Industry NewsMLS & Associations

To sell to MLSs, first get in tune with their needs

Vendors should listen instead of making a sales pitch that's a shot in the dark

Multiple listing service executives are constantly barraged by sales pitches from vendors of one kind or another. But the best way to get an MLS exec's attention may be to listen, not sell. "Ask, 'What are your struggles? What's your process? What's your strategic plan?'" said Steve Allen, director of business development at UtahRealEstate.com, a public-facing site operated by the Wasatch Front Regional Multiple Listing Service (WFRMLS). Allen spoke on a panel at Real Estate Connect New York City last week titled "Mission Impossible? How to market and sell real estate software." He offers a unique perspective as both a former agent and a former MLS software vendor for Hewlett-Packard. Inman News caught up with him after the panel. WFRMLS has 10,000 members, which the MLS estimates represents 92 percent of Utah's real estate agents."My biggest advice (for vendors) is to get to know who the decision-makers are, understand their business model, and understand tha...