Over the last 24 hours, I have received calls from no less than 3 individuals who are leaving the real estate business and trying their hand at the interactive marketing space. Is interactive marketing the new easy way to make money? Should we be expecting a ton of speculators coming in now that the housing market is in such decline? I mean, these people have to do something. I’m seeing increased interest in domaining and other things, and now these former realtors think they can hang out a shingle and do SEO? I’m very scared. These guys want me to train them, but how many are just going at alone and offering services they aren’t qualified to sell?
Which brings me to the fact that, as an industry, we are still in DIRE need of some sort of certification. Even the real estate industry has more regulations than our industry does. The damage done by con-artist SEOs and interactive marketers is astronomical. The monetary loss to legitimate firms is incalculable once spurned businesses decide that interactive marketing isn’t for them.
I know SEMPO is working on something to combat this with the SEMPO institute and there are others, but the time for certification has come. Sure, some people are going to be pissed, but I don’t care. We need to act as an industry. I’m willing to do whatever it takes to get certification, and anyone who has any efforts ongoing, please contact. Otherwise, I’ll be championing this cause on my own in the very near future.