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Google Wave – Why Agents Need to Learn This Tool Now



Time is up, the paradigm is shifting


Yes, I’m now riding the wave. Google Wave that is, and you should be too. I’ll admit, I wasn’t in too much of a hurry to get my early beta invite, as Google has already graced us with G-Mail, Google Talk, Google Voices, and now Google Wave, not to mention Google analytics, ads, real estate, and countless other Google things that all require some kind of attention, but this time, it’s different.

Google wave is Google’s way of rethinking collaboration for every day people, every day business, and yes, every day email. At first, I wasn’t that impressed, until I actually watched over Lani’s shoulder as she worked with a friend here in Austin using Google Wave. As they talked using live email all in the same chat window, the conversation is tracked, it can be played backwards and forwards to keep you in sync with one another, and (here’s the wicked part) they were able to exchange photos and videos within the same session. No new browser window, no clicking links, it was all just there- that’s when I realized that agents that have failed to learn and utilize basic web tools just got left behind- time is up, the paradigm is shifting.

I had these thoughts, realizing that this is a meeting tool- it’s a client and an agent sharing real estate knowledge, viewing neighborhoods, showing homes, and communicating about them in real time from the comfort of their pajamas. Clients can now present with ease in one window what they’ve found by crowd sourcing their home buying process with their agent, and their agent can do exactly the same in return. Google Wave allows the client and agent to get on one page seamlessly, store it, play back the stream of conversation, and even share it with others.

Worry not, because the coming that is Google Wave is still in early beta and your clients most likely haven’t yet experienced the wave, and probably haven’t even heard of it yet, but mark my words… they will, and they’ll use it not only personally, but in business, because it knows no timezone and is only limited by one’s ability to actually learn how to use it. It isn’t hard, it’s not intimidating, in fact, it looks a lot like email, but it is so much more than that which is why you need to learn it.

Stay tuned, you’re going to be hearing a lot more about Google Wave.

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. Ken Brand

    October 14, 2009 at 10:46 am

    Whaaaaaaa. Where the hell is my invite Google.

    Go get’m Benn, thanks for sharing.

    I have the Google Voice deal, but I haven’t pulled the trigger on porting my cell number to it yet. How about you? Are you using GV?


    • Benn Rosales

      October 14, 2009 at 10:49 am

      @kenbrand I’m using Google voice, and so far I really like it, unless you’re the caller. The need for google to advertise what system I’m using seems very 1.0. All and all though, it’s been very helpful in many respects. I’ll not be porting any numbers to it though, just the call forwarding feature.

  2. Todd Waller

    October 14, 2009 at 11:26 am


    I created a public wave for real estate agents here: [link broken]

    and have begun populating it with tips on just using wave, but with a bent for agents. Obviously, looking for collaboration and learning together with other RE professionals.

  3. Abel C. Ruiz

    October 14, 2009 at 12:16 pm

    Thanks for sharing your insight. I look forward to using it very soon. I always have agents asking me about new and innovative ways to stay on top of the market. I will be sure to forward this to them. I will also continue to refer them to AG for everything else 😉

  4. Adam Weart

    October 14, 2009 at 12:17 pm

    Todd, I tried joining that wave… not sure I am doing it correctly. I pasted the link into my google wave page. It does not appear to be pulling up. Tips?

    • Todd Waller

      October 14, 2009 at 12:36 pm

      Funny thing, I think gWave is acting a bit goofy today…Not had an updated wave since about 9:30 am EST…

      Be sure to snag the whole link too…I see the link above stopped being a hyper link at the !. You can also do a search for it by typing the following into the bar above your inbox:

      with:public real estate

      The open RE wave I created is titled: Google Wave and Real Estate – Open Forum

      Hope that helps…

  5. Donna Patton

    October 14, 2009 at 12:22 pm

    I’ve tried to get an invite, but nothing yet.

  6. Benn Rosales

    October 14, 2009 at 12:34 pm

    You can reach Todd @Toddwaller to get an invitation to his group.

    • Todd Waller

      October 14, 2009 at 12:37 pm

      yeah, happy to add you directly to the wave…simply dm on twitter your address and I’ll happily add!


  7. Joe Sheehan

    October 14, 2009 at 2:49 pm

    Wow! I can’t wait. I viewed the videos and I think this is a killer app, will change the way we communicate completely and forever. I can’t wait for my invitation!

