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Real Estate 1.0

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…is Kicking 2.0’s Butt

real estate 2.0


Real estate 1.0 seems to be kicking real estate 2.0’s butt these days in California’s East Bay area. Keller Williams Realty in Danville, CA (the office I work out of) has about 200 agents; on average about 75 – 100 Realtors attend each week’s meeting of the Realtors Marketing Association (Alamo, Danville, San Ramon) and the Valley Marketing Association (Pleasanton, Dublin).In the last month, I haven’t heard from a single Realtor about any new business arriving via their website. Houses are still be bought and sold in this part of the East Bay. Here’s what is working:

  • Working Expired Listings
  • Door Knocking
  • Working the Database

I don’t claim this to be 100% accurate, but it seems that the majority of new listings and new buyer agreements are arriving the old fashion way in this slow market.

Writer for national real estate opinion column AgentGenius.com, focusing on the improvement of the real estate industry by educating peers about technology, real estate legislation, ethics, practices and brokerage with the end result being that consumers have a better experience.

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12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. Danilo Bogdanovic

    January 27, 2008 at 10:18 am

    John,

    Glad to hear that the agents in your office are busy with clients, whichever way they may be getting them. But don’t count out real estate 2.0 and web 2.0. Here’s why:

    My business partner and I run three blogs – one is agent-centric and the other two are consumer centric. The two that are agent-centric are pulling in 2 to 3 ready, willing and able buyers/investors with lender letters in hand per week. An example of their email or phone call to us is, “We like and read your blog and want to buy a house. Can you help?”

    The blogs are also pulling in an average of one listing every 2 weeks. The same type of email or phone call listed above applies.

    Btw, we don’t do any of the action items you described in your post whatsoever and we don’t pay to advertise in print media. The way we get into print media is for free through quotes and articles on us by local newspapers as well as the Washington Post, Reuters, Wall Street Journal, etc. This is because the media reads and follows our blogs. And this happens with regular frequency. Consumers read this and then elevate the level of credibility they give us, which helps pull in buyers and sellers.

    This is not to say that the items you described don’t work. It just means that your claim that real estate 1.0 is kicking real estate 2.0’s butt may not be accurate.

    Btw, (static) web sites are real estate 1.0, not 2.0. You can’t clump blogs and social media sites into static web sites.

  2. Benjamin Bach

    January 27, 2008 at 11:21 am

    Interesting John… interesting

    I would agree that at my KW Market Centre (Kitchener-571) most everyone is getting business the old fashioned way – but most of my ‘new’ business (every sale so far in 2008) is now coming from people I’m initially meeting via my blog and other internet presence (facebook, among others)

    John what are you finding in your own business ?

  3. Lani Anglin

    January 27, 2008 at 1:20 pm

    John, I can’t say the same about our market (or at least our company). As always, out approach has been a consistent, delicate balance of 1.0 and 2.0. If you omit either, you may miss the business boat.

  4. Candy Lynn

    January 27, 2008 at 4:04 pm

    There were a few months that I was beginning to think my website was broken. The last 4-6 weeks both hits & info requests have been going crazy!
    Offers & listings produced from internet in last week.

    I use print to PUSH to website, I do not doorknock nor work expired listings. I do have a very personal high touch relationship with my clients. I work a niche market of horse properties so there is a great deal of common interest that results in clients not becoming just clients for life but friends for life.

    Is my marketing Web.1 or Web.2? I tend to think of it as just plain old fashioned professional service that just happens to use the tech tools of the day.

  5. Cyndee Haydon

    January 27, 2008 at 5:50 pm

    John,
    Maybe it depends on where your buyers are coming from – we find most of the people buying here are from somewhere else so we are seeing almost 100% of buyers coming from the web – now the listings are a different story – they seem to come more from the 1.0 way for us.

  6. Jonathan Dalton

    January 28, 2008 at 1:20 am

    I’m seeing some business from hitting expireds, though I’m not as consistent as I ought to be.

    But given I’ve pulled in a solid lead a day off the various websites this past week (and going back for some time), 2.0 has its place.

    Actually, forget I said that. If you’re an agent in the Phoenix market, please do not bother with the web. it’s a fad and will go away. Knock on doors. Much better.

  7. Benjamin Bach

    January 28, 2008 at 5:46 am

    This may be what we call tunnel vision – it seems all of us commenting on blogs (i.e. and are ‘in the web 2.0 know’) are getting business from blogs, while ‘old school’ realtors may not be generating leads online.

    I had a realtor ask me last week how quickly would he get business from a blog if he paid me to start one for him. I chuckled.

