In the real estate business, what is the best model for attracting leads to listings? At the Inman Real Estate Connect in San Francisco today, Sami Inkinen, Co-Founder & CEO of Trulia, and Louis Cammarosano, General Manager at HomeGain, dueled to answer that question.
With a central focus on the agent, Cammarosano spoke of the HomeGain model that has content designed to connect buyers to agents, as well as forms which capture leads. “I don’t think you’re going to hear anyone saying that they closed major sales or sold homes from anwsering questions on a website”, he said, taking a stab at one of the main features on the Trulia site.
In quick defense of Trulia Voices, Inkinen argued, “The mindset of the consumer is moving towards [research] behavior, as they are really doing their homework before making a decision on who to use for services”. He recounted a story that was told to him from an agent who uses Trulia Voices who has received “tons of business” from using the forum.
Both, however, seemed to agree that syndicating real estate listings is a highly effective method. In an open question to the hundreds of real estate professionals in attendance, Inkinen asked how many agents do not syndicate their listings. With only about 1/4 of the room raising their hands, there was a strong indication of how popular and successful this method is for real estate advertising.
Near the end of this intelligent debate, moderator, Brian Boero, Partner at 1000Watt Consulting, asked a thought-provoking question to the combatants when he mused, “How do we get these two models (buyer-centric and agent-centric) to work together?” Suggesting the name “TrueGain” for this merging of models, Boero seemed convinced that this all-encompassing approach could deliver the most powerful real estate marketing of all.
Photo credit: Randy Son Of Robert