YouTube – The Invisible Aggregator

Typically, WellcomeMat’s team goes to great lengths to not take sides on political matters within the real estate space. Why? Because it is not our place to do so.

But when it comes to our partners, there is no question as to where we stand. As strategic partners, we are here to position our customers’ video content in the best possible way – by facilitating direct traffic to their sites.

However, in light of all the chatter online last night (see links at bottom of this post), the irony of the following video is a bit too much to handle. Jim Abbott, an excellent communicator that I do not know, wisely chose to use video to make a statement about his company’s decision to stop syndicating it’s listings to Zillow, Trulia and

While I don’t really have an opinion on whether or not real estate companies should syndicate their listings to aggregators, I cannot help but notice the irony of using an aggregator (YouTube) to make a statement about how bad aggregators are.

Two quotes from the video above:

“All listing syndicators have one thing in common, they act as middle men and post our valuable listing data alongside the contact information of other agents and brokers…”

“….Zillow, Trulia and need our listings, along with our costly professional photography, description language and virtual tours…they need them in order to drive traffic to their sites.”

Wow…powerful statements! But, Abbott Realty Group unknowingly gave the value of their video content to YouTube. Go ahead…search for their video in Google.

If they held the same belief with all their content, specifically their videos, then they would be driving folks to content hosted on their site/domain.

Recently, the Inman News team summarized survey results that they gathered from more than 1500 top producing real estate agents in their video, Diving Into the Mind of Today’s Free Agent – First Look at the Explosive Data. The following statistics really say it all about how confused the real estate industry is about what to do with video content:

  1. 81% of agents making more than $100,000 per year have and use a YouTube channel.
  2. Second to the #1 source of new business (referrals), agents listed “their own website” as the #2 most important (see minute 12:00 and on in the video)

The second most important source of new business for agents is their own website, yet they use a video site that gathers all the traffic and audience generated from their content, while presenting viewers with competing videos from other agents and brokers?


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The chatter: – Third-Party Advertising
Inman Next – The Video That Will Rock the Industry
Facebook – Raise The Bar
- Third party real estate listing companies, too big to fail?
- Facebook – All Realtors need to watch this video

What do you think?

  • ellertheseller

    Rudy, I actually post my videos on Wellcome Mat for its obvious benefits and also to Youtube because each site has benefits and drawbacks. That way I think I am getting the best of both worlds. I use Wellcome Mat’s widgets to do various cool things and I use youtube as a way of reaching out to more viewers and engage with like-minded video geeks who are not on Wellcome Mat. I have been on Wellcome Mat since 2007, before it was even hip to be a video geek! In my opinion, it’s not where the eyeballs are, it’s a matter of getting the most eyeballs as possible to your video to benefit your client, (in the case of listing videos) or to benefit your brand.

    • Rudy Bachraty

      Hi Sue!

      We love that you’re on WellcomeMat! Thank you.

      Having a strategy in place as you do matters. Driving folks to your content in a way that builds your brand is important. 

      In my opinion, Youtube for real estate professionals should be a part of your strategy but not the #1 direct source where you drive them. Use it as a supplemental source to reach existing folks who are on there but use your social, mobile, email etc strategy to drive folks to videos on your home base, as your primary driver…..Just my 6 cents…


      • ellertheseller

        Thanks Rudy. Since video is an evolving method of outreach for my business, frankly the whole thing is one big experiment. It will be interesting to see where it takes my business. Thanks as always for your insight and help and also for your participation in the facebook page for Realtors doing video.

  • J Philip Faranda

    I don’t see how Youtube is the same kind of aggregator that Zillow and Trulia are. 

    • Christian Sterner

      Hi Philip…thanks for taking time to comment! I agree…there are major differences between YouTube and Zillow/Trulia. The most prominent one is the fact that YouTube is a worse, less contextually relevant aggregator – searching for real estate in YouTube is a horrible experience. Yet, when YouTube is used as a primary host for video content, views occur there, where it’s arguable that consumers have a very difficult time taking a next step. 

  • Arlee Carson

    Let me start by saying that, in any business or industry; “Ignorance Is Your Biggest Competitor…” not other companies, or in this case, other real estate agents or agencies. I’m not saying that people are stupid, but if the masses are not aware of you, your company, your product or service… or a home being for sale, it’s impossible for them to contact you or buy the home. Effective marketing helps overcome that “Ignorance Factor.” I learned a long time ago that ‘effective marketing ain’t cheap and cheap marketing ain’t effective!’ Wellcomemat’s video streaming and video players are hands down the most flexible and effective in the business… especially for real estate agents and their listing clients. They’ve got you covered for everything from SEO to Delivery to MLS compliance.

    This looks like just another agent or agency trying to wrangle the procuring cause of the sale to being themselves and not a competing agent or agency, which benefits whom… certainly not the seller paying thousands in commissions! If you are trying to sell your home, do you care which agent and which company sold your home? Hell No, all you care about is results. As a seller you know you are competing with all of the other homes for sale in your area… not to mention the eff’d up current market conditions, so you want to know that your agency is making sure your home stands out over and above the rest with an “Effective Marketing Plan.” Here’s what appears to be their listing presentation; “So, Mr. & Mrs. Seller, our marketing plan is to drastically reduce exposure to your home, by taking it off of all of those FREE (because they don’t have to pay to be listed on those search engines unless they want to enhance their listings) real estate search engines and only allowing the information about your home for sale to show up on our website and in the local MLS (which by the way is a real estate search engine). This way you’ll be less competitive, and we can enhance the odds that we will be the procuring cause of the sale and get both the listing side and the buying side of the commission. As we see it Mr. & Mrs, Seller, our needs are more important than yours… so what that you are paying thousands in commissions!” Is this a discount brokerage?

    If buyers are getting frustrated with obsolete information, because the homes they found were already sold, I would consider that to be a good thing. This way, when they find one that they like and see that it’s still available for a showing, they’re more motivated to act on it. I don’t know about you but, fear of loss is a motivation I love buyers to feel towards my seller’s home!

    Roughly, 85% of homes are sold under a “Co-Broke” scenario, where the procuring cause of the sale is an agent working for a competing agency. Which leaves 15% for “In-House” sales by agents within the listing agency.

    As an agent, I only list homes, and I never show them to buyers. Why, because statistically the home stands a  better chance of selling if my marketing plan caters to the 85% side, so I work to enhance those odds and stay out of the buyer rep side. When I tell that to home owners and they question it, I explain that my job is to gain maximum exposure to their home by marketing it effectively. If I’m out showing home after home, that pulls me away from focusing on my marketing plans. That’s like having a farm, but tending someone elses and not mine. In my area there are thousands of agents out there… let them show & sell the properties.

    Also, that video was way too long and boring. Did you notice how he spoke generically and didn’t offer up or show any real stats to prove his point? I hope they are a discounter because if not, I’m sure they don’t offer discounted commission along with that discounted marketing plan.

    • Christian Sterner

      Thanks for stopping by Arlee! We can always count on thoroughly thought out comments from you Sir! Be good and well!