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AG Breaks Into New Territory [New Contributor]

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Jack Leblond, SEO/SEM Professional


Jack Leblond, In-House SEO Guy

Please welcome Jack Leblond, the newest Agent Genius writer. Jack isn’t a part-time SEO kid in a coffee shop and he’s not a self-appointed king of the SEO world, no, he’s legitimately a SEO/SEM professional that works for a large corporation full time. He is not a Realtor and doesn’t pimp houses in any way shape or form (although he does live in one).

Jack has an extremely impressive background ranging from Sonar Technician/Instructor for the United States Navy, technical writer, pioneer in intraweb creation for McGraw-Hill and Times Mirror Higher Education. He was an Adjunct Professor for eight years at two Universities teaching web-related courses, and for ten years devoted himself to Net Smart, a company he co-founded where he managed networks, oversaw hundreds of sites’ development and worked with Cold Fusion technology.

Not Your Stereotypical SEO Type

On a personal note, we recently had coffee with Jack who we quickly learned wasn’t your typical pocket protector wearing SEO nerd with a superiority complex, he’s very down to earth, quite funny and has amazing insight as to how we can all make our websites better. He’s very approachable and isn’t here to sell you anything, rather to engage us all to help our sites and businesses. We invite you to engage him in the comments of his articles, send in your questions and feel free to gain as much knowledge as you can from Jack.

Many of our readers know a lot about SEO while others don’t yet know what “tag an image” means, so Jack will be giving tips at the most basic level all the way to expertise level SEO. This summer, Jeff Turner coined the phrase YEO (You Engaging Others) as a supplement to SEO and while we’ve covered YEO quite deeply over the last months, we’re ready to learn more about the technical underbelly of websites. We are very excited about all that Jack has to share with us, so please welcome him in the comments!

Lani is the Chief Operating Officer at The American Genius - she has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH and Austin Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.

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25 Comments

25 Comments

  1. Chris Shouse

    September 8, 2008 at 4:08 pm

    WOW welcome Jack this will be huge but then AG is always on the cutting edge. Will look forward to your posts:)

  2. Jeff Bernheisel

    September 8, 2008 at 5:00 pm

    Welcome Jack! Looking forward to possibly learning a thing or ten…

    -Jeff

  3. Matt Rains

    September 8, 2008 at 5:03 pm

    Welcome to Agent Genius. I can’t wait to read your stuff.

    -Matt Rains
    RETechBlog.com

  4. Nick Bastian

    September 8, 2008 at 6:06 pm

    Sounds like another genious move to bring him in! Looking forward to reading what he has to share. Welcome, Jack!

  5. Lisa Sanderson

    September 8, 2008 at 6:20 pm

    Glad to see you here, Jack. I sure hope you have a sense of humor ’cause this group can get rowdy!

  6. Ted Mackel

    September 8, 2008 at 6:25 pm

    Welcome Jack!

    Looking forward to your contributions.

  7. Jayson

    September 8, 2008 at 7:20 pm

    Nice move AG!

    I look forward to reading and learning from Jack’s posts. It’s always good to learn from the pros.

  8. Brad Nix

    September 8, 2008 at 7:54 pm

    SEO is the elusive leprechaun of web marketing. I can’t wait to follow the rainbow. Lead on Jack.

  9. Mariana Wagner

    September 8, 2008 at 8:30 pm

    Welcome to Agent Genius, Jack. I love how much I don’t know about SEO and look forward to everything you have to share. 🙂

  10. Jack

    September 8, 2008 at 8:55 pm

    Thanks everyone for the warm welcome! I’ve been lurking here for a while and in true AG form, I think we’ll all learn from each other.

    As for rowdy…I was a Submarine sailor, you can’t get much more rowdy than that.

    Jack

  11. Jonathan Dalton

    September 8, 2008 at 9:03 pm

    Hi, Jack!

    (Always wanted to say that.)

