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Cultural Blogging – Finding a Different Audience

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Cafesito

Article originally published 12/01/2007:

I don’t know if you know this but I was one of the apprentices for Project Blogger this past summer. I was lucky to have Paul Chaney, Mr. “Realty Blogging”, as my coach and we became friends and still keep in touch.

During the competition I became extremely frustrated with the judging (and so did the rest of the contestants) and decided to write a post in Spanish. I did this to make a bit of a sarcastic point that I might as well write in another language because the judges were just not getting it. Little did I know that this rebellious and insignificant post would lead to something important.

Rick and I are fluent in both English and Spanish. Our Miami Real Estate market is multi-lingual, and whoever does not know Spanish is either learning or hiring an assistant that speaks the language. If you work in a multi-cultural community, writing in a second and third language will open up doors that you did not even know existed.

Fluent English/Spanish

A few weeks ago our Genius Colleague Lani e-mails me in Spanish! Did you guys know that she speaks Spanish? She goes on to tell me that she found my Spanish post and that I should continue posting in Spanish. Then, again, she subtly guides me (yes, Lani can be subtle) to Pat Kitano’s transparent cultural blogging post….and that was it! I was dragging my feet because it’s difficult enough to keep up with blogging in one language, much less 2. I have begun translating my posts and placing them in a separate category entitled “articles in Spanish”. It took a final push from Lani and Pat…..but know I’m taking it at full speed. Thanks Lani and Pat!

I have already been contacted by people relocating from Europe and South America to the Miami Area because they are reading my stuff in Spanish.

I have expanded my target audience by taking advantage of our second language. I urge everyone that knows another language to take advantage of it as well. Who knows, I may even start a Spanish Blog! Take a look at this link Twittered by John Novak about Hispanic social sites.

Asi que aprovechen y empiecen a escribir en Español y otros idiomas también!

(here’s Google Translate for those of you that are Spanish-challenged)

**I had taken the photo in Miami especially for this article and forgot to include it – better late than never or as they say……mas vale tarde que nunca **

Ines is all Miami, all the time. A Miami Beach Realtor® with Majestic properties, Ines authors Miamism.com, PrimeMiamiBeach.com, and MiamismPix.com and is always on communication's leading edge. She goes out of her way to engage and be engaged, often using Mojitos to keep the mood light and give everything she does a Miami flavor. You can find her goofing off or instigating trouble at Twitter, Flickr, Facebook or LinkedIn.

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27 Comments

27 Comments

  1. Benn Rosales

    December 1, 2007 at 10:42 am

    Genius…

  2. Ines

    December 1, 2007 at 10:50 am

    Benn – when I read Scoble’s Naked Conversations’ section on Cultural Blogging, I was amazed to find out how virgin this market really is.

  3. Benn Rosales

    December 1, 2007 at 11:00 am

    It’s virgin for many reasons, I’ll write to you offline in a few days.

  4. Robert D. Ashby

    December 1, 2007 at 1:00 pm

    Ines,

    Great post. I am not fluent in spanish, pero yo se bastante. Puedo escribir tanto tambien, excepto no seguro si puedo escribir tan bueno en espanol. Por mi, es mejor en spanglish, lol.

    I also am not very good at spelling as I learned by listening, not reading and writing. I think you are on to something and I will have to find a way to incorporate it as well.

  5. Ines

    December 1, 2007 at 3:40 pm

    Robert – that’s why we have spell-check. I definitely feel better about my spoken Spanish than my written one, but as everything…..you improve with practice. You should definitely consider it (not the Spanglish) : )

  6. Robert D. Ashby

    December 1, 2007 at 6:29 pm

    Ines – I will definitely look into it. I practice my Spanish when I fly to other countries, such as I will be in Cali, Columbia on Monday night.

  7. Ines

    December 1, 2007 at 6:33 pm

    Robert – IMHO Colombian Spanish is the best Spanish in South America, but please don’t tell my Venezuelan friends that!

  8. Ricardo Bueno

    December 2, 2007 at 4:00 am

    Ines,

    Your words of advice make a lot of sense!
    tus consejos hacen mucho sentido!

    I’ve recently been blogging on Cheryl’s NELALive.net in Spanish.

    Does it take time? Sure. But it’s also a lot of fun!

