One of the big things in real estate these days is instant availability to your clients. Many agents carry smart phones so they can always see their email.
We have been told that clients will move on and seek another agent unless they hear back within 15 minutes of sending an email.
This of course is just the logical extension of the Google search. If you do not find what you want in the first five search results, you move on.
One of the post laughs a little about the kind of information that you can find with Google and the other talks seriously about how Google somehow replaces much of the information that used to be passed on by family and close neighbors.
While it might be nice to get a quick reply from a smart phone that I will get back to you shortly, I would certainly rather get a real contact from someone.
We have gotten to the point that people prefer quick over accurate, and anonymous over professional.
I have not decided why people have become so jaded that they are not interested in talking to professionals about a subject. Most people place the greatest importance on getting their information quickly. They seem relatively uninterested in making certain that they are getting good information.
As a Realtor®, I have gotten more training and access to useful information than I ever have previously in my sales career. Yet I get the feeling that most people are afraid of the information or power that Realtors® have. We seem to be only slightly above used car salesmen even though we go through a rigorous licensing procedure and take additional training each year.
People believed every word that I said as an Apple sales person. Unfortunately I knew almost nothing because of Apple’s North Korean style secrecy. Still people depended on my best guess as to whether or not to place million dollar computer orders.
My theory on sales does not have anything in it about magically tricking people into buying something that they do not want. Sales is all about finding out what someone wants and helping them find it.
When most people take the time to seek out a dedicated real estate professional, they add a local expert who can fill many of the cracks where the Internet just does not provide complete information.
I often get questions on online forums. I go to great pains to respond accurately to people’s questions. I do it not because people are likely to turn around and buy property from me but because by getting good information on the table, I can hopefully make people see that the quality of the information is more important than the speed of the answer.
We have become a society that does not want to wait. We would rather jump to whatever conclusion we can instead of taking the time to dig deeper and get real answers.
Google is part of my daily life, but I have no intention of trying to beat Google to the punch or supply Google type information. If you do a Google search for “Cape Carteret, NC,” you will come up with a Google map and lots of links.
You might be able to find what you want in those links. If you search for “Local expert Cape Carteret, NC,” I come up number six in the search. If you send me a note, I will likely be able to give you better information than you might get from a Google search. At the most you will wait a few hours.
Even Google has figured that out since they let us create more useful maps using their tools. You can compare my Cape Carteret map to the one you got in the Google search.
It depends on what you want with your Google search. If finding the right place to live the next twenty years is what you want, just maybe you should take the time to evaluate your sources instead of taking whatever Google throws at you.
If you are looking for the location of an ATM machine, Google is probably the right tool.
A friend and I are rolling out a local Internet resource which we expect will create another level of information at a more local level. We hope by involving lots of people we can get good information which is locally based and refreshed on a regular basis. We have the prototype up at CarteretNorthCarolina.us .
We will see whether it makes a difference in the long run.