  8. Jennifer S. Levine

    October 14, 2009 at 2:57 pm

    I find the whole, you have to be invited by a friend to gain access, to be a great way to create desire to test it out. I look forward to continued reviews on how it works for everyone! Thanks for sharing Benn!

  9. Adam Weart

    October 14, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    So I have had a chance to test drive a little in the “Wave” and I have to tell you. At first it is a little overwhelming, but once you get used to the functions it is fairly easy to navigate. I can definitely see the benefits this would hold for agents wanting to extend the conversation with their clients. I can see this working hand in hand with Twitter to create meet ups (tweet ups)…I can just see it now Twave Ups….(maybe that could use a little work)

    Thanks for the info Benn

    Great as always!

  10. Benn Rosales

    October 14, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    @laniar is finding Adam that it can kill FF, she’s crashed twice in two days, I on the other hand am pretty stable on chrome (figures). I’ll have more in depth in the coming days, but for now wanted to make the intro- thanks for the feedback in the meanwhile!

  11. Louise Scoggins

    October 14, 2009 at 4:55 pm

    Thanks for the heads up Benn! It sounds really interesting, almost like a cross between IM and Gmail. I’m going to see what I can find out.

  12. Missy Caulk

    October 14, 2009 at 7:33 pm

    I got my wave and set it up but until a few more folks are there, not much to do. Waving at Todd and the group he started.
    Find me Ben…and Lani….

  13. Gary Sattelberger

    October 14, 2009 at 10:25 pm

    Way cool! I didn’t think the beta of gwave was going to be available for awhile yet. I signed up for it months ago so hopefully I’ll be getting an invite soon.

  14. Benn Rosales

    October 15, 2009 at 1:38 am

    update: one of the recommendations I’ll be making is the need to provide a disclaimer/acceptance for private data and conversations. Agents should know now that conversations can be embedded in blogs and emails. Agents should be aware of disclosure rules and other items of a sensitive nature that may be overlooked in a comfortable setting that can be taken out of context later- not that anyone I know would ever have this problem, but I’m pretty sure there are reasons they’re not calling this email, and that might be because it wouldn’t have the same protections private emails currently have.

    It was discussed offline today it is totally possible that Google could potentially crawl the conversations at some point as well- I haven’t had time to really dive into the details of the use policy of Google just yet, but I will this weekend unless someone else can shed some light.

    • Todd Waller

      October 15, 2009 at 8:31 am


      Aaaand there’s the rub with Wave… Will the Google index/crawl these waves? Which waves will they crawl? If it truly is an open source hunk of software, then installation of Wave for businesses (agents & brokers) would, presumably, make the sharing of information a little more ‘comfortable.’

      Right now, in its shaky beta phase, I’d be leery of using this for sensitive client communications. Having said that, and once Wave’s limitations are known, I could see a few applications immediately for agents;

      1 – House Hunting Collaboration with buyers
      2 – Lead management for RE teams
      3 – Office ‘Meetings’ for home office or distant agents

  15. Gary Sattelberger

    October 15, 2009 at 1:53 am

    I wonder if Google would be able to crawl the conversations if the Wave software was run on a private server/domain. If I recall correctly, Google mentioned in their big roll-out video that this is open source software that could be run on a private server.

    When I first saw the Wave intro video one of the thoughts I had was would this software have the potential to be used as a transaction management application. I hope there is strong enough security for something like this.

    I don’t have a Wave account yet so I am just hopefully speculating at this point.

    • Scott Forcier

      October 16, 2009 at 12:05 am

      I think there is! I haven’t used it either but this was one of my first thoughts as well and will be one of my main initial practical uses of the wave without a doubt.

      I’m also looking forward to working with buyers searching for properties and actually providing SERVICE over a wave. I really can’t wait!

  16. Anthony

    October 15, 2009 at 3:52 pm

    A business acquaintance of mine actually did a prototype of an app similar to Wave a few years ago. It was targeted at Realtors to facilitate real time collaboration with clients. The feature set was very similar to Wave but the project was never completed, so I’m very excited to see Wave available now.

    Now only if I could get an invite 😉

  17. Scott Forcier

    October 16, 2009 at 12:00 am

    Duuuuuuuuudes I sure could use a google invite.

    For the spirit of Chrismas, LORD, send me a google invite!

