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Thank you, NAR! Or would you prefer to be known as a used house salesman?



What NAR is or isn’t doing

Thurmbs up NARA lot of blog posts have been written about what the National Association of Realtors is doing wrong or what they “ought to be doing” with regard to this or that.  I have written some of those posts myself.  I think it is important if one is going to find and point out things that are wrong that they also see and point out things that are right.

I believe that all members of the NAR have a debt of gratitude to the NAR.  Not just for the MLS either!  This includes all the various people who do nothing but find fault with whatever the NAR is doing – they do too.  I don’t know if what we have was by design or if there was a really really bright man or woman on some committee back in the day who realized the future impact of what they were doing or it was just a series of lucky breaks.  Either way, they did good.

Anyone who understands marketing (and there are NO exceptions to this rule) understands that you can be thought of by a public (whichever particular public you are marketing to – as there isn’t “a public” or “the public”) just one way.  The result or “product” of marketing is owning shelf space in the mind of that person.  And you get to occupy precisely ONE slot.  They will think of you one way.  How they think of you may have nothing to do with how you would like them to think of you or it may be exactly how you want them to think of you – that all depends on the effectiveness of your marketing – which depended totally on who you were marketing to and how carefully you crafted the single way that public should think of you.

The word “REALTOR”

If not for the word “REALTOR” – which became our NAME, thanks to the individuals on some NAR committee a long time back, we would most likely be referred to by the home buying pubic as “Used House Salesman”.  I like the title, Realtor a lot better.  I’m thinking you do too.  I’ve mentioned this to a few Realtor friends in person and thought it was about time I mentioned it to my friends here.

Thank you, NAR!!  Nice job.

Russell has been an Associate Broker with John Hall & Associates since 1978 and ranks in the top 1% of all agents in the U.S. Most recently The Wall Street Journal recognized the Top 200 Agents in America, awarding Russell # 25 for number of units sold. Russell has been featured in many books such as, "The Billion Dollar Agent" by Steve Kantor and "The Millionaire Real Estate Agent" by Gary Keller and has often been a featured speaker for national conventions and routinely speaks at various state and local association conventions. Visit him also at and

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  1. Jim Gatos

    April 22, 2010 at 7:25 am

    The “Realtor’s” themselves, I like.. Heck, I’m one of them myself! What I don’t like is “”, and some other “vendors” that aggressively act like they “own” us.. Recently, I have been looking into “Crm” database management systems for “realtors”.. Aside from their ridiculous pricing line, their overly aggressive nature is what cinched it for me NOT to renew my top producer account I “killed” off years ago..

    By the way, thanks for the tip, Russell..on CRM’s.. We;re down to REST and Wise Agent…

  2. Benn Rosales

    April 22, 2010 at 11:33 am

    Okay Russell, thanks for that clever and cool word Realtor that is somehow better than used house salesman. It obviously took guts and a rooted education in branding to invent that time tested and sturdy word REALTOR with a TM in all caps- ultra sexy, and obviously a household word.

    Truth be told, no one knows what in the hell a realtor is, nor the difference between a real estate agent and a so-called Realtor. The branding, the messaging, and the influence behind it are null in the eyes of consumer- but I suppose it is better than used house salesman, but in that vein you could be called home pimp and it wouldn’t matter in the eyes of the consumer. Irrelevant.

  3. Fred Romano

    April 22, 2010 at 4:32 pm

    We be pimpin some home(s) NICE! I like that one Benn 🙂

  4. Jonathan Benya

    April 26, 2010 at 6:35 pm

    I never thought of it this way, but I gotta admit, that IS some pretty good spin!

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Business Marketing

“House has spark” – burning up the MLS with typos and other bloopers



The year is starting a march toward its natural ending, friends…and it seems a few real estate careers may be also. This week I found some real head-scratchers in local real estate ads and the MLS.  However, I get submissions from all over the U.S., so no one is safe from the eyes of  the Blooper Scooper. Check out these blunders:

Do You Smell Smoke?

“House has spark” (Apparently your real estate career isn’t the only thing going up in smoke.)

“Big pep area in kitchen” (Is that the cookie jar where Mommy Dearest stashes her uppers?) 

“Dull Viking ovens” (Methinks there’s something in the cookie jar that will perk up those dull Vikings.)

“Large greenhose in back” (Large, naked Jolly Green Giant in yard.)

“Mush added to this house” (Was that the overflow from between your ears?)

