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WAV Group Announces New Technology Consulting Division
WAV Group is pleased to announce David Gumpper as the latest addition to its growing suite of executive leaders. David Gumpper, former Chief Technology Officer for Michael Saunders & Company, Founder of the Gumpper Group and a strong industry advocate, will be leading the company's Technology Consulting division. David's depth of experience helping brokerages increase market share uniquely qualifies him to help technology companies, brokerages and MLSs drive success by delivering technology and marketing programs.
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What Is a Brand?
A brand is the difference between a pair of running shoes and a pair of Nikes. A brand is what people feel about you your product, the service you provide, or your organization. It's part rational, but mostly emotional. People will forgive a strong brand if it makes a mistake. Likewise, people won't forgive a weak brand if it makes a mistake—remember Gateway computers? We thought so.
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5 Steps to an Impactful and Effective Strategic Plan
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When Is the Last Time You Did a Media Audit?
African-American novelist, playwright, poet, and social critic James Baldwin put it best: "Know from whence you came. If you know whence you came, there are absolutely no limitations to where you can go." That sage advice is at the heart of why every organization benefits from a media audit. Never heard of a media audit? You are clearly not alone, because despite its enormous value and incredible insight for business and communications objectives, most companies don't use them. What is a media audit? A media audit is a survey – a deep dive into how a company and its competitors communicate, either internally and/or externally. A media audit looks at industry positioning, competitive media messaging, the effectiveness of that messaging by sampling over a specific period of time comparable media reach and coverage achieved, and subjectively analyzes PR/communication strengths and weaknesses. A media audit is all about a look back to where you have you been, what have you said, what digital footprint, if any, you have created, including baggage you've left behind. And it is all about benchmarking: where are you and your competitors today? What is your share of voice? Are the right messages resonating? Are you winning in the right markets or are your competitors? Benchmarking with a media audit helps you measure – and justify – new PR/communication efforts and strategies.
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Wendy Forsythe Joins Swanepoel T3 Sixty Group as President T3 Broker Consulting Team
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The Future is Now: Insights from 3 of Real Estate's Top Influencers
Regular readers of RE Technology will no doubt recognize the name "WAV Group." The partners of consulting firm WAV Group are not only the founders of RE Technology, but also the dominant voice on our MLS and broker channels. You've no doubt read many of their insightful articles before. Every year, founding WAV Group partners Marilyn Wilson and Victor Lund appear on lists of the industry's most powerful and influential--and this year is already shaping up to be no different. Just today, the husband and wife team of Wilson and Lund were named to the 2017 Swanepoel Power 200, a list of "the 200 most powerful leaders in the residential real estate brokerage industry." And last week, Kevin Hawkins, President of WAV Group Communications--WAV Group's public relations division--appeared on a major industry list for the first time. Both he and Victor Lund were named to Inman News' Real Estate Influencers list. These accolades come as no surprise to anyone who pays close attention to the industry--WAV Group consults on major projects that impact the future of real estate, like the Broker Public Portal, Upstream, RESO, and more. The company has been a driving force in pushing the industry to adapt to changing consumer expectations spurred by technology. To give you a better idea of WAV Group's influential thought leadership, we've rounded up a sampling of their best articles from 2016. *** 1. Backed by Google, Zillow Set to Become Online Brokerage Why would Zillow become an online brokerage? The company has capped out on advertising revenue. In January of this year, they applied significant pressure to their broker advertising products in a calculated move to switch their revenue stream to agents. Brokers were really not that interested in the leads anyway – they just passed them along to the listing agent. But listing agents and buyers agents are starved for leads and were not total un-happy-ish about the price increase. The price increase weeded the garden of agents who were casual advertisers and paved the way for serious online real estate agents to get the customer flow they need. Zillow can continue to move forward with their mortgage programs. They appear to be RESPA compliant. Zillow can continue to work with owners and renters to satisfy the property management business. Zillow can continue to work with developers with their New Home marketplace. Heck, Zillow can even continue to support FSBOs. 2. Mastering Market LiteracyAgents who demonstrate a fundamental understanding of local market trends win more business and become trusted advisors because of their knowledge. Market "smarts" have become an important marketing strategy. You do not need a degree in economics to become market literate, just an understanding of how local real estate economies work, fluency with the terminology and good sources for local data on sales, prices, values, and inventories. Add your professional expertise and your skilled observations of the latest trends in the charts and numbers and you have a winning formula. 3. Brokers and MLSs Misunderstand RESOToday, the Real Estate Standards Organization has blossomed into one of the most collaborative industry-wide efforts we have ever seen, with funding from vendors, brokers, associations, and MLSs. This group is funding and directing a massive overhaul of how information (data) is used today, and laying a strong foundation for the future. It has inspired transformation. Like anything new, different and technical, there is also a massive level of misunderstanding that is frustrating the efforts. In some small way, my hope is to clarify some things to set people straight.
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Schmooze vs. Substance: What Are YOU Using to Make Technology Decisions?
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Is Growth Possible For You in 2016?
