February 2008 Newsletter

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with AgencyLogic

The 1980’s ad campaign Blown Away Guy helped make the audio cassette maker Maxell an icon of pop culture. In the UK version of the commercial, Peter Murphy (formerly of the group Bauhaus) places a Maxell audio tape into a large stereo. As he sits, impeccably dressed and sitting in a very expensive leather chair, we hear Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries”. The music begins, and with it a chaotic storm. Plants blow in the wind, Murphy’s previously well-positioned tie now flaps wildly over his shoulder, lights flash and the duck wall hangings begin flying towards the ceiling. The chaos we see is a perfect setup for the slogan: “Maxell. Break the sound barrier”.

This is the image I have in mind as I prepare to list only a fraction of the information that I picked up from the Inman Real Estate Connect Conference held in New York last month. The event didn’t disappoint, with some of the industry’s heaviest hitters speaking about past, present and future states of the real estate industry. With a focus on technology, Brad Inman opened up with a commentary on 2005 being the year of “Transparency” fueled by the Web which forced open “arcane real estate systems”. He saw 2006 as the year of Internet-based video and 2007 as the birth of social media and “people getting involved at a micro level”. With an observation that “the market is in a world of hurt” (unless you live in The Hamptons or Manhattan) caused by “a breakdown at all levels of the chain.” He acknowledged the natural cyclical nature of the industry and advised that Realtors should have hope.

My ‘hope’ is that there is at least one thing from the following list that you find useful. So please ensure you are sitting comfortably, imagine the sound of the “Choosers of the Slain” blasting in your ears and enjoy this exhaustive list of take-away’s, nuggets, sound bites and advice (with very special thanks to Brian Boero of 1000watt Consulting) from the event:

Things that will help you work smarter and cut costs:

Online tools to manage your deals:

Go paperless with e-signatures: Store your docs online: Use your lawyer less! Free: Stop buying software. Work on the Web: Never forget anything. Free: Get a free conference line: Never “have to run back to the office” Control headcount. Use freelancers: Things that let you engage customers and prospects in new ways: Conduct meetings online. Free: Send a stylish electronic newsletter: Add chat to your website. Free: Collaborate with clients and colleagues using wikis. Free: Things that will help you grow your professional network: Send and receive referrals online: Reconnect with old colleagues. Free: Learn from others. Free: Blogs and Websites you should read (and watch): Market smarter – and cheaper: Turn plain docs into great looking PDFs. Free: Know who’s coming to you Website and measure your marketing: Find out what visitors like and don’t like on your Website: New advertising opportunities: Create hyper-targeted ads in Facebook: Advertise online – in your neighborhood Target your advertising: Target homes in your ZIP code: Technologies that help you leverage your knowledge: Reevaluate your Website. Start a blog: Know more about your market than your competition: Things that shrink space and time: Create your own maps. Put them on your Website. Free: Bring the house or neighborhood to them with video: Tour a neighborhood without leaving the office: Technologies that help you meet the neighbors: Mingle with property mavens in your community. Free: Create your own online social network. Free: Answer real estate questions from consumers in your market. Free: Start a group about an issue in your community. Free: In summary? I’ll leave it to the words of author, preacher, scholar and clergyman, Leonard I. Sweet:
“The future is not something we enter. The future is something we create.”
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Stephen Fells

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