Archive for the ‘REBGV’ Category

REBGV cancels trade show website

December 16, 2008

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver has taken my advice and pulled the plug on its trade show website. It’s now no longer possible to become a sponsor of an event that isn’t going to happen.

The image above is an artistic rendering of a Board official building up the courage to hit delete.

In other news, it’s cold outside. When I complained about this to my condo-marketer friend, he asked me not to talk about it. He said “negative speculation” will only make things worse. Bob and I soon parted ways.

Yes, I recognize that’s a soft joke. Keep in mind I spent the better part of an hour getting Lionel Hutz and the REBGV plaque into the picture. That’s all for today.

How to lose friends and alienate people

December 10, 2008

Being in the right is not what always counts when it comes to public relations; what matters is what the public comes to understand. From a PR strategy perspective, the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver exercised poor judgment in its minor dispute with Vancouver Condo Info.

Inherent in public relations is the notion of relationship. This implies a respectful engagement with your audience. Hence, when contacting a blogger, spam is not good PR, hate mail is not good PR, but maybe a short email with a fact sheet attachment is.

In the matter of the REBGV v. Vancouver Condo Info, the blogger posted a graph with a potentially confusing title — one that the board thought infringed on its trademark. But rather than have a staffer send a quick email suggesting a correction, the REBGV calls on lawyers to make demands of the blogger with the intent of issuing a cease-and-desist.

Sure, the REBGV was in the right to do this since it’s no crime to hire a lawyer to do anything, whether it’d be to fold your laundry or pen your email. But if public perception is relevant to an organization, one wonders how “bringing out the barristers” is the best first choice to take. It’s needlessly confrontational and disproportionate to the objective — a crow bar in lieu of a toothpick.

It’s like your neighbour parking his car in the wrong spot and rather than ask him to move the vehicle, you call the police. Then you wonder why everyone in the neighbourhood doesn’t like you. But hey, you were in the right…

Over 4,000 people read Condohype yesterday. Welcome to the neighbourhood.

The party’s over… literally

December 8, 2008

“The party’s over” is a popular expression to describe a real estate boom gone bust. It’s the market that follows a bubble boom — one of falling prices and declining demand. What it isn’t is a call to end all parties. Just because the party’s over doesn’t mean you cancel your party.

The REBGV didn’t get the memo. They’ve gone ahead and canceled their 2009 conference and trade show. Due to “economic conditions”, the industry can’t bring itself to have a good time. Yet in a move I call “pulling a V6A”, the REBGV isn’t notifying the public. If it weren’t for a news story by Derrick Penner, we’d know nothing about the conference shutdown.

At last check, the 2009 conference website is still running, complete with details on the “great benefits” of becoming a sponsor. There’s a full agenda including a three-and-a-half-hour activity labeled “Fun Night on the Trade Show Floor.” Too bad the party’s canceled because that activity sounds awesome. In my book, it’s an invitation to show up in my “The Blogger Was Right” t-shirt with my dogs Case and Shiller. I’m devastated this can’t happen now.

PR advice to the REBGV: It’s good to update your website and news releases when news goes public. Just a thought.

Hat tip to the now-defunct Vancouver Condo Info. Thanks for all your hard work, Pope. You will be missed.