Today free access and information has been unleashed upon the computer screens, tablets, and mobile devices of the world. Multiple Listing Services across the country have allowed both Realtors and third parties to aggregate each other's data creating a gridlock of websites that regurgitate exactly the same aggregated information. We've gone from creating value by offering access to data and information to blasting that once guarded commodity all over the web thus eliminating any advantage any one Realtor may have had by possessing that information.
There are some who believe free access to listing information needs to be restricted in order to restore the value of those who possess it. I firmly believe that any attempt to suppress the free flow of information is both foolish and futile. Instead, Realtors should look for ways to increase the quality of their own information. For example, when photographing a listing, one agent may run through the motions by taking photos because that’s what they've been told to do. We've all seen the kitchen shots, sinks full of dirty dishes, and the living room shots with the agent's flash and reflection in the mirror. Another agent who understands the importance of detail and quality might be more diligent in taking photos that will impress and attract the right attention. There are also many agents who still write property descriptions as if they're writing classified ads. Other agents who care about detail and quality write comprehensive property descriptions that contain information not just about the property but also the surrounding community. The description contains material that is not just pulled from data pools but is custom made for that specific property by the agent. Creating custom content makes a huge difference. Huge! And the more we disseminate our products all over the web the easier it becomes for the consumer to see the difference between quality....and crap! Value is no longer one who possesses information. Value is one who creates and distributes the best information.
For more information about how to set yourself apart through creative innovation, contact Ron Cohen @ Ron.Cohen@GothamWest.com