    I would love to work and share with you all.

  18. Doug Francis

    October 16, 2009 at 8:34 pm

    Wow, the video on this makes me want to get in line… The agent and client interaction would be a great tool. Do I beg for an invitation @ToddWaller?

  19. Terry McDonald

    October 18, 2009 at 5:58 am

    I’m not one of the invitees but at an SEO REBAR meetup yesterday in Charlotte the reviews were decidedly mixed…from “nothing there” to an excellent way to teach a class online.
    Question: How many new ways do we need to communicate?

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Social Media

One easy way to organize your influencers inbox, get paid for fan DMs

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Superpage is a contact page for influencers that also allows users with a fanbase to charge fans money for guaranteed attention on their message.



Demo page of Superpage, a contact page for influencers that lets you filter DMs across social media platforms.

At times, our inboxes can get out of control. Besides email from our family and friends, marketing and spam emails wind up in there, too. While for some of us, it isn’t too bad to handle. Some people might find it a little harder to manage because of the great influx of messages they receive. And, some of those people are influencers.

Well, that is one company’s target – if you have a fanbase, you have an influence. Superpage is a “contact page for influencers.” According to the company’s website, their product will help influencers declutter their inboxes and offer them a better communication setup.

“DMs & e-mails were built for generic human communication. With huge follower-base & more people seeking their time, influencers need a slightly different communication setup – designed just for them. That’s what we’re building at Superpage – a communication system uniquely crafted for influencers,” wrote Superpage Founder Srivatsa Mudumby.

Who can get Superpage?
Superpage is meant for influencers, creators, artists, writers, entrepreneurs, and just about anyone with a social media presence.

What does it do?
The platform allows fans to directly connect with influencers by letting them send a message through the influencer’s Superpage. So, instead of hoping to receive a reply from the DM they sent on Instagram or TikTok, Superpage guarantees a reply, as long as it isn’t illicit or spammy of course.

But, while Superpage lets fans communicate with their idol, it doesn’t do so for free. Fans “pay what they want” to send a message. However, the website doesn’t make it clear whether what you pay makes a difference. If someone pays more, will their message get prioritized? I doubt a $10 ticket gave anyone the chance to choose between general admission or VIP.

How does it work?
You sign up and set up your personalized page by adding a bio, display picture, cover photo, topics you’d like to discuss, etc. Once you link your bank account to your Superpage account, you can share your page on social media, website, or blog post. Through your unique “Superpage link” anyone can send you “Super texts” (messages).

In your Dashboard, you can view, manage, and reply to your messages. Superpage uses “restricted messaging”, which means each sender receives a limited number of messages to follow-up. Once you’re finished replying, the conversation will automatically close.

Fees and Payments
There is no monthly fee to use Superpage. The company makes money by charging a 5% commission plus credit card fees. And, it uses Stripe to process payments directly to the influencer’s bank account.

“People want to talk to influencers of the world but because of huge volume of messages & poor incentivization, influencers can never respond to everyone mindfully. We spoke to a ton of influencers and almost everyone complained “my inboxes are spammed,” wrote Mudumby.

Superpage does provide a new way for fans to reach out to their idols, but is it more like a way for them to charge for office hours? One thing is for sure, it’s a way for influencers to reach out to fans, but make money in the process, too. It’s up to you to decide if it’s something you’d put your money into.

As for a decluttered inbox, it does seem like all those emails and messages might not end up in your messy inbox. Instead, they will live on the platform’s dashboard in a, hopefully, more organized manner.

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Social Media

If you’re not on Clubhouse, you’re missing out – here’s why

(SOCIAL MEDIA) What exactly is Clubhouse, and why is it the quarantine app sensation? There’s a few reasons you should definitely be checking out right now!



Clubhouse member hanging out on the app, on a couch with mask on their face.

The new exclusive app Clubhouse is challenging what social media can be – and it might possibly be the best thing to blow up during quarantine.

Developed by ex-Google employee Rohan Seth and Silicon Valley entrepreneur Paul Davison, Clubhouse has only been gaining in popularity since lockdown. Here’s why you need to join immediately:

What is Clubhouse?

Clubhouse is like if subreddit pages were live podcasts. Or maybe if niche, topic-centric Zoom chatrooms could connect you with people from all over the world. But it’s ONLY audio, making it perfect for this period of lockdown where no one truly looks their best.

