Jeff Bezos is the New Steve Jobs

p>The current rumor is that Amazon will be entering the offline retail space in 2012. Following in the footsteps of other large tech/web companies like Apple and Microsoft, Amazon believes they now have the consumer products to fill up a tangible storefront and hopes to increase sales with the added incentive of "in-person consumption." We all know that being able to see and touch a product leads to higher conversion rates, but is the Kindle product a good enough reason for Amazon to make such a bold move?

I have a lot of thoughts on this and I'd like to share some of them with you.

First of all, never bet against a guy like Jeff Bezos. Over the years, he has done a countless number of impressive and unexpected things with the Amazon brand. He's acquired major companies, he's disrupted the publishing world, and most recently, he is proving that a less expensive product, even if you lose money on each sale, equals more market (and mind) share and creates lifelong customer loyalty. What he has done with the new Kindle Fire is arguably just as impressive as the unveiling of the first generation iPad (at least to me). It's still an e-Reader (not a tablet), yet it's carving it's own sub-section of tablet/reader hybrid products. And let's not overlook the Silk browser. The caching technology alone is as innovative as something like a browser can be. I can't wait to see how Silk disrupts browsing on the computer in 2012.

Next, if the aforementioned rumors are true, Amazon's retail stores will be a whole lot more than just Kindles. Bezos has apparently been secretly working on a broad collection of retail products that can be offered under the Amazon label. I know this sounds risky, less-focused, and out of scope for an online company like Amazon, but again, Bezos is doing this for a reason. If you can pick up some other amazing products while you're in a store shopping for a Kindle, you're going to do it - especially if you already love the Kindle and have shopped with Amazon for several years already. After all, isn't Amazon known for having just about everything on their site?

That leads me to my next point. Amazon has done their time. They've served billions of customers over the years. In order to continue being an innovative technology company as oppose to just being a stale e-commerce site, they have to continue to grow. How else can Amazon's products reach the older generations that deserve to read from a Kindle? It's much easier to sell a newbie on a product when their grandchild begs them to go into a store because they have been shopping at Amazon online for 7 years. From that, more eyeballs will generate even more sales - but it all stems from the trust that they have built with the world over time.

There is no stopping Jeff Bezos anytime soon. I will continue to follow his every move as an entrepreneur as he continues to innovate and disrupt any of the markets he can touch. It's a real pleasure to watch him.

What do you think about Bezos? Please leave your comments below.

Guest Post: Technology For Real Estate

Today's guest post is from Jeff Norman. Jeff is a recent college grad that is living in New York City and writing for and

In his post, he writes about how the real estate industry is being effected by technology as a whole.

When many people envision the idea of a career in real estate, they might foresee a broker or agent needing a skill set similar to that of an Avon Lady. A smile, perkiness, and a willingness to trek from door to door in pursuit of sales is definitely an admirable assemblage of assets. But to today's real estate community, a fresh and souped-up array of technologically savvy abilities in not only favorable -- it's downright mandatory. The Internet and its myriad whiz-bang-glam features polarize those unfamiliar with the Web; like a powerful magnet, they can either attract your optimism, or repel you into an anti-tech stupor. Hopefully this article encourages you to lean toward the latter response and embrace how new technology can shore up your real estate repertoire.

First of all, you're strongly advised to get a Gmail account as your primary business e-mail. Yes, Gmail, not Yahoo or the like. Google's electronic messaging service stands out for its flexibility and diversity of assets, such as calendar and task functions. What is more, Gmail allows its users to ease the maintainance and accessing of their database of clientele. And every e-mail sent from Gmail includes the sent address as well as a customizable sign-off -- the perfect way to sustain recognition of your personal brand and styling.

For pictures, there is really no better internet system right now than Picasa. Simply put, Picasa makes picture management (essential for anyone in the real estate industry looking to achieve expertise) fun and easy. It has never been simpler to create sophisticated albums that can be geotagged and coordinated with what's on your desktop. Want to beef up your real estate acumen? Consider Picasa obligatory.

And now (drumroll, please), two words that strike fear into the hearts of anyone afraid of the real power possible with the Internet: social networking. Here are two more words to give trepidatious readers even more terror: Facebook and Twitter. Now that the big bad words are out in the air, we implore you not to apprehend these tools. Simply put, maintaining an active Facebook and Twitter page for your real estate affairs is one of the smartest ideas you can implement to immediately impact your success, from listing to escrow. Tweet often, and stock your facebook page regularly with pictures not only of your properties, but of yourself and your staff. Users online want to feel connected to the people of their networks, and they reward those who show an Avon-Lady grin or two online with increased attention.

Lastly, here are a few blogs that build off of the tips we've supplied to you here, and will keep your technological savvy well-spiced and up-to-date. Real Estate Technology features a consistent stream of quick yet cogent, counsel-filled postings that you can implement into your office right here, right now. And Geek Estate makes good on its promise to field relevant info for real estate people who want to harness technology's best.

We hope, after reading this, you're a member of that latter group!

Again, Jeff Norman is a recent college graduate, now writing from New York City. He also writes for as well as