I had the pleasure of interviewing

Editor’s note: View the original article at InmanNext: "What Real Estate Agents Can Learn from Virgin America — An Interview With Porter Gale."

I had the pleasure of interviewing Porter Gale, vice president of marketing at Virgin America, at Real Estate Connect San Francisco. Porter is a huge name in the marketing, tech and social media world, but what I really loved about Porter is how down to earth she was, and how gracious she was with her time. A true class act!

Virgin America’s social media marketing has redefined how people look at branding. In an industry where consumers feel "nickel and dimed" at every turn, where travelers are weary and tired, and where cost is the bottom line, Virgin has made a huge name for themselves.

Why? Because they care. Because they listen to their clients. Because they do things a little bit better than the other guy.

With a budget the tenth of the size of Southwest Airlines, Virgin America has been able to create a brand that connects with people — where people feel "cooler" because they have flown with them!

In this interview, I asked Porter to relate some of Virgin’s guiding principles to real estate agents. How can agents connect with people in their local community? How can agents fight mediocrity and do things better than their competitors?

Note: This video was filmed before Porter’s big announcement yesterday, that she will be leaving Virgin America in September to work for an unnamed startup. Porter wrote a very poignant article Wednesday in the Huffington Post about leaving Virgin.

In her article, Porter says this powerful statement:

"I was recently asked to speak on social media at a conference. After some thought, I emailed the host group and inquired if I could speak on networking. The reason? My thoughts are that networking is all about making the most of random moments. It’s not always about building your Twitter following or increasing the number of folks in your G+ circles or maintaining your Klout score. Sometimes, the most powerful person in your future is randomly sitting next to you at an event, in the grocery store or on a plane."

What a great point — especially for anyone in the real estate community!

It sounds like Porter will be moving onto a really exciting venture — and if history is any indicator, anything that Porter Gale touches turns to gold. We wish Porter the best and hope to see her again soon!

Do you have a comment or question for Porter? Tweet her @portergale or leave us a comment below!

Katie Lance is the contributing editor of InmanNext, and the social media director for Inman News. InmanNext is a part of Inman News.

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