Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage announced Wednesday that Debbie Elliott has been hired as its chief marketing officer and that Elliott will create an in-house marketing agency for the firm.
The marketing agency will provide a wide array of services for Sea Coast Advantage and its more than 475 agents, the release said. The move will make Sea Coast one of only three Coldwell Banker franchises in the nation to have in-house agency capabilities (the others are in Jacksonville, Florida, and Philadelphia), according to the release.
The owner of Talk Inc., a Wilmington-based public relations firm, Elliott will continue to serve Talk’s new and existing clients under the Sea Coast Advantage banner and all Talk Inc. operations will be assimilated into the firm, the release stated.
The release also said that as CMO, Elliott (pictured above) is a member of the Sea Coast Advantage management team and reports directly to its president, Tim Milam. Talk Inc. has worked on a contract basis for Sea Coast Advantage for the past four years and assisted with media relations, advertising and strategic planning. Elliott’s first day in her new position as CMO will be Jan. 2.
Milam described the announcement as "a game-changer for our firm."
“Debbie is one of the most respected marketing and PR talents in our region and we are honored to welcome her to the Sea Coast Advantage family,” Milam said in the release. “We are always looking for new, pioneering ways to make our agents successful and most importantly, help our customers buy and sell homes. Now, with Debbie on board, Sea Coast Advantage will be the first real estate firm in our region to operate a full-service, in-house marketing agency that provides best-of-class marketing support and services to our agents and their clients.”
The marketing agency will serve businesses outside Sea Coast Advantage, including those that are not real estate firms or affiliated with Coldwell Banker, Milam said.
He also said in the release, "Debbie and her team will take our marketing efforts to the next level and their efforts will ensure that we continue to hold the No. 1 position in the market, just as we’ve done for the past 18 consecutive years.”
As CMO, Elliott will oversee all marketing functions for the firm, including branding and brand management, advertising, public relations, internet marketing, social media, community relations and more. Elliott’s direct reports include the firm’s marketing director, Kathy Alexander, and Social Media Coordinator Honor Rudd.
“I am honored by the opportunity to work for such an incredible company and with such an extraordinary group of people,” said Elliott in the release. “And I am particularly excited about the opportunity to create an in-house agency for Sea Coast Advantage. Nationally, the creative industry is going through a paradigm shift, and more and more companies are bringing their marketing in-house. The result is that some of the best creative work in design, advertising and video is now coming from in-house teams. With an in-house agency at Sea Coast Advantage, we will have the brand expertise and industry knowledge to offer top quality services that are more effective, more affordable and delivered in a more timely manner than our competitors.”
Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage is the largest and highest-selling real estate company in New Hanover, Brunswick, Pender and Onslow counties, with $1.4 billion in closed sales volume and 6,364 closed sales transactions in 2016, the release said. Founded in Wilmington in 1988, the firm now has 13 offices located in Wilmington, Leland, Jacksonville, Carolina Beach, Topsail Island, Hampstead, Southport, Sneads Ferry, South Brunswick, Oak Island, Holden Beach and Calabash.
Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage also has an ownership interest in 18 Coldwell Banker Advantage offices in Raleigh, Fayetteville and Southern Pines and six Coldwell Banker Chicora Advantage offices in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
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