With more than 3,000 independently owned and operated Coldwell Banker broker offices in 43 countries, Michael Ford knew he was investing in a proven concept when he opened his franchise in West Memphis, Arkansas, in 1994. "The name recognition gives me a competitive edge, for sure, but I'm still impressed with the personal touch that Coldwell Banker provides its owners," he said.
Ford, who owned his own small real estate firm before purchasing his franchise, now has 28 employees that cover a territory with roughly 50,000 residents. His agents handle everything from folks ready to buy their first home, to growing families looking to trade up, to retirees about to downsize.
Ford said he looked at a number of real estate franchises before selecting Coldwell Banker. "I liked the fact that all their platforms were user-friendly and really tailored for the franchisee," he explained. The Zap program, for instance, is a digital platform that enables brokers to create their own website that offers clients all the listings, information and lead management tools that are available on the main Coldwell Banker site. The national television ads the parent brand has been running over the past several years have been particularly helpful, Ford said, because it reinforces the company's leadership position in the real estate industry and its dependability.