Archive for January, 2008
If you’re not convinced that blogging will get you results, then I suggest you read “Publish & Prosper: Blogging for your Business” by DL Byron & Steve Broback. This will explain the benefits of blogging (far better than I can!) and provides you with the tips and tools to create a successful blog. It’s 180 pages of easy and informative reading and if you’re not a dedicated follower of blogging by the time you’re finished, then frankly, it may be time to consider retirement!
If you cannot find the book in your local store, fear not. You can purchase it on-line at fishpond.co.nz or at amazon.com.
There are many other books available on blogging but I haven’t read them, so I don’t know if they’re any good! If you’ve read any others please feel free to comment or write your recommendations below.
January 31 2008 | General and Voices Blog | No Comments »
This blog post from Sellsius Blog provides a wonderfully simple and yet very clear explanation – you may have heard it before, but the clarity of the content and the richness of the images will make a lasting impression!
Sellsius Real Estate Blog – Blogestate marketing: How real estate blogs get you noticed
January 29 2008 | Promoting your blog | No Comments »
If you are one of the early adopters of blogging and want switch to be part of Voices, the good news is you can! Joining the Voices network can be beneficial as the platform has a significant presence already with Google search through the ranking of the website, also in time the consumer will come to see the platform as a valuable and objective means of evaluating real estate agents.
If you have a WordPress blog this is how you go about the process.
1. There is an export function and an import function in WordPress - Go to the Manage menu
2. Click the Export button in the sub menu. Now Select the Author option if appropriate and create an export XML file which will be saved to your computer. (This format, is called WordPress eXtended RSS or WXR, will contain your posts, comments, custom fields, and categories).
3. You need now to set up a Voices blog - (full instructions)
3. Once you’ve set up your blog use the Import function (under the Manage tab) on your Voices blog to import the content of your original blog
4. Next you will need to let everyone know that is following his RSS feeds of your original blog to switch to your new blog so they can still find you at your new location. The best way is to make a last post on the old address with a link to the new location is probably the best way and leave it there on that blog for ever more – don’t delete your old blog as it can always be a re-direct for any RSS feeds. Of course all your old content will be indexed to the Voices blog platform and therefore you get a hyper-lift in visibility with all the old content now seen as new!
Any problems – give us a call or email us email@example.com
January 29 2008 | Advice | No Comments »
If you’ve just started a Voices blog or are currently thinking about starting a blog, don’t forget to read the background information and advice on our homepage. This information will provide you with tips on setting up your blog, examples of good blogs you can learn from (or copy from – within reason!) and a list of ideas to consider if you’re having trouble thinking of something to write on your blog.
Just remember the 5 basics and don’t be afraid to ask other Voices bloggers for advice. If you notice a feature on another blog, which you’d like to add to yours but don’t know how to, just post a comment on the blog or ask me and I’ll do my best to get the answer for you. In fact, fellow blogger Ross Brader has already offered to assist if he can so if you’ve got a question, don’t be shy. We’re all new to this!
January 28 2008 | Voices Blog | No Comments »
I want to share this article with you – it is from the Florida Realtor Association publication called “The Real Estate Solutions Guide“. I picked up a copy at the Real Estate Connect conference I was at recently.
The article provides an honest view on the background and principles of blogging as it relates to real estate agents.
Crank Up a Blog!
Are you ready to gain exposure by writing an online journal (called a blog)? Answer these questions to find out.
You don’t have a blog? Do you start your car with a crank, too? That’s the message that blog enthusiasts are sending today. If you’re not blogging, you’re so last-century. But sales associates are seeing mixed results with blogs as marketing tools. Take V.K. “Mel” Melhado, a sales associate at Downing-Frye Realty Inc. in Naples, who blogs at www.previewnaples.com/blog. “I talked myself into creating a blog, and I’m not sure why I’m doing it. I [feel like] I’m talking to myself [sometimes],” he says.
Courtney Silverman, a sales associate at The Keyes Co./Realtors® in Weston, has been blogging at http://westonflrealestateblog.com for more than a year and feels differently. She says her blog helps generate traffic to her Web site, which has boosted its rankings in search engines like Google and Yahoo.
However, more than just directly increasing business, a blog can set you up as an expert in the industry and just as easily turn people off if you choose to use your blog to vent about problems. With the right tone and accurate information, you can build a blog that brings you goodwill and business.
To determine if blogging is right for you before you launch a blog, ask yourself these questions:
Read the rest of the article here at The Real Estate Solutions Guide
January 25 2008 | Background to blogging | No Comments »
At the recent Real Estate Connect conference I attended, the opening panel discussion of the blogging session was titled “Avoid the content brick wall – Ideas for fresh and frequent blogging”.
Just today I got an email from a Remax agent (agents love to add me to their mailing lists! – fortunately I don’t mind as it gives me a view of the marketing ideas of the industry) – within this email there was an article titled “What makes a good investment property” – I thought that was a great article for an email – equally for a blog!
Having read this article I was ammused to see at the footer “used with permission and adapted from www.realestate.co.nz/resources” – my reaction – I was delighted, I did recall speaking with the agent and was more than happy for him and infact anyone in this industry to take any content from the site and use it on their blog or email. All that I ask is that we are cited as the author of the content with a link back to the article. This is what the internet and blogs are all about – sharing insights and experiences with others.
