WAV Group provides consulting services to MLSs and Associations to develop strategies and plans for business success. Today, WAV Group is introducing a series of Case Studies developed for NAR’s REALTOR® Property Resource or RPR®. These Case Studies outline best practices for driving adoption of RPR as a REALTOR® benefit. WAV Group developed these best practices by evaluating RPR “power users” and “power promoters” of the software. Download MLS Case Study.
WAV Group has followed the introduction and rollout of REALTOR® Property Resource (RPR) closely since it was officially introduced and then launched in September 2010. In previous papers, WAV Group outlined the factors needed to make an informed decision about whether RPR and other data-related products were appropriate for individual MLSs and Associations.
These case studies are not intended to help an organization make a decision about participation in RPR. The purpose of these case studies is to help members who are using RPR to gain tangible methods to integrate RPR into their daily business practices and to suggest effective ways to gain adoption and regular usage of RPR by REALTORS®.
WAV Group has watched with interest as more and more MLSs and Associations have signed up for this service. From its early beginnings, the product has continued to evolve with more and more tools for REALTORâ members. As of May 6, 2012, 384 MLSs and Associations have signed agreements with RPR, representing 618,914 REALTORS®. 244 have RPR installed and operational for their 503,444 members with more in the review process.
While these numbers are impressive, REALTOR® usage and adoption of these products is the ultimate goal. It’s one thing for MLSs and Associations to approve and install RPR. It’s quite another thing to find the magic combination of marketing programs to successfully gain significant adoption among your members. As we discussed in our paper Keys to Technology Adoption, gaining any significant adoption for any technology offered to REALTORS® is a very difficult process.
RPR asked WAV Group to interview some of the early adopters of RPR to build case studies to help the industry understand the key benefits and value of RPR for agents, brokers, and MLSs. These case studies examine “best practices” for building awareness and adoption. Building each of the three studies involved gathering perspectives from “power users” to help identify “best practices” of REALTORS® using these tools on a day-to-day basis.
The first case study reviews the successful adoption of RPR in MLSs. It is intended to help MLSs find effective ways to promote the free service to their members. There are two more case studies discussing the best practices for agent and brokers.
WAV Group will be publishing one case study each day this week; and then, rolling them up together in a white paper that will be released after the NAR Mid Year Legislative Meetings in Washington DC. We hope these user insights derived from the perspective of the MLS, the Agent, and the Broker prove helpful for those interested in gaining more value from RPR their businesses.
Jeff Young, Senior Vice-President of Operations for RPR, explained why they thought the Case Study idea was a good thing to move forward with at this time.
“RPR has received great feedback from Agents, Brokers and MLSs in the eighteen months since its system launch in September 2010. A recent discussion with the WAV Group led to this project using a third party to assess the successful implementation of the RPR application on a three different levels, representing to date the highest value uses of the RPR application’s features and benefits. The WAV Group was given access to the RPR system, as well as groups of users representing agents, brokers and MLSs, and spent a great deal of time on research and diligence in accumulating information on both high use features, as well as areas of suggested improvement and constructive criticism. RPR appreciates the strong level of professionalism and industry knowledge demonstrated by the WAV Group in their assessments of the RPR Application and communication with RPR users.”
RPR chose to release the MLS case study first because they strongly believe MLSs have been pivotal to the successful rollout of the product. Jeff notes, “Through the process of RPR’s phased geographic launch to members, the MLSs have become vital market partners for RPR’s member delivery, and the point of first contact for the RPR value proposition. These MLS market partnerships offer not only the aggregation of local and off market MLS data for the MLSs REALTOR® members, but a valued partner in communication, training and support for RPR users. Its appropriate to have the first WAV Group Case Study on the RPR Application be from an MLS perspective.”
We hope you find the Case Studies useful. Click here for the MLS Case Study.
For a complete list of WAV Reports, click here.
This white paper is a very useful and helpful piece of work for MLS decision-makers. What’s interesting to me is the approach it takes: it’s a virtual ‘how to’ for good marketing practices within an association. While it’s detailing best practices, it’s also advocating for the product, of course–but the important thing is that it recognizes that in order to successfully sell a product within the Realtor structure, the marketer must realize that it is staff that is in very large part responsible for setting the scene for a favorable commitment from the volunteer leadership. And staff must be not only well-versed in the product or service, but must also have the sales skills to successfully interface with the volunteers and effect the outcome. This white paper goes a long way towards cheer leading for the product and at the same time providing valuable assistance in developing a strong marketing program at the local level. Brilliant!