    Welcome aboard!

  12. Mark Eckenrode | HomeStomper

    September 8, 2008 at 9:22 pm

    hey jack, looking forward to your contributions here. welcome.

  13. Kris Berg

    September 8, 2008 at 9:25 pm

    Welcome, Jack. Allow me to introduce myself. I am the one who types before she thinks, always on a regrettable seven second delay.

    Post quickly – I need SEO help badly!

  14. ines

    September 8, 2008 at 9:37 pm

    WOW!! Pretty amazing! Can’t wait to learn a little or a lot from Jack – WELCOME!!

  15. Russell Shaw

    September 8, 2008 at 10:17 pm

    Unlike Mariana, I hate how much I don’t know about SEO.

  16. Laura Cannon

    September 8, 2008 at 10:52 pm

    This is great! What an awesome addition to AG! Welcome Jack!

  17. Daniel Bates

    September 9, 2008 at 4:21 am

    The real question is he going to try to tackle your post URL problem? I don’t guess you need help in the search rankings, but the numbered posts thing has just always bothered me :-p

  18. Matt Stigliano

    September 9, 2008 at 7:40 am

    Jack,

    As someone just moving into the world of blogging (and for that matter real estate), I am DYING to see what you have to say. Welcome to AG!

    Benn and Lani,

    Can it get better than this? You’ve done it again! Thanks.

  19. Todd

    September 9, 2008 at 8:01 am

    My first request to Mr. Leblond is to explain Localism’s method of using agent’s labor ( writing posts in both localism and Active Rain ) to raise the page rank of localism when consumers search for houses in a given neighborhood.

    What SEO methods are they using?
    Is it ethical to take agent’s posts, monetize them through SEO/AdSense and not give them a cut?
    Is the accumulative SEO of all locaism pages better than what an agent can do by themselves with their own blog?

  20. Mack

    September 9, 2008 at 9:39 am

    Welcome Jack. I look forward to reading your articles.

  21. G. Dewald

    September 9, 2008 at 10:42 am

    Awesome! Can’t wait for more. Plus I’m going to make that Apple Crumble.

  22. Jack Leblond

    September 9, 2008 at 10:57 am

    Daniel – We *will* be looking into those URLs, they bug me too.

    Matt – this is perfect timing for you. SEO is so much easier if you think about it from the start.

    Todd – Two things, first thanks for the great idea for a post. Second, I checked your site…we NEED to talk.

    G – You will LOVE the crumble, be sure to thoroughly coat the pan first or you will have a very hard time cleaning up.

  23. Vicki Moore

    September 9, 2008 at 1:07 pm

    The addition of Jack is so exciting! Can’t wait to learn, learn, learn.

    “Todd – Two things, first thanks for the great idea for a post. Second, I checked your site…we NEED to talk.”

    Hey – What about me – me – me?

  24. Jay Thompson

    September 9, 2008 at 4:55 pm

    Well this is very cool.

    The post URLS here (and on MANY blogs) have always bugged me. Would love to hear Jack’s take on that vs I don’t know, words in the titles.

    You are welcome to take a peek at my blog Jack and rip it to shreds. I’m a big boy, I can take it. I want it in fact.

    Welcome to the sidebar Jack, nice to have more company!

  25. Jamie Geiger

    September 10, 2008 at 8:15 pm

    Hi Jack,
    Welcome-look forward to learning from you, loved your first article!

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Austin

Austin tops the list of best places to buy a home

When looking to buy a home, taking the long view is important before making such a huge investment – where are the best places to make that commitment?

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Looking at the bigger picture

(REALUOSO.COM) – Let us first express that although we are completely biased about Texas (we’re headquartered here, I personally grew up here), the data is not – Texas is the best. That’s a scientific fact. There’s a running joke in Austin that if there is a list of “best places to [anything],” we’re on it, and the joke causes eye rolls instead of humility (we’re sore winners and sore losers in this town).

