ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: How Many Posts In A Row Can I Post? - 07/18/17 01:14 PM
 There are written rules for this community and if you haven't read them, it's a good idea to find out what they are and you'll understand why this community thrives.
If you want to keep things rosy, there are some clear no-nos.
Don't self-advertise on another bloggers post.  Don't be rude! (remember learning how to play nice in the sandbox when you were in kindergarten?  Same principles, just a MUCH bigger sandbox).  Don't violate the law.  That's fair housing, commission discussions, and other topics that need to stay in your head and not typed.  Don't spam other members And that last is … (41 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: It's Personal - 07/11/17 04:04 PM

A blogger has many choices.
What to write, or not write.
How often to write.
Whether to be social or just hit and run.
How long to stick with blogging.
What platform to use, or to even go more than one.
Boxers or briefs...
Okay, maybe that last one isn't a decision for most bloggers.  It's a personal thing and that leads to one decision a blogger does have to make.
How personal should they get with their blog?
Do they go all professional 100% of the time?  Market reports, listings, nothing that lets you know anything about them at all?
Or maybe a bit of a peak behind the curtain.  … (32 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Doing What We Don't Want To Do - 07/04/17 01:13 PM

Real estate isn't necessarily a natural fit for me.  I'm an engineer and an introvert.  Pick your personality test and they're all going to pretty much tell you the same thing.  I'm data driven, just fine by myself and prefer independent project work over team activities.  And yet, for the last 13 years I've been living a dual career life, working as an engineer and a real estate agent.  Fortunately I'm adaptable and while being out with buyers all day may exhaust me, they'll not know it while I'm out with them...but I may be head to table within a few … (23 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Is It Time To Remodel Your Site? - 06/13/17 10:11 AM
When we bought our home it came with a free standing wood burning fireplace on a raised tile hearth.  That hearth was a real toe buster!  Every now and then one of us would misjudge our step and OUCH!!  We didn't use it because of concern for our pets.  While we have a near endless source of firewood and it would have been nice to reduce our heating bills, that savings would probably have been reduced by vet bills as each cat would have to learn that the top of the stove would be VERY hot!  So we lived with this … (39 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Down The Drain - 06/06/17 09:44 AM

Social media is both boon and bane.  Today I had another patio home buyer call about hiring us to help find his new home.  Our web pages do the job for us.  Creating blog posts and IDX web pages is a very productive use of my time.
Now if I wanted, I could literally spend hours and hours being sucked down the drain on the topic du jour:  Zillow Instant Offers.
It's apparent that many agents have a lot of angst regarding anything Z does.  And it's also apparent that many agents don't know all the ins and outs of our business.  That … (38 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Your Recommendations Reflect On You - 05/30/17 04:43 PM
Our clients always have a choice.  To work with us, or not.  To take our advice, or not.  If we've earned their trust it's likely they'll listen.  And that trust is a double edged sword.  If our recommendations work out, we'll look like heros.  If our recommendations fail, we'll be the scapegoat.
Our recommendations cover a varied scope:
Preparing, pricing and marketing a home for sale Helping our buyers find the right home and negotiating the purchase Our recommendations for other professionals:  agent referrals, loan officers, home inspectors, contractors. Every opportunity can be a make or break situation for our relationship with … (27 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Frequency AND Content Matter! - 05/16/17 01:17 PM
I see it every now and then:
Blogging doesn't work.
ActiveRain isn't getting the job done.
I used to rank better and didn't need to work at it nearly so hard.
And maybe it's true to some extent.  Maybe ActiveRain doesn't launch you straight to Page 1 the way it did 9 years ago...when there were just a handful of real estate bloggers in any local market...if there were even that many.
Now it's a lot easier to broadcast to the world, and blogs aren't the only mechanism.  Pinterest, videos, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and 43 more I probably haven't even heard of yet, but that each … (30 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: ERR-RANT Temptations - 05/09/17 03:01 PM
This is a business that REALLY tempts you to blow your cool.  Vent some steam.  Unload on someone that REALLY deserves it.  Just let them know how shortchanged they are in the IQ department.  Give 'em the verbal slap upside the back of the head.  Tell 'em to get a pair of big boy pants.'s probably not the prudent thing to do except in VERY specific circumstances.  There are times you need to defend yourself, your clients, your beliefs and when you've tried the sugar and spice and everything nice approach multiple times and the behavior doesn't change, then maybe the … (41 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Morning, Noon or Night, Just Write! - 04/25/17 01:44 PM

