How Quickly do Social Media Directors Respond?

Specifically regarding this post on Roost’s calling out the listing aggregators

Roost’s conclusion? That using these sites “homebuyers waste tons of time searching through homes that aren’t actually for sale.”

Inman – Same Day

Trulia – Same Day

Zillow – Same Day

It is interesting that Century 21‘s response was provided by an agent, Sotheby’s may not have been aware of Roost’s ad, and I’d bet that Google doesn’t care to respond.

For consumers in the Charlottesville area, Roost is a search front end that pulls listing information from the MLS; for the Charlottesville area, they have 29 listings; Waynesboro has one listing – far less than the local MLS. For better or worse, the MLS (and therefore Roost) is likely to have better and more comprehensive results than the aggregators.

The question is – why don’t the “big boys” have social media directors joining the conversation rather than ignoring it either deliberately or because of ignorance?

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  1. Daniel October 7, 2008 at 10:27

    At we have:
    1) All the MLS listings that have real, usable data (~90%)
    2) A “Social Media Director” (Kelly) that answers emails, blogs, tests the site, responds to comments and monitors the blogosphere (and twitter) for discussions.

    We’re working on a complete site redesign that will update with new data faster and improve search results for homes with non-mappable addresses.

    A “social media director” is an extremely important role in any internet company.

  2. Derek Overbey October 7, 2008 at 11:42

    I wanted to first thank you for understanding our proposition.

    “For better or worse, the MLS (and therefore Roost) is likely to have better and more comprehensive results than the aggregators.”

    This is all we were trying to get across with the videos we posted. I see you have touched on this subject in your recent article comparing Trulia, Zillow, Cyberhomes and the Charlottesville MLS.

    In relation to this post, I try to respond as quickly as possible to any places where appropriate. Having worked at a large regional real estate company myself and interacted with large real estate companies across the nation, I can tell you that social media is not really on the radar as of yet.

    Some are embracing with open arms but some don’t even have a company blog. It’s hard to respond when you don’t even embrace the medium itself.

    Derek Overbey
    Sr. Director of Partnership Strategy – Roost

  3. Pavel October 7, 2008 at 13:36

    For example, in places like Pittsburgh there is no “public” side to MLS so consumer has to go through a “third party” search such as of those provided by or the local real estate firms. I think it’s valuable to point out that Charlottesville MLS offers a “public” search site that is accessible to all (even though many would agree the features could be richer). I would make a guess in areas where the local MLS is “closed” to the public – the 3rd party vendors have more of a playing hand.

  4. Jim Duncan October 8, 2008 at 05:54

    Thanks, Derek for stopping by. When do you think you’ll be in C’Ville? 🙂

    Pavel – agreed. I wonder how long “good enough” is going to be “good enough”?

  5. Joseph Ferrara.sellsius October 10, 2008 at 13:48

    All sites should have a media director or spinmeister. But it is time consuming. You might need a team to be truly effective.

    Interestingly, Roost’s choice of video makes spin control difficult since YouTubers don’t typically read the comments.

    Imagine if all the real estate blogs banded together to write a post on one topic (hmm …) — say 3rd party listing sites’ MLS coverage (or lack thereof)– casting out perhaps dozens of posts– the spinsters would have quite a time keeping up. They may be able to dodge a bullet but not a shotgun blast.

  6. Derek Overbey October 10, 2008 at 18:01

    Jim, we will be there very soon! We do have 31 listings in Charlottesville right now but don’t have the MLS yet. I’ll keep you posted!


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