The hospitality industry can be pretty exciting with travel and lots of fun. But by the time 2005 rolled around, Melina Rissone was ready to stay in one place. That’s when she became a REALTOR® in sunny San Diego.
Thirteen years later, Melina can attest to the fact that real estate may keep you in the same place physically, but it still changes on a daily basis.
“When I first started in 2005, I was modeling other agents, trying out things they did,” Melina said. “Today, I can say that what I do is authentically me!”
Part of that authenticity is narrowing down her market. Once serving buyers and sellers all over the county, Melina is now working right outside her front door for her niche with local firm Ascent Real Estate.
“My daughter goes to school here. I’m involved here. People get to know me as the go-to resource for the area.”
Melina is a Relola user, and the app is part of her strategy to be a trusted advisor and local expert.
“Relola helps me stand out in terms of being a neighborhood specialist,” she said. “I started using it and would get leads from families right in this area, thinking this was my neighborhood, even though there are more dominant agents in this area.”
With the Relola app, Melina drops pins on her map. Those pins show the listings she’s toured and the local features she knows and trusts -- restaurants, outdoor markets, parks and services. Her map serves as a snapshot of her expertise.
“I needed a tool to communicate out what I know on social media -- and that’s what Relola provides, in a professional way. It’s a great tool, and I want to make sure I get the most of out of it.”
She combines her Relola map with Keeping Current Matters, a resource for blog content, newsletters and local buyers guides. “I use both Relola and Keeping Current Matters for content. Combined, I find they are really professional and well-aligned.”
If you go to Melina’s Facebook business page, you’ll see more and more videos. And they are all Melina, out walking in her neighborhood, in front of local businesses and showcasing her market. And now that she can include her videos in her Relola Insights, Melina plans on doing that more often.
The reason is simple: local is the heart of real estate.
That’s why the local insights Melina shares on Relola are a valuable tool for her business development. Even with people from her sphere of influence.
“I had clients that knew me already. Then I dropped a pin on my map for a listing and shared it on social media. They wanted to see it right way.”
For Melina, the ease of use of Relola is what makes it simpler than a traditional blog.
“Rather than me typing up something quick, I like the professional look of Relola. It looks great on LinkedIn!”
With over a dozen years under her belt in the San Diego market, Melina sees that local expertise matters more and more.
“The trends really point to locals supporting local,” she said. “From locally owned stores to restaurants and service providers. When it comes to real estate, I find it hugely beneficial for my clients to work with someone who is out there every day, and knows exactly the values. Property prices in this area can jump $15K in a couple weeks!”