All Talk ~ No Action

All Talk ~ No Action

My respected friend Matthew Shadbolt (Director of Interactive Product & Marketing at The Corcoran Group) wrote a very thorough and well researched article calling on more action in the Raise The Bar movement: Slacktivism: What It Really Means To Raise The Bar. It is a lengthy but thought provoking read that I highly recommend although it did stir some interesting opposition.

As most of you know, my passion is having #ConversationsThatMatter because I believe that conversations and communication lead to understanding, consensus and ultimately to actionable change.

I find huge value in ideas and am fascinated with perception and the ability to shift minds with creative new ways to present those ideas. Our brains are incredibly powerful and we have the ability to reframe how we see our realities and thus actually CHANGE reality.  How we speak to each other and share our ideas is as important as the idea itself. (I am encouraging checking egos at the door.)

In the Raise the Bar conversation I am working towards building bridges, and encourage thoughtful, respectful debate because when we choose to focus on the positive, give others the benefit of the doubt and sometimes respectfully agree to disagree, I believe we’re making room for positive change.

Below is an amazing TEDx presentation from Mark Waldman (Therapist and Brain Researcher at University of Pennsylvania) called: Big Ideas and Changing your Brain. He demonstrates how what we focus on literally changes the structure of our brains and directly affects our well being, and invites you to discover YOUR Big Idea!

I look forward to our conversation! #ConversationsThatMatter

Metrics, Branding and Intuition Oh MY!

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Corcoran_GroupMatthew Shadbolt – @Corcoran_Group
@darrinfrie You should ask @professionalone @1000wattmarc @tericonrad & @chris_smth about this: (cc @david_marine)

And this is what started the WHOLE discussion! Trust Matthew for stirring the pot and getting us all thinking this morning!  Watch the video ~ Darrin Friedman presents a bit of a controversial opinion on the concept of Agent Centric Branding… and earlier this year Matthew and I played with this idea briefly when he moderated my panel with Michael McClure and Debra Trappen at Inman Connect in New York. (Jan. 2012)

ProfessionalOneMichael McClure – @ProfessionalOne
@TeriConrad What’s their “why?” It’s that simple, IMO. #BRANDING

TeriConradTeri Conrad – @TeriConrad
Do they inspire? #brands @corcoran_group @darrinfrie @ProfessionalOne @1000wattmarc @Chris_Smth @david_marine

Corcoran_GroupMatthew Shadbolt – @Corcoran_Group
@ProfessionalOne @TeriConrad @GoodLifeTeam The issue is that saying ‘we’re an agent-centric brand’ is completely redundant. All RE firms are

seancarpsean carpenter – @seancarp
RT @TeriConrad: Value led story is what inspires. I DO think new CB campaign is on right track. @professionalone @Corcoran_Group @GoodLi …

TeriConradTeri Conrad – @TeriConrad
BUT do consumers really shop agents or neighbourhoods? @david_marine @Corcoran_Group @darrinfrie @ProfessionalOne @1000wattmarc @Chris_Smth

And here where it gets a little interesting…. So David Marine (Senior Director of Consumer Engagement for Coldwell Banker) and Matthew Shadbolt (Director of Interactive Product and Marketing for Corcoron Group) both come from the corporate marketing world. Each incredibly experienced and well respected.  I would argue they both do a fabulous job for their respective brands in terms of ‘inspiring’ and creating ‘value’ for both agent and consumer.  But we veered off the path a little and began to discuss the value and importance of metrics….

Corcoran_GroupMatthew Shadbolt – @Corcoran_Group
+100 RT @david_marine: @TeriConrad key word there is shop. they don’t shop agents as research shows they go w/ 1st agent majority of time.

david_marineDavid Marine – @david_marine
@TeriConrad @Corcoran_Group every agent has a dif reason for choosing a brand. splits/tools/recognition but it all goes bak to brand value

Corcoran_GroupMatthew Shadbolt – @Corcoran_Group
@TeriConrad @david_marine I think that @darrinfrie’s video is a classic example of why people go with the first agent that calls them back

Corcoran_GroupMatthew Shadbolt – @Corcoran_Group
@1000wattmarc @TeriConrad @david_marine @darrinfrie @professionalone @chris_smth Our web, mobile & customer data tells us the same thing

1000wattmarcMarc Davison – @1000wattmarc
@TeriConrad @david_marine @corcoran_group @darrinfrie @professionalone @chris_smth —> our research says Neighborhoods.

At this point I suggested that data is often so skewed and that I would like to see more common sense utilized….do we REALLY need the data to tell us this stuff because I’m thinking most of us know this intuitively.

david_marineDavid Marine – @david_marine
“@Corcoran_Group: @TeriConrad Data always beats opinion :-)” (agreed but pundits often like to overlook it)

Corcoran_GroupMatthew Shadbolt – @Corcoran_Group
@TeriConrad @david_marine @billublin “Data is the soil in which ideas grow”

TeriConradTeri Conrad – @TeriConrad
@corcoran_group You have a strong sense of what will work – you develop a ‘hypothesis’ and then stats back it up. @david_marine

billlublinbilllublin – @billlublin
@tericonrad You know what Disraeli said about statistics cc: @Corcoran_Group @david_marine

And here’s the quote by British Statesman Disraeli (And NO – I had no idea Bill! ;))

There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics. ~ Benjamin Disraeli


In my humble ‘non quantified’ opinion I believe that there is some common sense here… Ask the ‘Consumer’ what they care about it, and whether its been statistically proven or not I believe they just want solid service and faith that they’re getting a good deal.  Where the ‘Brand’ may come into play is in the ‘perception’ that they’ve had the best and herin lies the opportunity.

Consumer behaviour is based on psychology and we know that people are ‘justifiers’ and will find a way to convince themselves that they’ve chosen well, even if they’ve hardly made any effort at all to ‘shop around’.  What Corcoran Group does exceptionally well is create a ‘customer experience’ that INSPIRES and is generous with information that consumers want like ‘best restaurants’ and ‘places to shop’ and how to avoid lines etc…all the while carving out mind share and elevating their brand status with scrumptious pictures and defining ‘what’s COOL in Manhatten’! What Consumer OR Agent wouldn’t want to brand align with that?

Of course there is a need for Branding. Of course there is a need for Metrics.  But I love what Gary Vaynerchuck says: “What’s the ROI of your Mother?” There are certain impossible-to-measure intangibles that must not be ignored.  In fact I’ll go further….I think that’s where it gets REALLY interesting and juicy!

Thanks for the great discussion and mind stir this morning Matthew and David :)

****For further reading on the psychology of Social Business read @briansolis (Principle at Altimeter Group) latest article: The 6 Pillars of Social Commerce: Understanding the Psychology of Social Engagement