Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Celebrates 3rd Anniversary

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Real Estate Brand Continues to Enjoy Position as Industry’s Premier Lifestyle Brand

Stroudsburg, PA – Better Homes and Gardens® Real Estate LLC is celebrating its third anniversary with a growing network of 6,858 agents across 198 offices in 22 states.  Since launching the franchise in July 2008, the lifestyle real estate brand has continued to grow significantly and maintain exciting momentum throughout one of the country’s most challenging housing markets.

“It’s been said often that necessity is the mother of invention, and Better Homes and Gardens® Real Estate is clear proof of the truth to this adage,” said Thomas R. Wilkins, CEO.  “Major shifts in both the economy and the demographics of the home-buying population, along with significant advancements in technology and communications, have forced the real estate industry to reevaluate its most ingrained business practices.  Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate was launched with a clean slate in 2008.  Our brand—and our company’s—mission is to transform the real estate industry for the better—for brokers, agents and for consumers.  Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate’s continued growth, momentum, and the recognition we enjoy for our service and technology innovation reinforce that we are delivering on that promise.”

Wilkins & Associates, over the past 3 years, has done corporate restructuring, primarily in the area of consolidation, to reflect the new style real estate office as well as cut expenses due to a market that has down turned in the Pocono Mountains.

Said Thomas R. Wilkins, CEO, “We are very excited that we’re celebrating our 3rd anniversary with Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate®, but we’re also smart enough to understand that to enjoy continued growth with the brand, we need to carefully expand and watch our expenses while we continue to grow.”  Recently Wilkins opened up a third office at 102 Pocono Boulevard in Mount Pocono.

Rapid, Strategic Growth

Driven by a culture of innovation, service, commitment to franchisees, and industry-leading innovation, Chris, along with her team, have—versus last year—grown the agent base of the Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate franchise network by 35% and increased the brand’s office count by 45%.  The brand has achieved all of this while remaining committed to strategic growth.  Since its launch, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate has partnered with companies that share the brand’s business values of passion, authenticity, innovation, growth and excellence.  These companies embody the characteristics of the next-generation brokerage—specifically, a commitment to using technology to transform their businesses, embracing new business models, empowering the informed consumer with better service and information, and looking beyond the transaction to form meaningful, long-term relationships with clients.

With the recent signing of Phoenician Properties earlier this month, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate is now represented in Arizona as well as many of the nation’s top real estate markets in California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina, Texas, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia and Washington.

Committed to Service

Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate is dedicated to the success of its franchisees through a number of unique network-wide tools and initiatives.  Some of the most talked about initiatives over the past 12 months include:

  • PinPoint – Last summer, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate launched PinPoint, a proprietary direct marketing tool available exclusively to its brokers and agents which leverages Meredith Corporation’s U.S. database of more than 85 million consumers who interact with the Better Homes and Gardens brand through the magazine, website, and through other Meredith brands. Using PinPoint, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate brokers and agents have been identifying potential clients, winning listings, and expanding their spheres of influence through custom demographic and geographic segmentation, while creating targeted direct mail pieces through an online platform that links to a printing-and-postage fulfillment vendor.
  • Fusion 2011 – Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate held its first brand networking conference in February 2011 at the LEED® Gold certified ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, which was designed to give its broker and agent community a forum to network and learn.  Industry thought leaders were on hand to share best practices, trends and insights with attendees on topics ranging from social media, marketing and sales best practices, and achieving your personal best as a real estate professional.
  • Luxury, Urban and Commercial Programs – This year, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate unveiled a new brand extension strategy to enhance the lead- and revenue-generation opportunities for its brokers and agents. The new brand programs designed for the luxury, urban and commercial markets, which launched between the spring and summer of 2011, further empower the Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate network to capture the full range of real estate opportunities in and beyond their local markets.
  • Talent Attraction – Supporting the brand’s franchisees in attracting the next generation of agents, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate held a national online career event in June reaching more than 300 real estate agents and prospective agents throughout the United States. The webinar served as a platform to demonstrate the career opportunities that exist in the real estate industry and underscored the brand’s commitment to provide its network with innovative services and tools to recruit new talent and grow their businesses.

Industry Excellence

Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate seeks to continually raise the bar of excellence within the real estate industry.  As a result, the brand has received a number of important industry honors and awards for everything from its innovative service and technology to its business leadership.  A few of the most notable accolades from the past 12 months include:

  • Inman Innovator of the Year – Sherry Chris was named 2010 Inman Innovator of the Year in July 2010. The award honors individuals going above and beyond the traditional tools used by the real estate industry to enhance the transaction process and improve the overall experience for consumers and real estate professionals.

     

  • Stevie® Award – Chris was also honored with a Stevie Award for Best Executive in the Stevie Awards for Women in Business in November 2010.  The Stevie Awards for Women in Business is an international competition recognizing the accomplishments of outstanding women executives, entrepreneurs, and the organizations they run.  The awards are produced by the creators of the American Business AwardsSM.
  • Hermes Creative Awards – Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate won the 2011 Platinum and Gold Hermes Creative Awards for Website and Video Content.
  • 2010 GALAXY Awards – The Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate website, www.bhgrealestate.com, was recognized for its creativity and craft by members of the International Academy of Communications Arts and Sciences, who reviewed 500 entries from 16 countries.

“I could not be more proud of the transformative impact Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate has made on the industry in the past three years,” added Thomas R. Wilkins, CEO.  “As exciting as it has been thus far, I can say with confidence that the best has yet to come.”

The Wilkins organization operates 3 offices throughout the Pocono Mountains.  All offices are open 7 days a week.  To learn more about Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Wilkins & Associates, visit them online at www.wilkins1.com.