There has been a lot of talk about the plummeting real estate market and yet one business has found a way to be successful in the midst of it. VIP Realty in Dallas started two years ago in a highly competitive marketplace. The challenge was: How do you stand out when you're one of many in a competitive field? The way VIP Realty did it is by creating a business model with a unique selling proposition. By doing something different ... not following the crowd. Richard Soto, the founder, started with the premise that most homes on the market are now available for viewing on the Internet. A variety of sites, including real estate's MLS (multiple listing service), are now available online, giving you all the pertinent facts, 360 degree videos and a variety of pictures. Richard's idea for success stems from the fact that by using the Internet, home buyers are doing a lot of the legwork that used to be managed by agents. Rather than focusing on helping with the legwork, he has implemented two creative programs that assume that recognize the fact that consumers are already doing their own house hunting online: (1) A cash back rebate program for home buyers. The website explains it like this: A vast majority of buyers are doing their own house searching online these days. The MLS system is widely available on literally thousands of Internet sites. So, if you as a buyer are doing all the searching, why not get paid for it? As a VIP Realty client you'll receive a Real Estate Cash Rebate when buying in Dallas/Fort Worth or anywhere in Texas. Essentially, it's a way to get buyers interested in working with VIP. If someone uses VIP Realty exclusively to buy a home - they'll get a rebate up to 1.5% of the home's purchase price. (2) A 0% commission program in which sellers, who find their own buyer, benefit from the expertise of an agency throughout the entire process without the high commission payout. Home owners pay a flat fee up front and potentially save thousands in commissions at the time of the sale. Sellers who find their own buyers benefit from the expertise of an agency throughout the entire process without the high commission payout. Home owners pay a flat fee up front and potentially save thousands in commissions at the time of the sale. In a competitive marketplace, VIP has found a way to stand out from the competition thus enabling them to grow while others struggle. As you look at your business and your competitors, in what way can you differentiate yourself in a manner that MEANS something to the consumer? Are you challenging traditional ways of doing things and making your business stand out with a unique selling proposition? Share your story in the comments.