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It’s the natural evolution of a marketplace to start putting all the hot features into a single unit (iPhone, anyone?) It sells like gangbusters. But, what gets left behind?

As pointed out over on the HomeGain blog, companies like HomeGain, Active Rain, Trulia, and Zillow are aggressively maneuvering to be the one-stop shop for online real estate marketing. Is this good for you?

A single company could conceivably provide you all the tools: website, seo, blog platform, email system, advertising, etc.

Here’s the thing… just because you have the tools does not mean you have a marketable business. And where’s the strategy?

At it’s highest level marketing is your brand, your unique selling proposition, your competitive advantages, your business identity, your relationships, your market vision.

Got that in a box?

Some folks say that a one-stop solution will help real estate agents cut through the confusion of online marketing. Cutting through the confusion is good. Selling them a box of tools with no education as to how to how to effectively use them in a strategy… bad.

What do you think of this direction?