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Thursday WTF

Thursday Thoughts – WTF




WTFC- why cover it?  No one cared in the first place.  We love you though. 

  • The word is REAL-TOR  not REAL-a-TOR.

Nothing chaps my ass more than to hear someone call themselves or someone else a REAL a TOR.  If you’re going to put yourself on a video- at least understand how to spell & pronounce the title.  Sorry, that one always gets me.

  • No one comes to a Business Blog to read your personal crap.

So you had bad day. Big Deal. People come online to be inspired.  Not feeling all that inspiring? CTRL ALT DELETE to blog another day.  Now, if you’re covering a story that is negative, folks will eat that up- but try to be removed from the negativity by at least one degree.

  • I Twitter.

Enough said.

  • Because you blog makes you not a Superstar.

Except in your own universe, maybe.   Spare us the self serving crap.

 Something got you scratching your head?  We’d love to know…

Benn Rosales is the Founder and CEO of The American Genius (AG), national news network for tech and entrepreneurs, proudly celebrating 10 years in publishing, recently ranked as the #5 startup in Austin. Before founding AG, he founded one of the first digital media strategy firms in the nation and also acquired several other firms. His resume prior includes roles at Apple and Kroger Foods, specializing in marketing, communications, and technology integration. He is a recipient of the Statesman Texas Social Media Award and is an Inman Innovator Award winner. He has consulted for numerous startups (both early- and late-stage), has built partnerships and bridges between tech recruiters and the best tech talent in the industry, and is well known for organizing the digital community through popular monthly networking events. Benn does not venture into the spotlight often, rather believes his biggest accomplishments are the talent he recruits, develops, and gives all credit to those he's empowered.

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  1. jf.sellsius

    December 6, 2007 at 10:09 am

    Yes, Benn, you may be right that one one cares (but how does one know that?) Still, we cover it because we care. Silence in the face of what I consider hypocrisy has never been my style. Blame it on the legal education system.

    I also happen to believe Inman News is not out to fleece its audiences. (at least that’s how I read the remark that Inman recruits audiences so he can “spit on them” )

    Maybe it’s not a big deal after all.

  2. Benn Rosales

    December 6, 2007 at 10:20 am

    Inman has a bias in general, I do not know for a fact that it includes Brad personally. Greg does make a valid point in that connect is not agentcentric, although I am not sure there are not gains to be made by being there. If nothing else it’s a fantastic excuse to meet some of the players in this new game.

    Side note(s):
    1. The dog is gross, enough said.
    2. Brad probably does spit a little when he speaks
    3. I’ll defend Brad when the news is free.
    4. I’ll defend your right to be heard no matter what you cover.
    5. I’ll defend Gregs right to bite Brad’s ankels when Inman doesn’t cover the unchained event in May
    6. I will also defend Brad’s right not to cover it (unchained) if he believes that a blogging group said “screw it” let’s give the audience what they’re begging for- isn’t news worthy. Although a lot of eye rolling will take place- and Everyone will have to defend my right to blog the hell out of the fact the Inman said no thank you to a GREAT news story.

  3. Benjamin Bach

    December 6, 2007 at 11:11 am

    I honestly wish Greg would stick to real estate. His posts on latin, convoluted stories, why he’s the best, etc. get skipped over by me and many I know, in favour of the great content BHB produces.

  4. jf.sellsius

    December 6, 2007 at 11:18 am

    I did not realize Connect was supposed to be agent centric. I don’t even believe events have to be agent centric to be worthwhile to agents. But that is not the point of the post.

    The point is hypocrisy:

    Greg has repeatedly denounced the Connects (see the links in the post)– I support his right to say so (although I think it was tacky to do it on Inman’s blog as a guest blogger– it’s like being invited to a dinner party and standing up at the table to proclaim to your host “the food sucks”)

    He also declined a prior invite saying his reputation would suffer for speaking at an event he does not support— again I support his right not to speak at an event he does not support.
    BUT..(now here’s where the hypocrisy come in).. if he does not support the Connect and his reputation is at stake if he speaks WHY would an honorarium or a keynote make any difference. It shouldn’t. [There is another word for someone who does something they don’t want to do & is against their moral principles– provided they get paid first. It’s the oldest profession– and I don’t mean farming.]