  9. Ines

    December 2, 2007 at 7:10 am

    Ricardo, I will have to check out Cheryl’s blog. I think it’s beyond how much work it is and how much fun we can have. It’s about defining an audience that does not have much out there to help them make a decision.

    It’s our chance to make it happen.

  10. Brian Requarth

    December 2, 2007 at 5:32 pm

    Hi Ines,

    I think it is great that you are blogging in Spanish. The reality is that there are over 16 million U.S. Hispanic internet users in the United States. As you know, there are also many Latin Americans that are looking to move to the states, especially Miami. With a falling dollar, it is making it extremely affordable to buy real estate for many (we may see many more Venezuelans buying real estate soon depending on the referendum that will be announced tonight). Good luck in your business and I commend you for your innovation!

  11. Lani Anglin

    December 2, 2007 at 7:37 pm

    Ines, you are so smart- blogging in Spanish is an untapped market in Real Estate. Especially in the South where we are, if we do any business in Spanish, we should certainly continue our marketing efforts in Spanish.

    Kudos, Ines and thanks a whole lot for telling the world the secret that I (like Ashby) am fluent in Spanglish- you’re a pal 😉

  12. Ines

    December 2, 2007 at 8:12 pm

    Brian – the Venezuelan cause is close to my heart, since that’s where I was born. I totally agree with you about the Hispanic Internet users (as well as other languages) – thanks for the good wishes.

    Lani – was that a secret?? ooooops!

  13. Cyndee Haydon

    December 2, 2007 at 9:59 pm

    Ines – I agree with you completely and envy that you are fluent in more than one language. My big regret is being 1/2 Guatemalan and not being fluent.

  14. Ines

    December 2, 2007 at 10:02 pm

    Cyndee – it’s not too late. I have a girlfriend that married a Colombian man and learned Spanish in her late 40’s – not bad, huh?

  15. Cyndee Haydon

    December 2, 2007 at 10:34 pm

    Ines – My mom grew up in Peru and Guatemala (and taught ESL for 20+ years) and married my dad (Guatemalan)- both are fully bilingual. Now she is going back to Peru in December to help some friends in a Spanish Immersion trip and I told her we need to plan one to go with me and the 2 boys (6 and 11) – You never know and it’s the one thing I really would love to learn …at 45 (in 12 days) 🙂 Buenas Noches mi amiga 🙂

  16. Brian Requarth

    December 3, 2007 at 8:10 am

    Ines,

    Madrugue esta mañana y vi las noticias. Me imagino que estás contenta.

    Brian

  17. Ines

    December 3, 2007 at 8:33 am

    Brian – estamos contentos y asustados al mismo tiempo, como si fuera un truco o parte de una estrategia. GRACIAS!!

  18. Doug Francis

    October 11, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    Great photo… “fluent English”. Perfect.

    I was in FLA recently and the GPS in the rental car was in espanol, Dios mio! It took about an hour to get it set to English which is easier for me to understand.

    Glad we are all Americanos.

  19. ines

    October 11, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    Now THAT’s funny Doug (and not all at the same time) – I take it for granted when people approach me in Spanish, but can become a problem for many here in Miami. Glad you were able to change the GPS 🙂

  20. Paul Chaney

    October 12, 2009 at 9:26 am

    Hola,

    Cómo está usted? Gracias por incluirme en el poste. (Okay, that’s all the spanish I know! :->) Truth is, I didn’t even know that much, but use Babelfish to translate for me. Ha, ha.

    Seriously though, thanks for the mention Ines. It’s always appreciated. We had good times back then didn’t we.

    Paul (aka, Pablo)

  21. Paula Henry

    October 12, 2009 at 9:58 am

    Ines – What an opportunity for you and a market which remains virtually untapped. I would expect “you” to be the impetus of change and challenge, accepting the advice and push from your mentors.

    While living in California and Arizona, I always wish I knew Spanish. Unfortunately, I never learned the language.

    Now, here I am, back in the Midwest and we have a Latino population we didn’t have when I grew up here. I’ve even referred business to a local agent who does know the language.

  22. ines

    October 12, 2009 at 10:05 am

    Paul, can you believe I wrote this 2 years ago? We’ve come a long way, no? Now should be talking about your new book – The Digital Handshake 🙂 (for the record….”Pablo” just cracks me up)

    Paula – honored!! thank you so much …..and congrats on the Forbes.com article. May be the time for those in multi-cultural communities to hire buyer’s agents that speak other languages (talk about opening doors)

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Business Marketing

10 must-listen-to podcasts for business owners

(MARKETING) If you’re a business owner and want to learn something…anything…give one (or all) these podcasts a listen.

