Collaboration Makes Us Better

REALTOR® Magazine is listening and sharing like never before.

March 1, 2010

Every March, I report to you about how the magazine is doing—and what you can expect from us in the coming year. Although the publishing industry has experienced painful contractions, we’ve expanded how we think about REALTOR® Magazine. We’re saving money by publishing only 10 issues per year, but we’re delivering even more practical, how-to content through our other channels.

  • Web site. In February, we launched the new REALTOR® Magazine home page to showcase more content, including videos, webinars, blogs, quizzes, and sales scripts.
  • Videos. Our Master’s Series, public policy, and economic update videos were watched more than 170,000 times in 2009. As I write this, we’re editing a new Masters video and another on the Neighborhood Stabilization Program that NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® President Vicki Cox Golder talks about in her column this month.
  • Webinars. More than 100,000 people have registered for, watched, or downloaded segments from our free Hot Topics Webinar Series. To learn what’s coming up, visit our Webinars page.
  • E-mail and mobile. This year, we’re working on improvements to our Daily News, Weekly News Digest, and monthly Business Tips e-newsletters. We’re also in the first stages of delivering key content through your smartphone.

Beyond all this, we’re actively engaging in social media to produce content in a more collaborative way. I’ve long said that great magazines are not just print publications; they’re an ongoing conversation among readers. I was reminded of that idea recently by an entertaining little book called The Invention of Air (Riverhead Books, 2008).

Author Steven Johnson tells the story of Joseph Priestley, the English theologian, educator, and scientist who immigrated to the United States not long after the American Revolution. Among his many discoveries, Priestley was the first person to observe and write about the air exchange that takes place between plants and animals.

Johnson’s great insight about Priestley was that his discoveries were built on years of curiosity and thought—they weren’t simply “eureka!” moments taking place in a lab—and Priestley benefited from collaboration with his fellow scientists, including his friend Benjamin Franklin.

Reading Johnson’s book, I couldn’t help thinking about how people are sharing knowledge today via social networking sites, blogs, and wikis. That collaboration makes REALTOR® Magazine a much richer resource for you and your business.

Frank J. Sibley

Frank J. Sibley is the senior vice president of consumer relations for the National Association of REALTORS®.