From networking events to heated debates about arts and culture to book clubs, you can truly find anything you want on Clubhouse. And if you don’t see a room that peaks your interest, you can make one yourself.

Why is it special?

Here’s my hot take: Clubhouse is democratizing the podcast process. When you enter a room for women entrepreneurs in [insert your industry], you not only hear from the established experts, but you’ll also have a chance to listen to up-and-coming users with great questions. And, if you want, you can request to speak as well.

If you click anyone’s icon, you can see their bio and links to their Instagram, Twitter, etc. For professionals looking to network in a deeper way, Clubhouse is making it easier to find up and coming creatives.

If you’re not necessarily looking to network, there’s still so much niche material to discover on the app. Recently, I spent an hour on Clubhouse listening to users discuss the differences in American and British street fashion. It got heated, but I learned A LOT.

The celebrities!

Did I mention there’s a TON of celebrities on the app? Tiffany Haddish, Virgil Abloh, and Lakeith Stanfield are regulars in rooms – and often host scheduled events. The proximity to all kinds of people, including the famous, is definitely a huge draw.

How do you get on?

Anyone with an iPhone can make an account, but as of now you need to be “nominated” by someone in your contacts who is already on the app. Think Google+ but cooler.

With lockdown giving us so much free time that our podcasts and shows can’t keep up with the demand, Clubhouse is a self-sustaining content mecca. Rooms often go on for days, as users in later time zones will pick up where others left off when they need to get some sleep. And the cycle continues.

Though I’m still wrapping my brain around it, I can say with fair certainty that Clubhouse is very, very exciting. If you have an hour (or 24) to spare, try it out for yourself – I promise, you won’t be disappointed.

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Social Media

TikTok: A hotbed of cultural appropriation, and why it matters

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Gen Z’s favorite app TikTok is the modern epicenter for cultural appropriation – why you as a business owner should care.



TikTok creator with a phone recording on a stand, but dances can be a sign of cultural appropriation.

Quarantine has been the catalyst for a sleuth of new cultural phenomena – Tiger King, Zoom, and baking addictions, to name a few. Perhaps most notably, TikTok has seen user numbers skyrocket since lockdown. And I don’t think those numbers are going down any time soon.

TikTok is a very special place. More so than any other social media apps I’ve engaged with, TikTok feels like a true community where total strangers can use the app’s duet or audio features to interact in creative, collaborative ways.

However, being able to use another user’s original audio or replicate their dance has highlighted the prevalence of cultural appropriation on TikTok: the app, as wholesome as it may be at times, has also become a hot bed for “virtual blackface”.

The most notable example of appropriation has to do with the Renegade dance and Charli D’Amelio – who is young, White, and arguably the most famous TikTok influencer (she is second only to Addison Rae, who is also White). The dance, originally created by 14-year-old Black user Jalaiah Harmon, essentially paved the way for D’Amelio’s fame and financial success (her net worth is estimated to be $8 million).

Only after Twitter backlash did D’Amelio credit Harmon as the original creator of the dance to which she owes her wealth – up until that point, the assumption was the dance was hers.

There is indeed a myriad of exploitative and appropriative examples of TikTok videos. Some of the most cringe-worthy include White users pantomiming black audio, in many cases affecting AAVE (African American Vernacular English). Styles of dance and music that were pioneered by Black artists have now been colonized by White users – and many TikTokers are not made aware of their cultural origins.

And what’s worse: TikTok’s algorithms favor White users, meaning White-washed iterations of videos tend to get more views, more engagement and, subsequently, more financial gains for the creator.

As you can imagine, TikTok’s Black community is up in arms. But don’t take it from me (a non-Black individual) – log onto the app and listen to what Black users have to say about cultural appropriation for yourself.

Still, the app is one of the fastest growing. Companies are finding creative ways to weave their paid ads and more subliminal marketing strategies into the fabric of the ‘For You’ page. In many ways, TikTok is the next frontier in social media marketing.

With a few relevant locational hashtags and some innovative approaches to advertising, your business could get some serious FREE attention on TikTok. In fact, it’s the future.

As aware and socially conscious small business owners, we need to make sure that while we are using the app to get ours, that the Black creators and artists who made the app what it is today are also getting theirs. Anything short of direct accountability for the platform and for caustic White users would be offensive.

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