Agent


I’m a little biased, but Brian Boero is a genius….

Cloud CMA and the downfall of crappy real estate software
via 1000watt Blog

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Call it a case of the tail wagging the dog or just the fact someone took the wrong apple from the apple cart, but change is in the air. Today the wunderkinds at Diverse Solutions are releasing dsIDXpress. In a nutshell dsIDXpress is:

“A plug-in for WordPress that give gives IDX functionality to your website, allows your users to search for and browse available properties on in your MLS, and lets search engines index properties from the MLS on your website.”

I think their tag line says it better.

“MLS on your blog”

For SEO purposes adding dynamic listing content to your blog is like pouring gasoline on a lit fire. And it takes the “agent website” completely out of the equation. In the past the biggest reason you had a website separate from your blog was IDX. Not anymore. Now your blog is your website!

You want to know the test of true innovation? True innovation happens when it puts someone else out of business.

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Diverse Solutions Releases New WordPress IDX Plugin For Indexable Listings

Irvine, CA January 25th, 2010 – Diverse Solutions announced today that they have released a new IDX product called dsIDXpress. The product allows agents and brokers using WordPress to get property listings on their own website and own domain to be indexed by the major search engines. dsIDXpress is different than traditional IDX solutions in that it has both the standard consumer search capabilities as well as the ability to insert specific listings or groups of listings into any page or blog post with their Live Listings(sm) shortcodes. The plugin also automatically builds in search-engine-friendly city, community, and zip code pages that show available properties in the respective areas. Furthermore, listing detail pages are available for every property in the MLS. Overall, dsIDXpress is being touted as a low cost alternative to functionality that was previously only available in high- end custom websites.
The development of dsIDXpress came out of the desire for agents and brokers to have search-engine-indexable IDX listings on their website. With the National Association of Realtors recently adopting changes allowing for search engines to index property listings on an agent’s or broker’s website, the timing couldn’t be more perfect. Diverse Solutions recently completed their beta testing period, and the increase in website traffic from search engines was staggering. Active listings were being indexed by Google and ranking higher than results from the big national sites and large brokers. When asked about the new product, Justin LaJoie, CEO of Diverse Solutions, said, “Since WordPress is quickly becoming the platform of choice for real estate websites, it only made sense that we develop a WordPress IDX plugin that provides the functionality that the industry has been asking for.”
The plugin is built with flexibility in mind with the goal of placing the creative power back in the agents and brokers hands instead of being at the mercy of their vendors. Additionally, the Live Listings(sm) shortcode functionality provides the ultimate control on where listings show up on pages or posts. Live Listings(sm) allows agents and brokers to create the perfect city, community, or zip-specific pages with listings that are updated in real time for that area. dsIDXpress also include a number of WordPress IDX widgets, including their search and mapping widgets.
For more information about dsIDXpress, visit http://www.dsIDXpress.com or simply search for “dsIDXpress” in the WordPress plugin directory.
About Diverse Solutions
Headquartered in Southern California, Diverse Solutions is a leading provider of IDX technology for clients nation wide. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to enhance the productivity and marketing efforts of real estate professionals through cutting-edge technology, excellent service, and superior quality.

1000Watt Consulting released the “1000watt Index” this week. To me this is the next generation of the “Real Estate Mind Map” they published awhile back. Here’s a few thoughts I have about the site.

First off, I LOVE the design. It’s as simple as it gets. Great layout. They have about 35 categories, laid out nicely, and already have over 300 links to companies/products.

This reminded me of a simliar web site launched a couple months ago called Haystack.com (now called Sortfolio.com). It was put out by the guys at 37signals. Basically it’s was a way for companies to find web designers. Web designers can get a free posting or pay for a premium posting (bigger, more content).

Joel at 1000watt says there are no plans for charging vendors. But I think it is something they should consider.

Taking it a step further is the WAV Group. They are launching a new site called RETechnology.com. The site is not launched yet but will launching in several markets early this year. They also provide free listings for vendors AND a way to pay for premium ads. Agents will able to access the site through their MLS system is some markets.

The guys at LPS Real Estate Group have asked me to post this new job opening.

LPS Real Estate Group – Broker & Agent Products
Position: Product Manager

Background

LPS Real Estate Group is a leading provider of Internet solutions for the real estate industry. The Broker & Agent Products (BAP) team offers an award-winning suite of products, called rDesk, which includes broker and agent web sites, Contact Manager, CMA, IDX, and more. We are expanding our product management team, and looking for an enthusiastic individual that possesses that rare but valuable mixture of intellectual curiosity, business acumen, marketing savvy, technical proficiencies, strong communication skills, and fastidious attention to detail.


Job Description

The Product Manager is responsible for the product planning and execution throughout the product lifecycle, including: gathering and prioritizing product and customer requirements, defining the product vision, and working closely with engineering, sales, marketing and support to ensure revenue and customer satisfaction goals are met. The Product Manager’s job also includes ensuring that the product and marketing efforts support the company’s overall strategy and goals.

