Yacht Broker Ivan Rowe: Blrt Power User

There’s nothing we like better here at Blrt than to catch up with our power users and observe them in the field.

Catching up with yacht broker Ivan Rowe was a little trickier than usual because he’s a yacht broker and so his field is actually the ocean. Blrts enables Ivan to interact with his clients (both buyers and sellers) in a powerful way that differentiates him from his competitors. We recently sat down with Ivan and asked him a few questions about how, exactly, he does this.

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Luckily for us, he answered them without the need for us to get our feet wet.

Q&A With Yacht Broker Ivan Rowe

1. Please tell us what a Yacht Broker does. It sounds pretty glamorous.

Yacht Brokers basically act like a real estate agent for boats, helping their owner to sell them and a new buyer to get the boat that’s right for them. There’s quite a bit involved in the buying and selling of boats – probably more than anyone realises – and it’s not really very glamorous. Boats are much more like houses than cars, particularly as they get larger. Before you’re able to sell one there’s a lot of paperwork and there are things like sea trials and surveys to conduct. Sometimes you even have to pull them out of the water, which is no small thing, especially when they’re over 60 feet long.

2. What do you love about it?

There is nothing better than being on the water and I am on the water every day. Boats and sailing are my passions. I get to indulge my passions and help others indulge theirs as well, by finding them the right boat. A big difference between a boat and a car (besides the obvious ‘no wheels’ part) is that even though two boats can be exactly the same make and model, the differences between them can be huge. This is because of the way that they have been set up – their equipment, their sail wardrobe, their internal fixtures and fittings and many other things can all be very different.

3. What are the challenges?

The importance of pairing the right boat with the right new owner can’t be understated. If you end up with the wrong boat, sailing it won’t be enjoyable, and it will just sit on its mooring giving the seagulls a place to roost. Then nobody is really very happy, except the seagulls.

Then of course there are the usual issues of sorting the rudder kickers from the real buyers, managing the expectations of the sellers, and negotiating a deal between two parties who are sometimes a little misaligned on price. Finalising the inventory is also a bit tricky, because often boats are sold with everything that’s on them, right down to the last cup and spoon, and this has to be documented in detail as well.

4. How did you hear about Blrt and how long have you been using it?

I have been using Blrt for about three months now, and I use it a lot. I heard about it through a friend who is a graphic designer, who was doing some logo design work for me. She sent me a Blrt to talk me through some logo options and I had a bit of a ‘Wow!’ moment when I saw it, because it was immediately apparent to me that I could use Blrt in my business too.

5. What problem does Blrt solve for you?

Yacht Broker Ivan Rowe: Blrt Power UserBlrt solves a big problem for me, which is the fact that photos can’t talk. It’s not always the case that a person can come and inspect a boat in person, at least in the initial stages of making their enquiries, and it’s not unusual that a buyer will live interstate or overseas. That used to mean that I would need to do one of two things – either make a video of the boat (requiring a lot of my time and sometimes expense to the business) or write a lengthy email to the buyer, describing a bunch of photos that I attached to it. And after that I’d often spend more time on the phone explaining what I had written.

Now I simply take all the photos I’d normally take of a boat when I first list it, then when a buyer asks me a particular question about one of them, I can just start up Blrt and select the photos that will help me explain the answer. After that, it’s simply a matter of talking and pointing with my finger as I go through the photos I’ve selected, and hitting ‘save’ when I’m done. Then I can send my Blrt to the prospective buyer, and they’re able to see the photos and hear me speak about them. It really does save me a lot of time and trouble.

6. How have your clients reacted to Blrt?

On the whole, they’re reacting really well. There is a broad cross-section of ages and levels of sophistication in terms of their affinity for new technology, so a couple of them needed a little steer in the right direction. Most people receive the email notification, click on the link and they play the Blrt straight away, whether it’s on their computer or they download the app.

It’s also quite common that people form syndicates to buy boats, so Blrt is very handy in that I can make a Blrt ‘public’ and then the person who’s representing the group can forward it on to others to keep them in the loop.

7. What are your plans for Blrt?

Currently I’m experimenting with making a comprehensive Blrt about a boat when I first list it, as an extra service to my sellers. A lot of yacht brokers charge their clients for a professional videographer to help sell their boats, but making a Blrt is much easier and it’s something I can do myself at no cost. I think it will really differentiate me from my competitors.

I’m also starting to use Blrt to brief my suppliers on work that needs to be done to a boat on behalf of my sellers. This really helps to clarify what needs to be done, and helps them provide more accurate quotes, which prevents misunderstanding and surprises along the way.

Exploring Open Waters

Yacht Broker Ivan Rowe: Blrt Power UserIvan’s use of Blrt is helping him to stand out in a competitive marketplace by enabling him to communicate more effectively while effortlessly adding value for his clients on both the supply and demand side of his business. In the time it takes his competitors to produce a video walking potential buyers through a particular yacht, Ivan can create and send dozens of Blrts that address the specific needs of each client he’s addressing. His Blrts are personal, dynamic, and interactive in a way that video can never be.

Should you ever find yourself in the market for a yacht, which would impress you more: a generic video that gives a broad overview of the boat or a video-like Blrt in which your broker calls you by name and walks you point by point through each of the reasons this boat is perfect (or not perfect) for you, allows you to pause and zoom on our mobile app and takes up to 50x less bandwidth than video? Yeah, we thought the answer was pretty obvious, too, but we wanted to be sure we weren’t being biased!

Of course, you don’t have to be a yacht broker to employ Blrt in a powerful way – the potential for any salesperson is limited only by your imagination. Real Estate agents, car salespeople, B2B sales teams – any point where customer (demand) and sales (supply) meet can be enhanced for both parties by Blrt.

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About Blrt

Blrt helps you get your point across quickly by allowing you to talk, point and draw over images, documents and websites. The resulting video-like recording is called a Blrt.

Your Blrts require much less bandwidth than video and can be shared with anyone on mobile or desktop. This makes Blrt ideal for both collaboration and the creation and sharing of dynamic content, as public Blrts can be embedded into any webpage.

Once recorded, Blrts are stored in the cloud and are exchanged with others in a conversation-like fashion. A record is kept of the exchange, and new parties and media can be added at any time.

Blrt shifts time and place, allowing users in a conversation to participate in their own time. In an era where activity-based working and distributed teams are commonplace, Blrt is revolutionising the way people interact to get things done.

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