At least there's that

Character is what you have left when you've lost everything you can lose.
  - Evan Esar

So I joined in October of last year and quickly was able to get up well over 38,000 points, coming up to 40,000 soon. At first, it was all about getting as many points as possible, as the competitive nature came out. But after a while I began to notice a pretty cool phenomenon...

My posts were being noticed by Google, and even more important, by people. And getting noticed on Localism was becoming more of a focus for me as this is where the general public came. And as we all know, that is why we blog to begin with!

While watching others and their techniques, I noticed a couple others that would post the same content more than once. At first I thought this might be considered spam, so I contacted AR and asked about it. Never did hear back and after investigating more myself, I noticed further that the questionable posts were being modified to change the city name and then posted to each city within Localism. Since AR was silent (and I was new) I assumed this was acceptable and began doing this myself.

I would post roughly the same content to multiple cities, modifying the city name and a few smaller details. I was careful not to re-post the same thing directly to AR over and over as I did not want to spam the board. This method proved to build points quickly.

Now, also notice that I posted much more than just this. I continued to post original content beyond this. Again, it was not just about the points. By posting as much as I could, there was more content tied to my name and Google was seeing my name more often. So I posted well beyond the 10 max per week for automatic scoring. However, since I had already posted the modified posts to Localism, I had maxed out the points already. These other posts were "pointless", but still worthy of posting.

Fast forward to today. Another blogger on AR began to criticize me on this method. I indicated to him that I had contacted AR and they were silent, so unless they informed me to stop, I would continue what I was doing. However, after he complained to AR, AR did finally contact me.

We have gone back and forth on this issue and ultimately Bob and the gang at AR have decided that this kind of posting is potentially dangerous in regards to Google. So in that decision, all my posts were docked the points and "no follow" tags were added. This stops Google from seeing them as "duplicate content" somehow. They also considered it to be "cheating" in regards to points... ouch.

This was a blow to me. It is very disheartening to see all you have done be counted as "cheating" or somehow disqualified, when you had asked and no one responded. It feels defeating to go through this. Most people would just give up and leave AR altogether.

However, I still believe in AR and what it does. I will continue to post and will make sure that the posts are along the lines of the new information that has been provided to me by AR.

I do not post this to complain, rather to warn others of this type of posting. AR has acknowledged that this needs to be more clearly addressed, but I also know they have so many other things they are doing as well. So I humbly post this to prevent anyone else from feeling this pain.

I also formally ask other AR members to forgive me for taking a "short cut." It was not my intention to cheat anything or anyone. I simply figured I had found a method that was suitable and working smart. Either way, regardless of the reasoning, it was erroneous and I do ask for your forgiveness.

Respectfully,

Ed Nailor

_____________________________________

The Ed Nailor Mortgage Team
Charlotte NC Mortgages

704-651-8704 Phone
or visit www.EdNailor.com

close

This entry hasn't been re-blogged:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
Tags:
active rain
how to
posting
blog
charlotte
nc
google

Spam prevention
Show All Comments
Ambassador
1,052,265
Steve Shatsky
Dallas, TX
Ed, a post like this only demonstrates what a "class act" you are and will only cement in people's minds why they should want to do business with you.  The points are nice, but hopefully the "real" reason we all do this is to educate others and to lead generate... sounds like you are successful on both those counts, so be proud of your accomplishments! :)
Jan 12, 2008 05:51 AM #37
Rainmaker
291,454
Kate Bourland
Marketing with Kate - Redding, CA
Onlilne Marketing Mobile Marketing

Ed, Interesting post.  Localism is going to be one of my focuses on Active Rain this year.  In your case, I'm not sure that I agree with Active Rains policy.  It's frustrating, because, if you market to more than one area you can only post to one city. There needs to be a work around on that for those of us who have influence in nearby cities.

Don't know what the workaround is but I appreciate this information!

