Archive for the ‘Online Marketing’ Category

The Three Pillars of SEO for Realtors: Strategy, Technology & Content- Part III

We’ve taken some time to break down what SEO really means and entails for Real Estate professionals trying to stay ahead of the game. With some digestible facts and tactics to employ, we’ll cover what we think should be top of mind as you consider an SEO strategy, the technology behind it, and the content production involved- all with end goal of increasing your web presence and remaining competitive online!

We started with “The What & Why?”, and then we talked Strategy- now let’s cover the technology component.

Having the Right Technology Matters

I can’t tell you how often we speak to realtors and realize the technology behind their site is so antiquated that it will actually keep them from ever ranking in Google. It’s tough to swallow, but most real estate website platforms will actually keep your search engine traffic down. You have to have updated technology and you need to make sure the company you work with can perform.

When you’re shopping for a website provider, avoid the common pitfalls by first asking for numbers. Have the site provider send you reports from other sites built on their software- specifically, ask to look at traffic and inbound leads. Next, make sure your site includes a blog. The blog should be a part of your site. Your blog should not be hosted on blog.yoursite.com or part of some other website altogether like myblog.blogger.com. It should be an integrated blog. Example: www.yoursite.com/blog. The navigation of your site should be made up of HTML text links, not images. Finally, you should be able to edit the pages of your site with unique content. If your current provider doesn’t offer all of these features, it’s time to start looking for a new one. And these are just a few of the features you need. Doing your homework will payoff!

Once you’ve got your SEO strategy down with a solid platform behind it,  it’s time to think about CONTENT. Nailing this last component down will steer you towards the top of the Google results- this may seem old hat by now, but content really is still King! Stay tuned for our final thoughts about how to make search engine optimization work for you.

If you’re looking for a solid platform to help grow your online marketing efforts, and ultimately your bottom line- check out Boston Logic’s industry leading Sequoia software for Real Estate Professionals

The Three Pillars of SEO: Strategy, Technology & Content- Part II

Rolled out of a 4 part blog edition, we’d like to breakdown what SEO really means and entails for Real Estate professionals trying to stay ahead of the game. Served up as digestible nuggets of information and tactics to employ, we’ll cover what we think should be top of mind as you consider an SEO strategy, the technology behind it, and the content production involved- all with end goal of increasing your web presence and remaining competitive online!

Last week, we kicked off with “The What & Why?” of SEO…

Now Let’s Talk Strategy

Getting found at the top of the search engines results is unfortunately not a black and white endeavor. While Google does use a mathematical algorithm to determine where certain search terms rank on a page, these equations are constantly changing in nature. It’s fair to say it would be impossible to keep up with all the calculations, particularly when you have a business to run. But there are some good places to start, and with due diligence and time, you can compete for a findable spot.

The most common mistake that SEO novices make is to assume that everyone types the same keywords into Google. That’s just not true! In fact, well-optimized websites see visitors who type in tens of thousands of different keywords.

Google Algorithm Trends

Even though you’ll never be able to dream up every term that someone might search on, that’s ok, because you don’t have to. A properly optimized site will rank in the results for tens of thousands of terms. So, your site will be found by people who search on all sorts of keywords, not just the ones you can think of.

Focus, focus, focus!

Still your site should be focused on the markets you serve and the kinds of buyers and sellers you want to work with. For agents, we always recommend to focus, focus, focus! If you work in Los Angeles, for example, there are literally thousands of realtors who might try to rank on page 1 in Google for a term like ‘LA Homes.’ Why set yourself up for all that competition? Pick a few smaller towns and neighborhoods you know. Focus your efforts. Then, you’ll start seeing the leads come in for buyers and sellers who want to own or sell in the markets that you know best.

Now that you’ve done your research, and you’ve got a pretty good strategy mapped out- what’s next? Our next edition will focus on the technology component of SEO. A blueprint isn’t any good without a foundation- like a house built on cement, a good SEO strategy needs to be backed with the right technology.

Learn more about how Boston Logic helps Real Estate professionals map out successful SEO strategies and run online marketing campaigns that produce results!

