Million Dollar Listers on Balancing Client and Colleague Cams

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While we love watching the optics and drama of luxury estate sales on TV, it’s easy to forget that the real action is behind the scenes. Working in luxury real estate presents very real challenges that must be balanced with professionalism and fiduciary responsibility.

So how do you balance the pressure to close in the heat of the spotlight? We turned to the stars of Million Dollar Listing – Tyler Whitman, James Harris and David Parnes – to discover the secret to staying on top under the microscope of millions of viewers. while keeping their customers happy.

What are the challenges in upgrading your team and scaling to meet the influx of demand once you’ve become a famous real estate agent?

Tyler Whitman: The secret sauce to my team’s success is our systems and support staff. A major problem with real estate is that most agents are required to wear all hats in business, and meeting these requirements is unrealistic.

One goal that I’ve been hugely successful in achieving is investing in a huge support staff within my team to handle all the paperwork, marketing, processes, and lead influx so my team’s agents can do what they do best: Sell.

My overhead is certainly much higher than the average team, but this investment has paid off. My agents are always looking for qualified leads and highly motivated sellers to move their properties.

The customer experience is amazing, and we have more data on our customer base and transaction history because we track everything. My COO, Bailey, is an entrepreneur goddess and worth her weight in gold.

The systems we have in place allow us not only to close huge numbers of deals and continually grow through changing markets, but they also provide all team members with an excellent work-life balance.

What are your top tips for managing a large social media presence?

Tyler Whitman: The best advice I have is consistency. I learned from a hard mistake that when I slowed down my social media posts (admittedly due to burnout last year), audiences will quickly move on and forget about you.

It’s so important to stay ahead. My DMs are full of recommendations and new opportunities, but when I’m quiet, so are they.

Simply having a television appearance is absolutely not enough for business opportunities to arise. It’s a great hook, but you still have to tie it to a rod and go fishing every day.

How do you know who is reaching out just to talk to a TV celebrity and who actually has a deal pending?

Tyler Whitman: This is the biggest challenge. People are really good liars. I used to get really excited about those phone calls I got from people telling me they had these huge investment funds to buy tons of real estate and they were only interested in working with me.

I’d think, “WOW…that’s exactly what I thought would happen,” but 95% of those claims are wrong. I’ve learned that asking a few simple questions and analyzing their response will usually give me the indicators I need to be able to discern whether this is a real opportunity or not.

The sad thing is that I love connecting with the fans. It’s my favorite part of the experience. And I sometimes get calls from people who are very outspoken and just say they wanted to talk because they like the show or my story or whatever.

I always make time for these people when I have it. But when they start out lying about fictitious business opportunities, it’s hard to go back and have that human connection they wanted and I would have gladly given if they had been upfront.

What is the most important thing you would like readers to take away to learn about your experience on MDL?

Tyler Whitman: My favorite part of this whole experience isn’t the real estate. While obviously my business exploded because of the TV show opportunity, the biggest gift was sharing my story.

To be an “up-and-coming” broker in a tough city with lots of doubts and self-esteem issues, to have a platform to share my weight loss journey and the impact it has had on my life is the gift.

These are the relationships and the people I get the most satisfaction from. I feel like the luckiest guy in the world and am looking for other ways to grow this platform. my podcast “Glitter and Gay» is my first evening in this new adventure. I’m co-hosting it with my best friend and real estate TikTok celebrity, Glennda Baker.

We get very real on this show. We talk about our failures, our comebacks and our successes. We talk about our struggles in romances, finances, business, through the lens of good comedy. I’m beyond thrilled to have this new content in the universe and really hope the audience continues to grow.

What are some of your top tips for coming up with new ideas to wow luxury customers and earn their business?

James Harris: Once you’ve gotten a high-end listing, now you need to sell it, and sometimes that means getting creative! For us, the personal touch is essential.

We always send personal emails to our prospects rounding up the best new listings and local market updates that highlight our listing as a top property. Our customers are our first priority, so we make sure these lists feature some of their must-haves, as well as the personal details and preferences they’ve told us about.

We also like to organize events that go beyond traditional open houses. If budget allows, incorporate different experiential elements such as live music, refreshments, artists and other creative ideas such as partnering with luxury brands to showcase the latest cars, artwork or watches. This can help grab the attention of potential buyers and attract new customers.

How do you let customers and colleagues know before the cameras roll and help them enjoy their 15 minutes of fame without going off the rails when selling or buying?

James Harris: We always recommend our fellow agents and clients to give their best while filming. The media lives forever, so we remind them of that, even in the toughest scenarios.

How do you manage to maintain a professional presence while maintaining and developing your brand and personality?

James Harris: Always take the high road.

First, maintaining a positive reputation within the industry is paramount. It is something that will come easily to those who conduct themselves professionally and ethically, and it is also something that is very difficult to teach or learn.

Who you see on the way up is who you see on the way down.

What should a real estate professional expect when appearing on a show like yours, whether as a one-time guest or in a recurring role?

David Parnes: Be yourself and chart your career path, whether on or off camera. It’s important to have a clear direction when approaching real estate, especially when you’re in the limelight.

If you bite off more than you can chew, you will dilute your efforts and affect your reputation. Be honest with yourself and stay true to your values. After all, mishaps and mistakes can be even worse under the microscope of the camera.

How do you relate to ultra-high-end customers, even if you can’t quite relate to their lifestyle or experiences?

David Parnes: We still treat our $1 million clients as we would treat our $50 million clients. Every customer is important to us, and the price should not change your level of service.

The luxury space is incredibly competitive and there is only a small group of agents handling the majority of business. Positioning yourself as an expert in the markets you want to serve is one of the most critical aspects of breaking into the luxury market.

Luxury clients don’t want to do all the heavy lifting when it comes to market research and statistics. Do your homework and dive into the latest market insights, trends, and inventory.

What is your best advice to someone looking to embark on a career specifically in luxury?

David Parnes: Above all, whether you are a newbie agent or looking to enter the luxury space, maintaining a positive reputation within the industry is paramount.

Never forget, there is always tomorrow in business. For agents looking to land their first high profile listing, I recommend becoming an expert in the market you serve.

Once you’ve found your niche, showcase your skills, talent, and what sets you apart from your competitors. Demonstrating confidence and leading with knowledge and expertise will help wealthy potential clients view you as a go-to source for their real estate needs.

What is the most important thing you would like readers to take away to learn about your experience on MDL?

James Harris: If you had asked me eight years ago, I would never have imagined that we would become famous real estate agents. Looking back on those early days, we were fearless. We walked the streets of Bel Air and Beverly Hills, knocking on doors and ringing the doorbells of properties.

David and I would sit in the car and play rock, paper, scissors to see who should knock on the next door. We were asking if we could leave our business card because we had a client who would buy his house without seeing it.

Many said “No” or did not answer, but others took our cards and called us back. Fast forward to today, we loved our experience and feel very lucky to be working with Bravo and our Million Dollar Listing LA crew. It was a wild ride, with lots of fun, laughs, and some drama along the way.

Christy Murdock is a real estate agent, freelance writer, coach and consultant and owner of Real Estate Writing. She is also the creator of the online course Building the Property Description: The Step-by-Step Formula for Reluctant Property Writers. Follow Real Estate Writing on Twitter, instagram and Youtube.

By day, Rachael Hite helps agents grow their business. At night, she tweets and blogs. Feel free to tweet it @rachaelhite.

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