Alain Pinel Realtors Hosts Luxury Consumer Summit

Top luxury experts and real estate professionals come together to discuss working successfully with today’s luxury consumer

Alf Luxury Event

Alain Pinel Realtors (APR) hosted The Luxury Consumer Summit last week, an event that educated real estate agents and managers on how to increase their business with the luxury consumer and effectively deliver outstanding customer service experiences that set them apart.

Held at Cavallo Point in Sausalito, real estate professionals from San Francisco, Marin, and beyond came together for an intimate luncheon that featured Alf Nucifora, the Chairman and Founder of The Luxury Marketing Council chapters in San Francisco and Las Vegas, as the keynote speaker, as well as two panels.

Nucifora spoke on the topic of today’s luxury consumer and what they are looking for in their customer experience.

In his presentation, Nucifora said, “Let’s look at the product. What do our affluent customers demand? The most important thing they want is the ‘experiential’ halo over the product or service. Every category you can think of, it has to be experience driven.”

The Luxury Consumer Experts Panel followed Nucifora’s presentation. Moderated by Rainy Hake, APR’s Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, panelists shared experience from industries outside real estate, offering a fresh perspective on how the luxury consumer can be approached.

Larry Altschul, Senior Vice President of Customer Development at MGM Resorts International, joined the event from Las Vegas and spoke on his experience working with “whales,” high net-worth gamblers, sharing several stories of his clients’ outrageous requests. Greg Minor, General Manager of Ferrari/Maserati of San Francisco, spoke specifically to the Bay Area marketplace in terms of who the luxury consumer is and how to capture their business. Sharon Osen, Chief Marketing Officer of Perricone MD, provided insights into what agents can be doing with the resources they have to find client information, organize it in a manageable way through a CRM tool, and put it to use in order to generate more business. David Friedman, President of Wealth-X, emphasized the crucial nature of compiling this information and how to use specific data to target groups of potential clients.

The second panel was moderated by Michi Olson, SGMS, APR’s Vice President of Global Business Development & Relocation, and was geared specifically to real estate. The panel consisted of top agents from all over the country, including Jeff Hyland from Hilton & Hyland in Beverly Hills, Pat Choi from Choi International in Honolulu, Brian Lewis of Halstead Properties in New York City, and Quetzal Grimm from APR Woodside. All the panelists echoed the theme of treating the luxury consumer like a real person rather than an exotic spectacle, being authentic and true to yourself in all that you do, and going above and beyond to make their wishes a reality.

“As a luxury brokerage, it is crucial to stay relevant and understand the needs of our affluent clients so that we are able to provide them with the exceptional customer service they have come to expect from Alain Pinel Realtors,” said Hake.

Alain Pinel Realtors Delegation Attends Luxury Property Event in Beijing

Alain Pinel Realtors at LPS

Several agents from Alain Pinel Realtors (APR), including Michi Olson, APR Vice President, Global Business Development and Relocation, attended the LPS Property Showcase in Beijing. This is the third consecutive year APR has sponsored a booth at the invite-only luxury real estate event.

Held April 24-25, the expo welcomes over 5,000 Chinese luxury property buyers, high-end investors, VIPs and wealthy individuals. Now in its eighth year, the event at the Legendale Hotel features over 80 exhibitioners from over 20 countries and focuses on high-end properties. Sponsored by Maserati, Ferretti Group and Bank of East Asia, the event is considered Beijing’s leading luxury property showcase.

“If you are serious about attracting international buyers, you have to be there,” said Olson of the event. “It is a unique opportunity that allows APR agents to network and create meaningful relationships and connections in China.” Widely seen as the premier Bay Area brokerage at the conference, APR and Olson were selected to speak on the Bay Area real estate market and lifestyle at their educational sessions.

APR’s participation in the event is part of a comprehensive global marketing strategy that the company has implemented over the past year. As well as launching China.APR.com, the firm’s Chinese language website hosted in China, APR announced expanded advertising of their listings on international websites, image ads in international publications, relationships with service providers and financial institutions, and personalized international client assistance.

“As the Bay Area’s largest residential real estate brokerage, we aggressively seek out strategies that get the most exposure to our clients properties,” said Rainy Hake, APR’s Executive Vice President. “As international interest in investing in Bay Area real estate is at record levels, the LPS event is just one aspect of a multi-pronged approach in marketing our properties and our services to a global audience.”

Michi Olson Participates in Luxury Buyers Panel at Inman Real Estate Connect

Michi Inman

Michi Olson, SGMS, Alain Pinel Realtor’s (APR) Vice President of Global Business Development & Relocation, sat on the “Where in the World are the Luxury Buyers” panel at Inman Real Estate Connect, which was held in San Francisco from July 16-18.

During the session, Michi discussed APR’s international marketing strategy, which is targeting the rapidly growing number of international real estate homebuyers investing in the San Francisco Bay Area. As well as launching China.APR.com, the firm’s Chinese language website, APR has expanded their international listing syndication, developed relationships with international service providers and financial institutions, and is offering global attaché service and personalized international client assistance. Olson outlined what APR is doing to train their agents, notably their APR Global Specialists, who help foreign nationals transition into their new communities and lifestyles.