The Three Pillars of SEO: Strategy, Technology & Content- Part I

Rolled out of a 4 part blog edition, we’d like to breakdown what SEO really means and entails for Real Estate professionals trying to stay ahead of the game. Served up as digestible nuggets of information and tactics to employ, we’ll cover what we think should be top of mind as you consider an SEO strategy, the technology behind it, and the content production involved- all with end goal of increasing your web presence and remaining competitive online!

Let’s Start with the “What” & “Why”

Search Engines are the single biggest source of traffic for most websites. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can be simply defined as the process of getting found on search engine sites like Google, Bing, and Yahoo! On the technical level, SEO considers how search engines work, what people search for, the actual search terms typed into a search bar, and which searches are preferred by your targeted audience.

Why is it Important?

Well, h2001 pie chart imageere are the facts: According to NAR’s 2010 “Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers”, 89% of home buyers searched the internet ‘frequently’ for a home in 2010. And the share of home buyers who found their home on the internet jumped from 8% in 2001 to 37% 2010. Not surprisingly, these numbers are continuing to grow.2010 pie chartWhat Does it Get Me?

The next logical question is, “what exactly does SEO get me?” It gets you LEADS. And not just any leads…but qualified leads. These are the buyers or renters searching for specific types of properties in specific markets – and when they do search you want to be found right at the top of the search engine results.Capturing LEADS

Finally, SEO is a rare marketing medium. For most marketing media, consistent investment will get you consistent, flat returns. This is much like renting a home. You pay a fixed rent and you get a place to live. When you invest in SEO, you’re constantly building on your earlier investments. This is like buying a home instead of renting. Your dollars build equity. A well implemented SEO campaign sees better and better results as time goes on. Your website traffic and lead count goes up and up and up!

Stay tuned for the next edition, and we’ll talk STRATEGY.

Want to learn more about how Boston Logic helps Realtors deploy a comprehensive and successful Online Marketing campaign? Contact our Marketing Team today! (There’s no pressure, we promise).

8 Types of People to Connect With on LinkedIn

Chances are that when you first joined, only a few people in your “circle” were on LinkedIn- but it’s popularity has steadily increased creeping towards the popularity of Facebook. It’s become a pretty user-friendly interface with options to import your contacts and integrate your social media profiles as much (or as little) as you want. So if you haven’t done so already, take a morning off the Social Network to sync your circle with LinkedIn.

Two things to keep in mind before taking the plunge…

BE SELECTIVE with your professional network. Take the time to go through all your contacts before inviting them to connect. Don’t import people from your various accounts that may be detrimental to your image; like business ventures that didn’t go well, or that ex of yours you don’t talk to anymore, or that person from high school that posts inappropriate anecdotes to his Twitter Feed (which he has syndicated with LinkedIn). Your connections reflect upon who you are. While LinkedIn is becoming more ‘socialized’- leave the merely social to Facebook and be selective of your ‘professional network’.

BE CREATIVE with your network, too. Think outside the box! Your LinkedIn NetworReading List on LinkedIn Profilek should be a lot more than just the people you worked with at the last few jobs. Fill out your Reading List (by Amazon), join interesting Groups, write a unique Summary (with some of your resume keywords of course), and add impactful Experiences outside of your career track.

Here’s some suggestions to start widening your circle:

1. Teachers. Find and connect with teachers you had good relationships with in  school. Or, if you’re still in school- get it while it’s hot! It’s a great place to start with asking for Recommendations if you haven’t yet entered the workforce full time.

2. Fellow Students. If you had group projects, or were in a cooperative setting, having a classmate or two vouch that you’re a team player who can meet or beat expectations is something prospective employers will notice.

3. Successful Friends and Relatives (i.e. your “mentors”)- there’s a ‘friends’ option to request a connection on LinkedIn for a reason. It doesn’t matter what industry they’re in or what kind of job of they have- it’s always good to be connected to people with lots of connections! The six degrees of LinkedIn separation never cease to impress me. Oh, and the, “I saw on LinkedIn that you know so-and-so” makes for great office chit-chat or an ice-breaker on an interview!

