Licensed in Washington and Oregon, Ryan Buccola has extensive experience in residential and commercial real estate plus land entitlements and new construction and resale marketing. He has solid relationships with many land developers and builders, which brings his clients unique investment opportunities and valuable connections. He and his brother Tim co-own Bend, Oregon’s Key Properties RE/MAX brokerage.
How a ‘Broker’s Brokerage’ Can Improve Everyone’s Bottom Line
Read three tips from a broker-owner who’s growing his business in Bend, Ore., by providing a close-knit culture with extra support.
October 29, 2018
Over the past four years, membership in the National Association of REALTORS® has jumped 25 percent. A reflection of low inventory and increased demand, real estate can be an appealing option to many job seekers.
In our high-demand market in Central Oregon, ranked fourth in the nation for the fastest growing metro area, we see a lot of variance in the industry. From extremely high-production agents all the way to those working in real estate as a side hustle, there’s quite a bit of wiggle room when it comes to approaching a career in real estate.
My brother Tim and I co-own our real estate company, and as we see it, our role is to serve and support full-time professionals who are masters of their craft. My goal is to create a place where productive, professional broker sales associates who are focused on high production can thrive. This vision of a “broker’s brokerage” is our mission and philosophy, which we take to heart because we consider our brokers (a broker license is the entry-level license in Oregon) to be our clients. Far from just a place to “hang a license,” our firm has quickly become the go-to in our area for brokers who want this level of professional support to efficiently achieve their client service goals.
What does this concept of a “broker’s brokerage” mean and how does one accomplish it? Here are a few tips from our first-hand experience:
Tightly knit community: We take a “family” approach to our business—and not just because my brother and I co-own the firm. We work every day alongside our brokers and spend time shaping what we want our company to look like, sharing knowledge and our vision with the team. By interacting with agents on a personal level, we have made many discoveries about what they need to be successful. And when I say personal, that’s exactly what I mean. I recently practiced my skills as the wedding officiant at an agent’s nuptials. One of our top-producing brokers recently won a contest we held, and the prize was a ride in our RE/MAX hot air balloon—where her fiance popped the question. While you don’t have to get quite this up close and personal to run a successful brokerage, it helps to get to know your agents and their needs at a granular level. You’ll find that the benefit to one is the benefit to all.
Offer a range of marketing resources: At our brokerage, marketing is an individualized partnership to help each broker develop and strengthen his or her brand, grow their skill set, and expand their audience. From regular training on topics such as social media, technology, design, and branding to more specialized services like logo design and custom marketing plans, we help brokers build their business. Unlike some firms that execute an onboarding process and don’t do much after that, we take the time to create an environment of open communication and problem-solving on a daily basis. We believe it is our responsibility to make sure each broker’s professional needs are being addressed.
Provide human support: Staff members who are on the ground, working for our agents and entrenched in the company, are the pinnacle of our value proposition. They work side by side with our agents to train them in the technology and systems that are part of the toolbox they have for communicating with clients, selling properties, and managing their business. We believe that providing human support is so important that we just hired a full-time marketing strategist with extensive expertise in our local markets in both the real estate and homebuilding industries. This person’s only job is to support our agents. From marketing and branding support to team listing presentations and collateral, even office arrangement, our agents have human-led team services available to help.
This approach is working. Just this year, we have had two of the top-producing teams in our market join our brokerage. Our business is growing with an average production per agent that is nearly triple that of similar brokerages in our region. When you combine global franchise expertise with a personalized approach and a focus on your brokers and agents, you have a recipe for success in today’s competitive market.