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Cultural Blogging – Finding a Different Audience




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,, and 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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  1. Benn Rosales

    December 1, 2007 at 10:42 am


  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


    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… 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


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

    I’ve recently been blogging on Cheryl’s 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


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


  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


    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 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

The Body Shop’s new policy is first come, first employed

(BUSINESS MARKETING) An issue that has been on a lot of peoples minds recently is fair hiring standards, be from sex, race, or age discrimination to former prisoners.



The body shop hires prisoners

Anyone who has tried to get a job in the last decade can tell you that hiring is getting near dystopian. Everyone has heard jokes about needing 5 years of experience for an entry level job or the combined skillset of 3 positions to get one job. Things have gotten to the point where even some large companies are wondering if maybe hiring (and getting hired) shouldn’t be so complicated?

The Body Shop is making a radical change in the way they hire their retail employees this summer. They will be hiring on a first-come first-serve basis. Employees must meet three criteria to apply, but beyond that it’s open season – or “open hiring” as they are calling it.

1. Must be authorized to work in the U.S.
2. Can lift over 50lbs
3. Can stand for 8 hours

The company will not be performing drug tests or background checks for this “open hiring” round. The goal is to remove some of the barriers to entry for people seeking employment. This move will be hugely beneficial to the formerly incarcerated and people who have minor offenses on their record.

The Body Shop’s U.S. GM, Andrea Blieden, said, “When you give people access to something that they’re struggling to find, they’re very committed to working hard and keeping it.”

This isn’t the first time The Body Shop has tested out this hiring strategy. In December 2019, the company ran a pilot program at their distribution center. According to them, their employee turnover rate dropped from 43% to 16% and productivity improved.

This change could be equally beneficial to both employers and employees. According to, formerly incarcerated people are unemployed at a rate of 27%. To put that in perspective, that is higher than the overall national average during the Great Depression.

When established brands make big moves, people pay attention. If they continue to report success, The Body Shop’s hiring practices could be used as a case study for other businesses looking to shake up their hiring process. Perhaps in a few years, this type of hiring could become more common place among retailers.

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Stay ahead by decluttering your Instagram accounts with this new feature

(BUSINESS MARKETING) Get a head start on your spring cleaning with Instagram’s newest feature. It may become your favorite way to views others accounts.



instagram accounts

In a plot twist you weren’t expecting this week, Instagram is looking to make your life a little easier. Their newest app update includes a feature that groups accounts you follow into curated lists such as most and least interacted with or earliest followed to latest.

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Working with this new feature is simple. To access it just head on over to your Instagram profile and click “Following.” You should see a couple of categories above the list of accounts you follow. As an added bonus, you can also change the sort feature on your follower list. It can be set to show oldest accounts followed first or latest accounts firsts.

instagram accounts

For entrepreneurs and freelancers who don’t have the luxury of a full social media team (or any team at all) small features like this can be a game changer. If this feature sparks you to finally clean up your Instagram, here are a few questions to ask yourself when you’re trying to decide who to keep and who to unfollow.

Why did you originally follow this account?

Does this account still serve your business interests?

What was your main purpose behind following this account? As a business owner you might follow an account on Instagram for any number of strategic reasons. Perhaps this account is a fellow business owner in your area, but they’ve since closed their doors. Chances are you’ll find more than one of these cases in your least interacted with group.

Were you looking for business advice or inspiration? When you’re just starting out with your business, you might have followed a few accounts that aimed to give advice to new business owners. Well, if you’ve been doing this for a few years, you probably already know the basic advice these types of accounts are pushing. It’s time to move on.

Do you know this account IRL? Maybe your business has moved locations or changed niche in the last few years. You might have made some great connections with fellow business owners back in the day, but you may no longer run in the same circles. If you know the person who runs the account IRL and you still want to stay connected there are two options. You can either go follow them on your personal account or you can continue following, but mute the account so it doesn’t clog up your Instagram feed.

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2020 marketing calendar – plan this year’s marketing strategy

(BUSINESS MARKETING) Have you ever wondered when is the best time for your ad campaign, well look no further. This marketing calendar has every event listed, even weird ones.



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Add this to your toolkit… a 2020 Marketing Calendar from the team at Liramail, making note of big events and days that you can use online and IRL to engage customers and donors.

February marketing calendar

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The calendar is as useful for engaging your social media audience as it is promoting IRL events. You don’t have to own a pizza place to make a post with your team celebrating International Pizza Day and quizzing your followers on their favorite topping. You don’t have to be a veterinarian to turn Love Your Pet Day into a way to engage people by encouraging them to share photos of their pets.

And if you do have a direct tie? Absolutely use it. Each March, for instance, the small Austin well-building non-profit Water to Thrive observes World Water Day with a quick Facebook fundraiser. One of the Austin-area businesses that participated in Australia Day, Bee Cave coffeehouse/boutique Runaway Luna Lifestyle, did so because of family ties there, raising several thousand dollars with an in-store event and social media promotion of a GoFundMe fundraiser.

So page through the marketing calendar, making notes of days that you can take advantage of. And don’t forget, if you’re inspired to create an in-store event or other promotion, be ready for it. Get the initial date on the calendar, and then work backwards to create a long-range plan to support your event. Check your inventory, possibly looking for related items to feature. Book your advertising, draft your newsletter, schedule your social posts. Let your audience know that something special is coming up.

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