5 Takeaways from Inman Connect New York 2018

At the end of January, more than 4,000 industry pros descended on the Big Apple to share their insights, connect with other movers and shakers, and kick off the year with a range of colleagues in their field. What were the takeaways from this year’s successful event? From marketing tips and tracking trends to predicting techniques ahead of the curve—here are five memorable insights from Inman Connect 2018 in New York.

1. Use emerging technology to the fullest. A recurring theme at Inman Connect this year was the concept of leveraging data, predictive analytics, and other emerging technologies to build lasting relationships. What’s more, diverse digital tools are increasingly equipped to provide a superior client experience, end-to-end. Companies need to focus on integrating tech solutions in order to create a seamless flow of service, uniting agents and their clients like never before.

2. Make the most of the leads you have. Instead of focusing strictly on lead generation, this year’s conference prompted discussion of how best to manage the influx of leads technology delivers. Techniques like lead prioritization, along with tech tools like automation and chat bots, were all popular topics. All in all, the conversation surrounding leads was tailored toward maximizing dollars from existing leads instead of dumping energy into drumming up new ones—yet another lesson in working smarter, not harder.

3. Foster a personal touch. Real estate pros understand that this business is built on relationships, but this foundational truth was reinforced time and again at this year’s Inman Connect. The biggest takeaway? It costs much less to nurture an existing client relationship than to start fresh with a new lead. Time invested in nurturing existing connections isn’t time wasted—it’s an investment in future repeat business and a host of valuable referrals.

4. Optimize your listings for the digital age. The fact is, digital showings are here to stay. For instance, this year’s conference showcased numerous vendors with variations on the increasingly popular 3D tour feature. Another tidbit of advice offered to attendees: a photo slideshow with music isn’t a video, but a 3D tour is like a video that the user controls. There were also plenty of stats on display that highlighted just how much time people spend online—from Facebook to Google to Zillow. Ensuring listings are primed for an online audience is the new normal.

5. Be open to revision. You can’t move forward if you’re not willing to assess where you’ve been. This lesson was front and center at Inman Connect this year. Agents and others industry professionals were encouraged to hold marketing dollars accountable, understanding the customer journey is of peak importance. Successful agents are able to determine what works, what doesn’t, and shift their game plan accordingly for ideal results.

Other takeaways from the 2018 Inman Connect in New York? Networking was phenomenal as usual, and I was able to forge substantive connections with other thought leaders in the industry. This conference is an exceptionally open-minded venue to share ideas with your peers and set yourself up for a year of growth ahead. If you didn’t make it this year, be sure to mark your calendars for next year’s unmissable meeting of minds.

Brandon Doyle is a Realtor at Doyle Real Estate Team — Re/Max Results in Minneapolis and co-author of Mindset, Methods & Metrics – Winning as a Modern Real Estate Agent. He continues to be recognized as one of the industries leading tech gurus. In 2014 he was nominated for Inaman Innovative Realtor of the Year and has been acknowledged for his use of aerial photography and videos tours, along with conducting the world's first virtual broker open house using VR goggles. Brandon has a Bachelor’s of Science in Real Estate from St. Cloud State University and is pursuing his Masters of Science in Real Estate at the University of St. Thomas.