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ListingPress.com Rolls Out Premium WordPress Real Estate Listing Plugin

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Premium Real Estate Listing WordPress Pluginlogo

We’ve always been a fan of WordPress, and the WordPress community.  As hard as it used to be to find anyone in the WordPress world to work with real estate agents and brokers, one group of folks has always been there- the Real Estate Tomato. Whether you wanted a simple blog or a full on community, they can help.  Not only using wordpress plugins we’re all accustomed to, they could whip up a plugin in most cases to solve just about any unique need.   Bigger and better they’ve gotten, and they’ve gone to the next level by rolling out a new product for the DIY agent with ListingPress.com, where they’re supporting not only the agent but designers, brokers and the like with larger solutions.

Here’s the rub

Although they’ve never built a site for me, and I’ve not had a chance to test ListingPress, we do have a project we’re working on now where we were considering its deployment once it was rolled out in our needed markets.  So I downloaded the plugin and began reading the docs associated with it:

  • Requires registration to keep you legal with your local board
  • Page two of registration you’re charged a one time fee of $499.00 plus $49 a month

We had no idea it was a Premium WordPress plugin until page two of the registration process, and am a little dismayed, however, there is a market for this type of plugin, and this is fairly reasonable when you consider the end to iframes on your website as well as the overall functionality and content this tool will deliver to your site content.

Why not offer a Lite version

Why not offer a lite version from the WordPress Plugin Repository rather than a premium listing plugin as is customary?  A lite version may simply offer a local agent the opportunity to feature their own listings and nothing more, but would give the user of the plugin opportunity to upgrade once they begin to see the benefits ListingPress offers (see below), or once a smaller practice grows.

Current availability

  • Sandicor
  • SOCAL
  • Mid-Florida Regional MLS
  • Southeast Florida Regional MLS
  • Multi Regional Multiple Listing Service (MRMLS)
  • BayEast Association of REALTORS (MAXMLS)
  • Bay Area Real Estate Information Services (BAREIS)
  • MLSListings
  • Sacramento Metrolist

Here is what they’re promising

  • All listings are 100% SEO friendly (using pretty permalinks and are ‘spiderable’ by Google).
  • All listings displayed using ListingPress become part of your website (they are not framed in like IDX 3-party tools).
  • Listings can be dynamically displayed based on post and page content (think current featured listings related to article archives).

The Wrap

So, if you’re looking for a premium real estate listing plugin for WordPress, this might be the one and it’s at least worth looking at, and the reason I say it’s worth it is because I know if it doesn’t work or there are problems, they’ll make it work or fix any bugs that arise as WordPress updates.  RETomato is pretty well known for supporting their community which should comfort those that need to build and walk away, rather than plug and pray.

So, if you’re already using it, show us, we’d love to take a look!

Real Estate Listing WordPress Plugin | ListingPress.com on Twitter

AgentGenius.com is not affiliated with ListingPress.com or Real Estate Tomato.

Benn Rosales is the Founder and CEO of The American Genius (AG), national news network for tech and entrepreneurs, proudly celebrating 10 years in publishing, recently ranked as the #5 startup in Austin. Before founding AG, he founded one of the first digital media strategy firms in the nation and also acquired several other firms. His resume prior includes roles at Apple and Kroger Foods, specializing in marketing, communications, and technology integration. He is a recipient of the Statesman Texas Social Media Award and is an Inman Innovator Award winner. He has consulted for numerous startups (both early- and late-stage), has built partnerships and bridges between tech recruiters and the best tech talent in the industry, and is well known for organizing the digital community through popular monthly networking events. Benn does not venture into the spotlight often, rather believes his biggest accomplishments are the talent he recruits, develops, and gives all credit to those he's empowered.

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41 Comments

41 Comments

  1. Danilo Bogdanovic

    July 15, 2009 at 11:49 am

    They’re supposed to be formally rolling out a product in the DC metro area soon. I know of some folks who are banging around on it right now – will keep you posted.

  2. Chad A. Johnson

    July 15, 2009 at 11:59 am

    This plugin sounds like a dream come true. One question, does having the listings on your site and not iFramed cause issues with N.A.R.? There has been a lot of discussion recently about Google indexing listings from an MLS on an agent’s website.

  3. Benn Rosales

    July 15, 2009 at 12:01 pm

    Chad, that’s something we’ll all be dealing/fighting with mls by mls.

  4. Todd Carpenter

    July 15, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    Chad, no

  5. Todd Carpenter

    July 15, 2009 at 12:25 pm

    “AgentGenius.com is not affiliated with ListingPress.com or Real Estate Tomato.”

    I take this at face value. But can I ask? Why then do you link to the listingpress.com website via a forward through agentgenius.com/lpcom? Are the days of spreading link love through blogs officially over?

  6. Benn Rosales

    July 15, 2009 at 1:35 pm

    Todd, I appreciate your question, as well as your taking the disclaimer exactly as it’s put, as I would love to say otherwise.

    Anyone doubting how much link love we pump out is either blind or insane.

    As for why? We use tools to measure depth of interest of topics we cover when it comes to products and features, it only makes good sense when you consider the ratio of the size of our total audience, and content/coverage against the size of our staff (2).