I Think I See Flames

“Beautifully remolded guest” (Another cosmetically-altered Barbie hits the Hollywood party circuit.)

“Enjoy a drink poolslide” ( Hell, if the pool is sliding, I’ll need a whole pint of Jack.)

“Each bedroom has own bedrooom” (Hello-o-o, Alice, how are things down there in the rabbit hole?)

“Separate pod to build GH” (That should please my pea-sized buyers.)

“Play room for the kiss” (Something tells me this is the back seat of a ’67 Chevy.)

Still Smoldering…

“Ideal for gusts” (That’s great…if you want to live in a wind sock.)

“Impaccably detailed” (Incredibly challenged)

“Stylish pewder room” (Try burning a match.)

“Stone pillars flake driveway” (Flakey agent got stoned in driveway.)

Nothing But Embers (This Week’s Fave):

“From a bygone error” (You have just written your own epitaph.)



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Point & Purpose

What makes a top producer in real estate?



What makes a top producer?

Stop and think for a few minutes about who the top producers are in your market?

Ok, now think about what they doing that has allowed them to continue to consistently produce in a down market, when everyday REALTORS are throwing in the towel.

Every day I scan the MLS to see, what has sold, what is active, and what went under contract (I assume that is something most agents do every day.)

Over and over again the same names pop up as the listing agent with the home that sold or the actual buying agent that sold the home.


Except for one agent in my area, all the top producers have teams. Now it may be a two person, husband and wife team or a well oiled team with a team leader, several assistants, a listing coordinator or a closing coordinator. But, they all have HELP.

In my area, the names that keep popping up are on Teams. I believe it is virtually impossible to be a top producer without help. Well, you could do it alone but if you do how is that effecting time with your family? Realistically how many transactions can you juggle and give good service?

Running a Business

The second thing I notice about those top producers is the fact that they treat their business like a business. Real Estate to them is not just selling a house, but something they brand, allocate resources for, grow and manage. Not only are they thinking of ways to grow their business but they also thinking of the future and how to sell it down the road.

I remember being told by a entrepreneur friend of mine years ago, “all businesses are built to be sold.”

Far to many REALTORS, think of Real Estate as a job they do and someday when they retire then all the hard work of creating and nurturing relationships they have built is gone. (I’m outta here)

Focused and Positive

One other observation I have observed with top producers is they are focused and positive. I never see them “hanging out at the office”, or attending broker opens, or really for that matter, serving much at all on their local boards. Oh there are a few, but really very few.

Finally, I don’t see many top producers in my market on Twitter, Facebook, Empire Avenue or other social media sites during the day. I don’t see them at every conference known to man around the country.

What I do see is they work everyday, on their business and in their business.

How ‘bout you?

Think of the top REALTORS in your market, what characteristics do you see?

Flickr Photo Credit

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Business Marketing

“New bd pans inc” – Making a Splash on the MLS



I have two things to say this week: 1. When you drink, you can’t think. 2. When you drink you can’t- … uh, what was I saying? Oh, yes – the MLS.  It was so full of bloopers this week that I am led to conclude that happy hour started Monday and never stopped. Read these and tell me if it is any wonder I was driven to throw back a few martinis myself:

Booze ‘N’ Fools

“Free membership to gin inc” (It seems someone else beat us to it, Martini Mary.)

“Grab now use imagination” (That’s what Arnold said to his housekeeper.)

“House has new edition” (Agent lacks erudition.)

“Babblying broke runs in back” (Bumbling buffoon runs amuck.)

“Drop by for cocktail ho” (Oh, is the Sunset Strip for sale?)

Puff ‘N’ Stuff

“Near Sacramento airpot” (I believe his name is Jerry Brown.)

“Claw me for selling” (I’m too busy clawing my eyes out over your spelling.)

“Reduction on mid-century ner Holywod” (Another mid-sixties porn star is looking for work.)

“We can sake your home” (Can I get fried rice with my sake?)

Proof or Goof

“Nice streem” (Said Grandma to Grandpa after his diaper  exploded.)

“Nice for dog kids” (Uh, they’re called ‘puppies,” pal.)

“New bd pans included” (Thank you, Nurse Nancy – can you warm those first?)

“Good stable in neighborhood.” (Have you contacted Mary and Joseph?)

“Drawing for plasma” (Is this a blood-bank?)

And This Week’s Winner Is:

“Good school in areola” (Thanks for keeping me abreast of things.)


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