Mark Lesswing Is Everywhere

Apr 30, 2007 Michael Wurzer

Check out Pat Kitano’s summary on the Transparent Real Estate blog of the key note speech NAR’s CTO Mark Lesswing gave at a tech fair Pat attended last week. If you’re interested in a few more details, there are a couple of slide shows from Mark’s presentations posted over at the RETS site. This slideshow download is from a presentation Mark gave a few months ago at the Clareity conference and covers some of the same topics highlighted in Pat’s summary, including a review of the RETS standards and Mark’s thoughts on making real estate web sites better lead generators by focusing on user’s intentions. Since the slides don’t do Mark’s in-person presentation justice, here’s a quote from Doc Searl’s seminal post on what he calls the “Intention Economy”:

The Intention Economy grows around buyers, not sellers. It leverages the simple fact that buyers are the first source of money, and that they come ready-made. You don’t need advertising to make them.

The Intention Economy is about markets, not marketing. You don’t need marketing to make Intention Markets.

The Intention Economy is built around truly open markets, not a collection of silos. In The Intention Economy, customers don’t have to fly from silo to silo, like a bees from flower to flower, collecting deal info (and unavoidable hype) like so much pollen. In The Intention Economy, the buyer notifies the market of the intent to buy, and sellers compete for the buyer’s purchase. Simple as that.

The Intention Economy is built around more than transactions. Conversations matter. So do relationships. So do reputation, authority and respect. Those virtues, however, are earned by sellers (as well as buyers) and not just “branded” by sellers on the minds of buyers like the symbols of ranchers burned on the hides of cattle.

The Intention Economy is about buyers finding sellers, not sellers finding (or “capturing”) buyers.

(Emphases added.) I think it’s fantastic that Mark is delving into this area as he criss-crosses the country on behalf of the NAR. Here’s an idea for Inman Connect: Mark could moderate a panel on web 2.0 lead generation, with the panelists being Greg Swann or Teri Lussier (discussing Greg’s “insanely great hyper-local weblogging strategy”), Kevin Boer of 3Oceans Real Estate (discussing the “world’s most internet-marketed property”) and Jim Duncan of RealCentralVA (discussing “hyper-local blogging success” with RealCrozetVA). I haven’t been to Inman for years, but I’d go to hear that panel.

Back to Pat Kitano’s summary, I was interested to hear that Mark has added something about “MLS gateways – combination but not merger of multiple MLS systems” (Pat’s words) to his speech. Mark also mentioned that topic in his presentation (slide show download) at the RETS meetings in Austin. I hope to learn more about that in the future.