Conveyances: Q & A with Michael Bull, CCIM, Host of America’s Commercial Real Estate Show

The Commercial Real Estate Show is a national talk radio program heard weekly in 22 major markets.  Michael Bull, show host, is founder and principal of Bull Realty, a regional commercial real estate brokerage firm with three offices, headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia.  Mr. Bull is a writer, speaker, trainer, consultant and active real estate broker.  He writes for the show's blog and also can be found on Twitter.  Show topics run the gamut from social media for real estate to distressed market updates to commercial lease issues and dominant broker traits.

Q.  You are based in Atlanta, leading a commercial real estate brokerage and all it entails.  Given the full plate, what was the inspiration to launch a radio show amidst your other business interests?  

A.  Tom, we were looking for ways to build recognition for our firm.  We wanted to attract more clients, and we wanted to attract commercial agents who might be looking for a change.  Our brokerage firm has done well in this cycle and we are looking to continue our growth while the market has so much potential.

A lot of our business is investment sales, land sales and selling commercial properties to users.  When sellers look hard at what agents actually do to sell their property, we do well.  The radio show is one of the ways we can illustrate our marketing prowess and the power of our platform.

We also hope to add value to the industry as a whole.  The radio show is like social media on steroids.  We provide great information for free, hoping to help the industry, build relationships and attract potential business.

Q.  The Commercial Real Estate Show airs on flagship station Biz1190 WAFS every Saturday morning at 10 a.m. ET, and conveniently online on demand, as well as on stations around the country.  Given that real estate is, by its nature, a local product, how do you go about selecting program content which will resonate with disparate geographic markets?

A.  I agree commercial real estate is local, sometimes down to each individual building.  However, there are skills, strategies and information helpful to us all, whether we are in Maine, California or Florida.  We are able to make sure the show provides great content and takeaways valuable to a large audience.

It was not until I walked out of the studio after the first show, that I realized how informative and powerful the show was going to be for the listeners.  The first show was on commercial loan workouts.  As usual, we had some of the best professionals in the country sharing their experience and knowledge.  It’s free and you can listen anytime.  What a great country.  

Q.  The tone of the show strikes a balance between learning and laughter.  Has the balanced tone been a central tenet to your on-air success; to be able to communicate with different segments of your radio audience when they have very different levels of understanding about commercial real estate and business matters? 

A.  Well, I think with whatever we are doing, we should have fun.

On the sophistication of the audience, while we explain the concepts at a level everyone can understand, we don’t talk down to the audience.  If we talk about something they don’t understand, most will appreciate the opportunity to learn something.  The feedback we have received from experienced lawyers, brokers and investors is that they themselves learn from the show.  Some firms even require their personnel to listen every week.

The show tag line is lead, learn and laugh.  We hope that every show helps listeners do just that. 

Q.  What has surprised you about the Commercial Real Estate Show over its tenure? 

A.  The biggest surprise was the time and commitment required to do it right.  We don’t want to be involved in a B or C product.  To create a great show every week, we spend an average of 60 hours per week and that does not include our guests’ prep time.

Q.  What can listeners anticipate for 2012 programs? 

A.  We will continue to produce quality shows.  High caliber guests providing top notch market updates.  Helpful transaction and business strategies related to the industry, and oh yeah, we’ll have fun too!

Conveyances: Q & A are Real Estate Lit’s interviews with professionals positively impacting the communications and publishing aspects of real estate.  Interview conducted by Tom Pfister, April 2012.