We do however hold particular excitement about NAR’s annual REALTORS® Conference. The massive, multi-day undertaking brings together professionals in real estate at every level for dialog and the exchange of new ideas, all touching on the most important topics in the industry. What’s not to love?
From November 7-11 we were in San Francisco for the 2019 REALTORS® Conference & Expo and while we may have left our hearts in San Francisco, we gained great insight into the state of the industry. To share all we saw and learned at the conference this year could fill a book, so we distilled several days’ worth of insights into a list of four key takeaways from our time in San Francisco.
- We’re in the Era of the Smart Office
If it wasn’t already obvious by looking at the titles of the conference’s education sessions, a trip down the expo floor made it clear: technology to simplify and expedite daily tasks is more pervasive than ever. Like smart houses (which were also a much-discussed topic of conversation this year), smart offices have become the topic du jour in the industry. From tools to automate website and social media tasks, to solutions to handle home showings, it’s clear that the real estate industry has completely embraced technology to handle common tasks.
Of course, real estate is a people business, so any technology employed is only as successful as its ability for agents to continue to provide the personal touch that their clients expect from them. Fortunately, we were heartened to see that most conversations about technology also emphasized how it can be used to enhance, not supplant, agent-client interaction.
- Privacy and Security are Top of Mind
Perhaps the logical conclusion from the increasingly universal use of technology to facilitate the home buying and selling process, the topic of how real estate professionals can ensure safety for themselves and their clients was a big one. Likewise, as an increasing amount of personal data is stored online, privacy has become a key concern in the industry.
While there was no one-size-fits-all approach to ensuring smooth, safe real estate transactions, it was clear that industry leaders are paying attention. With the stakes being what they are, the industry can’t afford to be complacent about protecting its most valuable asset: people.
Did you know: ShowingTime protects agents and their clients throughout the showing process. Learn more about some of the ways ShowingTime keeps users safe by clicking here.
- Video has Never Been Bigger
The use of video to market an agent, firm or property is by no means a new thing. In fact, according to NAR’s 2018 REALTOR® Technology Survey, 38 percent of respondents said that they use video for marketing purposes. Yet with 20 different education sessions containing the word “video” at this year’s conference, it’s clear that video use in real estate is bigger than ever.
It’s not hard to see why video is growing in popularity. What 20 years ago would have required the use of pricey technology and access to a specialist, now can be accomplished by anyone with a smartphone and access to a free video hosting platform like YouTube. The spread of social media and its ascendency as a top real estate marketing tool has also helped make video an appealing way to stand out from the crowd and generate more leads.
SEE ALSO: How Real Estate Agents Can Benefit From Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube & Pinterest | 4 Areas of Focus to Generate Real Estate Leads on Facebook | 5 Ways Social Media Can Grow Your Real Estate Business | Top Free Marketing Tools for Real Estate Agents & Brokers
A big thanks to Elizabeth Nelson, Jennifer Sturlaugson and Nathan Larson of Park Co. Realtors for sharing some kind words about their experiences with ShowingTime!
- All Eyes are on 2020
It’s commonplace this time of year to begin looking ahead and wondering what’s in store for the industry, and the prospect of a new decade particularly seemed to capture the imaginations of conference attendees. Who could blame them? Next year promises to be an exciting one, albeit one for which there are still many questions.
Will there be another recession? What affects could the 2020 presidential election have on real estate? How will technology continue to evolve in the year ahead? These were the kinds of questions on the lips of conference-goers, and they’re good ones. While we won’t speculate on the answers to these questions, we can say that we expect 2020 to be a fruitful year for ShowingTime users!
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