News from the front!
I am attending the Real Trends "Gathering of Eagles" and am going to attempt to provide updates and tidbits, here goes:
A little birdie told me that the Inman news article titled "Prudential opens real estate Web metrics to sellers" was rushed to beat the soon coming hush hush announcement by Realtor.com or Move.com (or whatever else they want to call themselves) of their own seller login area. Apparently Russ Caper has an inside source at Homestore and felt the need to steal their thunder. Too bad we did three years ago. I guess we need to shout it out louder.
Cara Heiden of Wells Fargo Home Mortage gave the opening talk and it was interesting. What was more interesting was that she refused to answer the second question she was asked: " Does Wells Fargo have plans in place to enter the Real Estate industry should banks be allowed to enter it". In fact, the moderator stepped in and said that it was agreed the question could not be asked. IMO the silence speaks volumes.
Justin McCarthy of Google spoke next. No surprises, although he did clarify what base.google.com is and what it is not. It is, according to Justin:
- Free Distribution tool
- A platform to upload to Google
- A better search tool for consumers
What it is not is:
- A Broker
- A fee based lead generator
- An end to end solution
He also said the Google has no plans to do analytics over the brokers data and sell it to others.
Then we had Alex Perriello, CEO of Cendant. Alex is a lot more enlightened then I expected. He understands the need for rich information and the role and MLS ought to play. He said " We (brokers) are being out-marketed by eight year old kids on eBay selling baseball cards" He recognizes that it is a "crime" that "most listings have one photo that looks like it was taken from a speeding vehicle." and he thinks it is "sad" that only 14 percent of realtor.com listings are enhanced.
He also recognizes that consumer demand empowerment and quick response. He believes that brokers own the data and should do the marketing themselves. In answer to my question he said that MLSs don't have the flexibility to do the marketing and that should be left to the broker. I agree.
more to come …