Hi, it’s Greg,
When I started the Stop Zillow movement 65 days ago I was furious. I could see that Zillow’s introduction of Instant Offers was a devious move to capture home sellers before they call us.
It’s now or never and we have a plan! We need to take action NOW. Continuing to moan and groan about Zillow will accomplish nothing. Eventually the anti-Zillow firestorm will subside as all flames do… unless they are fueled by a goal. We have that goal and a solid plan.
The plan is a Zillow-alternative website and marketing WE control.
I’ve devoted every day for the past two months (and over $50,000 of my personal funds) to develop a plan to take back control of our listings, something we should have never given up. It involves a world class website and the most powerful marketing message ever in real estate.
(Read below for our anti-Zillow plan.)
Instant Offers is designed to attract sellers to Zillow before they call us.If we let Zillow become the go-to website for home sellers, before they call us, Zillow will own us. Entrepreneurism in real estate will die. That is what Instant Offers is designed to achieve. Think it can’t happen?
Zillow co-founder, Rich Barton, decimated travel agents.
Travel agents didn’t see it coming when Zillow co-founder, Rich Barton, launched Expedia. Don’t doubt that he has the same plan for us. If you don’t pay Zillow for leads (or join Zillow Realty) you’ll be out in the cold.
Instant Offers is performing as Zillow predicted.
Instant Offers is generating tons of seller leads for Zillow agents in the test markets of Orlando and Las Vegas. When Zillow goes national with millions of dollars in television, print and Facebook advertising, urging home sellers to check out their Instant Offers before they call you, they will. Then Zillow will position its pay-for-leads agents to take those listings away from you.
Zillow is holding back on the national rollout.
Sources report that Zillow is purposely delaying Instant Offers’ national rollout until the Stop Zillow furor dies down. It makes sense. Going national with Instant Offers now would create more of an industry uprising, perhaps causing us collectively to pull our listings off Zillow in one fell swoop.
We must not relinquish control.
Venture capitalists have expressed high enthusiasm and serious interest in funding our plan. But there is a catch, we would need to give up control. And that defeats the purpose of our mission- TO TAKE BACK CONTROL of our listings and our business. This needs to be a Realtor-owned, Realtor-managed website, directed by a Realtor leadership committee.
Crowdfunding is the solution.
The best path is clearly to crowdfund the website and national marketing so we remain in control. Funds raised will go into a segregated account to be used for website development, marketing, and employees to run the business.
Will enough Realtors forgo one dinner out?
If every Realtor in America gave up just one night out and contributed $100, that would be $120 million, enough to kill off Zillow in a matter of months. Even if just one half or one quarter of all Realtors contribute $50—$100, that is still sufficient start-up capital. Are you in? Let me know HERE.
Remember, we have an ace in the hole. Once we get buyers going to our website (easy with the right message and enough money for a few months of killer national marketing), we can pull our listings from Zillow. That’s it. Zillow is dead.
The rest of the plan.
After we’re up and rolling, we will elect a Realtor leadership committee to guide the operation. An IPO, as Redfin just did, may be in our future.
I’ll match the first $100K.
I will match the first $100,000 in contributions to demonstrate my commitment to make this happen.
The technology is there.
I have received hundreds of emails with suggestions for the website. I’ve read every one. Be assured, our website will be spectacular. The technology is already developed. It’s easy to replicate the best features from Zillow’s and Redfin’s websites (two of the best out there).
The key is marketing.
I can’t disclose it here, but the business model and marketing message we have developed will rock the real estate world.
The only question.
Will enough Realtors give up one night out and contribute what they save ($100, $50, $25) to take back control of our listings and our business? Our plan depends on it. Again, I will match the first $100,000.
So many of you have asked how you can help. Here it is.
If we crowdfund, will you contribute? $100? $50? $25? Let us know in this two-question survey.
I will send you the poll results.
I am sending this email to all 41,000 who signed the Stop Zillow petition. When we tabulate the responses, I’ll let you know the results.
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