March 22, 2006
 

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Mobile Real Estate Goes Real Time
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By Jessica Rivchin  





Since realty is an extremely itinerant, competitive and fast-paced field, it is not surprising that so much of an agent’s success depends on mobile technology. A new property may disappear before an agent has time to return to the office, so speedy, dependable e-mail and wireless Internet access is vital.

 

Last week, at the Fifth Annual National Real Estate Online Convention, mobile marketing and sales applications provider Cellstory announced that Cellstory for Realty, a mobile multimedia application, will now enable real estate agents to upload listings directly to their blogs.

 

Cellstory for Realty, which was released to the National Association of Realtors in October, is a downloadable software that allows real estate agents to use mobile phones or PDAs to send digital photos, build multimedia presentations and other marketing materials to property Web sites and potential buyers while still on-site. Realtors can select from a variety of ready-made templates, or they can start from scratch and follow a series of prompts to add images, text, colors and more. In addition, users can access and edit a list of common real estate terms. They can then send the content simultaneously to clients and sites such as Craig’s List and eBay.

 

“Cellstory is a great tool for us. It’s just so easy to send photos and video with personalized text,” said Michael McGibney, a realtor for Butler Kane in New York City, in a recent press release.

 

Currently, Cellstory is available for use on Palm OS and Windows Mobile 5 products, as well as the Symbian Nokia Series 60 and Symbian IOQ camera phones. “We’ve turned the cell phone into a real sales and marketing tool,” said Bill Oliver, CEO of Cellstory, in a recent press release.

 

Cellstory For Realty works most effectively in New York City and other metropolitan areas, where one or two days on the market make a real difference. Sales may also benefit from the fact that a listing accompanied by an image has a much greater chance of being sold quickly. “What’s good about this product is that people are willing to add visuals,” Oliver said in a recent phone call, “even if they’re not selling a $5 million house and can’t afford a professional photographer.”

 

Oliver hopes to eventually expand beyond the real estate market in the near future. “Realty was the first vertical group that we went after, just because it seemed like a good fit,” he says. “The product is brand new, and we’re getting very good traction. Our long- range interest is in much more horizontal markets. We are very interested in enabling commerce directly from the cell phone as a data acquisition device. We are hoping to make some announcements about that in the next three months.”

 

 

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