    1. so is hypocrisy
    2. don’t sit in the front row 🙂
    3. it’s sort of like blacklisting comments on BHB– I see your point
    4. same here
    5. I will defend his right to say anything, although he denies others theirs. But consider that Inman did not bite Greg’s leg for not covering the Inman event.
    6. greatness is usually attributed to an event AFTER it takes place. And I will certainly defend your right to call it great afterwards.

    Now, to bring an end to this long-winded comment (my apologies to your readers)– If you feel so strongly about defending rights to speak, you might address GS blacklisting policy- (it’s not “moderation” when all comments are suppressed). Even if you defend his right to blacklist comments on his posts, how can you defend his right to blacklist comments on his contributor’s posts? If it is their copyrighted work (as Greg admits) they should have the right to say– “Greg,do not censor comments on my work”. Perhaps I think writers are due more respect. I do not even know if he tells his contributing writers this is taking place. If he has and they consent, that’s a whole ‘nother story.

  5. Chris Lengquist

    December 6, 2007 at 4:47 pm

    “No one comes to a Business Blog to read your personal crap.”

    Are you telling me that no one cares about my Kansas Jayhawks? 🙁

  6. Todd Carpenter

    December 6, 2007 at 5:28 pm

    You know… Any non-Realtor agent could start calling themselves a Realator right now, and pretty much nobody in the general public would know any different. is available. :p

  7. Lani Anglin

    December 6, 2007 at 10:35 pm

    Chris, no one cares about your stupid Jayhawks 🙂 or the fact that you’re a Real-A-Tor…

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Housing News

Spare me your Excuse Party




My business is slow because the market’s down. Buyers are hiding in the woodwork and sellers don’t want to think about selling right now. My marketing is just not working and I need something new and shiny. It’s the fall and it’s always like this in the fall. But when spring rolls around, and when that stimulus passes, and when those leads start rolling in and when that software brings discipline to my business and when I attend that conference and when I start reading blogs every morning, and as soon as this social media thing kicks in…and…and.

I don’t want to hear it.

Do you want to know the Truth: You don’t want it bad enough. Nothing more, nothing less. Nelson Mandela spent 28 years in a South African prison for his opposition to apartheid and overcame it to become the country’s president and and a Nobel Peace Prize winner. Elie Weisel was put in Auschwitz-Birkenau at age 16 and not only survived but went on to become a best selling author, professor and lecturer. But these are special people, you might say. Regular folks  not only survive tragedy, extreme financial problems, disease, poverty but flourish to become what others deemed impossible, EVERY DAY. The human power of will is strong enough to surpass the toughest obstacles life can pose. You mean to tell me, it can’t overcome your slow season, anemic conversion rate or weight loss troubles?

You already know “The Dance”

We all have been through a period of time (albeit, short) when we were on the ball, focused and productive, locked in and intense. We all have gone Nazi on ourselves when we decided to lose weight and stop trying to do so. We all have tucked away Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Hulu, Drudge Report or HuffPost to focus solely on closing business. I don’t need to tell you the results because you  know them. You know exactly what works because you have done it before. So what’s stopping you?

Troubling Trends

Two trends that I see in social media on a regular basis bother me like a pack of flies in a backyard cookout. The first is the Extreme Honesty Bridge to Nowhere trend. This is when someone is brutally honest about the troubles that they’re facing and go public with them in their blog or social media sites. The idea here is to involve your peers in your struggle and have them hold you accountable for results by proxy. This part of the idea I actually like. What happens next is … nothing. They move on to the next best idea they have only to return with another lame post about the same thing. You can do whatever floats your boat to get your focus in order, but DO something. The second is the “I’m an Idea Collector” trend. This is when someone reads articles from blogs and newspapers religiously every morning collecting great ideas but never acting on a single one of them. That’s the ultimate preparing to prepare surefire recipe to wasting your time. Antidote: Take one idea per week and put it to work. Internalize it and make it part of your repertoir. Way before I became a contributor on AG, I read a post by Lani on how to find Creative Commons licensed images to use in your posts with Flickr. Since that day, that’s what I do every time I blog. I read another post from Ken on the power of sending handwritten notes to clients to generate referrals. Now, that’s part of my M.O. Reading great content is better than not reading it but not doing something with the information will lead you to the exact same place. Nowhere.


