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More than meets the eye: Transform XII finalists revealed

The finalists in Elite Agent’s Transform XII have been announced, with the Top 12 covering the gamut of sales and property management and boutique agencies as well as large networks.

Similarly, the Top 12 are made up of business owners and team members, as well as having varying degrees of industry experience.

The finalists, in no particular order are:

  • Mel Cringle, Jonny Warren Properties
  • Sue Rowles, Peard Real Estate
  • Jenna Baker, Key2 Property
  • Alex Gayl, Ray White Cherrybrook, Thornleigh, West Pennant Hills
  • Alison Hatch, Best Nest Property
  • Amy Vella, Ray White Maroubra, South Coogee
  • Shannon Thwaites, LJ Hooker Cairns Edge Hill
  • Jess Hunter, RE/MAX Results
  • Lauren Peel, Home 2 Home Realty
  • Sandy Lower, Q State Properties
  • Samara Bedwell, Macwell Property
  • Kyra Blechynden, LJ Hooker Pemberton, Manjimup

The finalists were announced following a 30-day challenge in which real estate professionals are given access to some of the brightest minds in the business who focused on topics such as attracting new customers through leveraging digital traffic sources like Facebook, Instagram and Google, as well as nurturing leads with simple, relevant digital content.

Transform XII also covered how to convert prospects to clients with targeted messaging before, during and after appraisals.

The course is defined by a series of challenges designed to promote action and accountability, encouraging participants to step outside their comfort zone.

The final hurdle participants need to jump is to present a five-minute pitch before the Transform judges on Friday, 10 December explaining their three biggest implementable takeaways from Transform XII, their marketing plan for 2022 and if they were to win the $5000 in prize money, how they would invest it to action their marketing plan.

Let’s meet the finalists.

Amy Vella

Licensed Real Estate Agent 

Ray White Maroubra | South Coogee

What prompted you to enter Transform? 

You can never learn too much, so I took it as an opportunity to grow in my career, make some new friends and learn some new skills. 

What is the biggest lesson Transform has taught you? 

Don’t be afraid to get in front of the camera and produce great quality content. 

What is the Number 1 digital takeaway from Transform that you will implement in your business?

Producing consistent digital content through multiple social media platforms to build my social media presence. 

People won’t use you as their agent if they don’t know who you are.

What would winning Transform mean to you? 

Winning Transform would be an awesome achievement for me. Doing this challenge was to prove to myself and others that you are never too young to achieve something great if you work hard for what you want to achieve. 

Amy Vella

Samara Bedwell

Managing Director and Business Development Manager

Macwell Property

What prompted you to enter Transform?

I entered last year but fell out due to not having enough capacity, but I could see that if you were in the right space that you would grow from this experience so I got organised for this year.

What is the biggest lesson Transform has taught you? 

If you are genuinely committed your mind can be expanded to areas that you have never explored before and you’re not actually going to die.

What is the Number 1 digital takeaway from Transform that you will implement in your business?

We have already  implemented and used Claudio Encina’s List before Xmas dialogue and have had 100 per cent success. 

Overall it’s about repurposing the content and working through the topics clients ask about and it’s not about what we think they want to know.

What would winning Transform mean to you?

It would be a huge achievement for me. It would prove that I made a commitment and I was brave.

I have had a go at everything and I am still learning and applying everything from the 30 days.

I am loving that I can actually comprehend some of this ‘scary’ tech, as I was the generation just before computers, so everything I have done is through self-learning and having a go.

Transform has taught me to see a need and to fill that need. 

If I were to win, I hope it would encourage my whole team – If I can do this anyone can do this.

Samara Bedwell

Mel Cringle

Business Manager and Head of Property Management

Jonny Warren Properties

What prompted you to enter Transform XII?

We only opened the doors to the agency in March this year and while I thought I was all over this social media stuff, I knew that there was much more to learn. 

At first, I figured it was free and only 30 days so why not, but I’m so glad I decided to grab the VIP tickets, as being able to go back over the sessions is a blessing.

What is the biggest lesson Transform has taught you?

I only knew the surface of social media and you don’t have to take on everything at once. We have been active on socials but there is so much more to it than what we are currently doing.

What’s the Number 1 digital takeaway from Transform that you will implement in your business?

Introducing tech to enhance the personal touches within the business is definitely going to be implemented into our business. It’s all well and good to be active and engaging on a social media level but all the hard work is going to fall apart if you have too much on your plate.

What would winning Transform mean to you?

While the $5000 would definitely help get the systems moving, it would give me that extra confidence that I actually know what I’m doing.

Mel Cringle

Alex Gayl

Sales and Marketing Professional

Ray White Cherrybrook, Thornleigh, West Pennant Hills

What prompted you to enter Transform XII?

I have always struggled with my digital presence and creating posts in a cohesive strategy.

I always felt a little overwhelmed and as such never really did too much to bring it all together. 

When I saw a Facebook post by Elite Agent about the Transform XII program, I thought it could help me in gaining the skills I need and help me formulate a strategy.

What is the biggest lesson Transform has taught you?

I have dabbled with Facebook and Instagram in the past, but learning about LinkedIn and the ways to utilise that platform has been incredible.

What’s the Number 1 digital takeaway from Transform that you will implement in your business?

I think using a cohesive strategy across all of the digital platforms, not just the easy Facebook. 

What would winning Transform mean to you?

I have put together a very detailed marketing plan and winning Transform will enable me to put the plan into action by having the resources to upgrade my technology that I am using for my digital marketing.

Alex Gayl

Lauren Peel

Assistant Property Manager 

Home 2 Home Realty

What prompted you to enter Transform XII? 

I am new to property management and the Home 2 Home team have done Transform in previous years and highly recommended we all take part in the challenge. 

