Many real estate brokers believe this to be true. They believe doom is upon them and there’s nothing they can do about it - but is this the reality?
There are plenty of brokers out there who will survive this Zill-pocalypse but not for the reasons you’d think.
But still, how can you make sure your business stays afloat?
Most brokers would just say: keep your head down and work harder, run faster.
Problem is, you’ll never outrun a machine - they get faster by the day in ways you can’t even imagine. Computers get more powerful every year and it’s only a matter of time before AI is embedded in every industry.
As a result, some brokers push their agents to their limit. This leads to agents feeling unhappy and unsatisfied - and tanking real estate agencies.
What’s really causing businesses to go under?
Many agencies won’t survive, but Zillow isn’t to blame.
What is to blame is brokers’ strategic decisions, often rooted in the fact that they don’t add value to their agents’ careers.
Real estate brokerages are successful because of their agents. They do all the legwork: going to listing appointments, conducting buyer consultations, showing homes and much more.
A broker’s main responsibilities are to provide the necessary resources, education and tools to empower your agents. Too many brokers try to combine everything… they sell, manage, coach, recruit. They wonder why their numbers plateau when they’re just spreading themselves too thin.
A single person can only do so much to increase revenue and streamline processes. This is why it’s important to start recruiting more agents on time.
Once you’ve hired agents, you need to focus on retention - successful brokerages have something to offer their agents; otherwise, why would they stay? That value can range from training, education, resources, coaching, technology, leads, the list is endless.
How to avoid the Zill-pocalypse
So what’s the solution? How can you increase agents happiness and work with Zillow (not against it). Here’s three key things to do:
1. Make sure your agents are happy:
How can you, as a broker, make sure you provide as much value to your agents as possible?
Here’s three things you should do:
Show you care about your clients. You need to show that you are truly concerned with your clients and want your agents to be concerned too. This will help your agents take off as much stress and worry as possible off your clients. This makes sure agents are involved, which works as a huge motivator.
Invest in technology. Tools can take away a lot of the heavy lifting and boring tasks from your agents. Your agents will love the fact that their time is freed up, because they have a solid appointment management system, invoices are created automatically and commission checks are generated correctly and quickly.
Make life easier for your agents. Sure, work is work. But, that doesn’t mean you can do things to make it easier for your agents to succeed. When investing in technological tools, it’s important to make sure they are convenient and easy to use. That way, agents will see the benefit of technology and will be happy to use these tools.
2. Use Zillow to your benefit:
“A leading business economist today urged [the] president-elect [...] to call a conference on unemployment caused by technological change and automation as soon as he got settled in the White House.”
Sounds familiar? It seems like it could’ve been written in 2016.
Actually, this quote is from 1960.
People have been up in arms about machines taking over their work. And, to be fair, computers have taken over a lot of work from a lot of workers.
But, as we’ve seen time and time again, people are much more flexible than machines and they will find new tasks to do. As computers started doing more, people didn’t start doing less, but they started doing other tasks - usually more rewarding tasks.
3 Make sure you add value to your clients
As Zillow takes more and more of the boring tasks out of your agents’ hands, they can focus much more on their clients - and making clients happy. A real estate transaction, for most consumers, is an emotional process. It can’t be automated or accomplished with an easy button, at least not yet anyway.
Still, as technology evolves and becomes more intelligent, you and your agents will need to constantly reinvent yourselves - always looking for areas where you can add value, but tools like Zillow can’t.
Get this right and clients will love you - you’ll also stand out in a crowded market and will see your numbers go up - even in the middle of that Zill-pocalypse.
Read more: 6 ways to add value to your clients