Why Online Commercial Real Estate Will Suck In 2014!

Why Online Commercial Real Estate Will Suck In 2014!

What were you expecting?

Come on its me. You want fluffy kittens and rah-rah speeches? I already did that last year.

Where is the positivity? Where is the can do will do attitude?

Well, I have all of that but let’s get real.

Online commercial real estate sucks now and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.

Here’s why.

First off there is never any debate about commercial real estate. Same old topics with the same old talking heads saying the same things over and over. Does anyone have a different opinion? Ever?

Second is the basic commercial real estate website. You have not changed yours in how many years? So it is still amazing right? The plain corp logo with the handshaking generic glam shot and long ridiculous bios. Facing that consumer with all the tech savvy of a……!

Third is video. I know it’s hard real hard but it creates so much value. I see small peeks of possibilities but we still have a long way to go.

Fourth is search as in how consumers look for commercial real estate. Hint: it’s by the address, not you your website your company or your organisation. Hint:  Consumer wants to look for a building they……Google the address. Simple!

Fifth is the commercial real estate story. We don’t tell it well. We don’t know how to tell it if we even try at all.

Sixth is the non use of Google + Hangouts. What an amazing tool. So you ask what can you do with that? There is the problem.

Seventh is the lack of conversations. Real conversations…..about deals.

Eighth is the lack of original ideas. Name the last one that you have seen. Think about it.

Ninth is that there will be no flaming public burns. Wait, it may already have happened at Motionloft.

Tenth is that there will be no new voices. Where are they? Who else has the balls to have an opinion and put it out there? Is it the same old boring stats and tips shit we always get?

Eleventh is The Dark Star gets to do whatever the fuck they want and….. you……. still……. pay.

Twelfth is “Associations “are less relevant online because the members already know what they provide, which is  events to go and do deals and network…….in person.

Thirteenth is that nobody in CRE is paying any attention to www.floored.com  COME ON PEOPLE! WAKE THE FU*K UP!

Fourteenth is the MLS thing as we know it becomes less relevant. Just look at the residential shitstorm. We are already way ahead of them on this one….for once.

Fifteenth is lists. My lists. Anybody’s lists. You love them you hate them you click on them every time.

And this is……Why Online Commercial Real Estate Will Suck In 2014.



Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/womanofscorn/9163060/


Duke Long


  • It’s amazing how similar 2013 was to 2001 in the CRE space. Wagers on how similar 2024 will look to 2014? It’s sad how little this industry keeps moving forward and it’s simply due to a culture of not wanting to share anything of value. That one cultural trait keeps the stories the same each year, makes the marketing materials across the board generic and boring, and makes brokers and CRE firms look petty and silly to clients.

  • Here is what I have pondered recently…how do we, as CRE brokers, do as good a job creating content for our customers (btw, they aren’t other brokers) as those selling to brokers do? Think about it…

  • […] Welcome to 2014 everybody!  Now that we are all feeling warm and fuzzy about new beginnings and opportunities, here is a nice buzzkill.  One the most prominent bloggers in the CRE space, Duke Long put together a simple list of reasons why our industry is still in the dark ages and things don’t seem to be getting better.  The post in it’s entirety can be found here. […]

  • Lots of great points Duke. I used to work for a large real estate developer and was often really frustrated with the general lack of awesome software. So a couple of partners and I are currently building lease administration software in an attempt to bring the real estate industry up to speed. In doing customer interviews for the software, we found many people had simply given up on the possibility that software might help. So I appreciated your comments about the general lack of software implementation even though some really great tools exist.

    Here is to hoping that 2014 might come as a surprise!


  • All great points Duke, but I’d like to add one more … we are still in a very deep recession. Recessions cause everyone to go into a shell, a sell-shell. The messages are strictly outbound, nothing inbound, nothing is allowed to pierce the shell. It makes common courtesies, like discussion and referral, impossible because that would require some degree of openness, which flies in the face of all of the disingenuous banter. It is amazing how everyone is always doing “great”. Really? They might be losing their home, living with their in-laws, in the midst of divorce, on the verge of bankruptcy, but look them in the eye at an ICSC event and they’re doing “great”. There won’t be any CRE online successes until people are willing to ask for help, and listen to and hear what others have to say, even when those others are not buying.

    I’ve gotten some great leads through online social connections, and managed to survive because of them. If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Online CRE is one of those tools in the shed that’s collecting dust … for another year at least. Looking forward to your forecast for ’15 at the end of this year Duke.

  • Duke — YOU ROCK!!! You are a truth teller and we need more brokers like you. The problem is commercial real estate brokers are stuck in a box and can’t/don’t want to climb out. To be hugely successful in 2014 look around you at the competition and do the exact opposite. Happy New Year Duke…cheers to another year of getting it right.

  • Duke,
    Great thoughts once again!
    Here is the major problem with CRE in general. The older the person(s) involved in the hierarchy in the decision making process, the less time or lack of keeping up with skillsets of digital technology that these people!
    The 25-55 year olds have adapted and use many of the technology tools, software and mobile apps in their daily routines.
    You want to give a 55 year old a special gift for their next birthday or score bonus points with a decision maker that you hope to work closely with? Give them an HD Quality Webcam like the Logitech HD Quality- model 920 (I am not a shareholder) and spend 5 minutes to help get them “up an running”.. The returns could bring you multiples back from the $85 or so investment.
    Google apps are terrific, and there are lots of other apps on the internet with getting video messages and video broadcasting out to help you with getting your “deliverables” and messages across to prospects and existing customers.
    I am almost “100% virtual” with all the apps I have on my smart devices, and laptop for information, presentations and communications (to 1 or 100), and anyone can do what learnt over the past few years.
    I think 2014 could be a great year for Commercial and Industrial Real Estate in general, as absorption in many markets of “type A & B class products”) continues.
    Duke, as I had mentioned a few years ago to you, the day of the Virtual Internet Brokerage Company may be finally here!!
    Have A Happy, Healthy & Prosperous New Years To All!
    Howard Applebaum
    Corporate America Realty & Advisors

  • Don’t forget brokers/agents are cheap as hell and don’t invest in their business let alone market their clients properties. Bigger problem is a myopic view of the the world. Get out of your space and see what other people are doing. Spamming your email list is not marketing. Keep up the good fight Duke!