RedFin And Podcasting 101 For Real Estate Agents Part 2

RedFin And Podcasting 101 For Real Estate Agents Part 2

We discuss in the first half of the show a recent interview that “Glenn Kelman” Founder and CEO of Redfin did on the podcast “This Week in Startups” hosted by “Jason Calacanis” connected about the present housing market and how Covid – 19 has and will change fundamentally the housing market in the USA.

Then in the second half of the show, I go into some more details on why I think this is an excellent time for real estate agents to consider starting a local podcast about their town or city and then go and interview all the areas “shakers and movers in the area. We go into some detail what are some of your choices connected to how you do these types of interviews.

Transcript of The Podcast

Robert Newman: Hello, this is Robert Newman here with John today Is episode number 304 of the Mail-Right real estate marketing podcast. And John has a surprise for me today. Now the second half of the show, I know what it’s about. We’re going to be talking about, podcasting again and how you can leverage that for your real estate business. In the first part of the show, though, John has a little surprise for me that has something to do with the CEO of Redfin and an interview that he did. And he just wants to kind of want to have an open-air dialogue with my surprise face, or for those of you listening my surprise voice. So welcome to the show. We’re super excited to get started, but before we do, why don’t, I have those of you that don’t know him already be introduced to my amazing co-host John, John, John founder of Mail-Right

Jonathan Denwood: Oh, thank you so much, Robert. You’re so nice to me. So yeah, I’m the founder of Mail-Right. If you’re looking to have your own website and you should have your own website, not your broker’s website and you need to control your marketing message, come to Mail-Right we will build your website. We’ve got a host of other features and we built it all on WordPress and you own your own website. So that’s important. You’re not leasing, you’re in your own local branding right over to you.

Robert Newman: Beautiful. All right, ladies and gentlemen. So, my name is Robert Newman. I’m the founder of in-bound REM. John asked me to help him with the ship. Well, help him. Co-host the show with them years ago, we’ve now done close to 200 episodes or we’re what, maybe 1 71 somewhere in there. So that’s a lot of shows to do. And I used to specialize in SEO am still specialized in it, but truth be told, I’m now kind of a generalist thanks to the show and John and his beautiful stewardship. So with no further ado, John, there’s the wind up surprised me, my man.

Jonathan Denwood: So, as I was saying, I listened to a lot of podcasts. A lot of them do not specifically have to do with the real estate industry. There’s one particular that I’ve been listening to for years, and that’s called this week in start-ups. And it’s hosted by a famous individual in Silicon Valley and in the VC industry Jason Calacanis. I think he’s up to 1,010 episodes of something Robert he’s done more than us? And he was interviewing a personal friend of his and that was Glenn Coleman. Hopefully, I’m not butchering Glen’s second name. And he is the founder and CEO of Redfin. And Jason interviewed Glenn for over an hour about what he saw as where the real estate market is, where it is going to be in a year’s time, what Redfin is trying to do and trying to do in the future.

And I, was doing my morning walk and I was listening to this conversation and I relistened to it a few days ago. And I’ll come to this conclusion that with what has happened around the virus around the pandemic, around the virus and the over 18 months that a lot of people have been on furlough or they’ve lost their job, or they’re doing their job remotely at home. And, you know, a few months ago we hoped that we were at a stage that we would see the back of this virus, unfortunately, that hasn’t totally panned out. But if it had anyway, things are not gonna go back to what they were like before the pandemic that is pretty obvious.

And what I mean by that is that a lot of people who used to have to commute an hour, hour and a half, some people were to commute two hours plus to get to their office, to do their job. They’re not going to have to do that or B they’re going to refuse to do that. And if they’ve got a skill that’s in demand, if they are forced to do that commute again, they’re going to bail. They are going to go with another company that allows them to work at home. Some people don’t want to work at home because they got a smaller place or they can’t concentrate, but most people are faced with an hour-plus commute. The last thing they want to do is to go back to that because most people, not all people, but most people hate commuting.

