success story

success story

How a Chicago brokerage used Buildout Marketing to reach the top of the market

“If you don’t have Buildout, then you don’t have a plan to grow your business.”

Company snapshot

Success story snapshot


When Chris Irwin stepped into his role as Senior Vice President of Retail Leasing and Sales for Colliers in the Chicagoland area, he immediately recognized a familiar challenge.

Like many brokerages, the team managed marketing through a tedious system of spreadsheets and email threads full of edit requests and file attachments. And while this homegrown process got the job done, Chris knew it cost the team countless hours, slowed properties’ path to market, and undermined brokers’ success.

Thankfully, he knew how to fix it.

After experiencing significant success while using Buildout Marketing in a previous role, Chris knew it would be the perfect solution to help streamline the process at Colliers. With this new system, the brokerage could slash the time it took to get new listings in the marketplace and ensure a world-class experience for brokers, clients, and buyers.

“I’ve been working with Buildout for over ten years, and I’m always surprised when [other brokerages] don’t have a similar system,” he says. He points out that this technology is especially vital in our remote-first, digitally dependent commercial real estate environment. “Buildout gives you the ability to have multiple people work on a property in real-time, enter data, add and share files, make edits, and keep the process moving forward.”

Colliers branded documents
Colliers branding
Colliers branding

After implementing Buildout Marketing, the brokerage saw near-immediate results. When he first joined Colliers in mid-2019, the team ranked 250th in the market in transactions. But by the end of 2021, after implementing Buildout Marketing, the team rocketed to 4th place.

“We would not have the ability to grow that much without having a program like Buildout,” he says. “We wouldn’t be able to manage the number of listings we have or complete the number of transactions we do without having this smooth, easy marketing system.”

Today, Buildout helps the team win competitive listings, and agents’ ability to quickly create professional, top-quality marketing collateral impresses prospective clients.

“Once we realize that we’re going to have an appointment with a seller or landlord, our first step is putting their information into Buildout,” Chris says. “We add photos, a bio, and details about how they’ll go to market.” Then, they create a sample piece of collateral. He points out that showing potential clients a marketing piece with their property during the proposal phase helps them visualize their property being marketed by Colliers and nudges them onto the next step.

But, if that doesn’t win them over, telling potential clients that their property will have its own website with a unique URL—or that his team can get their property on several listing portals in less than 24 hours—usually does the trick.

Using Buildout Marketing has also freed up the marketing team’s time to focus on other endeavors. Because agents can handle data entry and build templatized marketing pieces themselves, marketing pros can focus on efforts that uplevel listings and set clients’ properties apart. For example, the Colliers marketing team now has the bandwidth to produce show-stopping drone footage, create virtual tours, and design custom graphics.

And when brokers know they can quickly spin up marketing materials and promote properties via e-blasts and social media with the click of a button, they feel more empowered and confident walking into new deals.

After witnessing his team’s success, Chris is even more of a believer in the Buildout Marketing solution. “Buildout gives us a central place to coordinate and collaborate throughout multiple teams in multiple areas,” he says. “If you don’t have Buildout, then you don’t have a plan to grow your business.”

Ready to learn how Buildout Marketing can help your brokerage save time, earn more business, and grow fast? Contact us today.

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