Jan 12, 2008 06:01 AM #38
Anonymous
Anonymous
there but for the grace of God go I. Ed- I have been thinking about doing what you did and just wasn't sure it would fly. I think AR should give you a 1000 points for honesty and humility. Good luck.
Jan 12, 2008 06:31 AM #39
Ambassador
593,794
Rich Jacobson
Fathom Realty West Sound - Poulsbo, WA
Your Kitsap County WA Real Estate Broker
Kate - I agree. There are many of us who market to mutliple cities/counties, or even states. Currently, our profiles can only be used in one city/town. However, that doesn't preclude us from posting articles to other citites or market areas. That is something I've done quite a bit myself for Localism. So, from a consumer standpoint, if someone is accessing Localism, and looking in an area other than where my profile is resident, they will find me. The downside is that my point ranking is only applicable to my primary profile location. I know the AR gods have discussed this issue at length, but I don't know what the future direction is. All I can say is that the best way to participate in Localism is to consistently post original content in each post, and vary them for the various cities/counties you serve. And remember, there are several primary catgories you can post to within Localism. The more consistently you post to each of these categories, the greater your chances of being found by potential clients.
Jan 12, 2008 06:35 AM #40
Rainer
7,826
Vinnie Vacca
DPR Realty LLC. - Glendale, AZ
Glendale Arizona, Arrowhead Ranch
Hey Ed, thanks for the info, ultimately, we all want to get to the top as fast as we can(well, maybe not all), so I'm forgiveness come easy. You didn't know it was cheating. Can't blame a guy for trying.
Jan 12, 2008 07:56 AM #41
Rainmaker
207,870
Erby Crofutt
B4 U Close Home Inspections&Radon Testing (www.b4uclose.com) - Lexington, KY
The Central Kentucky Home Inspector, Lexington KY

When I was a kid I learned by doing.

Sometimes i learned NOT to do something because it had negative consequences after I did it.
(Is that a polite way of saying my dad kicked my butt!)

My younger brothers and sisters learned by the example of the negative consequences I suffered. 

In any case, I lived and I learned.

So did you!

AND becasue you shared, so will we!

Thanks for sharing your lesson.

Jan 12, 2008 08:11 AM #42
Rainer
122,217
Christy Powers
Keller Williams Coastal Area Partners - Pooler, GA
Pooler, Savannah Real Estate Agent
I am so sorry that happened to you. This is definitely a great post for new people coming to the site.
Jan 12, 2008 08:18 AM #43
Rainmaker
501,615
Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA
Douglas Elliman Real Estate - Southampton, NY
...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons

....at least you got featured! How's that for rewarding bad behavior....I joined at the same time you did and have not really been trying to "break the bank" so to speak, for points but I have written a decent number of posts and not been featured, so there ya go!!!

Thank you for sharing this information with the AR group...I bet they never thought some one would do what you did--it is a bit of a scheme. 

Jan 12, 2008 09:06 AM #44
Rainmaker
1,147,431
Bryant Tutas
Tutas Towne Realty, Inc and Garden Views Realty, LLC - Winter Garden, FL
Selling Florida one home at a time

Ed, Way to take it like a man. You just won many points in my book.

The thing we have to remember about AR is that the whole is greater than the pieces.  Our individual efforts should always be done with "benefiting the community" in the back of our minds. Also, points don't mean squat in the grand scheme of things. I get tons of business from AR and none of it was because of my points. All of it came through Google searches. They hired me because I know what I'm talking about when it come to real estate in Poinciana Fl. Keep your message real and be consistent not repetitive and the consumer will find you.

Re-adjust your plan and move forward. Everything else will take care of itself.

 

Jan 12, 2008 09:10 AM #45
Ambassador
1,894,589
Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News
Ed-the rules seem to be fairly inconsistent.  I have posted the same blog a couple of times when they are relevant to go across counties and cities it seemed to be the only way to get the message out to two localities. Your experience is unfortunate and there are others who are seriously gaming the system and it seems to go unnoticed.  Stay the course!
Jan 12, 2008 09:51 AM #46
Rainmaker
338,542
Gary Bolen
McCall Realty - South Lake Tahoe, CA
CRS - Lake Tahoe Real Estate Information

So here's what just happened. This post got me off my but and you're now subscribed to and associated with. Rich is always spot on, and his comments here are great. So's the support from Bryant.

