So I’ve been MIA from friends, family, and everything to do with San Francisco because I was recently attending the Apartment Internet Marketing conference in Scottsdale, Arizona. It was a great time, and I had the opportunity to discuss the RentWiki concept with loads of industry executives.

Day 0: D-Backs and Suns

Went to the Diamondbacks game with a couple of VaultWare peers, and spent a great deal of time with a gentleman by the name of Dirk Herrman, former branding director at AvalonBay. Obviously the multi-family housing industry will never be commoditized, but I think it is similar to real estate agents where there is only a limited amount of branding you can do (I personally do not care if my agent is with Century 21, Realty Executives, or XYZ No Fee Agency). Dirk is an extremely intuitive guy and we shared some ideas on RentWiki, the industry, and watched the Suns lose to the Spurs.

Day 1: VaultWare releases PadZing.com

Think Zillow for rentals… great idea, and a necessary resource for apartments to accurately price their units. I know that property management companies probably leave millions on the table by not accurately assessing supply and demand. On a side note, I wondering if PadZing is able to get more data than Zilpy.com.

As always, Mike Mueller was hilarious, entertaining, and memorable… entering the conference as Slash, I don’t even know who that is. VaultWare covered many new features, a consumer redesign, and released PadZing.com to the industry. A memorable moment was when someone asked about the ratings for PadZing and the entire crowd in unison screamed, “No!”. It was if someone had been stabbed in the chest with a butter knife by the devil himself.

Day 2: Speaking for the Social Media Panel

I had the privilege to speak about social media and the multi-family housing industry. I covered some of my favorite examples of social media including Wikipedia, PerezHilton.com, Bittorrent, and i-Tunes. I also discussed how social media has changed the way consumers find and receive information… and we are beginning to see it spill into the Multi-family housing industry.

I was limited on time, so I was unable to talk about the Social Graph, but I will do a post about it in the next day or two. My other panelists included Ed Spiegal, of RentMineOnline.com, and Ellen Cowen, of LinkedIn.com. Ed did a great job of causing quite the controversy. He explained how his product would eliminate the high referral fees of Rent.com… did I mention that Rent.com was a $45,000 sponsor of the event? But it was amazing to see the buzz in the room and Ed did a excellent job of creating momentum and interest for his product and social media in general.

The best part of the conference was that night when we all went to Barcelonas. Seeing all the conference attendees drinking and having a good time was quite the highlight. Our moderator, Israel Carunungan closed that place down… great job Israel!

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