Spencer Rascoff successfully guided Zillow to a blockbuster initial public offering in July, a significant milestone for the fast-growing online real estate company. And while that achievement alone would have warranted Rascoff’s inclusion as a GeekWire 2011 Newsmaker, it’s the little stuff that’s most impressive about the 36-year-old Internet executive.
On Monday, Rascoff posted this message on his Twitter account:
“Responding to a high schooler who emailed me asking about @Zillow strategy for a school assignment.”
You’d think that the CEO of a publicly-traded company — especially one who welcomed a new daughter on Labor Day weekend — wouldn’t have time to respond to high school students about the intricacies of Zillow.
But that’s just Rascoff’s style. He’s been described as one of the hardest working men in Seattle technology. The former executive at Hotwire and Expedia routinely answers questions in the Zillow forums, helping real estate agents and consumers better understand how to get the most out of the site.
Rascoff’s attention to detail is paying off. There were almost too many major milestones to count for Zillow in 2011.
Consider this: The company turned its first profit; purchased its first companies (Postlets in April and Diverse Solutions in November); topped 25 million monthly unique visitors; and is on pace to more than double revenue this year.
Zillow is also now the second most visited online real estate Web site in the country, overtaking Realtor.com last month, according to Hitwise. Amid all of the changes, Zillow moved to more spacious digs in downtown Seattle.
It’s certainly been a busy year for Zillow. Rascoff, who took over the CEO reins from co-founder Rich Barton last year, has lifted the company to new heights through a very personal touch.
As an example, here’s his most recent Tweet, responding to a newcomer who just discovered Zillow.
@zillow! Better late than never.”