There’s always something to howl about

Archive for October, 2011

Who has “Cutting Edge Marketing” for Mortgage Origination?

The mortgage business is pretty cut-and-dry today.  Historically low interest rates, a whole lot less people in the industry, and five screwed-up banks are making it easy for originators to pick the “low-hanging fruit” today.  I’m not so naive to think that the Garden of Eden will be as lush as it is today.  I know we are going to have to return (once again) to the basic building blocks of business generation when rates rise (my guess for the inevitable rise is sometime after the New Year).

A lot of things have changed in the past two years, especially the way we find loans which can be funded.  Some of the ideas I think make sense include:

  1. an automatic CRM, like Top Of Mind manages for you
  2. video email marketing, like I have been exploring
  3. Continuing education for REALTORS, like Educate2Earn is doing
  4. Old-fashioned blogging for mortgages
  5. Even older-fashioned but proven systems, as offered by Loan Toolbox
  6. Some of the many ideas offered by Mortgage Marketing Animals

Are you doing something differently to get the telephone to ring?  Is there anything you might have heard, which allegedly works, which you would like to learn?

I’m interested in your feedback.


Steve Jobs, requiescat in pacem

Bless you, sir. Thank you. I’m in your debt forever.

Comments are off for this post

Greg Swann’s second request: I need a partner.

What? No one is going to send me to the NAR convention? Their loss — and the losses are but beginning.

Meanwhile, I need a partner. I’ve been thinking about this for months, but I don’t know that it’s something I can actually do anything about.

Here’s where I am, at this stage of my life:

I am swarming with ideas that can make boatloads of money.


I am broke — not all the time, but frequently.

Being broke is temporary. The cure for that is just hard work and a little luck.

But the ideas are driving me insane, because I can see how much better things can be done, but I’m not able to accomplish even ten percent of what I can envision.

I need people behind me. And for that I need money behind me. And for that I need a partner, someone who can bring or attract investment capital — and manage it.

This is some of what I have going: is as sexy as four-day weekend in Vegas, and there’s a lot more real-estate-porn power still to come. I’m building versions of Ascende for Realtors around the country, but I can see ways to turn it into a cash-and-carry money machine.

As Sean Purcell pointed out yesterday, the real estate listing praxis is a fearsome competitor. Phoenix is not a great listing market right now — but Phoenix is not the only city on earth.

We’re also building a property management business, which is poised to explode. My rental homes lease fast and stay leased, yielding maximum profits for our landlords. I personally sell a lot of rental properties, which we then manage, and I am ready to start recruiting landlords who already own their rentals. As icing on that cake, I have killer ideas for taking a VOW feed and using it to build a virtual Point-of-Purchase for out-of-state investors.

Away from real estate, is a forest in its seed stage. There is a big marketing business in there — conferences, books, magazines, web sites, etc. It’s a content play, so there is no limit to the profit centers it can throw off.

My Get rich fighting crime post posits hundreds of new businesses, some of them huge businesses, but, in the comments, you can see Brian Brady and me talking about “Heidi,” a hugely efficient new CRM idea that can be built with existing technology.

There is a new video compression algorithm discussed in that post, too, and I can’t think about anything in depth without throwing of tons of product ideas. Here’s one, building annotatable eBooks, but I can go that one better: The technology I’m talking about should be built in at the browser level, so every web page can be annotated by anyone running that browser (or browser plug-in).

Behind everything, I have an enormous amount of web power. I have over 300,000 web pages now, and I’m on pace to hit a million within a couple of years. Each one of those pages searches well, and they’re all interlinked, all pushing each other up in the SERPs. Do any search related to anything I do and see where I stand — and then reflect that I did all of that with just my own efforts.

I can write, I can speak, I can sell, I can come up with innovative business models and I can produce huge quantities of work.

Here’s what I can’t do, not to my own satisfaction: Manage systems and account for funds. I can do both of those proficiently, I suppose, but it’s work I take no joy in, and I know that I am holding myself back by not working with someone who is excellent at the back-office part of running businesses.

In the DISC system, I’m a very high ‘D’ with enough ‘I’ to put on a killer presentation. What I need is a high ‘C’ with enough ‘S’ to keep staffers happy and productive. If you bring money, I love you even better, but if you’re the kind of executive who can build the kind of documentation VCs like, I can get us money.

I’m happy enough to focus on one thing at a time, but I want to build all of these businesses, and then some. What I would really like, in the long run, is to build a start-up incubator, a company that partners with brilliant people to build seed-stage companies, then runs them through the venture capital gauntlet, all the way to IPOs, if possible.

Seven figures? Eight figures? Nine figures? We live in a world where numbers like that are possible. If you’ve got the roots, I’ve got the leaves. Between us, we can build the trunk and branches. One tree at a time, we can build a forest of business opportunities.

Email me. I love what I’m doing now, and I know I can do well enough to live the way I want to live. But I also know I can do a lot more, and I’m looking to forge a relationship that will make me and you and a lot of people very rich in the coming years.


I want someone to give me a conference room in rounds so I can launch a Scenius in Sacramento Anaheim.

I want someone to send me to NAR in Sacramento Anaheim next month. I don’t want to do anything even remotely NARish, I just want to commune with the grunts on the ground. I have lots of interesting ideas about innovation in real estate, and I am lucky enough to know a lot of very clever people. Put us all in a room together, and we can make magic. We’ve done it before.

This would be cool: A double- or triple-sized break-out room in rounds of eight, each table its own little Scenius. Some formal presentations from the front of the room, with web and slide support, all that stuff. But also a lot of time for real work at the table level. I plan on throwing off a lot of product ideas, and I would love to have a leavening of people from the development side of the on-line real estate table. I want to sell some very serious ideas, but I want people to go home with new product plans, new marketing plans, too.

Here’s a true fact: This is the most propitious time for revolutionary change in the residential real estate business. Why? Because things could not possibly be any more screwed up than they are now. There is no sane argument to be made against any attempt to right this flailing beached whale we scheme to call a profession. I have ideas. You do, too. I want to talk about how we can be the drivers of real change in our business.

Am I too vain to think that someone would put together a show for me? I know how to do all this myself, after all. But: I don’t have the time or the money to put anything together. I loved doing the BloodhoundBlog Unchained events with Brian Brady, and with all the hard-working dogs who graced us with their presence. But all that is way more than I can do now. It comes down to this: I’ll do this if someone will take on the logistics and costs, and not if not.

But what I’m promising is a Scenius, a synergy of shared genius. I’ve got a bunch of strage and dangerous ideas in my head, and I know how to tease a roomful of smart people into getting a lot smarter a lot faster. I would love to come to Sacramento Anaheim to play, and I would love it if the people reading this who are most interested in getting smarter would come to play with me.

So: I need a sponsor. Give me a room and I’ll make it glow.

PS: Social media butterflies: If you want this to happen, tell your friends to make it happen. I’ll deliver the goods if you will.

PPS: How much attention do I pay to the NAR? A couple of folks have pointed out by email that the NAR convention is in Anaheim, not Sacramento. I don’t know how I got the towns mixed up, but I think Sacramento would have been the better choice: The membership could have seen the NAR’s handi-work at its most effective. Whatever. I’m still game to play Scenius.


An Unchained Melody for Bocephus: Red, White, Pink Slip Blues

My favorite Hank. I and III got the voice, but Junior got all the heart and then some.


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