CSRA Home Connections Program Helps Members Survive, Thrive and Grow

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Local business group has made it easier for its Preferred Providers to succeed and even expand during the extended economic downturn.

Larry Miller, broker/owner of CENTURY 21 Larry Miller Realty, recently announced that many of the CSRA Home Connections Program's Preferred Providers have attributed a large measure of their success over the past several years to the work generated through their active participation in the program.

"We launched CSRA Home Connections in the fall of 2005, when business was still booming," reports Larry Miller. " When the real estate market starting slipping in 2007 and the economy nose-dived in September of 2008 (and ever since then), we have been a steadying, supportive influence for our dozens and dozens of Preferred Providers."

Miller adds, "The CSRA Home Connections Program has evolved into what co-founder and Executive Director Bert Dean and I envisioned way back in March of 2004: a close-knit community of like-minded businesses and professional practices, all dedicated to excellence, exemplary citizenship and mutual success.”

Larry Miller also is co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of the CSRA Home Connections Local Alliance Co-op Marketing Program, now in its ninth year.

"It is so rewarding when our Preferred Providers voluntarily tell us how much their membership has benefited them, both personally and professionally," explains Director of Membership Development Caroline Bradshaw. "It is absolutely true that we are more like a 'family' than a business networking group."

Here are a few testimonials from Certified Preferred Providers:

“We saw an almost-immediate increase in our home inspections business from CSRA Home Connections referrals,” said Gerald Hargrove, founder and CEO of Hargrove Home Solutions and a member since September 2008. “We're breaking records, growing and looking forward to even more success in the future.”

John Boudreaux, president of Hargrove Home Solutions and also a member since September 2008, said, “Our membership in this program helped us in our decision to move forward with the addition of an entirely new division, Hargrove Pest Solutions, back in 2011.”

“After over eight years as a Preferred Provider, I can say that a very significant percentage of our new residential business comes from the CSRA Home Connections program. The referrals are either directly from the agents, indirectly from the agents, or from my other Connections Partners referring to me,” said Dwayne Fox of D&D Pest Control, a member since November 2005.

“Based on our advertising experiences over the past 35 years, our participation in the CSRA Home Connections Program has proved to be a fabulous investment that quickly showed a great return, said Davina Key-Strickland of A&D Carpet and Hardwoods, a member since March 2007. “We enjoy working with the agents and fellow Preferred Providers.”

“New homeowners are one of our best sources of new business development for auto, life, and health coverage, in addition to property insurance and financial planning,” said Ed Ricketson of Ricketson Insurance, a member since November 2005. “CSRA Home Connections is an excellent business-building program for all of our agents.”

Burt Sappenfield of Majestic Floor Care, a member since September 2010, said, “WOW! That's the word that best describes the CSRA Home Connections Program! Every week I receive calls from either agents or customers they refer, as well as fellow Preferred Providers. I'm a member of two Chambers of Commerce and other networking groups, and this far exceeds any other program I've ever been involved in.”

“We have seen a 40 percent increase in our business just from the CSRA Home Connections Program and we've added a full-service shop to complement our mobile service business,” said Jeff Hawn of Beacon Auto Service, a member since April 2010. “This is by far the best return on investment for promoting our business – and the monthly networking breakfast events are great!”


“We took the basic premise of Century 21’s Local Alliance Program and enhanced it exponentially with an aggressive multimedia marketing campaign,” explains Larry Miller, who has been operating his successful Century 21 franchise for over 28 years. “Our program makes it possible for local businesses to economically and effectively market their products and services to thousands of homeowners, home-buyers, home-sellers and home-builders throughout the CSRA.”

The unique marketing program features a half-hour television program shown at 10 a.m. every Sunday on The CW Augusta, and 19 times a week on WOW (formerly Knology) cable channel 38. “CSRA Home Showcase” offers 30-second and one-minute “TV tours” of dozens of homes, land and commercial properties listed by CENTURY 21 Larry Miller Realty agents. It also provides 15-second and half-minute commercial positions for CSRA Home Connections sponsors.

Other media include:

  • A substantial monthly radio campaign on a network of local radio stations
  • TV commercials on local broadcast stations (such as FOX 54) and on both

Comcast and WOW cable networks

“We’re offering tons of networking opportunities for our program participants, with monthly breakfast meetings, quarterly success seminars, and other group events,” reports Director of Communications Dawn Human. “Furthermore, all of our agents are promoting our Preferred Providers to their clients, and our sponsors will cross-promote their products and services throughout the year.”

Director of Membership Development Caroline Thomae Bradshaw adds: “Plus, in an effort to make sure we’re promoting the very best businesses available, all potential sponsors must apply for membership in the program, pass our Executive Committee’s review process, and agree to regular monitoring and customer service standards.”

Interested companies, professional practices, or individuals may contact Bradshaw by phone at (706) 860-0000, or via e-mail: CBradshaw(at)C21LarryMiller(dot)com

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