As food for thought here are a couple of the articles that you could borrow for your blog from our resources section of the site:
Home loan options
How to be a smart property investor
Living in the burbs
Tracking legal documentation
What’s the state of the property market?
January 25 2008 | Advice | No Comments »
On my travels this week I met an agent who, some time ago, had been asked by us to remove some of his properties from realestate.co.nz. The reason for this was pretty simple – the properties were sold.
Although the properties were immediately removed, the agent feels that our policy is unfair, that we should allow sold properties to be listed on the website as a means of promotion and to attract new listings. I know there are other agents out there who feel the same way, but I have to say this confuses me.
I think it’s safe to assume that people browsing realestate.co.nz and other property websites, are there to look at properties that are on sale, even if they do not always intend to buy them. I certainly don’t know of anyone who has visited a property website to select an agent to sell their home.
However, let’s say I am looking to buy a house and in doing so I will need to sell mine. So, maybe choosing an agent is something that has been on my mind. Having said that, the reason I’m on the site is to find my next home and that’s what I’m focused on. I certainly don’t want to find houses in my price range that I might have been able to purchase if I’d only started my search a few months earlier! If anything, that’s a black spot against the agent who has listed them but maybe that’s just me. Am I missing something?
So, when you sell a house, please remember to remove it from realestate.co.nz immediately. You can still share your good news with the world, there are just better places to do it – like your Voices blog!
January 24 2008 | General | No Comments »
I thought you might be interested in this fact!
I wrote the post “Be wary of spam” at 8.24am today the 23 January. At 9.02 (exactly 36 minutes later) I recieved an email from Google as I have email alerts set up – one of which is on my own name (no I am not being vain, butI do want to see what is out there with my name on it!!) and it was the link to this post “Be wary of spam”. Also if you do a Google search on “Be wary of spam” you will see it there – it was there soon after 9am.
So this tells you that our site ww.realestate.co.nz is highly visible to Google so that it takes just over half an hour to identify that new content has been added to our site and set about notifying the different parts of Google that handle new seacrh info, one of which is Google Alerts.
This then tells you that if you write on your blog on the Voices platform it is more likely to be “found” on Google than any other platform in NZ.
It really is a powerful and pervasive world we live in!!
January 23 2008 | Promoting your blog | 1 Comment »
I have noticed over the past couple of days the start of a new spam attack that is not being picked up by the spam filter on this WordPress platform – this is not a crtisism of WordPRess it is more how smart the spammers are – as you will see it looks pretty legitimate.
The situation is best seen as ”Mirroring content”. What happens is someone sets up a blog platform on a subject - real estate seems attractive as there are so many blogs on real estate attracting traffic. The blog then using automated capabilities searches out blog content on real estate. Once found it copies the post and then posts that content on its blog prefaced by a line like:
“Jacquie article is brought to you using rss feeds.Here you will find the latest real estate news for buying and selling homes.Whilst on the face of it this may seem a rather simplistic question it actually belies a deeper understanding of the structures of the real estate industry. It is important to bring clarity to this matter especially as this year it is … ”
“Alistair Helm wrote this great article on real estate, I have copied it here so you can read .Whilst on the face of it this may seem a rather simplistic question it actually belies a deeper understanding of the structures of the real estate industry. It is important to bring clarity to this matter especially as this year it is …”
Both of these are real examples – the latter is smart it captures the authors name to add authenticity and make the author feel proud of their article. What they then do is parcel this post up in a comment and send it to your blog – which in content does not look like spam as it has your name and part of your original article.
So why do they do this? – they can make money – by doing this they can build a website which in a matter of hours can have hundreds of posts stolen from other blogs which will capture search engine “eyes” – by placing Google ads on their blog they can make money by click throughs to those ads. Now before you begin to panic and feel that the internet is being destroyed by spammers, these people will not last long and you can help.
Firstly if you see this type of thing come as a comment to you blog, then mark it as spam rather than delete – this process will enable the spam software to use this information to get smarter and part of their role is to report this type of impact to Google etc. Also be aware Google spends billions per year to keep the web clean and to block spammers either making money from this type of activity or from destroying the blogosphere.
Bottom line keep your eyes open and be confident that the web is a very sophisticated beast, it is rich and rewarding – don’t be put off by the actions of a few who may never effect you!
January 23 2008 | Handling comments on your blog | No Comments »
I am! And, after setting up my blog almost a week ago, I’m finally writing my first post. Ok, so I realise I’m a little behind the times. Blogs have been around now for over ten years and are very popular. It seems like every man and his dog has one and they’re not shy about giving advice to us newbies. There are so many articles out there on the Dos & Don’ts of blogging that it’s easy to get a little overwhelmed.
This week I’ve learnt that if my blog is, among other things, informative, relevant, interesting, witty, spontaneous, interactive, authentic, conversational and maybe just a touch provocative, then I’ll be doing well. I’m hoping it doesn’t have to be all these things at once…maybe just one per post will be ok?!
So instead of taking all these things on board at the moment, I’m taking just one thing with me from my week of research on blogging: “It’s not about being an expert; blogging is not rocket science, it’s about being yourself, and putting what you have into it.”
I’ll work on the rest later!
January 20 2008 | General | No Comments »