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Quick Thoughts on Reputation and Mindshift

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Look: I said some things that are apparently going to haunt me, and the only picture I took was of a couple of Teletubbies at the restaurant, but it wouldn’t have been Vegas if things weren’t at least a little bizarre.  I’ve been flipping through my notes from BlogWorld, both the Real Estate and the Regular variety.  There were 3 things that have floated to the top of my mind.


You Are What the Web Says You’ve Done

First was a session about taking risks with your online reputation: Google is forever, and if you don’t make an effort to craft your own reputation online, someone else will do it for you – you are not just what you publish, you’re what the web says you’ve done.  Which is a scary thought to me.  I’ve spent a lot of time and energy building Housechick.  Feasibly, it’s a saleable brand, an exit strategy when I decide I’ve had all the fun there is to be had from selling real estate.  If I’m not actively managing my brand – which would mean that I’ve first clearly defined it – then my whole brand’s reputation is dependent on what everyone else puts online, good and bad, consistent or not.


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Think Different

Second was a gem from David Bullock, who said:

The only way you can do something different is to think something different.

I liked that so much, I put a star by it on my notes page.  Also, he had an example of a relatively low traffic, but highly targeted site he built with an insanely low bounce rate – I want to say in the single digits, but I didn’t note the exact figure.  Low traffic, high retention, high conversion – anyone sensing a theme with so many RE bloggers touting niche sites as well?


My Apologies

And lastly, but not leastly: I apologize to those in attendance the first day.  It may be my fault that Jeff Turner yelled at us all for not using more offline methods to garner more referral and repeat business (although calling us Freaks for being techno-proficient while wearing a t-shirt that says #FFFFFF is a bit of the pot calling the kettle black).  I think I saw a small portion of his brain explode the previous day when I may have mentioned, in an offhand manner, that I don’t really do past-client follow-up.  Admittedly, I am quite cognizant that this is not my forte, and being told that I *ought* to do more of it isn’t exactly breaking news.  So now the challenge is to find some method of staying in touch with past clients – at least with the ones I liked – that is neither trite nor boring, and preferably doesn’t involve a telephone.  Unless we’re talking text messages.  I’m going to have to let that idea percolate for a while.

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Written By

Kelley Koehler, aka the Housechick, is usually found focused on her Tucson, Arizona, real estate business. You may also find her on Twitter, where she doubles as a super hero, at Social Media Training Camp, where she trains and coaches people on how to integrate social media into successful business practices, or at, a collection of all things housechick-ish. Despite her engineering background, Kelley enjoys translating complex technical concepts into understandable and clear ideas that are practical and useful to the striving real estate agent.



  1. Missy Caulk

    September 24, 2008 at 5:55 pm

    Kelly, following up past clients doesn’t have to be a drag. I simple email “thinking of you today,when I drove in your sub”. or…. a quick note, flowers in the fall. They are so appreciative. Glad you had fun, sorry I missed it.

  2. Daniel Bates

    September 24, 2008 at 6:14 pm

    I wonder what percent of the real estate community (not your readers, but the whole community) even gets that #FFFFFF joke? Even though you may not keep up with past clients, you’d be surprised at how many keep up with your through your blog. I know many of mine have subscribed to my blog feed.

  3. Paula Henry

    September 24, 2008 at 8:33 pm

    Kelly –

    I always kick myself when I miss an opportunity to reach out to a past client, then run out the door for a new client. Doesn’t make much sense.

    What is the #FFFFFF joke? I’m one who doesn’t get it 🙂

  4. ines

    September 24, 2008 at 8:39 pm

    I peed my pants a little – thank you!

  5. Kris Berg

    September 24, 2008 at 8:48 pm

    #FFFFFF is my favorite color these days, although #000000 seems more appropriate after hearing the President’s speach. (@USPres, not @ResPres).

    And, Kelley, we should start a “We Suck At Following Up With Past Clients Anonymous” club thingy. I am right there with you. It is the demon with which I constantly battle. I have an inherently anti-social tendency, which is not terrible helpful in my real estate career.

    Sorry I missed the LV fun. I hear you rocked the house.

  6. Kris Berg

    September 24, 2008 at 8:50 pm

    I think I misspelled speech. Sending myself to the corner.

  7. Paula Henry

    September 24, 2008 at 8:51 pm

    Now I got it! A little slow here 🙂

  8. Kim Wood

    September 24, 2008 at 9:33 pm

    FYI, #FFFFFF when applied to Jeff’s shirt is Foxy, Fabulous, Fantastic, Friend, Favorable Fella !!!

    And I love it when clients say, “Kim? Do you text message?” SCORE!

  9. Thomas Johnson

    September 24, 2008 at 9:41 pm

    Kelly- Isn’t there a vendor for drip tweets (drip twits?) for client follow up?

  10. Jay Thompson

    September 24, 2008 at 11:48 pm

    For past client follow up, I send a short (for me) personal email on the anniversary of their closing, and an irregularly snail mailed “newsletter” about once/quarter.” That’s it. I know the “experts” say that’s not often enough, but it seems to work. Drip email gets poo-poo’ed by many, but done properly, it can be *very* effective for past client follow up.

    I *love* Bullock’s quote.

    I’m partial to #0000FF

  11. Lisa Sanderson

    September 25, 2008 at 5:00 am

    Kelley: Thanks for the nuggets. I wanted to tell you that I love your open-book, no BS attitude, and I imagine your clients do too.

    Kris: Please let me know when the first meeting of WSFUPC Anonymous is scheduled. I have a ‘friend’ that needs to go.

  12. Heather Elias

    September 25, 2008 at 7:18 am

    “calling us Freaks for being techno-proficient while wearing a t-shirt that says #FFFFFF is a bit of the pot calling the kettle black”

    Heehee… indeed!

    I wasn’t there for the “think something different” quote, but I love it. That’s a great jumping off point. Hmm. My head is so full of great ideas from the conference, and you put a few in there, yourself, Chick~~ thank you!

  13. Kelley Koehler

    September 25, 2008 at 8:41 am

    Thomas – not sure about the drip tweets, but Twitter’s not my favorite broadcast mechanism at this time. For business, anyway.

    Paula – it’s a bad web developer joke, a color code.

    Kris – you have anti-social tendencies? I knew I liked you. Will you be my friend? We can be anti-social together. Or not. Whichever.

    Everyone else – thanks for the encouragement and comments. I took a lot of flack offline for being honest about my paying for placement and my failure and lack of desire to stay in touch with past clients, and not all of it was friendly ribbing. I appreciate the understanding that we’re all just trying to do our best out there, according to our values and goals, and for not attacking me for being honest!

  14. Jay Thompson

    September 25, 2008 at 9:57 am

    “I took a lot of flack offline for being honest…”

    Wow. How sad. PPC is a viable solution and how or whether you follow up is your decision.

    There are no absolutes in this business. Whether you choose to use PPC, SEO or no web presence at all, whose business is it to give flack to someone for their choice?

    I’d seriously question the integrity and ethics of someone who attacks honesty. I don’t know who they were, and I don’t think I want to know. That’s simply pathetic.

  15. Steve Simon

    September 26, 2008 at 6:48 am

    #003366 & #FF6600 !
    Go Gators 🙂

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