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Amazing What a Year Can Do



What a year…

This has been quite a year for me as a real estate agent and blogger… I was one of those folks who started out blogging on Active Rain, probably back in March 2007, before I finally got my nerve up to do a stand-alone blog. was ‘born’ right around this time last year (December 14th, actually!). I went to the Virginia Association of Realtor’s second BloggerCon in March, feeling very intimidated and very much like a ‘baby blogger’. Imagine my suprise when I felt I actually contributed to the conversation. Maybe I was on the right track?

Feeling My Way Along

I’m totally self-taught, made from scratch where my internet marketing and blogging are concerned. I have a public relations/journalism/marketing degree, but there wasn’t even email the first couple of years I was in college…so the ‘learn how to type a press release’ degree I have? Need to adapt to market a business now. (Just a bit, huh?) Times have changed. In any case, I built my blog on advice from my friends in the…listening to what worked for them, adapting it to what might work for me. Going to Inman Connect in San Francisco in July kicked open so many more doors for me. I came home with tons of ideas to implement, and I’ve actually made quite a few of them work. REBlogWorld in Vegas in September brought more great ideas (that I’m still putting into action).

So here I am in December, celebrating the one year birthday of my blog. In a year, I’ve gone from ‘not sure of my voice’ to ‘backbone of my marketing and prospecting’. I’ve been invited to write here, for heaven’s sake, and at VARBuzz! And LoCoMusings is now the Blog Brawl Champ. (For anyone who hadn’t heard.). Plus there was that whole pig kissing thing (I didn’t actually kiss the pig, for the record.)

But Is It Working?

Wait, what did you say, back there in the back? Has it brought me business? Well, yes. Most important of all, it has brought me business, and clients, and contacts, and prospects. Here’s an excellent example, from an email I received. I’d have to say that I couldn’t script it better if I tried.

“My wife and I are in the process of trying to select a Realtor with whom we can work to sell our townhome and to also find our dream home. We came across your name from your LoCo Real Estate Musings blog- which is a great information source, by the way! Just from reading all of your online information, your are definitely one of the top 3 candidates with whom we’d like to meet.”

That’s only one example, I have more. And yes, I got the listing. I have no fancy SEO or design, it’s just me, and my voice. The internet is my ‘farm area.’

I can’t wait to see what 2009 brings.

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  1. Matt

    December 16, 2008 at 11:25 am

    Congratulations! 🙂 I hope you have many more years of happy blogging – it’s a wonderful social tool.

  2. Ginger Wilcox

    December 16, 2008 at 11:56 am

    It is hard to believe it is only one year. Happy Birthday my blogger friend! I am so thankful you started 🙂

  3. Lisa Sanderson

    December 16, 2008 at 12:16 pm

    Congrats, Heather, you deserve it. We all know how much work goes in to this blogging thing. Yes, we love it but it is still work, and the time & dedication it takes to be successful are great evidence of your work ethic and tenacity. No wonder you’re a winner!!

  4. Brian Block

    December 16, 2008 at 12:59 pm


    What a year it’s been! Congratulations on all that you’ve achieved in 2008 and best wishes for a great 2009!

  5. Matthew Rathbun

    December 16, 2008 at 7:08 pm


    It’s been awesome reading your stuff and getting to know you over the past year. It’s making quality friends like you, that keep me engaged in social media.

    I really look forward to seeing all the awesome things you’ll do for real estate in the future.

  6. Missy Caulk

    December 16, 2008 at 9:02 pm

    Wow,a lot has happened this year, my blog was launched last November. That email is the fuel that keeps us going.

  7. Bob Carney

    December 17, 2008 at 10:25 am

    Any many more to come. You are only just getting started. It has been wonderful knowing you are you grew into an amazing social media princess.

  8. CTann-Starr

    December 17, 2008 at 5:34 pm

    Very nicely done. Looking forward to reading your blog posts in 2009. 🙂

  9. Real Estate Web Design

    December 17, 2008 at 9:32 pm

    Congratulations. I have heard many good things about you, and find you on Facebook. I am definitely a fan of yours.

  10. Paula Henry

    December 18, 2008 at 5:44 am

    Congrats Heather! Emails like that are proof you reaching your farm. Now on to a stupendous second year!

  11. Linsey

    January 1, 2009 at 10:41 am

    I so related to this piece. I began blogging in May and definitely felt intimidated at the outset, but excited about the possibilities too. I can hardly believe the changes that have taken place in that period of time.