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As podcasts grow more and more popular, it has become increasingly difficult to sort through the sea of excellent options out there.

From interviews with business leaders to industry-specific advice from experts, podcasts are an incredible free and convenient way to get a small dose of inspiration and knowledge.

This short list offers just a taste of the myriad of business podcasts available. Whether you’re an aspiring entrepreneur looking for some tips on breaking into a new industry or a seasoned vet hoping to get some new inspiration, we hope you’ll find something here worth listening to.

How I Built This, hosted by Guy Raz.

Podcast fans will recognize Guy Raz’s name (and voice) from TED Radio Hour. While that show can be a great source of inspiration for businesses, one of the most consistently inspiring shows is his new project that shares stories and insight from some of the biggest business leaders in the world. In just four months, Guy has talked to everyone from Richard Branson and Mark Cuban to L.A. Reid and Suroosh Alvi. While there are plenty of excellent interview-driven shows with entrepreneurs, if you want to hear about the world’s best known companies, this is your best bet.

The Art of Charm, hosted by Jordan and AJ Harbinger.

The Art of Charm is a business podcast by definition, but the advice it provides will definitely help you in other parts of your day-to-day life as well. With over three million listens a month, the incredibly popular show provides advice, strategies and insight into how to network effectively and advance your career and personal life.

StartUp, hosted by Alex Blumberg and Lisa Chow.

If you’re an entrepreneur, there is no excuse not to be listening to StartUp, the award-winning business podcast from Gimlet Media. The show’s talented hosts come from incredible radio shows like Planet Money and This American Life and bring a top-notch level of storytelling to the show, which provides behind the scenes looks at what it is actually like to start a company. Now on the fourth season, StartUp is one of those business podcasts that even people not interested in business will get a kick out of.

The Whole Whale Podcast, hosted by George Weiner.

One of the best things about podcasts is the wide variety of niche shows available that go in-depth into fascinating topics. One of those shows is the Whole Whale Podcast, which shares stories about data and technology in the non-profit sector. You’ll get detailed analysis, expert knowledge and can hear from a long list of social impact leaders from Greenpeace, Change.org, Kiva, Teach For America, and more.

Social Pros Podcast, hosted by Jay Baer and Adam Brown.

Navigating the surplus of social media guides online can be a nightmare, so look no further than Social Pros. Recent episodes talk about reaching college students on social media, the rise of messaging apps, and making better video content for Facebook. Plus, there are great case-studies with companies doing social right, like Kellogg’s, Coca Cola and Lenscrafters.

Entrepreneur on Fire, hosted by John Lee Dumas.

One of the original entrepreneurship shows, Entrepreneur on Fire has logged over 1,500 episodes with successful business leaders sharing tips, lessons and advice learned from their worst entrepreneurial moments. Sometimes humorous, sometimes heartbreaking, always inspiring, this show is sure to have at least one interview with someone you can learn from.

The $100 MBA, hosted by Omar Zenhom.

Think of The $100 MBA as a full-fledged business program in snack-sized portions. The daily ten minute business lessons are based on real-world applications and cover everything from marketing to technology and more. Cue this show up on your commute to or from work and watch your knowledge grow.

This Week in Startups, hosted by Jason Calacanis.

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The Side Hustle Show, hosted by Nick Loper.

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Back To Work, hosted by Merlin Mann and Dan Benjamin.
Focused on the basics that you don’t think about, Back To Work looks deep into our working lives by analyzing things like workflow, email habits and personal motivation. Somewhere between self-help, and business advice, Back To Work takes on a new topic relating to productivity each week.

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Business Marketing

Why your coworkers are not your ‘family’ [unpopular opinion]

(MARKETING) “I just want you to think of us as family,” they say. If this were true, I could fire my uncle for always bringing up “that” topic on Thanksgiving…

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The well-known season 10 opener of “Undercover Boss” featured Walk-On’s Bistreaux & Bar. Brandon Landry, owner, went to the Lafayette location where he worked undercover with Jessica Comeaux, an assistant manager. Comeaux came across as a dedicated employee of the company, and she was given a well-deserved reward for her work. But I rolled my eyes as the show described the team as a “family.” I take offense at combining business and family, unless you’re really family. Why shouldn’t this work dynamic be used?

