I cannot believe I took time off from blogging! This goes against everything we teach in class. No excuses. However, after completing a book in mid- Jan and 4 new classes in Feb, I just couldn't do it! If you have any suggestions on how to keep at it- I would welcome your tips. I'll let you know a little about the book as soon as I get it back from my editor.
There are several things I would like to write about. I'll write about them a bite at a time.
The first item is that I attended the BloodHound Blog class and the Re Bar Camp Symposium held at Zillow on Feb. 12th and Feb. 13th. That was weeks ago, which is why we all (me too!) need to blog consistently. I thought it was brilliant and important. Duane Hopper already provided a wonderful summary of Bar Camp (thank you Duane), but I wanted to give you my take on those events.
At the RE Bar Camp symposium, Jim Marks from Virtual Results opened his remarks with a joke. I adore humor as a learning tool- so please do NOT become offended by this joke. I'm going to paraphrase: A cab driver and minister were at the pearly gates. St Peter gave the cab driver a silk gown and golden staff and welcomed him to heaven. The minister was next in line. St. Peter gave him a cloth rob and wooden staff and welcomed him to heaven. The minister said he was really grateful to be there, but wondered why the cab driver was awarded a silk robe, when he, the minister only got a cloth robe. St Peter said, "We reward results! While you were presenting sermons, people listened appreciatively. When the cab driver was driving, they all prayed!" That really made me laugh and it was a great analogy for real estate. All of the good things we do, or think we are doing, don't matter if we don't get results. Today, many agents are doing the same old things and not getting results. Perhaps it is time to change!
Jim Mark's premise was: focus on results driven marketing. Look at the amount of traffic you are getting and then look at your conversion rates. Are you getting the results you want? My question is, "Are you even tracking your results?" At seminars I ask agents, "How many of you have a business plan?" Only 1/3 of agents tell me they have a plan. I ask agents, "How many of you know how much money you have made this year to date?" M any do not know. I ask, "How much, on average, are you spending on marketing- what % of your earnings?" Most do not know. We cannot improve if we don't know what is working and what isn't. Today more than ever, we need to be results driven. Where are you spending your marketing dollars and why? If according to NAR, 87% of consumers are online- are YOU there?
Jim Marks also recommended thinking about the expectations of web 2.0 consumers. What are their expectations? Is your value immediately apparent? He recommended communicating clearly your unique value proposition. Make your communication: simple, useful and authoritative. Make sure you have killer content on your blogs: news, event coverage and articles. Jim suggested using Google analytics to track your results.
This was a sparkling presentation. Any comments?