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Real estate marketing wake up call from outside of the industry

Take a Realtor by the scruff and holler in its face and what do you get? A better industry. Genius.

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Finally, another voice of reason

For years, we’ve written on the intersection between real estate and digital marketing, pointing out what to us is obviously poor practices with social media, most specifically. We’ve begged people to not just put social media icons on print ads, but to physically instruct ad recipients where to go, and we’ve noted poor uses of QR codes and noted that they may be a passing fad, especially when most QR codes go nowhere special and are not even pointed to mobile-ready sites in most cases.

Sound familiar? Our regular readers will say yes.

The above video is by Scott Stratten of who is well known for his willingness to shake people by the collar. Stratten isn’t a Realtor, and the above video is as kind as it possibly can be, given the atrocities committed by Realtors feigning expertise in marketing. What we appreciate most is that Stratten echoes what we’ve been saying for years, including the reminder that most Realtors don’t even have to market well, they just have to market properly and they’re miles ahead of most in the industry.

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Lani is the COO and News Director at The American Genius, has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH, Austin Digital Jobs, Remote Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.



  1. Linsey Planeta

    September 1, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    Just when I think the message has been made clear about the social media faux pas of blasting your listings to the four corners of the social media universe, I'm invited to an Open House in some random part of the country. Why this seems to be such a tough message to get out is beyond me. But, hopefully Scott's impassioned outcry to the real estate community will be heard. Honestly, I'll admit I laughed out loud, but I know I shouldn't. It's sad more than anything.

    • Lani Rosales

      September 1, 2011 at 12:09 pm

      Totally, Linsey. Can you imagine if you got a postcard designed by and paid for by a Realtor that invited you to an open house in Florida? Why, people!?!? You're right, it's more sad and counterintuitive than anything.

  2. Emmanuel

    September 1, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    AMEN!!!! Well done! Well Said!

  3. Cliff Stevenson

    September 1, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    This won't change much, although I love the passionate plea. Agents everywhere (not all) look at social media as a megaphone, or a billboard. Much like Linsey, I live in Calgary, AB, and I receive open house invitations on Facebook for California. Blows my mind.

    I use QR codes (sparingly, and to mobile sites only), and I get scans (which I track), but I'm not sure how long I'll be continuing with them. My pet peeve with QR codes is that agents are using these things on websites. Uhh….websites. Why, if I'm sitting in front of my 27" iMac, do I want to instantly transfer my browsing session to your remarkable site on my 2" iPhone screen??

    I'm not saying everything I'm doing is the way to do it… all. It does, however, work for me.

  4. Daniel Bacon

    September 1, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    Absolutely. Scott is correct that these, well, mistakes, incorrect usage, whatever you want to call it, represent a huge opportunity for many of us. I do feel bad that 80-90% of Realtors (my estimate, mileage in your area may vary) will never be able to catch up or compete effectively in the coming years, at least in the online side. But that's life and it's survival out here!

  5. Ken Montville

    September 1, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    I, personally, think that QR codes … look!. squirrel!

    Where was I? Oh yeah. I was walking by a yard sign once that had a QR code that took me to a virtual tour of the house. Kinda useful except that most people drive by yard signs. (Of course, I was was walking by because I was at a party across the street)

    Now, here is the curmudgeon coming out…Scott just spent 6 minutes telling us what NOT to do. OK. Fine.

    What works?!?! (My seminar for $600, My book for $19.95, My CD/DVD set for $199.95) Yeah. I'm cynical.

    Big, hairy asterisk. I don't have a seminar, book or CD/DVD set. That's just an example.

    • Scott Stratten

      September 5, 2011 at 7:29 pm

      Hi Ken,

      Thanks for the comments. If you noticed, while I saying what not to do I was also saying what to do.

      1. Make your site mobile friendly
      2. Have your QR code lead to a mobile landing page
      3. Put your social media addresses with the logo
      4. Be social in social media.

      I don't have a course for real-estate agents. Really couldn't care less if anybody bought my book because of it, I make 80 cents a copy 🙂

      It was a plea from a member of the public, her market, on what to do differently.

  6. Barry Cunningham

    September 1, 2011 at 11:01 pm

    2 things about this…most realtors will ignore because they either don't know how to market…or b…most realtors won't change because they are too lazy to learn how to do things the right way. Same story, just a different year. Had this argument years ago. Nothing changes. Quite a shame. Makes you want to scream.

    And per Ken, underscoring my comment, Scott knows how to market. He learned how and if he is charging a fee, then it's because he knows something that you don't. Cynical? I think he just showed he's the real deal.

  7. Molly

    September 2, 2011 at 6:38 am

    Love it. I am sending this out to the agent population this morning for our company. I am always frustrated at people who only get on facebook to pimp their latest listing, no matter HOW many times I tell them it doesn't really work. My most favorite is to the effect of " Hey friends, check out NEW PLACE TO EAT, I got them the lease." WTH, really?

    SO don't eat there because it is good food, eat there because I GOT THEM THE LOCATION.


  8. Liz Benitez

    September 2, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    I like him 🙂

  9. Matthew Hardy

    September 4, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Yes, it's clear that the Realtor highlighted in the video is effing-up big time.

    I can't imagine where she got the money to run a full-page ad. 😉

  10. Rebecca

    September 5, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    This is awesome! I'm speaking about communication strategy to a group of Realtors in a couple of weeks, and am happy to find Scott delivers messages consistent with mine. I did have a slide with the message, "It's Social, Stupid" to illustrate that social media is, you know, social. But, I took it out because I was worried I'd offend. However, the fact is, I'm offended every time I talk to someone about social media being about making connections and creating dialogue, and they then ask me how to set up a Twitter account so they can push out information. So, all this being the case, the slide is back in the deck. Thanks for the inspiration, Scott!

  11. Jon Sigler

    September 7, 2011 at 8:20 am

    This is an excellent video. Be better than the other agent, it isn't hard.

  12. Charlie Dresen

    September 17, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    This is perfect, timely and spot on.

  13. Jonathan Benya

    September 26, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    Awesome Video. I know so many agents like the one mentioned, and they seriously need to stop it. They make kittens cry.

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