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All is Fair in Love, War and Internet Marketing.

Real Estate Agent with Century 21 Lanthorn Real Estate LTD., Trenton, Ontario

I guess I dropped the ball on this one. When I switched from Remax to Century 21 earlier this year I had to scramble to change all of my websites, internet profiles and virtual business cards. It took quite a while, and I'm sure there are still dozens of places on the web where I'm still listed as a Remax agent. When I first started building up a web presence I didn't realize that it should be done with such a disciplined approach and I just haphazardly signed on to any site that would allow me to link back to my websites without paying too much attention. Consequently, I have no idea where my mug will show up.

One of the most important profiles that I should have kept my eye on is my Google business profile since it shows up on Google maps and Google queries related to real estate in Trenton.  I just use my gmail account as a gateway to access all my Google products such as my blogger blog, Google documents and my profile. Needless to say I haven't paid a lot of attention to it lately and just assumed that everything was alright with it. Well you can imagine my surprise when I stumbled across my own business profile and it was sporting another local agent's mugshot.

I have no idea how someone else was able to access my Google Business Profile and upload a picture of themselves. I can see why someone would want to though, it places very high in local Google Queries related to real estate, and since it was apparently dormant (mea culpa), I guess it might have appeared ripe for a takeover. It's the cyber equivalent of a hermit crab switching shells. No harm done really.

In my spare time I'm going to have to browse around and see if anything else has been hijacked. This is one excellent reason why people who are building an on-line presence should take a disciplined approach to the job and keep an eye on things.


Stacia Whatley
John L. Scott Silverdale - Silverdale, WA
StaciaSellsHomes Your Western WA RealtorĀ®

Good advice! Thanks for the post!

Oct 04, 2011 03:52 AM
Susan Emo
Sotheby's International Realty Canada - Brokerage - Kingston, ON
Kingston and the 1000 Islands Area

Malcolm -  I was going to say a haircut was needed, lol   It is amazing what stays out there forever.  I had an email from a Buyer wanting to book an appointment for a listing that had sold twice since I had first listed it.  He couldn't remember where he saw it online but thought it would be perfect for him and his family.  He became quite annoyed when I informed him that it was not available and hadn't been for years!  It seems the virtual tour company I used in the day had linked it out around the world and back and for some reason it continued to show active in their records. 

Oct 04, 2011 03:55 AM
Stacey Smith
Keller Williams Realty - Aliso Viejo, CA
Your Orange County Beach Cities Realtor

Great post and great advice.. Hope you like the change you made to C21...Happy Tuesday! :)

Oct 04, 2011 03:55 AM
Andrew Capelli
Troy, MI

Malcom- A very good point.  We take for granted the heightened level of awareness needed in an online world.  Thanks for sharing!

Oct 04, 2011 04:02 AM
Robin Dampier REALTORĀ®
Coldwell Banker King - Hendersonville, NC
Hendersonville & Western NC Real Estate Source

Indeed that picture would be quite a transformation for Malcolm.  Much more than letting your hair grow!!  Technology can be so difficult to keep up with.  I'm beginning to think that a well maintained/updated less is better and easier to manage.  Hopefully you can get it straightened out.

Sue of Robin and Sue

Oct 04, 2011 04:08 AM
Sheila Newton Team Anderson & Greenville SC
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - C. Dan Joyner - Anderson, SC
Selling the Upstate since 1989

spare time? what is that.. lol.. it is very hard to keep up with all the sites.. i have the same problem.. :)

Oct 04, 2011 05:23 AM
Malcolm Johnston
Century 21 Lanthorn Real Estate LTD., Trenton, Ontario - Trenton, ON
Trenton Real Estate

You're welcome Stacia.

Susan, I had a similar problem with a listing that went to a syndicated quasi real estate site. It's out of your hands at that point.

Hi Stacey, yes, I'm enjoying the change.

Andrew, we do need to be on top of many things on the web.

Sue, yes, that would be quite a transformation.

Sheila, if you cut your sleep back to 3 hours a night you'll have a few more hours to work.

Oct 04, 2011 06:11 AM
Chris Smith
Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage - New Tecumseth, ON
South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta

Malcolm, when I changed companies last year, I had not planned the move, and as a result, had no way of contacting some prospects with my new contact info... it is so easy to forget to update the many websites we use. 

The people who are looking for you will hopefully find you, or think that you have had some major surgery ;-)

Oct 04, 2011 06:41 AM
Cynthia Larsen
Cotati, CA
Independent Broker In Sonoma County, CA

Talk about letting your hair down! No, Malcolm, we are accustomed to the mug we see on AR every day. Please fix it.

Oct 04, 2011 02:11 PM
Sally Weatherley
Vancouver Home Staging, Home Stager Vancouver, B.C

Malcolm - As nice as the blond hair looks, I prefer you as a brunette!  A great reminder to keep on top of the sites we've linked to.

Oct 04, 2011 02:26 PM
Krystal Knott
Christie's International Real Estate - Summit Colorado - Breckenridge, CO
Breckenridge CO Real Estate & All Summit County CO

Malcolm, wow I didn't know someone would be able to or would want to do something like that...doesn't anyone believe in karma anymore?  Thanks for the great reminder to keep an eye on things online.  --Krystal

Oct 04, 2011 04:25 PM
Brian Madigan
RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage (Toronto) - Toronto, ON
LL.B., Broker


That's pretty strange. But, there can be problems with Google and blogger.


Oct 05, 2011 12:56 AM
Janice Ankrett
Burlington, ON
Staging Professional

Malcolm, You mean you don't have long blond hair?! LOL! That's really a strange tale.

Oct 05, 2011 08:38 AM