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Building Community Alliances

A Case Study about Abe Lee Realty

An Award Winning Project

At Schweitzer Consulting, we understand that each client and situation is unique. We partner with our clients, combining their industry knowledge with our marketing expertise to develop solutions that will take their business to the next level. This case study is one example of our work. This is no textbook approach, and we wouldn’t necessarily use this approach with other clients.

Industry Background
Hawaii’s fierce, multi-billion dollar real estate market is unlike any other in the world. Success in this industry requires a solid understanding of the market and an authentic appreciation of the local community. With more than 700 brokers in Honolulu, including national corporate giants such as Coldwell Banker and Prudential, it takes a lot for a local firm to compete. It takes even more to gain a generous amount of the multi-billion dollar market while preserving their local roots.

At Abe Lee Realty (ALR) it is their mission to be the most knowledgeable and caring real estate company that provides unsurpassed service and value to the community. Looking to gain market share while keeping its current size of 100 agents and keep its family-style corporate culture, ALR sought the help of Schweitzer Consulting (SC). Through this partnership, ALR maintained its corporate culture and established a way to compete more effectively with the larger statewide and national firms.

Strategic Insight
Schweitzer Consulting developed a unique strategic PR program by pulling on ALR’s existing strengths. A preliminary survey of agents, employees & local consumers, found that ALR’s mission statement aligned perfectly with the public’s perception of the firm- ALR genuinely cares about its clients as well as the community. However, while ALR regularly donated in excess of 5 percent of its income to local charitable causes, the cumulative effect of its efforts were somewhat diluted by generalization. Following Schweitzer Consulting’s recommendations, ALR consolidated its donation dollars for a single purpose which matched with its knowledge base – housing.

While ALR’s philanthropy was never intended for marketing purposes, Schweitzer Consulting recognized how well it resonated within Honolulu’s tight-knit community. Utilizing the firm’s unparalleled knowledge of the housing industry combined with its passion for community involvement, ALR established Abe Lee Charities, an organized effort to aid Honolulu’s homeless and first-time home buyers. Its motto: Everyone deserves a roof over their heads.

At no additional philanthropic cost, the program helped to coordinate diverse donations and volunteer opportunities into one organized focus. Press coverage and viral marketing helped brand ALR as a small agency with a big heart. According to ALR staff, Abe Lee Charities has brought new clients to ALR. One in particular phoned Abe Lee (founder of ALR), after reading about him in the newspaper, and asked that ALR sell her apartment complex because she “trusted a person as generous as Abe Lee.”


"Julie did such a great job on our grand opening. We were showcased in all the major publications including an awesome full page spread in the Star Advertiser and two-page story in Midweek."

~ Geri Berger Pineapples Boutique

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