Boardman Real Estate Brokerage Forges New Path
BOARDMAN, Ohio — It’s the start of a new era for a local realty company in Boardman.
During a ribbon cutting event held by the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber Thursday, Brokers Realty officially celebrated its rebranding campaign.
Brokers Realty is a new marketing concept previously known as Real Living Real Estate, a franchise. Everything will stay the same, said Yvonne Smith, owner. The only difference is marketing material.
“It’s the same expert agents with the same dedicated and trusted service they’ve always had, but with a beautiful, new clean logo,” Smith said.
The new logo is sleek with a “youthful” feel, she said.
Brokers Realty is an independent realty company. In addition to the Boardman location, it has an office in Trumbull County. Between both, there are more than 80 agents. It serves northeastern Ohio and very soon, western Pennsylvania.
Smith opened the realty company 23 years ago, with partner and president Dan Alvarez joining in 2004, and son Marcus Smith as the newest partner in July.
Her brokerage has seen some changes over the years from Coldwell Banker to Better Homes and Gardens, GMAC Real Estate and then franchised to Real Living.
Brokers Realty handles both residential and commercial real estate, as well as new construction. Developing a unique identity was a fresh starting point for the company, Smith said.
“It feels like a whole new fresh start,” Alvarez said. “It was time for us to go in a way that would allow for us to grow.”
The process to rebrand was completed in a short time – just two months.
It was in August that the corporate office with Real Living told Smith and her partners they were going to “sunset” the brand, meaning they would no longer offer services to the franchise. That included the franchise’s website and access to marketing materials.
After digesting the information, Smith said she and her team decided they could rebrand and come out stronger. In addition to the logo, there’s a “clean, new” website, Smith said.
The change has been met with positive feedback from both agents and clients, Alvarez said.
“People love the color of the logo” and new concept, which was spearheaded by Palo Creative in Boardman, he said.
Initially for Marcus Smith, the idea of rebranding soon after he was named partner was “daunting at first.” But he and the partners took the opportunity to hit the ground running with creating a new identity.
“We were very excited to get a refreshed look and to take our destiny into our own hands,” he said.
While the rebranding efforts continue to roll out, there isn’t an exact figure for how much the campaign cost Smith said.
There was new signage throughout the Mahoning Valley, signage on agent vehicles, apparel and business cards.
Still, it was an update that “needed to be done, anyway,” Smith said.
Many motorists have gotten to know the team by billboards around the Valley with agents’ faces and play-on-words. Smith said there that marketing aspect that isn’t going away.
“The billboards will still show each agent’s personality,” she said.
Next, Brokers Realty has its sights set on expanding its service area. On Nov. 1, a Hermitage location will open with 15 agents. Waterstone Mortgage will be a partner across the state line.
The partners are planning to expand toward Pittsburgh in the near future.
Holding the blue ribbon left to right are: Brokers Realty agents Amy Burns, Gretchen Merritt, Mary Sims, Nicole Garcia, agents Marcus Smith, Yvonne Smith, and Dan Alvarez, and agents Cindy Best, Lindsay Thomas, Samantha Ragan and Katie Bloom. The team celebrated the its ribbon cutting Thursday afternoon, formally announcing its rebranding campaign and unveiling a new logo after departing from a franchise.
Copyright 2023 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.