Target the consumers, not the digital start-ups, real estate agents told

Bernard Lee

SETIA ALAM (March 4): Property agents should not worry too much about being ousted by property portals and should work with them instead to leverage these portals’ traffic, said Celcom Planet Sdn Bhd ( senior manager for seller and strategic business division Bernard Lee. (pictured)

“It’s a love-hate relationship [between property agents and digital start-ups] but it’s a two-way situation actually. You should work with them.

“Agents should tap into and leverage on these portals’ traffic. You can understand consumer behaviour from these property portals. This helps you know your consumers and their preferences better because consumers are your target, not the portals.

“It’s all about data, how you mine it and take advantage [of it],” he said. Lee was speaking at the two-day Malaysian Annual Real Estate Convention 2017 (MAREC’17) which began yesterday (March 3). The annual convention is organised by the Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents.

In his talk entitled “IT start-ups: friends or foes?”, Lee also advised property agents not to just think about getting professional fees or on selling properties. In fact, they should think about their customers’ needs and wants.

According to Lee, real estate agents still have a competitive edge because at the end of the day, it’s the servicing skills of a property agent that matters while technology is just a platform.

“Finding the right home is the most important thing for many people. You may not close the sales today but at least you’re honest by telling them that the house is not suitable for them. Think from the consumers’ perspective,” he said.

“Technology is just a tool for you to get your leads, learn about your target audience and then you go ahead with the insights from these platforms,” he added.

“The real estate industry is still a personalised service. When a client is satisfied with your service, they will go back to you.

“So, your interpersonal skills are very important. We need to keep abreast with the trends and be able to adapt to the change,” he added. is the media partner for the event.



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