So how does this affect real estate and how does this affect Redfin? Well, it affects because those institutions, those that invested heavily in commercial real estate not straight away, because most of the people that have signed contracts for commercial property, unless they’ve got a clear, brake clause or way of buying out of their lease, they’re not going to be able to walk away from that lease even if they wish to. But what it does mean is that over the next few years, that the commercial real estate sector is going to be semi-destroyed. Don’t get me wrong. If you’ve got a premiere office or office block, in a premier location in San Francisco or in Dallas, you’re probably going to be okay. But I’m talking about in the suburbs, middle size, smaller office complexes, the writing is on the wall folks. The market isn’t going to go back.

And when it came to investments, you know, hedge funds, other large financial investment entities, they really invested a lot of their money into commercial property in the domestic US market and abroad. And what’s going to happen to the commercial retail industry is not just going to happen in America we’re talking about a global phenomenon where people are just not going to work in offices so much or not work in offices at all. They’re going to work remotely. And this is going to have a tremendous consequence to these financial companies. So how are they going to deal with this enormous change?

Well, they’re going to look to invest their money somewhere else. And the reason why they like commercial property is that you have that underlying asset and you have a regular payment and it’s not particularly high risk, and it’s not particularly difficult to understand the fundamentals. So it’s very attractive for people that have large amounts of money to invest in that sector. So what alternative are they going to find? Well, this is where Redfin, Zillow, and open door and have like, this is the vacuum which they are planning to fill because these companies, Redfin don’t get me wrong. I think Glenn Coleman is a hugely intelligent individual and Redfin’s, the share price has gone up quite considerably over the past couple of years, but I would suggest that is more to do, with what we’ve seen in the real estate market.

I’ve always been critical of the actual business model because I just don’t think it’s chilled completely. But what these companies like Redfin are planning. They’re planning to cut everybody out. They want to cut out the real estate agent. They want to cut out the broker. They want to cut out the mortgage broker. They want to cut everybody. Everybody’s cut in, in the sale of a house. They want to cut out the small wholesaler or the individual that flips a home. They want to cut everybody, they want all the gravy for themselves. And they mean to become a wholesaler, the real estate agent, the finance broker all in one, and then they propose, this is what I feel that they are planning is to bundle a whole load of homes, which they have bought and then sell them to hedge funds.

Now, hedge funds normally are not in the business of buying individual homes. They will go to a builder and build a whole development and buy the whole development of the builder. And we’ve seen that happen recently, but they’re not normally in the business. They did enter the market in the last great recession, but I bought whole packages of homes from banks that’s how they do business. Well, this is what Redfin and Zillow are planning. They are planning to package how bundles of homes and sell them directly to the finance brokerage is hedge funds, whoever wants to buy- Like you get a hedge fund, they want to buy 200 homes in Dallas where they just go to Zillow and Zillow will have 200 homes to sell to them. This is what they’re planning. Before I give you another bit, what, what do you think of what I’ve just stated Robert?

Robert Newman: Well, okay. I mean my guess. My first statement is it seems like it’s just something that really caught your interest. I don’t think it’s anything different than what we’ve talked about and I don’t think it’s anything different. I think that it’s as a broad statement, the search portals, which is Redfin, Trulia,, they’ve been all competing for an ever-decreasing slice of market share because they’re all basically just competing for search, which was the model that they got into since 2010. That model is a little bit oversaturated. And it has been for a long time. Redfin is in that model too. So everybody seems to be looking for what’s the next thing it’s like, oh, we own all the search, which effectively means that we should own a big piece of the real estate business buying and selling. That’s what everybody’s saying right now. It doesn’t matter whether it’s Redfin. You’re just saying, this is my thoughts about what Redfin’s strategy is.

Jonathan Denwood: Not only Redfin but Zillow, open door.

Robert Newman: Right and open door, just had $1.2 billion worth of transactions. I think as a general rule, I do think that we’re basically gonna watch, how is it digitization gonna affect real estate? Now at a very broad level, my opinion about that is that number one, we’re going to see virtual play a big part of it. Number two, we are going to see these portals own a very big piece of the real estate business. I think that virtual, it hasn’t yet stepped into the real estate market in a way that you’d expect it to. But I do think it’s going to, and I think if the pandemic continues to play, the US in any way. I do believe that just like, even if it’s just the news headlines, let’s say 70% of the people get vaccinated, but there’s still a couple of holdout states where people aren’t getting vaccinated.

