Going to NAR's convention in Vegas and want to learn how to use Excel? No problem, attend the class on how to use Excel.
Need to learn more about how to market luxury properties? No worries, there was a class on that too.
You hear a lot about this thing called Web 2.0 and want to know more about it? Take your pick from the three or four classes on this topic.
Want to start blogging and need to know where to begin? Sorry. You are out of luck, no classes offered for this particular topic.
Huh? Wouldn't this be an obvious choice of a class topic?
I give NAR credit for offering a wide array of classes with some very interesting speakers at the Convention last week in Vegas. Some of the sessions I attended were pretty good. Most of the sessions I personally went to dealt with internet marketing and 2.0 concepts. In each of the sessions the rooms were packed, telling me that Realtors have a huge desire to learn more about how they can better market themselves in this 2.0 world.
Of course blogging was mentioned intermittently throughout various sessions, but it was obvious by the questions that the audience asked that they could have used a blogging primer before launching in to the more involved 2.0 concepts which each speaker discussed. For example, a larger broker spoke of all the leads that they were getting through their blog which they had integrated into their corporate website on which they inserted numerous links moving the consumer around their website. Next questions from the audience- how do you get a blog?
The obvious omission of a blogging class seemed almost intentional to me by NAR. Why would they do this? For the last year NAR has said that it is going to explore how much it wants to regulate blogging. "We tabled the Internet-related issues...blogs to name a few until November. The subcommittee will be looking at Article 12 to see if we need a broader more encompassing ethical direction guiding all forms of communication."
I don't know where they landed on this issue yet. But by ignoring the issue until they make up their mind is handicapping Realtors in utilizing a marketing technique that could be making them money today. Let say they make a decision this month on these Blogging issues. It is going to be another whole year before next year's convention when the topic can be discussed to their satisfaction. Think back to how much you knew about blogging one year ago. Can you imagine where it is going to be in another year!
I think by not offering any basic b classes this year, a huge gap in the people who get it and the people who don't will be created. There are those that have fully embraced blogging and will be able to grow with the medium as it grows. And there are those who don't have a clue right now and without a basic education today, are going to continue to left behind even further.
(image courtesy of Maxine for Hallmark)