A Wheel! I’ve Never Heard of That…

I think I’ll build one too!

Its amazing how much time is spent reinventing the wheel. Business partners often create the same website features, tools and widgets over and over.  I’d like to see the day when companies truly recognize that the typical services that they supply to their customers are just a fraction of what they could be selling them.  But the flow could also reverse and the customer may have developed a tool that the supplier needs.

Builders, brokers, real estate agents and real estate portals are all developing, having developed or using similar and in many cases the same tools.  So why doesn’t ZillowTrulia or NewHomeSource offer their maps or other features? They can all gain information and perhaps a way to offer a wider network of ad partners across the new partner sites.

Until that type of cooperation happens I’ll keep reinventing the wheel and trying to create the better mouse trap.

Real Estate Social Media to the Next Level

I’ve been thinking about when real estate will truly be taking social media to the next level.  Century 21 announced that they are moving their rather large TV media spend to online.  So where are the putting it?  Where is everyone else putting it?

Judging by Hitwise the majority of the money is going to PPC and some banner networks.  That is of course speaking on average among builders, brokers and real estate portals.  But where is the spend toward enhancing the sites or creating new tools that let their customers truly do the marketing for them with word of mouth?

It has to be coming.

I’d look for one of the big builders, Zillow or Trulia to be doing something bigger.

2009 Where can we go from here?

I’ll tell you where we can go… (Then I’ll tell you where you can go)

There are typically two ways that we can go and in our collective case we have been heading one way at full steam ahead for a while.  Just look at the traditional media (bastards, fist raised in anger!) and you can tell that they are even getting tired of reporting on the car crash of the economy.  Take for instance my favorite morning show that I love to hate, Good Morning America.  This show exmplifies that which is wrong with the media.  A typical morning is full of what is wrong with your life and how they can try to show you a glimmer of what you might possibly be able to do to make it seem better, while they sit in their ivory tower.  Thanks Diane.  But really, once you start to see the media get tired of reporting on something they start to try to find something that doesn’t depress themselves.

Its happening!  Even though people are scared and nervous about where the stock market is heading, the banks, getting a loan and home prices they are starting to come out and realize that now is a good time to buy.  What could be causing this?  Its the media making everyone excited about Obama and his change (I’m quite sure he’ll be paying my mortgage) and just their general demeanor making the move to being positive.

At this time I think its about time that we all start to think about what it truly means to be at the bottom.  In my book (reaching store shelves after I begin writing it) it means that you aren’t going lower.  Well, the bargain hunters are out.  If you take a look at the housing industry and the traffic to home builders during 2008 you can see that the year sucked.

If you start to look at what is happening on a daily basis you can start to see some interesting traffic coming along.  I’m sure that some of it has to do with interest rates but I have to believe that some part of it is the change in perception toward the belief that now is the time to buy.

If that doesn’t look interesting to you then I don’t know what to say.  From here we will have to see if this will change into a longer lasting trend.