Here;s what we do that might help you. We've got 40 neighborhoods. We update them statistically at least once a month in our outside blog. It takes 3 full days to do it every time. We post a narrative there leading people to the stat charts. That narrative is essentially the same for each neighborhood, kinda. We post that here on AR too. Some weeks more of it, like this one, and other weeks much less. It depends on what we're facing. Hope this helps.

And thanks for being so stand up to write about this so positively. Right on.

cheers 

Jan 12, 2008 10:38 AM #47
Rainer
94,830
Kim Wood
The Tech Byte - West Chester, PA
Kim Wood ~ The Tech Byte
I respect you for how you delivered your post of disappointment. And heh....  a feature at that :)
Jan 12, 2008 10:51 AM #48
Rainmaker
273,670
Wayne B. Pruner
Oregon First - Tigard, OR
Tigard Oregon Homes for Sale, Realtor, GRI
Way to go public with this. Thanks for sharing your experience so we can all benefit from it.
Jan 12, 2008 10:54 AM #49
Rainmaker
250,068
Mike Klijanowicz
Cummings & Co. Realtors - Perry Hall, MD
Associate Broker @ Cummings & Co. Realtors
Good for you ed!  Keep up the good "original" work
Jan 12, 2008 11:34 AM #50
Rainmaker
656,032
Bob & Carolin Benjamin
Benjamin Realty LLC - Gold Canyon, AZ
East Phoenix Arizona Homes
It's hard to know what is the right thing, especially if one asks and gets no answer. Keep being on A/R and consider this all behind you. All the best.
Jan 12, 2008 02:59 PM #52
Rainer
271,024
Ginger S
Wilkinson & Associates, Wilmington NC - Wilmington, NC
Wilmington NC Real Estate & Relocation~

Ed, It takes a lot of character to stand up and ask to e forgiven. yes, and keep on keeping on.

Ginger 

Jan 12, 2008 05:10 PM #53
Rainmaker
120,685
Gary McNinch
Better Properties Real Estate - Renton, WA
Broker, Renton WA Real Estate

Ed,  I also repeat the thanks.  I didn't know if it was ok to post on both, but if it is not a legal or moral issue, I usually tend to do it and not ask.  Now I know.  So your elegance has kept me out of the grease.

List and Sell (and it starts with a good mortgage)  Gary @ RentonHomeFinder

Jan 12, 2008 06:34 PM #54
Rainmaker
212,749
Terrylynn Fisher
Dudum Real Estate Group - BuyStageSell.com - Walnut Creek, CA
HAFA Certified, EcoBroker, CRS, CSP Realtor, Etc.
Always be the first to acknowledge a mistake and people are willing to forgive and forget.  Well, the rules are overwhelming when you first come on and "now that you know better, you do better."  Thanks for the post
Jan 12, 2008 06:46 PM #55
Rainer
69,057
Charlotte Home Loans Your Charlotte Mortgage Lender
Charlotte, NC

Thank you all for your feedback and encouragement!

Ed

Jan 15, 2008 01:01 AM #56
Ambassador
593,794
Rich Jacobson
Fathom Realty West Sound - Poulsbo, WA
Your Kitsap County WA Real Estate Broker

The Bolen Brothers do some of the best, most effective local posting on this network. They would be a good model for anyone to exemplify.

Ed - thanks again for your continued involvement and support!

Jan 15, 2008 01:26 AM #57
Show All Comments

What's the reason you're reporting this blog entry?

Are you sure you want to report this blog entry as spam?

Rainer
69,057

Charlotte Home Loans Your Charlotte Mortgage Lender

Ask me a question
*
*
*
*

Additional Information