Gone are the days of reciprocation, attribution, and unique ideals that are shared and vetted. The real estate space as we knew it in 2005-09 is dead and its history is being rewritten by the maven/guru/ninjas of the industry. The passion is gone and ActiveRain is to real estate as Twitter is to the rest of the world as the place to be for smoke blown up your ass, and if you’re on both, it must be euphoric- now you’re really a big deal!
I’ve spent a lot of time resisting this article and it’s just come to a head in this past week… I can no longer remain silent. As more and more real estate practitioners merge online, the failure of experts to promote and teach the fundamentals of conversation though blogging has created a vacuum of epic proportions in the realm of consumer-centric real estate. I loathe the idea of selling numbers over quality, and followers in exchange of fans, but that is exactly how it’s being taught by fraudulent gurus every day.
If you’ve been online for any length of time, then you know if something is missing the tenants of consumer-centricity, then it’s not social media, it’s just marketing – bad marketing.
Three people today attempted to sell me a course, NAY, a designation for social media, and I’m thinking to myself, you can’t sell or buy social media. I mean, I can sell you how to turn on your computer if you’re really that ignorant and I’ll even throw in a badge for knowing that you should turn it on. Please…
I mean no disrespect at all to those that have been in the space, done the time, listened to the masses, engaged in dialog around relationships and cultivated the very space and ideals I’m speaking of- to be quite honest, there are very few of them.
I’ve been asked several times this week if I was friends of so-and-so only to say no and to learn that so-and-so has used my name or the AgentGenius brand to further their personal agenda. With a little research, I couldn’t even call the folks acquaintances. What in the world is wrong with people? It gets worse to hear the backbiting of those once called friends utilizing our influence for their own gains. It truly makes me ill to see those same people attack the very foundation of the influence they’ve stolen.
There’s a buyer for every swamp, just as there’s a follower for every guru. I say to those that are truly a friend, remain true to your consumer, not your ego. Your feeling of fame on Twitter or Facebook is merely an illusion, and the ball truly is succeeding in business.
The way forward is clear, and many will attempt to pull you from the path, but you do not need a designation to build and foster a relationship. Gauge not a person’s integrity because I follow or do not follow them on Twitter. Quite frankly, there are very few people other than my wife, family, or Christ that influence me or my decisions. We’re not interested in being co-opted and if that makes us enemies, so be it.
If no one is centered around their business and their consumer, improving the industry, nor the reputation of the Realtor brand so be it, die a painful death- we’ll report on it and continue to work with people who understand the values of a consumer-centric culture.
If you’ve been handed a geek t-shirt by a Realtor coach this week, burn it; I implore you to understand that being a geek is not a business strategy. It’s a turn down a dark path of following followers to conference after conference to blow smoke up each others’ ass. We’re F’n AG, and if we’re not there, it isn’t worth attending and you don’t have to sell your soul to hear content regurgitated on a stage that people read on AG the year before.
Has it ever made you wonder how in the hell one can produce if they’re at every conference, every month, every year? That’s right, they’re not producing… their lonely spouse at home is, and they’re out selling you something other than real estate (ego) and the last time I checked, YOU are the one still in real estate.
A month ago, our company was approached by a builder vendor to consult on an “innovative new widget” they could “pass off to their builders” (their words) as an answer to their demand for a more social consumer experience. Seriously? Needless to say, we’ve never looked back. Between cheap idiotic brain pickers and self-centered self-promoters, the smell in real estate today is a stench of hysteria married to complete loss of focus and vision.
This is the last I’ll say on the subject, you know where I stand. There are very few people I dislike in this world, and few I’d ever speak poorly of, even if asked, but not because the gurus have issued a decree that they should not be called by name in public, but only in private (which is code for “we’d prefer to talk behind your back“). Yes, we are all seeing and all knowing, and that person you call a friend says they’re our friend too. Welcome to social media. It’s a small world after all.
So Benn, you wrote this article, and I’m just a learning guy or gal, how do I sort real from bullsh*t? Well, that’s easy. Just email me and I’ll tell you what I know, and if you happen to need help turning on your computer or logging in to Twitter, I’ll probably answer those questions too.
Fear not AG readers, the passion here is still alive and well, and we’ll continue to keep those that make decisions honest, as hard as they try to minimize or devalue us- AG is still the king of what’s hot in real estate. If it’s worthy, you’ll hear it here, but not because they’re a diamond sponsor or a platinum sponsor, but because I think it’s something you should see and check out for yourself. People in this space know me as being level headed and fair, so you know that if I am the one saying all of this, it’s getting pretty thick.
Last but not least, don’t buy a piece of technology to fit into a wannabe old man/old lady chic geek crowd, do it because it’s a productive tool that will further your business or your life.