  8. Chris Lengquist

    January 28, 2008 at 10:20 am

    I do both…with heavy emphasis on blog/web. And the leads/clients generated reflect that.

    The key is DOING SOMETHING.

  9. Port Orange Homes For Sale

    January 28, 2008 at 1:10 pm

    If it works don’t break it. Seems like that what works in his market and hey he is on this blog so he appears to be on the internet blogging that will bring more business. Good luck to all in these hard times with creativity and doing what ever it takes to sell real estate.

  10. Borino

    January 28, 2008 at 1:56 pm

    John,

    Your information confirms what vast majority of my clients from almost every US market confirm – expireds are plentiful, fairly easy to work, and can be one of the most profitable niches right now.

    Good ol’ fashioned work is back in style, it seems. And it’s profitable. 😉

    Borino
    http://www.ExpiredPlus.com

  11. Nouveau Riche

    June 15, 2008 at 4:59 am

    Very interesting blog you have here. I don’t know much about real estate and I had started to read about this subject a few days ago and I must say that your blog made me understand a lot of things about real estate. Thanks

  12. Pingback: Sacramento Real Estate Market is On a Roll...! | Realty World - Your Property Source

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Business Marketing

Google Analytics will now filter out bot traffic

(BUSINESS NEWS) Bender won’t be happy that Google Analytics will now automatically remove bot traffic from your results, but it’ll help your business.

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In the competitive, busy world of online content, Google Analytics can help businesses and online publications deliver what their audience and consumers want. Now Google is finally taking the step of filtering out bot traffic in your Google Analytics reporting. This is excellent news!

In the world of websites, online news sites, blogs, and social media, bots are the bane of our existence. In their finest form, they are the electronic equivalent of junk mail. At their worst, they can carry malicious malware and viruses to your site and computer. They can even flood the internet with unfounded rumors that can have an impact on people’s opinions–stirring the political pot or lending misleading numbers to drive unfounded rumors, such as wearing a mask is dangerous. No it’s not! Chalk that nonsense up to bots and crackpots.

For businesses that rely on Google Analytics to determine what content is not only reaching but also resonating with potential customers, filtering out the bot traffic is crucial to determining the best course of action. Bots skew the data and therefore, end up costing businesses money.

Bots set up for malicious purposes crawl the internet looking for certain information or user behaviors. Bad bots can steal copyrighted content and give it to a competitor. Having identical copies on two sites hurts your site and can dink your SEO ranking. However, good bots can seek out duplicate content and other copyright infringements, so the original content creator can report them.

However, it is important for companies and content creators to know if their content is actually reaching real live humans. To this end, Google will start filtering out bot traffic automatically. The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) actually provides an International Spiders and Bots list, through which Google can more easily identify bots. They use the list and their own internal research to seek out bots in action, crawling through the internet and confusing things.

Google says the bot traffic will be automatically filtered out of the Google Analytics results–users don’t have the choice. Some may argue there is a good reason to see all of the data, including bots. Many businesses and online publications, though, will be relieved to have a much clearer vision of what content genuinely appeals to humans, to readers and potential customers. It is a welcomed advancement.

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Business Marketing

Opportunity Zones: A chance to do good

(BUSINESS MARKETING) Opportunity zones offer a chance to breathe new life into economically-distressed communities.

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Opportunity Zones are a beautiful mechanism for growing communities that are struggling, but some critics have put this process in a negative light. The following is an expert’s perspective on just this topic.

Jim White, PhD is Chairman and CEO of Post Harvest Technologies, Inc. and Growers Ice Company, Inc., Founder and CEO of PHT Opportunity Fund LP, and Founder and President of JL White International, LLC. His new book is a heartfelt rallying cry for investors: Opportunity Investing: How to Revitalize Urban and Rural Communities with Opportunity Funds, launched March 31, 2020.

Dr. White holds a B.S. in civil engineering, an MBA, and a doctorate in psychology and organizational behavior. He acquires struggling businesses to revive and develop them into profitable enterprises using his business turnaround strategy.

In his own words below:

BY JIM WHITE, PHD

Every investment vehicle has a twist some folks don’t like. Real estate, stock options, offshore tax havens, and even charitable gifting can be criticized for certain loopholes.

Likewise, some detractors have pointed to opportunity zones, a newer investment vehicle unveiled in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed by Congress in December 2017. This bold, bipartisan plan allows for private investment capital to be channeled into some of the most distressed communities in the nation, serving the struggling residents and the investors alike.

