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Raffy Siapco remembers one of his very first property buyers. During a tripping session, the client revealed that he was a developer interested in townhouse projects. From that first meeting, Siapco saw multiple opportunities landing on his lap. Aside from being able to sell several properties to the developer, he also became the seller of the finished townhouses.
Sharing one of the fundamental lessons in the real estate business, he noted, “When the broker is trustworthy, babalik at babalik yung business sayo.”
Starting Small, Growing Big
Siapco is no stranger to overwhelming growth in the real estate business. He has been in the industry since 2011. In just five years, he was able to put up his own agency, RS Property Manila, after passing the PRC Licensure exam in 2016. Knowing the promising potential of the industry, he said, “I wouldn’t want to pass the golden opportunity of the real estate business, so I want to take advantage of earning more.”
He added, “Real estate is a very rewarding career. As long as you work hard, you will earn a lot.”
Beyond the financial benefits, Siapco also recognizes the professional maturity that the industry can contribute to an individual. He shared, “The perks of widening your network — working with other brokers, collaborating with [them] — it’s actually very rewarding.”
From his humble beginnings in 2011, he grew his company and ventured into different services other than buying and selling properties. RS Property Manila offers property management, appraisal, consultancy, and documentation services.
“When I started in real estate, I was into project selling. Mas narealize ko na mas malaki ang network at saka yung gain na makukuha mo when you venture into brokerage,” Siapco noted.
He attributes the growth of his agency to his team’s hard work. “My success is actually my team’s success. I call them the power team.” In return, he feels a deep sense of fulfillment in knowing that he’s able to help his people.
Expanding the Business
The most significant growth in Siapco’s company happened when he decided to go digital. “Digital marketing works for me — it’s sort of, I have this additional manpower, generating leads for the company.”
“Lamudi was very helpful to us. Without Lamudi, ‘di kami lumaki siguro. If we only relied on our personal sales, ‘di lalaki ang sales namin. We actually reached 200 percent. Listings, dumami rin. More or less, nag-increase kami ng 50 percent.” These huge figures are a testament to the power of online marketing.
Comparing it to the traditional method, he noted, “When I started in real estate, I used flyering. [Nagma-man] kami sa malls. I also tried tarpaulin. It takes a lot of time.” Not to mention, a lot of energy. Agents would have to be physically present to catch leads. Siapco claimed, “[Kapag] online advertising, kahit may ginagawa kang iba, the inquiry keeps coming in,” Siapco said.
At the same time, there’s an expanded reach in online real estate marketplaces like Lamudi. Agents are able to reach millions of potential buyers. Unlike flyering, which only hits a portion of mall-goers, a property listed online is visible to anyone who has an Internet connection.
Even those in the farthest countries from the Philippines can see the listing. Lamudi, in fact, sees significant web traffic coming from cities in the Middle East and America, including Dubai, Doha, Riyadh, Los Angeles, and New York. The interest may be fueled by overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) looking to invest in the home country.
On top of the expanded reach, the Lamudi platform allows brokers to keep track of interested buyers and stay in touch with them through email alerts.
Another benefit of online marketing is the cost-efficiency of promoting multiple properties. In Lamudi, brokers can list as many properties as their chosen package permits. They wouldn’t have to spend a lot on so many tarpaulins or flyers, which are rarely seen by mall-goers. Siapco was able to tap into these opportunities by embracing digital marketing practices in their company.
Getting Ahead of the Game
The RS Property Manila managing director recognizes the fact that the real estate business in the country is now aggressive. It promises a lot of opportunities, yet a lot of players are competing for the same breakthroughs. For that, he echoes the advice of top experts at Lamudi’s Broker Awards Night: go digital.
“Right now, everybody goes digital, everybody goes online, so let’s take advantage of it,” Siapco recommends.