And now all of a sudden, those states have outbreaks and that captures the headlines, which is basically what’s happening right now. I think that we’re going to, we’re watching. So how does that affect what you’re saying? I like, do I have any specific opinions about, Redfin’s specific strategy? If you’re going to say they’re bringing it in-house or they’re trying to figure out ways to own their particular piece of market share. I agree whether that’s packaging homes up and selling them to hedge funds or not. I don’t know about that. At the end of the day, somebody has to unload the homes onto homeowners. There are ways to make your money on the back end. If you’re doing everything, you can make your money on the note, you can make your money. But still, because real estate agents make their money on the commission of buying and selling well, big, big, big, huge institutional investors wouldn’t necessarily have to do that.

There are so many different ways to make yourself money inside the whole transaction. You’ve got the title fees, you’ve got the transaction fees, you’ve got the mortgage fees. So there are all these different ways. You could literally say, I’m going to eliminate the commission for buying and selling a home, but take my money. If the client is going to buy the note from me and still be making two or three points on the entire transaction. There’s so much money inside real estate inside the whole transaction pie, a big company could split it up. Any number of different ways

Jonathan Denwood: Just to finish off because the big problem with wholesaling was, or is, is it only attracts and a minority of clients. Those that want a very quick sale for various reasons, those that are in financial distress for some reason, or they are being handed a property out of state through death, and it’s just a hassle to deal with it remotely. So they want to sell it quickly. And normally when it comes to property, if you’re in a distress situation or distress time situation, you’re not going to get the best price for the property. You’re going to have to if you want a quick sale unless it’s a very hot market, which we’ve just seen it. Normally you have to sell it and you sell it at a discount, our wholesale discount, and that can be quite considerable from 25 to over 30%, depending on your personal circumstance and the condition of the house.

But what Redfin is talking about is that they’re going to go for volume and they’ve got already buyers lined up by the financial institutions. They’re going to do the whole their cut because they’re also, they get a cut from all the other profit centers, which you have described. Their wholesale cut is going to be a lot slower than the traditional model. That,

Robert Newman: I think we’re well past our break.

Jonathan Denwood: So we need to go for our break I normally say that to you. Don’t I? So we need to go for our break and we’re going to delve into podcasting. Aren’t we?

Robert Newman: Yes. All right. So ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, real estate professionals of all ages and levels of experience, we’re super excited that you tuned into Mail-Right stay tuned we’re going to be talking about how we, you can make podcasting a part of your marketing strategy. We’ll be right back.

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Robert Newman: Welcome Back to the mail, a right show wherein episode number 304, John just wrapped up a segment on his thoughts on where Redfin is going in the marketplace of tomorrow. And now we’re going to drift back to a topic that we started in episode number 302 of the Mail-Right Show where we’re talking about the real estate podcasting. unfortunately, John, I don’t actually remember exactly where we left off in that, in that long conversation. I know, I know shock shocking, and surprised.

Jonathan Denwood: I’m so shocked to hear that Robert. I normally have this effect on Robert it doesn’t really remember much of what I say to him.

Robert Newman: I just don’t remember where we, you and I collectively left off in that show. But I do know that we agreed that we’re going to talk about real estate podcasting again, the second time, hopefully, you have a starting point to kick us off and-

Jonathan Denwood: Luckily I do remember where we ended and it was basically, we went from a very broad description of why you should be looking at podcasting as a means of marketing yourself in your local community or city. As a method to my yourself, stand out in a very competitive market. And just to finish that off just want to go through some of the actual, equipment and some of the mechanics that you need to know. I just want to quickly finish off where I ended, in our last discussion around podcasting. And one of the great things is it’s become so much easier to do podcasting. And the reason is the pandemic of the virus because so many people weren’t used.