    Congrats on your success Heather and here’s to your ’09!

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Business Marketing

“House has spark” – burning up the MLS with typos and other bloopers



The year is starting a march toward its natural ending, friends…and it seems a few real estate careers may be also. This week I found some real head-scratchers in local real estate ads and the MLS.  However, I get submissions from all over the U.S., so no one is safe from the eyes of  the Blooper Scooper. Check out these blunders:

Do You Smell Smoke?

“House has spark” (Apparently your real estate career isn’t the only thing going up in smoke.)

“Big pep area in kitchen” (Is that the cookie jar where Mommy Dearest stashes her uppers?) 

“Dull Viking ovens” (Methinks there’s something in the cookie jar that will perk up those dull Vikings.)

“Large greenhose in back” (Large, naked Jolly Green Giant in yard.)

“Mush added to this house” (Was that the overflow from between your ears?)

I Think I See Flames

“Beautifully remolded guest” (Another cosmetically-altered Barbie hits the Hollywood party circuit.)

“Enjoy a drink poolslide” ( Hell, if the pool is sliding, I’ll need a whole pint of Jack.)

“Each bedroom has own bedrooom” (Hello-o-o, Alice, how are things down there in the rabbit hole?)

“Separate pod to build GH” (That should please my pea-sized buyers.)

“Play room for the kiss” (Something tells me this is the back seat of a ’67 Chevy.)

Still Smoldering…

“Ideal for gusts” (That’s great…if you want to live in a wind sock.)

“Impaccably detailed” (Incredibly challenged)

“Stylish pewder room” (Try burning a match.)

“Stone pillars flake driveway” (Flakey agent got stoned in driveway.)

Nothing But Embers (This Week’s Fave):

“From a bygone error” (You have just written your own epitaph.)



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Business Marketing

“New bd pans inc” – Making a Splash on the MLS



I have two things to say this week: 1. When you drink, you can’t think. 2. When you drink you can’t- … uh, what was I saying? Oh, yes – the MLS.  It was so full of bloopers this week that I am led to conclude that happy hour started Monday and never stopped. Read these and tell me if it is any wonder I was driven to throw back a few martinis myself:

Booze ‘N’ Fools

“Free membership to gin inc” (It seems someone else beat us to it, Martini Mary.)

“Grab now use imagination” (That’s what Arnold said to his housekeeper.)

“House has new edition” (Agent lacks erudition.)

“Babblying broke runs in back” (Bumbling buffoon runs amuck.)

“Drop by for cocktail ho” (Oh, is the Sunset Strip for sale?)

Puff ‘N’ Stuff

“Near Sacramento airpot” (I believe his name is Jerry Brown.)

“Claw me for selling” (I’m too busy clawing my eyes out over your spelling.)

“Reduction on mid-century ner Holywod” (Another mid-sixties porn star is looking for work.)

“We can sake your home” (Can I get fried rice with my sake?)

Proof or Goof

“Nice streem” (Said Grandma to Grandpa after his diaper  exploded.)

“Nice for dog kids” (Uh, they’re called ‘puppies,” pal.)

“New bd pans included” (Thank you, Nurse Nancy – can you warm those first?)

“Good stable in neighborhood.” (Have you contacted Mary and Joseph?)

“Drawing for plasma” (Is this a blood-bank?)

And This Week’s Winner Is:

“Good school in areola” (Thanks for keeping me abreast of things.)


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My secret office organization tip – Sharpies and tape

If you’re still practicing to be OCD, here is a secret I don’t typically share with anyone, but I’m willing to share with you today…



Keeping organized

I used to be obsessed with the P-touch machine. I labeled everything. Drawers, shelves, folders, canisters, and anything that I could think of putting a label on.

But the label makers weren’t as pretty as my own handwriting and didn’t come in every color a Sharpie does, so I got the brilliant idea one day to write in light blue sharpie in my beautiful handwriting on clear tape, placed neatly on the shelves in the pantry. Visitors thought I had written on the cabinets, “what if you have to move things?” they asked. “It’s just tape, look!” I said as if I was performing a complicated magic trick.

Not just shelves!

It’s great to use this tip on files and folders so you can reuse them (especially if you have custom files or designer files), on drawers at the bottom of each section where pens and tape goes, and especially in the break room.

No more label maker, no more refill cartridges and no more mess, especially someone else’s mess! Trust me, this is an OCD person’s dream organizing tip!

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