Here are the top comments of the week, gathered from across the site by the Inman editorial staff.

Brian Adams · Commented on SEO vs. PPC: What’s the best real estate marketing strategy?

I wish I had started on SEO earlier. PPC is renting traffic. SEO is earning traffic. And because it takes longer, it’s all the more important to start earlier. You can do both simultaneously, and that’s what I would think is best when starting out.

As an aside — I hear a lot that SEO in real estate is dead because Zillow/Trulia/ can’t be beat.

Google “Colorado Springs Homes for sale” and you’ll see an agent who is beating Zillow on the search rankings (#3 spot as of today). Pretty neat stuff, courtesy of Real Estate Webmasters (I am not a REW user — I have WordPress — but still, pretty neat).

Jane Sciortino · Commented on Why We Need To Stop The Glorification Of Busy

Craig I agree with almost everything in this article because I am one of those agents who has an anxiety attack when you take my phone away. This was done to me at my first KW coaching session.

You see Keller WIlliams business planning always makes you put your vacation down first for the next year. In training we are taught to have voicemail that gives a specific time to return phone calls. But … one of the reasons I answer all the time and work weekends is I don’t have family close by; I am single with a long distance relationship and have no pets.

I did this in my previous occupation in the restaurant business. I worked weekends and holidays so my servers with family could take off and spend time with them.

I realized just recently what you are talking about more than ever though. I took a much needed weekend away and let everyone know not to call. I did have my phone with me (I am a first point of contact with an elderly aunt’s emergency system since my cousins live far away) — but I didn’t have to answer any calls!

I didn’t pick up my phone and take photos of my food (although I had awesome food) and I didn’t check in on Facebook or Twitter for three whole days, and it was wonderful. I didn’t realize how hooked I was until I logged off. I will still take buyers out on weekends since we are in a vacation area and they sometimes fly in just to look at property on a long weekend. Thanks for the article.

Debbie Biery · Commented on Why agents should shut up and listen to consumers

Excellent article Robert! So many times agents are non-stop talking, non-stop promoting, non-stop “me, me, me”… it’s overwhelming and embarrassing.

I recently had an interaction with an agent who talked over his seller, interrupted his seller, and rambled on about personal details that had nothing to do with the topic at hand … it was so unprofessional. It was a great reminder how important it is to be quiet and listen to others. Love the points about Schultz, too — brilliant businessman.

Brooke Livingston · Commented on Millennials aren’t alone — no one is buying a house

Agree and wanted to make an additional point — I think the general viewpoint of the boomer generation that being tied to a home debt somehow makes you “adult” or “grownup” is ludicrous.

Responsibility shouldn’t be tied to how many material possessions you can collect or how far you can go into debt to live in a house, the opposite should be true. Millennials are constantly being being told to grow up or become adults, to settle down and do as the boomers did and start families, buy houses, etc.

Greg Watkins · Commented on Why agents should shut up and listen to consumers

Real estate brokerage needs to be re-engineered. My take on this issue is that technology changed consumer behavior for good, and our industry insists on maintaining its antiquated 100+ year old business model that’s in conflict with the demands of the marketplace.

In should come as no surprise that buyers and sellers are using the internet to perform many tasks directly related to buying and selling homes on their own long before working with agents. Tasks that used to be performed by agents before the advent of the internet. Home buyers and sellers are demanding more transparency, lower cost, and require fewer services from agents than ever before. But, alas, the past is the way forward…right?

It should also come as no surprise that technology has lowered agent time and material costs associated with home buying and selling…the cell phone, email, Docusign, internet advertising, CRM’s, Zillow (the de facto national MLS) have all brought down agent transaction costs.

Unless and until we learn from the corporate sins of the past, and refuse to change, we are all headed for our own “Kodak Moment.”

Heidi Mueller · Commented on Why one indie broker never hires industry insiders

To me that is what a good real estate company has to do. Train the agents, care about their success and their advancement which does as a logical consequence result in the best service to the clients. That’s how it used to be until the companies decided to hire anybody and everybody and burn them out just like the insurance industry does. As far as Compass…….every few years a new company tries to throw money at the business trying to dis-intermediate us. Fortunately we are the industry that cares about people and their happiness. We are going to persevere because we care about people.

Jana Rice · Commented on Redefy, a high-tech discount brokerage, made the Inc. 500 list like this

What a great business model. It’s crazy all the things a Realtor is expected to know and do. It takes years for a Realtor to become an expert at all of them. The assembly line idea streamlines the process and capitolizes on an individual’s best abilities. However I agree with another commenter who said he believes money is being left on the table with the flat fees.

Mary Nack · Commented on Why our clients deserve better than DIY photos

Amen!! And I say Amen again!

I just love it when the agent has taken a photo showing the occupant’s bedroom dresser, for example. I thought we were selling real estate — not the furniture? Or the agent gets “wide angle” happy and you are looking at the property through a fish bowl. Perfect! My favorite are the ‘artistic’ ones that have taken a photo of the room from the ceiling – something they learned in class no doubt – AND at an angle. It looks like the picture was taken from a ride at an amusement park! What the heck are we looking at here?

The average sale price in our market is >$400k. With a $20k+ commission at stake, you can’t invest $100 to get a professional photographer? It is beyond ridiculous! And you call yourself a real estate professional?

Guess you hit a hot button, Teresa. I just hope some of the agents that NEED to read it actually do! Thanks for the post!

Email Caroline Feeney

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