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Rich Media And International Opportunities Abounded At The NAR 2007 Annual Convention

November 19, 2007

I was struck by a number of things while at the annual convention of the National Association of REALTORS(r).

First and foremost was just the sheer number of people. Combine the normal throngs in any given casino hotel of Las Vegas and add dozens of thousands of REALTORS…wowsa, was it packed.  Just meeting up with people was a major logistic exercise at times.  The well stocked blogger’s lounge on the 4th floor was often the meetup location of choice.  We decide to participate in the convention rather than just film real estate video interviews on this trip.  Too many places to be and very few quiet areas…plus we really wanted to see Bill Cosby!

Next was the number of actually interesting seminars.  Most conferences have a few interesting seminars…the NAR conference had 3-4 seminars during every time block that I really wanted to attend. Choosing was the worst part…

Also surprising was the number of rich media participants in the Expo. There were a lot more video and virtual tour companies than I expected.  We stopped at every rich media provider stand.  While many were interesting, very few seemed to have any sort of real differentiating proposition. I was constantly thinking about the old adage, “if you dont have any differentiation from your competitors, you’d better be cheap”. Pricing was fairly consistent across the board in the groupings of virtual and video tours. Expect to see the number of video tour companies expand and costs drop as palm sized HD videocameras continue to fall in price.

International also had a strong presence at the Expo thanks to Santiago and Alex from SIMA (who run what is billed as the world’s largest real estate fair in Spain). Their hard work paid off with representation from a large number of international developments and real estate service providers.  SIMA and NAR make for a great symbiotic partnership for these sorts of events in terms of the scale of participation that each organization can muster. 

Special thanks to the great folks at the REALTOR Association Of Greater Miami and the Beaches (RAMB) who invited us to a number of their special events including the Love show. Oh, and ActiveRain had a great afterparty for bloggers in the Fantasy Tower of the swanky Palms hotel. Great view and awesome opportunity to connect with a number of Activerain bloggers.

The people are definitely the best part of participating in these events…

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