That said, SelfStorage.com dug into the data and determined that the top 12 places to buy a home are currently Texas and North Carolina (and Portland, I guess you’re okay too or whatever).

They examined the nerdiest of numbers from the compound annual growth rate in inflation-adjusted GDP to cost premium, affordability, taxes, job growth, and housing availability.

“Buying a house is a big decision and a big commitment,” the company notes. “Although U.S. home prices have risen in the long term, the last decade has shown that path is sometimes full of twists, turns, dizzying heights and steep, abrupt falls. Today, home prices are stabilizing and increasing in most areas of the U.S.”

Click here to continue reading the list of the 12 best places to buy a home…

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Housing News

Average age of houses on the rise, so is it now better or worse to buy new?

With aging housing in America, are first-time buyers better off buying new or existing homes? The average age of a home is rising, as is the price of new housing, so a shift could be upon us.

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aging housing inventory

aging housing inventory

The average home age is higher than ever

(REALUOSO.COM) – In a survey from the Department of Housing and Urban Development American Housing Survey (AHS), the median age of homes in the United States was 35 years old. In Texas, homes are a bit younger with the median age between 19 – 29 years. The northeast has the oldest homes, with the median age between 50 – 61 years. In 1985, the median age of a home was only 23 years.

With more houses around 40 years old, the National Association of Realtors asserts that homeowners will have to undertake remodeling and renovation projects before selling unless the home is sold as-is, in which case the buyer will be responsible to update their new residence. Even homeowners who aren’t selling will need to consider remodeling for structural and aesthetic reasons.

Prices of new homes on the rise

Newer homes cost more than they used to. The price differential between new homes and older homes has increased from 10 percent traditionally to around 37 percent in 2014. This is due to rising construction costs, scarcity of lots, and a low inventory of new homes that doesn’t meet the demand.

Click here to continue reading this story…

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Housing News

Are Realtors the real loser in the fight between Zillow Group and Move, Inc.?

The last year has been one of dramatic and rapid change in the real estate tech sector, but Realtors are vulnerable, and we’re worried.

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zillow move

zillow move

Why Realtors are vulnerable to these rapid changes

(REALUOSO.COM) – Corporate warfare demands headlines in every industry, but in the real estate tech sector, a storm has been brewing for years, which in the last year has come to a head. Zillow Group and Move, Inc. (which is owned by News Corp. and operates ListHub, Realtor.com, TopProducer, and other brands) have been competing for a decade now, and the race has appeared to be an aggressive yet polite boxing match. Last year, the gloves came off, and now, they’ve drawn swords and appear to want blood.

Note: We’ll let you decide which company plays which role in the image above.

So how then, does any of this make Realtors the victims of this sword fight? Let’s get everyone up to speed, and then we’ll discuss.

1. Zillow poaches top talent, Move/NAR sues

It all started last year when the gloves came off – Move’s Chief Strategy Officer (who was also Realtor.com’s President), Errol Samuelson jumped ship and joined Zillow on the same day he phoned in his resignation without notice. He left under questionable circumstances, which has led to a lengthy legal battle (wherein Move and NAR have sued Zillow and Samuelson over allegations of breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and misappropriation of trade secrets), with the most recent motion being for contempt, which a judge granted to Move/NAR after the mysterious “Samuelson Memo” surfaced.

Salt was added to the wound when Move awarded Samuelson’s job to Move veteran, Curt Beardsley, who days after Samuelson left, also defected to Zillow. This too led to a lawsuit, with allegations including breach of contract, violation of corporations code, illegal dumping of stocks, and Move has sought restitution. These charges are extremely serious, but demanded slightly less attention than the ongoing lawsuit against Samuelson.

2. Two major media brands emerge

Last fall, the News Corp. acquisition of Move, Inc. was given the green light by the feds, and this month, Zillow finalized their acquisition of Trulia.

…Click here to continue reading this story…

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