I hope I wasn’t unclear. Did you find this a bit harsh? I can understand that. But I hope knowing that this rant was not only directed  to you but to me as well, can heal some of those bruised feelings. Now go out there and DO SOMETHING.

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Opinion Editorials

NAR & Local Boards Should Go Back to Being Broker-Only Organizations



puntAnd Agents Should Form Their Own Membership (Union)

I think that maybe NAR and local boards in their zeal to capitalize on dues by a larger membership may have bitten off more than they can chew when they allowed regular agents to join the boards (as is evident by continued tensions between the boards and average agents on the ground).

The Punted Football That Has Become The General Membership

It’s true, in every instance we’re told to get involved, however, involvement has become to complicated, that one hand has no idea what the other is doing.  Rules are consistently created by Broker boards, and enforced and agreed upon by the NAR that have absolutely no Agent interest protected.

So Maybe It’s Time to Protect Ourselves

Once upon a time, the membership really was Broker only, and maybe it needs to be that way again.  The birth of an actual membership of agents could be born with a proper voice at the table, similar to a real trade union with real votes in our best interest.

Such representation could beat down costs for, and other services we’re producing content for, thus reducing costs to the agent.  Such representation could seek out better, more competitive boards that would spring up in contrast to existing boards and the NAR.  It’s conceivable that an opportunity such as this could fracture the entire MLS cluster flip, allowing for possibly a smaller more nimble MLS that could be provided to the agent membership at a much more fair price as it has now cut out the middle men.

The Time May be Near..

…that enough is enough, that when and if a rule greatly disrupts the agents’ ability to adopt new technology, that a simple vote of no says that the massive bureaucracy that has become the collective board needs to clean up, scale down, and take it’s policies back to the drawing board for a decision that weighs all things equally.

The Broker Can Pick Up the Shortfall for NAR

This would force the Broker to pay a larger premium to the board and the NAR I’m sure, but in reality, that in and of itself would force Brokers to become more competitive where the rights and interests of their agents were concerned.

NAR would only need engage with Brokers, simplifying the conversation of progression.

The Agent Membership Now Represented

  • Has a larger voice, and choices.

Yeah, if they really want to go backwards in time, maybe we should. And yes, I am aware that there are independent versions of the current NAR that have never really taken hold, but if the current state of affairs continues, I can see a day in the future where the concept has a more stronger footing.

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Thursday WTF




It might come as a shock to many, but I am extremely anti-DIY.

I am not trained as a plumber, electrician or mechanic and I have no interest in doing so even though I know it could potentially save me a lot of money.  I am not a REALTOR, lender, home inspector or stager and I don’t pretend to be.  I am a graphic designer, videographer, photographer, SCUBA instructor, welder, marketer and coder.

The things I DO are all things I either am or was interested in.  Only a few of them I got into because I thought they’d be business ventures.  The big issue is I value my time.  I know I’m only going to learn things I am interested in (there are many such topics) and that I should just pay people who are good at other skills to let them do what they’re best at.

The reason I mention this is that here and other sites in our industry are constantly encouraging REALTORs to do it yourself.  Don’t use/pay for a web site, just setup a WordPress site yourself.  Don’t pay for a single property web site, build it yourself.

I understand many people in this industry came from somewhere else.  Some of you are geniuinely interested in learning how to code a web site.  But to me, the tone has almost turned to a browbeating.   “You paid for that site? Why didn’t you just setup WordPress, it’s free!”

I mention this in many of my classes: if you run your business being chief cook and bottle washer, why can’t buyers and sellers do it themselves also? Now don’t get me wrong, I will use a REALTOR when it’s time to sell my house and buy a new one.  I value my time.  It’s not something I know how to do or want to learn (from a paperwork/liability standpoint, I teach REALTORs to market listings all day, so that I could do).

I really came to this realization at the Seattle REBarCamp and chatting with the ActiveRain guys.  I’ve setup close to triple digit WordPress sites now and didn’t see the point in AR.  The discussion was that there are (many) people who do not want to take the time to learn and setup a system and a turnkey site like AR is perfect for those people.  At least they’re blogging.

So I encourage those of you who are hesitant in setting up a new web site or becoming an “expert” overnight on a new social network: evaluate your time and consider letting someone help, otherwise the DIY concept may put this, and many other, industries out of business.

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