Tuned Into the Market
In a world where business professionals have instant access to information, some might think radio communication is a thing of the past. Not true, say listeners who tune into the “Commercial Real Estate Show,” a weekly online and on-air talk radio broadcast. Hosted by Michael Bull, CCIM, CRB, founder of Bull Realty in Atlanta, the show brings together a new panel of experts each week to share their insights. Commercial Investment Real Estate asked Bull for a behind-the-airwaves look at what goes into producing his show.
CIRE: What prompted you to start your own radio show?
Bull: I've been in the industry for 30 years and several clients and colleagues along the way have said that my sense of humor combined with my commercial real estate expertise would make for interesting talk radio. So I decided to produce a show with meaningful content for listeners, regardless of where they live or work. The show is fast-paced and covers a tremendous amount of industry information each week.
CIRE: How do you determine the topics and select your guests?
Bull: Topics are chosen based on current issues in commercial real estate. For example, we have quarterly updates on the various property sectors as well as shows that address buying and selling distressed assets, the health of the banking industry, auctions, and commercial loan workouts, among other topics. We've also covered commercial real estate training, the return on sustainability, tenanting strategies, and social media marketing.
We invite guests who are well-known for their experience related to each topic and we've established relationships with top analysts at Reis, Real Capital Analytics, and many other industry-leading firms as well as with top developers and real estate investment trusts. Guests also include leaders from the top commercial real estate associations, such as CCIM's 2011 President Frank Simpson, CCIM.
CIRE: How much time does the show take to produce? Is it worth it?
Bull: The show has a full staff and is much more time-consuming and involved than initially anticipated. Staff members are devoted to planning the shows, writing the content, selecting and coordinating the guests, producing the show, marketing, updating the website, and handling social media. On average, it requires 60 to 70 hours per week for a one-hour show and that does not include the guests' prep time.
As for the return, the show certainly helps us build relationships, stay on top of the market, and establish credibility. It has increased our number of Twitter followers as well as driven traffic to our blogs, YouTube channel, and BullRealty.com. The show is part of a large marketing funnel to attract clients, customers, brokers, and referrals. Bull Realty has done very well in a tough cycle, so the show is helping - or the combination of what we are doing is working.
CIRE: How has your CCIM designation helped you achieve success with the show and in the industry?
Bull: Part of the benefit of the CCIM training is the confidence. You're confident discussing business with the chief financial officer of a major firm, the underwriter for a big fund, or just the guy next door. My CCIM experience gives me more confidence when talking to powerful industry leaders on the show.
We have a large concentration of CCIMs at Bull Realty and recommend CCIM training, resources, and networking to everyone. The first place we turn to partner with expertise around the country is the CCIM network.
CIRE: With access to so many experts in the industry, you must glean a lot of insights on the market. What does 2012 hold for commercial real estate?
Bull: The already-strong sectors, such as multifamily, single-tenant net lease, and medical office, will continue to strengthen in 2012. The sales volume of these assets will increase and capitalization rates will remain stable or compress even further on properties with longer leases. Cap rates for stable assets in secondary markets will improve for sellers as investor demand spreads to these markets.
Industrial, office, and retail sector performance will continue to improve very slowly and in that order. The growth will be slower for class B properties and even slower for C properties, especially in suburban locations not tied to an employment or education center. Improving performance will be partially due to lack of new construction.
Jennifer Norbut is senior editor of Commercial Investment Real Estate. If you have a story worth sharing in CCIM Q&A, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.