Jim Cheney recently asked in the Q&A section about when people prefer to blog.  The answers of course vary as blogging is a personal endeavor and we each have different demands on our time and attention.  Mix in whether we are more creative at certain times, the environment around us and a host of other factors and it gets a bit complicated.
For me personally, I'm scattered on the when (and even the where for that matter).  When I first started I was a morning blogger AND an afternoon blogger.  Just had to get those points!  But over time that changed.  One … (21 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Expert, One Of The Most Abused Words In Real Estate - 04/18/17 06:20 PM

Expert doesn't mean what I think it should in our business.
Apparently Facebook thinks because I spend time in real estate groups that I need ads pertaining to real estate, especially ads from other local agents!
So I see an ad come across my feed for a local agent and it's an agent name I haven't heard, and the ad proclaimed her a local expert.  Well since I had about 60 seconds to spare I decided to do a quick check of MLS for this agent and check sales.  Five sales in the last 15 months.  Now maybe she truly is an expert … (11 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Market Reports Make Music To My Ears! - 04/11/17 05:07 PM

"I love reading your market report blog."
Not exactly the message I expect to get on a Sunday morning, but there it was in my Inbox!
And a little email back and forth later and I've got a buyer 2-3 months out that knows where they want to live and what they want to buy.  Score one for blogging!  All I have to do is make sure I continue to maintain contact and prove the actions back up the blog posts.
Now for those of you that might think writing market reports is a grind, I'll not argue with you about that.  It's far, … (44 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Blogging My Humanity - 04/04/17 01:45 PM

I've been a human all my life.  I started off without much awareness, bad eyesight, not much hair and pooping myself regularly!  :)
Over time, a lot has changed and some things haven't.  I'm still a human over half a century later!  With that comes the same Life challenges we all face accompanied with a full range of emotions from the highest to the lowest.  Wants and needs are there, and sometimes the challenge is understanding the difference between the two!
Now if you wonder where I'm heading with this ramble, recently Tony Lewis asked a question about a blog post about Easter and … (34 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Avoiding Vampires - 03/21/17 07:07 AM
What many new real estate agents may not realize is that as agents we are a small business.  Whether you work for a big box brand or a small brokerage, you're responsible for your own success. 
Establishing goals, a business plan, understanding your sources of business, your costs, recognizing your limits, planning for taxes, that and much more are a critical part of being successful.  And it's not just a matter of grossing the most, but a matter of keeping a good sized piece of those earnings in your own pocket.
So to be successful, you've got to avoid vampires.  While there … (52 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: 10 Things You Learn In The Rain - 03/14/17 01:19 PM

We've been doing our best to put the "Active" in ActiveRain for almost 7 years, and there are many key lessons to learn.  The quicker you learn and apply, the better your Rain experience: 
1.  Playing nice in the sandbox mattered in kindergarten and it matters here too.  This community isn't a place for bare knuckle brawls.  If you're looking to fight, I've got a few places to suggest for you to look, but the Rain isn't one of them.
2.  Posts and comments are permanent.  Thank you Interwebs and it's a double edged sword.  If we do things right, we get … (46 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: ActiveRain Commenting Etiquette - 03/07/17 10:46 AM