One of the problems with doing podcasting before the pandemic was that a lot of people didn’t have a headphone, a decent mic they didn’t know how to use zoom. They didn’t know how to use Skype. When you called them up, you spend about half an hour trying to work out how they could get connected and the sound cause he was normally dreadful. If it wasn’t somebody that was either in marketing or promoting their business or service through appearing on podcasts, their sound quality, and the loops that you had to go through were painful. Because of the pandemic by people, the type of people that you’re probably gonna want to interview in your local podcast have probably got used to using zoom. They’ve probably invested in a proper mine system and they’ve got used to how to use that system. So it’s going to be a lot easier to actually do interviews with local shakers and movers or people that your target audience would be interested in. Is that making sense, Robert?

Robert Newman: Yes.

Jonathan Denwood: Now,, you got two choices to make when it comes to interviewing either you do the interviewing like what we do because Robert lives in California and I live in Nevada, so it’s not physically possible for this to do this in a location. We do it over zoom. So, and we either do an internal show, like what we are doing now, or we interview a guest. You’ve got the same choice. do you do it all remote fruit zoom, or do you go to these shakers and movers in your local community and interview them at their place of work or their office?

Well, both have their strengths and weaknesses, you know, like I say until the pandemic, in some ways it was easier to go to their office because you could take your own equipment, you could set it up and it meant that you didn’t have to go through all the nightmares. So trying to get somebody to teach them how to use the zoom or how to use a mic you just didn’t have to deal with that. But because of the pandemic, it’s much easier now because people understand how to use zoom.

So I think when it comes to time, obviously, you can interview more people more efficiently over zoom and like book one or two people, and record it through zoom and the sound quality, I record our shows through zoom and the sound quality and the compression that zoom uses is quite effective. And then I send it to an editor who has been working for me for the past four years now. He, he lives in Chile. I’ve never met the gentleman, but he’s always been very responsive. And he’s a member of my team now.

Or you could choose to still go to people’s office is why would you do that? Because it’s a lot more time-consuming, isn’t it? Well, you would do that because I don’t care what anybody says. You know, I’ve only met Robert through zoom and I classify Robert as a friend, but I’ve never met Robert in person. And yeah. You know, I would still classify Robert as a friend, but it’s not the same as meeting Robert in person. You can never- is like if you were dating. Yeah, you might, you might have a conversation with somebody on zoom about the possibility of meeting, but it can never replace actually physically meeting that individual connected to build in a real, real relationship with that person.

So you’re not only doing the podcasting to build an audience and to build your brand. You’re also doing it to make real relationships with the type of people in your local community that could be great resources for sending possible clients, to you, introducing you to people that might also be able to introduce clients to you in building your network. Because to be a real effective agent, I feel we’ve got to be effective online, but you still got to build your local network. What do you reckon about that, Robert?

Robert Newman: Of course I agree with everything you were saying about equipment, about those networks, about basically everything related to podcasts. And of course, I agree with the fact that you need the right kind of equipment. I think you can do it inexpensively. I think that you do have to- I do think that the, I have been on the phone, my entire career at John. Some of the things you’re talking about almost sound foreign to me because many, if not, most of my business relationships are built up entirely with what you are referring to is virtual. You get to be a master of looking at or hearing somebody’s intonation. And when you start developing a lot of relationships by sound or by visual, you get used to it. It’s just to say it’s just a slightly different concept than building them in person. And honestly, at this late stage in my career, I prefer to build all of my relationships virtually as opposed to get in the car and drive somewhere or get on a plane and fly somewhere constant.

Jonathan Denwood: I’m sure you are not including your dating relationships.

Robert Newman: Well, except for those. Yes. but a lot of those are run virtually to a degree. A lot of that connection is done via text or other messages because I’m an entrepreneur and I’m busy. So I don’t actually nurture those as much as some of those partners would like, in-person I do it.

Jonathan Denwood: I think, we got to understand because of your background and I’m just the same. There’s a lot of people in the WordPress community that I would classify as friends that I’ve never, I have known for over years now. Robert, I’ve never met him. I’ve never met him once. But I, the reason why I put that in is that I think we’re growing. We were quite unusual in a way, but also what you’ve just stated is rapid. I wouldn’t say becoming the norm but growing, but I still think for a lot of people that are not used to it like yourself, with your prior history that they find it easier to build real connection when it’s face to face.