4. Clients. Request a recommendation for your work on their accounts now, while it’s fresh in their mind and you’re fresh in theirs! Your company might even use it as a testimonial & it certainly reflects well on them too. It will also be a nice accumulation of recommendations over time naturally, instead of a mad-rush if you’re unemployed later.

5. Your ‘Freebies’. This is especially important for consultants, and often overlooked! Make sure to connect with the people you give your advice, support and/or guidance to (i.e. your “mentees”). Maybe it’s a local diner you love, or a charity group you volunteer for- whomever benefits from your knowledge (or simple ambition to be a good person) can repay the favor ten-fold with a recommendation on LinkedIn!

6. Co-workers. It doesn’t need to be an obvious swap- but pay attention to who you enjoy working with and why, and start giving recommendations. Link Karma will surely come your way.

7. Subcontractors, Vendors, Partnerships. If your company hired another company to do work, and you coordinated frequently with someone on their team, send them a ‘connect’ request! Provide or request a referral from them, depending what the relationship was. You never know when your NEW boss will ask you if you know someone that does ______; and it would be nice to say ‘Yes, I’ll email them now’.

8. People You Don’t Know…Yet. Under your profile Settings, set your privacy controls to be open. It’s beneficial to let anyone and everyone  browse and find you- you never know who might be looking. Also, be sure to carefully indicate who can contact you for what (i.e. reconnecting, business opportunities, consulting, job offers, etc.)- there is an unspoken rule of the acceptance of these intentions.

** Helpful Tip **

A lot of people aren’t sure what to write in their recommendation, even though they enjoyed working with you and are happy to give you one.  Maybe writing is just not their thing, so help them out. Instead of just sending the auto request, give them tips on what to write by saying things like:

“I was hoping you could write a recommendation for me based on the work I did for you on xyz project, particularly about ________ and how we handled ____________.”

OR, if your relationship is more casual, feel free to provide them with a list of bullet points to touch on (i.e. punctuality, organization, creativity, plays well with others, etc.)

Take a little time to get creative and connect. Continuously building your online reputation will establish you as a leader in your space, and as someone who is passionate about who you are and what you do. Chances are you will strengthen your current relationships and job prospects for the future, too.

Is there a group of people to connect with that I’m forgetting? Add them to the comments below!

RE Bar Camp Chicago Recap

Thanks to the folks who made the RE Bar Camp in Chicago possible. Tony, Todd, and others, thank you!

BL attends Chicago Bar CampI have to say that the day was one of the most discussion oriented Bar Camps I have  experienced. Most sessions weren’t lead by any one person. Often, there were people in the session who knew more about the topic and answered a lot of questions, but really, a conversation ensued.

There was no PowerPoint, no white boards, no presentations of almost any type. This certainly made for a different kind of Bar Camp.

The sessions on SEO and Facebook were, in my opinion, certainly lively – but here’s my biggest takeaway, and one that I think a lot of realtors need to realize:

Many Real Estate professionals, especially those over 40 (not to be ageist here…), look at Social Media and the web as a new thing they HAVE to do. Someone at the conference said that they need to start “checking” Facebook 2 or 3 times per day. I think this is a misconception.

Reality has changed. The way we compose a relationship has changed. How we communicate has changed and will continue to evolve. You don’t check Facebook a few times every day, you’re constantly on Facebook. Your phone gives you alerts, and you get emails. Twitter will text you if you want. That’s how it’s been since the beginning. Social Media is a big part of how we relate to one another now.

If the realtors who were at the conference make social media a part of their lives, then they won’t see it as a new marketing medium or a new way to find clients, they’ll see it as a new space for connecting and communicating…with family, friends, clients, corporations, candidates, you name it.

Social media is not a new marketing tool for realtors. Social media is a new part of life. Make it part of yours…

Looking for a good place to start? Check out the last presentation from our LogicClassroom series, Marketing Your Business on Facebook | Logic Classroom May 2011, hosted by our resident marketing expert Angela Davis. And be sure to sign up for the next one on Tuesday, June 14th!

The team and I at Boston Logic are looking forward to another memorable and educational RE Bar Camp in our home town in a few weeks – hope to see you all there!

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