I have rarely deleted comments in years of blogging in the Rain.  Vulgarity on a consumer facing post, yep that'll do it.  But otherwise if someone wants to act like an
I've preferred to just leave it there and let others draw their own conclusions.  But under the right circumstances, I WILL use the Delete key.
There are a some key ways to get yourself in trouble with your comments:
1.  Not being aware of the blogger's target audience.  If they're writing to the consumer, you can bet the author isn't looking to have you try and destroy their credibility, ethics or professionalism.  If … (67 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Why We Blog Daily - 02/21/17 01:51 PM

It's Tuesday, and it's a "normal" week so returning to our regularly scheduled AAA schedule.
Anyone that has known us in the Rain knows there's one thing they can count on:  We WILL have a new post every day.  If we didn't show up I suspect there might be a missing persons call made to Bob Stewart.
There's a host of reasons why that is the case:
1.  It's a habit.  It started off with a 30/30 challenge back in 2010.  I got used to it and got tuned into ideas and after that the dominoes just started to fall into place.
2.  I … (35 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: My Client Said He'd Knock Me Out! - 02/13/17 11:08 AM

You may think my blogging world is turned upside down.  After all, aren't my AAA posts on TUESDAYS??? (yes, normally) And WHY would my client be promising to knock me out?  Just how bad did that transaction get??
Well, those that follow me know that I blog with a purpose, and here it is:
You need a good title to pull readers in. 
You can have the BEST content in the world, but it you can't get that initial click, it doesn't do you much good.  It's no different than the wonderfully updated home that has an exterior with BLAH curb appeal.  That … (41 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Pros & Cons of Short URLs - 02/07/17 03:15 PM

What's a short URL you may ask?
It's basically just what you'd expect from that name, it's a tool to abbreviate a blog post's URL to something...wait for it....SHORT! 
E.g. we start with:
and it becomes
Both links will take you to the same post (well USUALLY, more on that later).
So how do you create that short URL for your posts?  They're just a click away.  On any post (not just your own), look to the bottom right for the SHORT URL button:
Click the SHORT URL button and you get:
And right next to that red arrow will be a UNIQUE short url generated for … (40 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Should I Enter ActiveRain Contests? - 01/31/17 01:24 PM

I'm going to use everyone's "favorite" answer to answer that question:
"It depends!"
Okay, don't shoot the messenger but that's my honest answer to whether or not you should participate.
ActiveRain offers two categories:
1.  Challenges.  Do X and we'll give you Y points.
2.  Contests.  There are judges, extra points for placing 1, 2 or 3 and points for participating.
So "It depends" on:
Where are you in your blogging life? How badly do you want the points? Do you have the time? Will the particular contest help you develop as a blogger or increase your business? Your answers to these questions help decide whether it's … (39 comments)

ask an ambassador: Ask An Ambassador: Where Can I Find Help? - 01/24/17 01:41 PM

Are you having a problem and need some help? 
Where can you turn to for assistance?
For general How To questions or about how things work in the Rain, you have multiple options:
1.  If you see someone that's doing what you want to do, just ask them!  That's how I learned to hyperlink in our posts when we were first starting.
2.  Post a question in the Q&A section.  There's a fair number of people checking in there throughout the day and chances are good someone might be able to give you a solid answer.
3.  Contact one of the Ambassadors (caveat, not all … (31 comments)

Liz and Bill Spear,  RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton) (RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 Ambassador large

Liz and Bill Spear

RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Mason, OH

More about me…

RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305

Address: 5720 Gateway Blvd, Suite 203, Mason, OH, 45040

Mobile: 513-520-5305

Email Me

REALTORS(R) serving Warren County Ohio and surrounding areas. Observing and reporting on real estate and related topics to help your quality of life! And if you're asking where is Warren County Ohio? We fill the space between Cincinnati and Dayton. Perfect for enjoying the bigger cities without living in them. Places like Mason, Lebanon, Springboro, Waynesville, Franklin and more. Plus lots of rural properties available too. We work with both residential home buyers and sellers.




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