Friday Flash: Dollars flow, a meme is born and Zip tests unfiltered reviews

 DotLoop closed a $7 million funding round and released a free version of its transaction management software this week.

Congratulations should be extended to the DotLoop team, but investment in business-to-business companies in our space is good for everyone. It’s damn hard to deliver an excellent product while accounting for practitioner price sensitivity and the customization and exclusivity demands of brokers and brands.

This kind of money gets companies over the hump. Here’s to more of it!

A new meme has been hatched: the syndication smack-down video.

Jim Abbott launched it with a piece kicking aggregators to the curb. Then some guy issued a gratingly sanctimonious rebuttal. Abbot returned a few weeks later with a stylish “update” video.

This week, David Cooper, President and CEO of Prudential Kansas City, threw down his own entry announcing his company would no longer send its listings to Zillow or Trulia. It’s nicely done, but let’s just say he’s no Abbott.

In fact, I think I’m going to start rating these videos in “Abbotts” in honor of the father of the genre.

So: Mr. Cooper gets 4 out of 5 possible Abbotts. A good debut.

I hope you will forgive my frivolity. This is a serious business issue (and one with which we help our broker clients grapple) but I need a laugh sometimes, don’t you?

ZipRealty began displaying unfiltered reviews of its agents this week. I’m inclined to believe the unfiltered claim, as I did turn up some negative reviews.

If you’re a broker and have toyed with the idea of reviews, keep tabs on this. Someone’s testing it for you.

This is also an interesting study in brand positioning. Most brokers who compete with Zip would take issue with characterizing Zip agents as the best in their market. But Zip now has reviews, which even when mixed, build consumer trust and increase engagement. It’s a good example of “doing what your competitor can’t or won’t do” to differentiate in an industry where that’s very hard to do.

The Huffington Post, a large media enterprise that’s been characterized as a parasite by some publishers, is now planning to power publisher websites.

It’s an interesting idea, and one we could very well see in real estate.

Enjoy the long weekend!