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Making the difference with your own agency: an interview with Samy-Félix Picard
In this interview Mailbutler has the chance to get to know more about Samy-Félix Picard, his job and how he achieved his goals.
Tiffany studied Language and Economics, and now likes to write about business topics and conduct interviews with interesting people. She spends her free time looking after her plants and with her dog.
Samy-Félix Picard noticed that things should be done differently within the real estate sector. For that reason he decided to set up Brew’s Immo, a French real estate agency, trying to change the way of working there. Today, Mailbutler has the chance to get to know more about him, his job and how he achieved his goal.
Hi Samy-Félix! It is a pleasure to have you here today. As we know, you are the founder of Brew’s Immo, how did you come to the conclusion that Paris needed a new real estate agency?
It’s a hard question… In fact, I can’t say that Paris needed a new real estate agency because there are already so many… But maybe it needs a new way of thinking and a new way of doing things. I was already in the real estate before, with 5 agencies and 40 employees from 2005 till 2013. And I created Brew’s Immo in 2013 to do things differently and to work on the quality of service with a consumers vision, and it’s what I’m doing now and what is making the difference.
What do you mean by a new way of thinking and doing things?
To answer that, it will take hours, really 😉 but to give you some examples, in France, the real estate market and the law around is really specific. I’m qualified by my pairs as an Alien… For example, I’m really transparent, on all. On all my lists, you will always see the exact address of the house or flat I’m listing, for me it’s just an evidence because, and more in Paris, when you are looking for a new place to live, you are searching in an exact area, and not 10min by walk away… To see the exact address gives you the possibility to go on this flat or not. 99.9% of the real estate agency are not giving to you the address on the lists and 95% give you the address the day of the meeting when you are on place, but the meeting is given to an address not so far away.
It’s just an example, I have dozens of others…
Yes, I think it’s better to give all the information beforehand! This way customers have the chance to decide whether they want to live there or not…
And you mentioned the consumers vision. In fact, I have read that in your opinion, your profession, real estate agent, is mainly based on the relationships with customers. You need to understand their needs in order to satisfy their expectations. How do you achieve your main goal?
The real estate market in Paris is a seller based market. There are more buyers than sellers. That’s why, you can hear very often that the sellers are satisfied but not the buyers. It’s “easy” to find a buyer.
Me, I’m always asking myself: “And if it was you, the one who wanted to buy this flat, what would your expectations from the agent be?” And I’m acting like I would like people act with me. It’s simply like that. I’m really taking time with people, speaking with them, asking for their wishes, their expectations and acting in these ways. For that, I’m using a lot of new tech, helping to bring the consumer vision and the customer experience at a high level.
That is a great way to achieve your goal! And your answer is related to my next question… Do you take advantage of the Internet and social media to sell homes?
Sure yes, I’m really present on social media and Internet. Today, I’m working from home, I don’t have agency or showcase so Internet is my showcase. I’m using a lot the video (not for so long…) with a Youtube channel, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter to show lists and advise about real estate.
Today, the market is on Internet and it is international. You have to be present and to speak closely with your customers. The new technology help you in that way.
You are absolutely right! Nowadays customers use the Internet for almost everything. So, as you don’t have an agency, how do you manage to contact people that offer apartments and those who look for them?
For people looking for apartments, they can find me by the lists on all the Internet websites specialized in real estate. And again, it’s quite easy to find a buyer in Paris, because there are a lot in comparison with sellers…
For the sellers, I’m not doing advertising, I’m not calling people or sending letters by mail. I’m working 100% with word-of-mouth and my e-reputation (Google and customers opinions). This is my way, the service quality and the opinion of my customers.
And why did you decide to carry out the word-of-mouth marketing?
Because, I’m not a commercial 😉 In the past I was managing 40 people, I don’t know how to sell things or convincing people to buy. I’m an adviser, a very good consultant. So, the word-of-mouth is for me the only way, because my satisfied customers will sell my services and I don’t have to convince people that I’m efficient, they can see it by the experiences of my past clients.
That is a clever way to do it! People trust a lot in others opinions. But, could you tell us how you organise your work? (First contact with people, then visit the apartment, etc.)
It really depends, I don’t have a typical day (this would be in an ideal life!!). The more often, it’s people contacting me at first, by phone, by mail, by WhatsApp or by chat (on my website) and then, as I said before, I pay attention for what they are looking for and try to answer to their wishes. And when it’s by mail, Mailbutler is helping me a lot, really!!
I’m glad to hear that! How has Mailbutler improved your daily work?
I’m using Mailbutler since 2016 and to be honest, I could not work today without. First, I’m working in an Apple environment, and it was no reading confirmation before Mailbutler. It’s very useful because sometimes mails are going to the Spams… with Mailbutler I can see it and call back people.
Other things, very useful in my work, when you present a flat to several customers, you have always to send the same things, same information to a lot of people. Before, I was losing so much time to redo the same mails with the same attachment to a lot of people. Now I do it one time, create a template and it’s done, I can send this email in a couple of seconds.
For a couple of weeks, I can say that I’m a little in despair since you decided to stop Cargolifter (a way to attach files in mails by creating direct link of download) because I was using it in my templates. Now I have to find a way to do it, but I didn’t find yet 🙁
I’m using other options but I could speak about it for hours 😉
Oh! Sorry to hear that Samy, and we’re glad you enjoyed Cargolifter. We discontinued it in order to fully focus on our main product Mailbutler and to optimize the service for our customers. And thanks for the words, we are so glad that Mailbutler helps you improve your email productivity 🙂
On the other hand, we are curious to know in what kind of apartment a professional owner in this field like you lives. I imagine you have the perfect ways to select a good property 😉
You know the expression “the shoemaker’s son always goes barefoot” it’s so true… We moved last year with my wife and sons (4 boys) in a new flat, an old factory. We are still on work for some things. It’s a duplex with a little terrace in a very good area of Paris (in its heart) near the cemetery Pere Lachaise. It’s an area with a lot of artists. We have big volumes, it’s oriented as a loft and it’s in a quiet area, which is essential when you work at home. And as an old factory, we keep the style with an old freight elevator and steel beams without forget a glass and transparent floor in a part of the flat.
It sounds pretty good!! Last question and we’re getting a bit romantic here: Is your job always as perfect as we would picture it? Selling wonderful old houses to wealthy people in beautiful Paris?
The answer is very simple. Unfortunately, we are not living in a movie 🙁 No it’s not always like that even not often, but I’m always following people in a life project, even often THE project of their life. It’s not always a wonderful house of magazines, but in their eyes it is, and that’s the most important thing:
To make it happen and to allow them to realize their dreams and in this case, I can say yes, it’s a way of romanticism “à la Parisienne”.
Love your answer!! It is so nice to make it possible that others’ dreams come true. Thank you very much for letting us interview you. We have learned a lot about the real estate sector. It has been a pleasure, Samy-Félix! 🙂
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