Benchmarking for agents

Benchmarking for agents

08 September 2014 by Kylie Davis 0 comments

Do you have a clear vision, mission and purpose for your business? Do you benchmark yourself against your competition? Do your staff know what your competitive advantage as an agency is? 

These three great questions – and 12 others – were posed by Doug Driscoll, CEO of Starr Partners at the Business of Real Estate Conference at Noosa recently as part of a presentation on 'Measuring the Health of Your Business'.

Delegates were asked to score their business with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ against each question and tally the answers.

Those with 0-5 ‘yes’ answers had a score that indicated their business was at risk and probably only succeeding due to market conditions. Those with a score of 6-10 were in a stronger position able to cope with a change in economic circumstances albeit with some pain, while those with scores higher than 10 were in the rock star category with the kind of economic bullet-proof protection that comes from knowing their business, its purpose, mission, processes – and the value it offered its customers – intimately.

“The question you have to ask yourself is whether you are a market-driven business, or a marketing-driven business,” Mr Driscoll told the audience of more than 120 agency principals.

His comments were backed by Barry Plant, who said one of the key things he had learned in a career that stretched more than 40 years, was that taking control of your image and understanding your business fundamentals were the key to success.

“If you have sloppy image control, it is the sign of sloppy business practice,” Mr Plant said. “Perception is reality in this industry.”

Too few agents in the industry, Mr Driscoll said, understood why their customers chose a competitor over their business – and even fewer ever phoned a lost listing to ask the question although it is a simple thing to do.

“We’re not competing against each other in real estate for the most part,” Mr Driscoll said. “We are competing against consumer views and their negative opinions about the industry and we need to address that.”

The Macquarie Real Estate Benchmarking Report revealed in May that while 79 per cent of agencies enjoyed increased revenue over the past 12 months, only 20 per cent grew revenues by  more than 30 per cent in their market – an indicator that demonstrates they are winning market share over competitors.

But how can agents identify how they are performing compared to their competition in a way that is timely and does not require allocating a resource to both collect and analyse the data?

This week, RP Data launched our new Agency Benchmark Reports which look at agency performance by postcode across the key criteria of an agency’s ability to list and sell property, its market share compared to competitors and rental market opportunity.

The report gives customised insights for every agency, identifying where and how they can improve performance or insights into why they are performing strongly. The reports, which are delivered in PDF format monthly on a 12 months subscription, and can be used in conjunction with RP Professional to grow your business. (with complimentary training provided if you need a refresher on new features and the best way to use RP Professional).

When more than one postcode is ordered, we provide a free Compendium Report that collates all the postcodes together for a general overview of the broader area. But it is the drill-down that provides the most insights and value at a granular level.

In these days of big data, there’s no excuse to claim you don’t know how your business is performing. The Agency Benchmark Reports are a powerful tool to help principals have a stronger understanding of your business and is the latest in a series of solutions to deliver  insights and analysis as well as the best property market data.  

Kylie Davis is the head of marketing for property services at CoreLogic. She joined CoreLogic after nearly four years as network editor of real estate at News Corp Australia, creating a national desk of real estate reporters across more than 100 titles, and training them in the use of data and market journalism. She has a 25-year career in media across News and Fairfax Media, and as a 20-something was the founder and publisher of hyper-local newspaper The Village Voice. Follow her on Twitter: @KDavisCoreLogic

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