Industry News

Prudential VOW plan takes the cake

Opinion: National listings database is way to go for franchise systems

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Earl Lee, president of Prudential Real Estate Affiliates, has masterminded a plan to put the Prudential real estate franchise corporation on top of the charts in online listings, lead generation and capture of referral fees. The plan, which includes Pru's purchase of online brokerage eRealty, makes Prudential the second major traditional franchise operation to open a national-level virtual office Web site with its own and its competitors' listings. The first effort was the Realty Executives Web site, which has a map of the states that links home searchers to framed or MLS Internet data exchange Web sites in local areas. It isn't yet a full-blown VOW with all the listings in every location, but it may be only a matter of time until it is. Lee wasn't in the vicinity, but might as well have been listening last November when Realty Executives COO Bill Powers said: "Anybody who's not building a VOW is nuts." The Prudential and RE/MAX International Web sites have property s...