We often look around us at some of the biggest names in the industry and recognize their size and power, often forgetting what it took to land them in that top spot. What we see so obviously is the foliage atop the trees, but often forget about the roots keeping the company grounded. Those roots are entrepreneurial, and no brand goes from an idea on the back of a napkin to IPO overnight.
What we can learn from these giants
Mary Bradford at New Home Source notes, “As technological advances have become commonplace it’s no surprise to say that most niche businesses have embraced web presences. However, it is clear that in order to maintain a successful and consistent following, entrepreneurs must breakout from the norm.”
“Creators are forced to truly examine their audience and devise an entirely different product or service within already well-established areas of expertise,” Bradford adds. “These real estate moguls have paved the way for simplistic, but effective clientele building as well as creating essential web tools that were begging to be born for some time. Whether one is in this industry or not, we can all learn from these massively successful practices.”
In her own words below, Bradford offers three ways entrepreneurs have turned their idea into mega brands:
1. Sizing Up The Competition
The idea of having agent statistics at a glance has drastically increased in popularity in recent years. Sites such as AngiesList.com have created a rating system to improve transparency of employees offering a service. Realtor.com used this same ingenious tactic by creating a searchable database of agent profiles with recommendations and a ranking system all available on their website. Each agent has the option of creating a profile with the price ranges they work with, areas serviced, as well as a bio including experience. Each profile also has a comment section for rating these realtors. The days of guessing which realtor to go with or just hearing dependability via word of mouth are now over.
2. The More The Merrier
Zillow.com came up with an amazingly simple idea to include ads from newspaper websites into their home listing searches. Of course, previously realtors or home listers were forced to manually upload information about houses to for sale sites. According to Zillow, they are actually a media company that sells advertisements and not a home classified site. This fact makes them incredibly successful. By thinking of themselves as an home advertising agency they no longer are forced to come up with ways to increase their traffic or improve their search engines – the search somewhat creates itself.
3. If You Can’t Beat It, Build It
Another much needed service that was long overdue, but not time sensitively pioneered was the ability to search for local home builders all in one place. NewHomeSource.com provides consumers with an easily searchable database of such custom home builders based on your city and state. Profiles are stacked with a multitude of information including: an overview of the company and their history, testimonials, examples of previous work with pictures, and even a guide featuring “How to Buy a Custom Home.” The concept of “one stop shop” certainly is the foundation of longevity and success for many businesses.