Personally, I believe it is one of the noblest initiatives to emerge from Washington in years.

I grew up in a sharecropper cabin in what would have been an opportunity zone in Salem, South Carolina. What would an influx of investment dollars have meant to my low-income community? More and better-paying jobs to offset unemployment. People relocating to my town for those jobs, reversing population decline and increasing real estate values. New life breathed into local businesses. The increased tax revenues could have helped improve failing infrastructure. Social challenges, like crime and drug use, could have decreased. Better resources for my family and our neighbors, such as health care and education, would have emerged.

Today, there are nearly 8,800 distressed communities dotting the country that have been identified as Qualified Opportunity Zones (QOZs). These neighborhoods were designated from census tracks, treasury, and state leaders as communities that would benefit from an influx of investment dollars directed through Qualified Opportunity Funds (QOFs) to reinvigorate businesses, rebuild infrastructure and bolster residents.

As our economy continues to falter, more and more businesses file Chapter 11 and unemployment soars under COVID-19, I believe we are heading toward a painful expansion in designated opportunity zones. Even with the latest round of CARES stimulus money many people will have no way to rebound from this crisis.

One of the unexpected consequences of the coronavirus quarantine is that many businesses are discovering that, in reality, they can succeed through working remotely. This success is a double edged sword, meaning that if a business can thrive with employees working offsite then commercial real estate will suffer. And when companies no longer require brick-and-mortar locations, a local domino effect ensues; ancillary businesses, from cafés to gyms to print shops in and around a commercial office environment will subsequently close. The ripples will be felt through many other industries, including construction, transportation, energy, and retail.

Qualified Opportunity Zones and Qualified Opportunity Funds are instruments that can help stop a downward spiral. When a sponsor is able to present a project that meets the objectives of the QOZ initiative, both the QOZ and the investors benefit. That’s a win!

And, it’s not only urban centers that benefit from investment dollars. Forty percent of opportunity zones are rural. Even with often plentiful food, water, energy and other natural resources, deep poverty exists, and too many of America’s 60 million rural residents lack access to education and healthcare. A declining population often goes hand in hand with failing infrastructure as tax money for repairs dwindles. Many households lack broadband, something the vast majority of Americans take for granted.

Despite the challenges, rural residents are often surprisingly resilient and resourceful. According to The Hill (“Rural America has opportunity zones too”), rural residents create self-employment opportunities at a slightly higher rate than the national average. Their challenge is to connect with investors and access funding, more of which is directed to small business investment on the coasts.

In fact, many entrepreneurs and small business owners don’t know about Qualified Opportunity Funds. If a business is located in an opportunity zone it is eligible for direct funding by reaching out to the QOFs with a specific request for funding.

More than any investment plan that’s come before, I believe opportunity zones have the greatest capacity for positive social and economic impact. Spread out over many communities, these investments can help our nation flourish as a whole.

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Business Marketing

Gloves that translate sign language in real time

(BUSINESS MARKETING) A new wearable tech translates American Sign Language into audible English in real time.

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Advancements in technology never cease to amaze. The same is true right this moment as a new technology has been released that helps translate American Sign Language (ASL) signs into spoken English in real time.

This technology comes in the form of a hand glove – similar looking on the front side to what one would wear in the winter, but much more advanced when in view of the palm. The palm side of the glove contains sensors on the wearer to identify each word, phrase, or letter that they form via ASL, and is then translated into audible English via an app that coincides with the glove.

This is all done in real time and allows for instant communication without the need for a human translator. The signals are translated at a rate of one word per second.

The project was developed by scientists at UCLA. “Our hope is that this opens up an easy way for people who use sign language to communicate directly with non-signers without needing someone else to translate for them,” said lead researcher Jun Chen.

The hope is to make communication easier for those who rely on ASL, and to help those unfamiliar with ASL adapt to the signs. It is thought that between 250,000 and 500,000 people in the United States use ASL. As of now, the glove does not translate British Sign Language – the other form a sign language that utilizes English.

According to CNN, the researchers also added adhesive sensors to the faces of people used to test the device — between their eyebrows and on one side of their mouths — to capture facial expressions that are a part of American Sign Language. However, this facet of the technology is not loved by all.

“The tech is redundant because deaf signers already make extensive use of text-to-speech or text translation software on their phones, or simply write with pen and paper, or even gesture clearly,” said Gabrielle Hodge, a deaf post-doctoral researcher from the Deafness Cognition and Language Research Centre (DCAL) at University College London. “There is nothing wrong with these forms of communication.”

What are your thoughts on this advancement? Comment below!

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