Employers don’t have loyalty to employees.

One of the biggest reasons work isn’t family is that loyalty doesn’t go both ways. Employers who act as though employees are family wouldn’t hesitate to fire someone if it came down to it. In most families, you support each other during tough times, but that wouldn’t be the case in a business. If you’ve ever thought that you can’t ask for a raise or vacation, you’ve probably bought into the theory that “work is a family.” No, work is a contract.

Would the roles be okay if the genders were reversed?

At Walks-Ons, Comeaux is referred to as “Mama Jess,” by “some of the girls.” I have to wonder how that would come across if Comeaux were a man being called “Daddy Jess” by younger team members? See any problem with that? What happens when the boss is a 30-year-old and the employee is senior? Using family terminology to describe work relationships is just wrong.

Families’ roles are complex.

You’ll spend over 2,000 hours with your co-workers every year. It’s human nature to want to belong. But when you think of your job like a family, you may bring dysfunction into the workplace.

What if you never had a mom, or if your dad was abusive? Professional relationships don’t need the added complexity of “family” norms. Seeing your boss as “mom” or “dad” completely skews the roles of boss/employee. When your mom asks you to do more, it’s hard to say no. If your “work mom or dad” wants you to stay late, it’s going to be hard to set boundaries when you buy into the bogus theory that work is family. Stop thinking of work this way.

Check your business culture to make sure that your team has healthy boundaries and teamwork. Having a great work culture doesn’t have to mean you think of your team as family. It means that you appreciate your team, let them have good work-life balance and understand professionalism.

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Business Marketing

Market your side hustle with these 6 tips

(BUSINESS MARKETING) It can be hard to stand out from the crowd when you’re starting a new side hustle. Here are some easy ways to make your marketing efforts more effective.

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Side hustles have become the name of the game, and especially during these turbulent times, we have to get extra creative when it comes to making money. With so many of us making moves and so much noise, it can be hard to get the word out and stand out when sharing your side hustle.

Reuben Jackson of Big Think shared five ways that you can market your side hustle (we added a sixth tip for good measure), and comment with your thoughts and ideas on the subject:

  1. Referrals: Don’t Be Afraid to Ask!
    If you’re going to make a splash, you have to be willing to ask for favors. Reach out to your network and ask them to help spread the word on your new venture. This can be as simple as asking your friends to share a Facebook post with information that refers them to your page or website. Word of mouth is still important and incredibly effective.
  2. Start Where You Are
    Immediately running an expensive ad right out of the gate may not be the most effective use of your (likely) limited funds. Use the resources you do have to your advantage – especially if you’re just testing things out to see how the side hustle goes in the real world. You can do this by creating a simple, informational landing page for a small fee. Or, if you’re not looking to put any money into it right away, create an enticing email signature that explains what you do in a concise and eye-catching way. Check out these tools to create a kickin’ email signature.
  3. Gather Positive Reviews
    If you’ve performed a service or sold a product, ask your customers to write a review on the experience. Never underestimate how many potential customers read reviews before choosing where to spend their money, so this is an incredibly important asset. Once a service is completed or a product is sold, send a thank you note to your customer and kindly ask them to write a review. Be sure to provide them with links to easily drop a line on Yelp or your company’s Facebook page.
  4. Be Strategic With Social
    It’s common to think that you have to have a presence on all channels right away. Start smaller. Think about your demographic and do some research on which platforms reach that demographic most effectively. From there, put your time and energy into building a presence on one or two channels. Post consistently and engage with followers. After you’ve developed a solid following, you can then expand to other platforms.
  5. Give Paid Marketing A Shot
    Once you’ve made a dollar or two, try experimenting with some Facebook or Twitter ads. They’re relatively cheap to run and can attract people you may not have otherwise had a chance to reach out to. Again, the key is to start small and don’t get discouraged if these don’t have people knocking your door down; it may take trial and error to create the perfect ad for your hustle.
  6. Go Local
    Local newspapers and magazines are always looking for news on what local residents are doing. Send an email to your town/city’s journal or local Patch affiliate. Let them know what you’re up to, offer yourself for an interview, and give enticing information. The key is doing this in a way that your hustle is seen as beneficial to the public, and is not just an ad.

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