During the session, Olson also discussed how the firm is building stronger relationships in China, including their participation at the recent LPS Property Showcase, held May 16-18 in Beijing, which Olson attended along with a team of APR agents. Olson spoke at the event, presenting on Bay Area lifestyle, the state of the local market, and living in the area. This coming December, Olson and APR agents will be attending the next LPS Property Showcase in Shanghai, where they will continue to develop future partnership possibilities with other brokerage firms, investment consultants, and wealth management companies.

Olson was also recently named “One of Top 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders for 2014” by Inman News.

Real Estate Connect, produced by Inman News, is an annual real estate technology event where thousands of influential real estate leaders gather to network, make deals, explore current trends and technology, and learn how to embrace and leverage the change that surround the real estate industry.

APR Attends LPS Property Showcase in Beijing

Michi and Mark at LPS

SARATOGA, California (June 20, 2014) — Alain Pinel Realtors (APR) had a network of agents accompany Michi Olson, APR Vice President, Global Business Development and Relocation, to the LPS Property Showcase, held May 16-18 in Beijing. Olson spoke at the event, presenting on Bay Area lifestyle, the state of the local market, and living in the area.

This invitation-only expo welcomed an audience of Chinese luxury property buyers, high-end investors, and wealthy individuals. Now in its seventh year, the event held at the Legendale Hotel featured over 80 exhibitioners from over 20 countries and focused on international high-end properties, with 5,000 targeted visitors in attendance. Firmly established as Beijing’s leading luxury property show, the event allows Chinese luxury home owners to interact with well-known property developers from China and leading overseas luxury real estate professionals, like Alain Pinel Realtors.

APR’s participation in the conference coincides with the launch of their International Marketing Strategy last month, targeting the rapidly growing number of international real estate homebuyers investing in the San Francisco Bay Area. As well as launching China.APR.com, the firm’s Chinese language website, APR announced expanded international listing syndication, affiliate offices in China, image ads in international publications, relationships with service providers and financial institutions, and personalized international client assistance.

“The conference served as a unique opportunity for APR agents to network and build international relationships in China and with other global luxury real estate professionals,” said Olson. “The LPS conference is yet another example of how the business world is getting smaller.”

The experience gained from the event helps APR agents to better guide international buyers, as well as gain more exposure for their listings. According to Bob Brushwyler, APR Saratoga, the quality and interest of the contacts was of a higher caliber, and agents came away with more new contacts than from any past LPS conference.

Mark Wong and Daphne Chou, APR Saratoga, visited a well-established Beijing real estate brokerage firm which shares a similar philosophy as APR. The founder and CEO invited them to speak to all their agents and staff regarding the current housing market in the San Francisco Bay Area. They were invited back to Beijing next month to speak at a widely-publicized real estate and investment seminar.

“APR agents explored future partnership possibilities with other brokerage firms, wealth management companies, investment consultants, and individual entrepreneurs,” said Wong. “We gained first-hand experience about Chinese culture, business practices, and real estate opportunities, and also visited Central Government financial institutions to learn more about their monetary policies.”

According to the California Association of Realtors (C.A.R.) Annual Housing Market Survey, the share of international buyers is growing in California, with 30% of international buyers coming from China. In a recent interview with Forbes, Wong said international investors look to buy in the US to diversify their portfolio. C.A.R.’s 2013 International Real Estate Consumer Survey shows 16% of international buyers as interested in investment/tax advantages in the US, and 38% of buyers intending to use their property as an investment or rental. With its weather, business opportunities, and public education system, the Silicon Valley is a natural target for these buyers.

Chinese clients look for brand-new, furnished single-family homes built with high-quality materials. Important home amenities among international buyers according to the international survey are designer kitchens, outdoor pools, and hot tubs.

According to the international survey, 69% of international buyers are bringing in all cash offers, have a median income of $260k, and are highly educated, with 82% being college educated. As this increase in investment buyers translates to an increase in rentals and fewer owner occupied homes, there is a transition in local neighborhoods, with communities becoming increasingly diversified.

Michi Olson Named Among Most Influential in Real Estate

Congratulations to Michi Olson, Alain Pinel Realtors Vice President of Relocation and Business Development, for being named on the Inman News Top 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders list for 2014. Michi is being recognized for her work in relocation, with an emphasis on the insight she brings based on her international experience. Michi was chosen earlier this year to speak on a panel on working with international buyers at Inman Connect in San Francisco. She will again be speaking at Inman Connect in New York in 2014.

Announced today, this is not the first time an Alain Pinel Relators leader has been named to the Inman 100. Paul Hulme, President and CEO, was named to this list in 2010 and 2011. The Inman 100 report recognizes those who “who embody leadership, ingenuity, strength, conviction, power, persistence, perseverance and progress.”  It identifies and honors those whose words and actions can shape and move the real estate industry toward change.

Inman News accepted and reviewed hundreds of reader nominations via an open, online nominations process. An Inman News in-house review and selection process considered reader-selected nominees and also suggested additional individuals worthy of consideration.

For more information about the Inman 100 list, visit http://www.inman.com/inman100.
For Michi’s full bio, visit: http://www.apr.com/Leadership-Team#Michi-Olson

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