Allen Norwood

Concord broker a hit online

Leigh Brown doesn’t have an “accent.” She sounds just like lots of other people from North Carolina, especially those who grew up around here. She’s animated and vivacious when she speaks, but she doesn’t have a regional accent. I don’t know why some of the folks who follow her online feel obliged to mention her Southern accent.

I mean, she sounds like me.

She laughs when I mention that, and those comments about her accent: “I’m fully aware that in the Northeast they deduct 100 points from my IQ when they hear me ... which lets me get away with stuff.”

And much of that “stuff” is serious commentary on the real estate industry and her fellow professionals.

Brown’s online videos appear on a leading real estate industry site, Inman News. Her features draw lots of comments, including kudos – and the occasional mention that she’s clearly not from New York or California.

No, and that makes her commentary even more important. California, New York and Florida are important markets, but they’re not like other markets around the country, even though they tend to dominate the national conversation. The real estate cultures in those places are different from Charlotte’s. Even the language of real estate varies from state to state.

How did a broker from Concord, who grew up on a farm near what is now Concord Mills, come to have a national audience?

Several years ago she began teaching at national seminars and conventions, in addition to maintaining her career at Leigh Brown and Associates RE/MAX Executive Realty. She led sessions in personal growth, managing paperwork, effective social networking. She caught the ear of Brad Inman of Inman News.

She was colorful – “But nothing my Mama would disapprove of!” – because that signature style helped get her points across.

With a nod toward a hilarious Twitter feed that became a popular book and then a television show, Inman presents Brown’s videos as “Stuff Leigh Brown Says.”

She has been featured in weekly commentaries for about six weeks.

In January, she’ll appear on the main stage when Inman News hosts its “Real Estate Connect” convention in New York City.

I’m betting that she’ll draw a huge crowd – and that some in the audience will comment on her Southern accent. But she doesn’t have one. If you’re from around here, go to www.inman.com/news and see for yourself.

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