Robert Newman: It’s funny too because once you’re face to face, there’s a lot of intricacies that involve building those relationships that are very different than building them digitally or building them by phone. There are things that you’re in control of when you’re doing it by phone, that you’re not in control of when you’re in person. Finding easy outs or excuses, if a meeting isn’t going well, is one of the. So my answer to your overall statement is I believe that podcasting is long overdue. It essentially is taking radio or the concept of radio, which has been a powerful concept in our society since the 1930s. the sound of people’s voices and the stories that they tell is never going to go away in terms of how important or impactful it is. There are literally thousands of you listening to the sound of my voice right now, which confuses me because I don’t think I have a great voice, but you’re listening to it because maybe you think I have something to say, but it moves us. It it’s powerful.

And that’s so if you’re thinking, I think that what John tried to say eloquently is, hey, don’t forget those, those old school ways of marketing yourself, but podcasting should not be underestimated in terms of a fairly easy, fairly cheap equipment-wise way to get into producing kinds of content. And didn’t we read the statistics the last time that we did this and like, look up really quickly. I looked up how many people are actually listening to podcasts, just on the regular, it’s like 180 million people listen. And something like 60 million people considers themselves to be avid podcast followers. Wasn’t that roughly the number?

Jonathan Denwood: It was and it’s growing and doesn’t worry, listen, and viewers about the equipment. I will have some links to some inexpensive equipment in the show notes supporting this podcast. Also, I think probably in September when we don’t have a guest, we probably have to do a part three about podcasting because I did take up a lot of time in the first half of this show explaining my thoughts about Redfin and Zillow and Opendoor just wasn’t choosing Redfin. It just was on my radar because I listened to that interview with Glen Kelman. But, I think in September when we don’t have a guest, we have to do a part three where I go into the actual physical equipment as well. But I totally agree with what you just said. We need to wrap it up back over to you, Robert.

Robert Newman: well, ladies and gentlemen, so here’s a couple of last details that you need. So one of those things that, John is talking about is he’s talking about, he found the episode on a show called this week in start-ups, which honestly I’ve never followed. And I didn’t really even know until John introduced it to me. The show’s date was August 6th, 2021. If you want to know what John is referring to it’s episode 1,261. And, you can go ahead and look that up. If you’re curious to know what the John on one is, that’s the show that he’s referring to. Other than that, we really appreciate you listening to our little podcast because our podcast is small in comparison to the one that he’s referencing, but we’re growing all the time. It’s because of amazing people like you. If any of you know, somebody in the real estate business that is struggling or is asking simple questions about real estate marketing, like what platforms should they use or should they try postcards or, should they give up because they’re worried about what’s going to happen in the future, which is what, where you refer them to this episode. I’m going to say, please have a conversation-

Jonathan Denwood: I’m sorry, to interrupt but I was just saying, that’s what their plan of action. I’m not saying that I feel that it’s going to be successful because I think there are all sorts of questions around legality and ethics and a host of legal and political and all sorts of things. But we, I couldn’t delve into that maybe in September, we’ll have another look at that as well.

Robert Newman: Perfect. I wasn’t inferring that. I was just saying, hey, sometimes people call me and they say, Hey, should I give up? And I tell them, no, this is the best time in the world. The best time everybody, these platforms are moving in and changing so much because they’re losing market share and you just don’t see it. But I do. They’re losing market share, which is why they’re getting into other markets at such a rapid clip. Literally every single one of these guys. If the old model was still working for them they wouldn’t be trying to shake up their business, but the business is already shaken up. And so that’s my comment to what John said, but let’s save the rest for another episode. like us on apple iTunes, please, please, please look at whatever John posts on mail hyphen, right. YouTube tone. And at some point, guys, I will probably get around to reproducing these videos and doing my own little spin on them on my channel. But in the meantime, you can find, I have a whole section dedicated to podcasts on inbound, All right, guys, have a great day, John and I appreciate you see on the next show.

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