi-weekly one-on-ones and twice-yearly performance reviews. The sales people’s business plans, as well as the office, have
various KPIs to monitor productivity
and_success.

HOW CLOSELY DO YOU MONITOR WHAT YOUR COMPETITORS ARE DOING?
Not overly. We are too busy doing what we do to worry about them too much.

WHAT ARE YOUR TARGETS FOR THE NEXT YEAR?
To be in the top five in our group nationally.

THE CHALLENGER

BUSHBY PROPERTY GROUP INTERVIEWED: PHILLIP BUSHBY
PRINCIPALS: Phillip Bushby, Mark_Bushby and Eric Andersen
RENT ROLL: Approximately 1,100
FARMING AREA: 100km
SHOPFRONT? Yes

HOW IS BUSINESS IN_LAUNCESTON?
Overall, business is challenging in Launceston at present. However, we are finding that activity is still strong amongst both our sales and rentals.
The vacancy rate amongst rentals is still slightly higher than we would like, however we are aiming to achieve a reduction in this rate.

WHAT TECHNIQUES DO YOU USE TO ENSURE YOUR MARKET SHARE?
We use a variety of techniques and we aim to be at the forefront with regards to innovation and communication.
This includes thorough staff training, building staff motivation and maintaining strong databases.

HOW IMPORTANT IS REFERRAL_BUSINESS?
Referral is critical in our business and we build this by utilising all of our databases, networking, and by keeping up with the latest technological and marketing developments.

WHAT MEASURES DO YOU HAVE IN PLACE TO HOLD YOUR_POSITION?
Bushby is a member of the Real Estate Institutes of Tasmania (REIT) and of Australia, and we participate in several activities set out by them, such as submitting statistics so we can monitor our progress in the market and devise strategies to ensure that we are the best at what we do.

HOW CLOSELY DO YOU MONITOR YOUR COMPETITORS?
The REIT statistics give us an indication of our position in the market, and we monitor the number of listings our competitors have on realestate.com.

THE UP AND COMER

RAY WHITE CENTRAL LAUNCESTON INTERVIEWED: STEVE MCCANN
PRINCIPAL: Steve McCann
RENT ROLL SIZE: 340
SHOPFRONT? Yes

WHAT TECHNIQUES DO YOU USE TO ENSURE YOUR MARKET SHARE?
Keeping ourselves active in the local real estate guide is still important to our profile.

WHAT IS ONE THING YOUR OFFICE DOES BETTER THAN YOUR COMPETITORS?
Negotiation – my guys continually amaze me with their strength of negotiation. They build such magic rapport with clients and think outside of the box to achieve results for our vendors.

HOW IMPORTANT IS REFERRAL BUSINESS?
This is paramount to the future of our business. Just as we complete this interview our new contact plan is swinging into action, we will be supplying our clients with data snapshots of their suburb, by mail, every quarter so they can simply see what is happening in the market place.

WHAT’S YOUR OFFICE CULTURE?
We maybe have too much fun in our office. The office was built on mateship and that continues to be important.

IS IT DIFFICULT TO FIND QUALITY STAFF?
I think it’s hard to find quality people anywhere in this industry – it’s still an industry that receives a bad rap, so attracting professional people is tricky.

HOW CLOSELY DO YOU MONITOR YOUR COMPETITORS?
We keep a slight eye out but prefer to work on our beliefs and training rather than look to copy or worry about others.

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