As the new recruit I couldn’t say no! So I signed up not really knowing what exactly I was getting myself into.

What is the biggest lesson Transform has taught you?

I thought I was pretty up-to-date with social media, but Transform proved that to be very wrong. I’ve learnt about reach, target audience and the ins and outs of what to post to get seen! 

My first reel has almost 6000 views.

What’s the Number 1 digital takeaway from Transform that you will implement in your business?

Instagram is a standout for me. The views and reach you can get on that platform and the different ideas you can implement can be huge for our agency.

What would winning Transform mean to you? 

Winning Transform would be a mega accomplishment for me.

I completed Transform in the middle of getting my PM registration (I am one marked assessment away from completion). I am new to the industry and Donna (the owner) literally offered me this job out of nowhere and has been amazing in helping me start a new career. 

I would love to win to show Donna that she invested in the right person. It would be amazing to be able to help the Home 2 Home family win and start implementing everything we have learnt along the way. 

We are a small agency that Donna built from her own home, we don’t focus a lot on advertising and rely a lot on recommendations. Winning Transform would be a great way to get our names and faces out to the world.

Lauren Peel

Jenna Baker

Department Manager

Key2 Property

What prompted you to enter Transform XII?

This is the second time that I have done Transform. Last Transform I could see all of the good things happening but wasn’t dedicated enough to really get enough from the experience. 

This time I made sure I was 100 per cent committed and have so many takeaways to bring to my team.

What is the biggest lesson Transform has taught you?

Transform has taught me that there are so many agents doing awesome things and that I do have time if I prioritise right! 

Technological advances have meant so many exciting things are happening in our industry right now and video is king.

What’s the Number 1 digital takeaway from Transform that you will implement in your business?

My number 1 digital takeaway is that video gets so much more traction than anyone would think! I would love to implement more reels and video into our socials so that our clients, current and potential, can get to know us more.

What would winning Transform mean to you?

Winning Transform would demonstrate that I am active in giving back to both my industry and agency; both of which I feel have given me so much.

It would also mean that we can seriously experiment with different software and programs to find what works for us and our market without financial risk.

Jenna Baker

Alison Hatch

Licensee

Best Nest Property

What prompted you to enter Transform XII?

I completed my first Transform in February 2021 and was blown away by the personalised, practical content being delivered. 

The coaching line-up was second to none. I have always been proactive in professional development and training to stay fresh and relevant for my clients, and can honestly say there is no training that comes close to what Transform offers.

I knew I had become a ‘Transformer’ from that point, and would sign up for each program.

What is the biggest lesson Transform has taught you?

We are a customer centric property management company that was designed and created with our clients input to ensure we could best meet their needs, add value to their experience and develop a strong service guarantee right from the start. 

This Transform showed me new ways to enhance our client service value with a digital approach, while sustaining the personalisation our clients deserve.

What’s the Number 1 digital takeaway from Transform that you will implement in your business?

I loved learning how to repurpose content over multiple platforms, and will definitely be using some of the tools and tips given by the coaches to achieve this. 

There are many ways to deliver education and investment advice to property consumers, but it’s difficult to have the time to push that content out across all the channels available. 

Repurposing content allows us to be an industry expert across multiple channels, while sustaining our unique brand and the feel of each platform for the consumer.

What would winning Transform mean to you?

We are dedicated to our clients being delighted by our customer service experience, and winning Transform would mean we could invest in areas to further deliver on that promise.

Alison Hatch

Sandy Lower

Principal

QState Properties

What prompted you to enter Transform XII?

Personal growth, hands down, is my ‘why’. This is my third Transform with Elite Agent.

Having a couple of Transforms already under my belt, I knew the industry coaches and the quality of content would be outstanding and easily actionable – we can be implementing right away. 

What is the biggest lesson Transform has taught you

You can still have a personal touch whilst adopting a higher digital presence and including new technologies in your business.

A special mention to Sam for the USP challenge – this gets me every year and this year it feels even more natural. 

What’s the Number 1 digital takeaway from Transform that you will implement in your business? 

Now that we are in the final stage of Transform XII, I can certainly say I have already started to implement a couple of key strategies in my business.

These include the content marketing and SEO improvements.

What would winning Transform mean to you? 

I am absolutely amazed that I am in the presence of the other 11 finalists of Transform XII, so to me I have already won getting to where I am today.

If I were to win this final round I would be speechless.

It has taken great effort and work to put myself and my small agency out there to be ‘on stage’.

It would be my first time winning an award. I wouldn’t have gotten this far without my family and the life-long friends I have met through Transform and Elite Agent. 

Sandy Lower

Shannon Thwaites

Business Systems Operator

LJ Hooker Cairns Edge Hill

What prompted you to enter Transform XII?

 I have competed in Elite Agent’s LJ Hooker Accelerate Challenge previously which sounded very similar to the Transform XII Challenge so I was very eager to give it another go.

What is the biggest lesson Transform has taught you?

Narrowing down just one key takeaway from Transform is like choosing your favourite child; but if I had to choose it would be learning the RRP Model to build and maintain relationships, ensure marketing is relevant to the consumer and ensure that marketing presence is strong.

What’s the Number 1 digital takeaway from Transform that you will implement in your business? 

I am looking forward to making the most of repurposing tools to ensure that key pieces of marketing can be utilised and shared across multiple platforms.  

What would winning Transform mean to you?

I already feel like a winner being announced as a Top 12 finalist in Transform XII. 

In just 30 days I feel honoured to have learnt these imperative digital marketing lessons from the elite coaches and to connect with other eager real estate agents across Australian and New Zealand.

It’s been an incredible experience.  

Shannon Thwaites

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