The Product Manager is expected to:
1. Define the product strategy and roadmap based on market needs and industry trends as well as information gathered from customers and business stakeholders
2. Work with customers, business, sales, account management, and support to understand, prioritize, and communicate product requirements.
3. Clearly define development tasks in the form of Product Specifications
4. Work closely with engineering, QA, project management, and account management teams to ensure successful launch and ongoing enhancements to products
5. Conduct market analysis and run usability studies, focus groups, and surveys to assess, confirm, define, and prioritize product plans.
6. Work with sales and marketing to establish pricing and effective communication of product features and value propositions.
7. Keep up-to-date with market trends and industry information, and be an expert with regards to the competition.
8. Work with external third parties to assess and form strategic partnerships and licensing opportunities

Qualifications

• Minimum 5 years experience as product manager, business analyst or related responsibility. Experience with real estate products a significant plus.
• Minimum 3 years experience working with software and Internet products, primarily in the B2B sector.
• Proven technical proficiencies in software and Internet arena, such that you can communicate effectively with engineering. Experience with Agile development environment a plus.
• Experience in producing product specifications. Able to supplement words with screen shots and other tools to communicate what is required.
• Demonstrated success in working in a team environment with engineering, project management, customer support, sales, etc.
• Highly organized, with extensive attention to detail.
• Have an absolute comfort in engaging with clients and partners.
• Possess a natural curiosity to explore product opportunities, and ability to convert that understanding into clear specifications.
• Strong industry references.

Contact:

Gail.Wu at lpsvcs dot com

*** This post is best read while listening to Jay Z’s track “Empire State of Mind” off his new album “The Blueprint III ***

Oh man I’m getting pumped up for next week! Brad Inman and his team have certainly put together another great conference. I’ve heard attendance is up from last year. So I’m looking forward to seeing everyone. Dan and I have a lot going on at the conference that I wanted to share with you.

First up:

Cloud CMA launch!
Yup, we plan to officially launch our latest web app, Cloud CMA at the show. We will have a SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT about this later this week so STAY TUNED!

We will have a demo pod on Wednesday only in “Start-Up Alley” so if you want to come and see a live demo of Cloud CMA please stop by!

Wednesday, January 13

ConnectTech

Dan Woolley will be moderating a Workshop called ConnectTech from 9AM to 11:30AM
Topics include:
Tips and Tricks For Working with the iPhone SDK
How to code IDX Solutions that Don’t Suck
CTO Roundtable: What’s the Next Round of Online Real Estate Innovation?

Thursday, January 14

10:20AM – 10:40AM
I (Greg Robertson) will be on stage for “Start-up Shoot-Out” Part I:The Entrepreneurs”
There will be six us of us pitching our new products and the audience and a panel of judges will decide who take home a prize valued at $25,000!

11:10AM – 11:30AM
Start-Up Shoot-Out Part II: The Investors
High-profile venture investors weigh-in on the start-ups. What do they like? What don’t they like? Will they invest? (Not sure if we get back on stage for this or not yet?)
Investors include: Simon Baker, Vanessa Fox, Brad Inman, and Michael Yang

3PM to 4:PM

I’m doing “CONNECT LAB 2”:

Vendors Only: Selling Technology Solutions in Real Estate
“You’ve got an application. A service. Something you think is killer. But you have no idea how to market and sell it. Learn how to price your product, message it, and get in front of the people who will buy it in this session led by one of the most battle-tested marketing and bus dev executives in the business.”

I’ll be giving a short presentation on what I’m calling “The Twin Peaks of real estate app sales”

I’m kind of bummed a bit because Michael Wurzer is moderating one of the “INNOVATION TRACKS” around the same time:

TRACK 3 – The MLS
2PM to 5PM

MIke has a killer line up of topics and panelists.

RPR Reverb: Should MLSs Love it or Fear it?
Breaking Data Taboos for Fun and Profit
For Those Who Think Big: Charter an Alternate Strategy for Your MLS
Not if, But How To: Work Towards Best Practices for MLS Data Sharing

Ought to be a good show. See you there!

Just in case you missed it yesterday….

My only question is how much did Gregg Larson pay this guy? ; )

I kid…I kid!

Shane McCarthy has left VisualTour and joined RISMedia new “Top 5 in Real Estate“, headed by former President of Realtor.com, Allan Dalton.

Here’s how Allan describes “Top 5”:

“By joining this unique real estate network, you are signaling to consumers that you have earned elite status within your profession. Consumers will take note that membership is reserved for only those North American real estate agents who have satisfied five “consumer-valued criteria.”

I’m not sure what that means. But Shane is definitely on my “Top 5” list of persons for selling software to Realtors.

Good luck and congrats on the new gig Shane!

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