Economists are expecting 5 percent growth in 2016. Yet many of our clients are setting expectations above 25 percent. Goal setting is more than just putting numbers on a page and slapping your business in the rear, yelling "go get 'em" while you stand there in the dust with your hands on your hips hoping for the best. Goal setting is about getting on the horse and leading the charge. Before you get on that horse, you had better know where you plan to go. In business school, they call this discovery. It is a process for understanding the possibilities for your organization. I wrote yesterday about the three economic requirements for growth – capital, labor, and productivity. Discovery involves taking a hard look at your financial position, the skills of your employees, and the productivity of how you do business today. A lot of great leadership also involves storytelling. When journalists are interviewing for a story, they are taught to ask who, what, when, where, why, and sometimes how. In business, this process is a bit different.
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Does Your Brand Have a Strategic Plan?
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Choosing a Consulting Service
What is Consulting for Real Estate? Any industry has its ups and downs, but recent years have been particularly turbulent for real estate. In a business like ours, in times like these, having someone to help and guide you is invaluable. Whether you're a brokerage, Association, or MLS, consulting services may be just what you need to take your business to the next level. From technology implementation to strategic planning, consulting services provide the research and advice you need. Questions to Ask There are some important questions to ask when considering any real estate technology product and some that are unique to choosing a consulting service. First, let's look at general questions you'll want to ask. What are my objectives for hiring a consultant and how do you expect the service to benefit your company? What is my budget? After you've asked and answered these questions, you can get down to the questions that are specific to consulting: What is the consultant's background? Do they have experience working on similar projects for a company like yours in the past? Can they provide references? What process will they use in providing the consulting service? Is their proposal detailed and does it include specific deliverables and timelines? Who on your team will work with the consulting firm and who at the consulting firm will lead your project?
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The Summer of Social Business
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Product Review: Immobel’s Multi-Language Website IDX and REAL-Buzz
Although we set out to write a review of Immobel’s Multi-Language IDX Translation, a look at REAL-Buzz was inevitable. Thus, our review covers both. Many REALTORS® who invest in IDX translation to market to global buyers will also choose to participate in the (free) REAL-Buzz.com portal.
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Learning from Inuit Social Media Faux Pas
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Who is Your Company's CSO?
In real estate, we love our letters. CSO is Chief Social Officer. Hence the question begins; who is your company’s designee that owns your social media strategy? As we look back over the past few years, social media evolved slowly. Most corporations started with the tactic of outlawing Social media by employees. After all, like personal cell phone usage, it was viewed as a distraction from the work at hand. Now things have evolved, and progressive organizations have learned that social networking by employees (if done correctly) enhances the company’s brand and strengthens relationships with customers. The challenge is to have a plan for coordinating social media strategy across multiple components of your organization - sales, marketing, IT, research, public relations, HR, etc. There seem to be a variety of schools of thought on this. Some organizations require each department to create their own social media strategy. Others build one strategy and try to engage every person in the organization to participate. Some outsource. Here are some examples in our industry: Lead Strategist, Group Social, Oursource
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New MLS Consultant Partnership Formed!
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Don't Make Them Wait!
You finally decided that with prices still low, you are going to upgrade to that bigger house you and your husband have been talking about for years. Things are good with both your jobs and now is the time. You have heard from several people that XYZ Real Estate has a good reputation and you see a lot of their signs around town so you decide to start your search on their website one night after work. They have a nice site and you are getting excited about the listings they have in the neighborhood you have been wanting to move into. Saturday morning you decide that you want to spend Sunday looking at a few homes for sale in your dream neighborhood. You get back on XYZ’s site while you are having your morning coffee and put in a request to speak to someone about viewing homes tomorrow. It’s about 9 AM and you give them your cell phone number in case they call while you are out and about. Soccer, baseball, yard work, laundry, and grocery shopping chores are done by mid-afternoon. You and your husband finally sit down to relax before cooking dinner and wonder why you have not heard anything from XYZ Real Estate. You are both eager to look at homes tomorrow so you check your email to see if someone has gotten back to you. Nothing on email and nobody has bothered to call after several hours. Not impressed with the lack of response, you get back online and start searching for other companies. Does this happen every day in our industry? Unfortunately, it happens hundreds of thousands of times every single day!
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Need Legal or Consulting Services?
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Listing Syndication - Be Sure to Read the Fine Print
Listing Syndication is a great method for attracting new sellers and increasing exposure for your listings. It is important to know what rights you are giving up when working with each of the online property search portals however. During the Council of MLS conference this year there was a groundswell of discussion about the rights brokers are giving up when they send their listings to third party websites. WAV Group went to school on the terms and conditions of several of the leading third party websites. We were specifically focused on the rights to display, distribute and maintain listing data. We learned that in some cases the broker is transferring the irrevocable, perpetual, non-exclusive, fully paid, royalty-free license to use, retain, transmit, copy, create derivative work of, sell, or distribute the broker’s listing data to other parties or sub-licensees. Bottomline, brokers are giving away rights to their listings they may not be aware of. We also learned that all third party listing sites are NOT created equal. WAV Group has researched this issue and produced a white paper on the topic that has been designed to help brokers ask the right questions before they syndicate their listings. Click here to download. Are You Ready to Wage War Against Data Licensing? Who’s Who in Lifestyle Search Lifestyle Search – What is it?
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Stop Advertising, Start Edutizing
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