    As for why we don’t allow tracking of links in comments (which may be another question), is because we have since day one verified every link posted in comments (which is now well over 27,000 total comments), and because link trackers are cloaked (when 3rd party), there is always risk to our computers in clicking links we’re unsure of, so we just don’t do it.

    For folks we know, like yourself, we’ll click the link to see its destination, and as a courtesy we allow the link to remain, but we feel it’s important that our greater audience who may not yet know you to see the destination. This is also incredibly time consuming as just about everyone feels they know us.

    We suggest changing your comment url to any tracking mechanism and destination you chose, and simply pointing to it in your comment. This will still leave you in moderation until we verify it (from known sources) but it allows us to maintain the integrity of our comment policies for all.

    I would appreciate anyone with any questions to simply email me directly talk [@] agentgenius.com in order to salvage the preceding conversation.

    Thanks,
    Benn

  7. Jason Benesch

    July 15, 2009 at 7:53 pm

    Hey Ben!

    Thanks for mention!

    Here is a little background around the concept:

    Back in 2006, I helped start a company called the Real Estate Tomato with Jim Cronin. We make custom wordpress sites for real estate agents and help train them on how to capture leads online. Before that, I worked at a company called Z57, also consulting agents on how to market their business online using a real estate website they purchased through the company. The most common question I have received from agents the last 6+ years of working in this industry is: “How can I create a custom website with listings.”

    Using WordPress and ListingPress, we now have the ability to create those types of sites for clients.

    ListingPress is currently in version 1, meaning this:

    The core engine is very stable and usable, but the current plugin is missing many bells and whistles. Over the next couple weeks we will be releasing more versions of the plugin with cool new features. Some of those features include:

    1. Capturing leads using Facebook Connect (I am personally very excited about this one. I believe we can tremendously increase lead capture by adding a facebook button for consumers to click, instead of a dreaded online registration form.)

    2. I need a couple things to happen, but I am working on making searching for homes using cooliris a reality. If you have ever browsed a cooliris wall, you know how much fun it is to search through images… Now imagine this with listings: https://www.cooliris.com/tab/#cs=11&url=http%3A%2F%2Ftest.listingpress.com%2Findex.php%3Fzip%3D92119%26showlistings%3D3%26showlistings%3D1000%26display%3Dmediarss

    3. Of course google maps. The trick here is making it as easy as possible for agents to add them. Think widgets.

    4. Widgets to customize the search forms: https://listingpress.com/lp_search_form.png

    Besides the plugin, we are also launching WordPress related themes that already incorporate the plugin so an agent can purchase a “complete” package and not just the plugin. The themes are very cool and I am in the middle of an article I will eventually end up posting titled: “How to create your own Trulia in 10 minutes using ListingPress.” I am also closely working with other current theme artists. For instance, we will soon have a studiopress.com ListingPress enabled theme.

    As far as price goes:

    You have to kind of understand that ListingPress is the just the middle man. A mashup if you will of different services.

    I love wordpress and what I can do with it. I am intimately familiar with it after running a WordPress driven company for the past 3 years. I see the benefits and know how powerful an application it can be for a real estate agent.

    But ListingPress in the end is an IDX solution. A complete IDX solution. I actually think the pricing is very competitive in the IDX world. I don’t see ListingPress as being a second add on type of IDX solution, but the main and only one an agent needs. After I get some Tomato sites up using ListingPress, I believe an agent will see the power of it (both seo, but also lead generation) and will have enough confidence to competely drop the current IDX they are using.

    As far as a lite version:

    I will toss this around in my head for a while, but I just don’t see the upside to that. I would much rather run a 30 day free trial which has been tossed around, then a lite version.

    But as far as a company goes, we are very transparent. After all our plugin is open source!!!

    We also have killer reseller prices cause I know that most agents won’t have the savvy to set it up on their own. Therefore a developer is needed.

    I would also be very happy to issue demo registration codes so you can play with the plugin and get your hands dirty. Email me at jason (at) listinrpress (dot) com for information about that.

    One last thing, Come say hi to me! I will be at Inman in San Francisco in Start-up Alley. Come check us out and let us know what you think. We will have our themes ready to go as well as newer releases of the plugin.

  8. Bob Wilson

    July 15, 2009 at 10:27 pm

    From the download page:

    “The plugin is free and open source (released GPL) but unfortunately the listing data is not.”

    The rub is that at $499 plus $49 a month, what is actually being offered is an integrated IDX solution for WP.

    It’s only truly a free plug in if I can use the plug in with my own IDX data solution.

    Can I?

  9. Jason Benesch

    July 15, 2009 at 10:33 pm

    Hey Bob,

    Absolutely!

    The plugin is free to download:

    https://downloads.wordpress.org/plugin/listingpress.1.0.21.zip

    What you do with it is up to you.

    Furthermore, I would be more than happy to create an option for people to select which IDX service they want to use. So if you have the data, we can display that data in wordpress, with the plugin. Feel free to contact me if you would like to chat about it.

  10. Mariana

    July 16, 2009 at 1:58 pm

    When I originally had the MLS feeds on my site – it was AWESOME! I saw a DRAMATIC shift UP in my traffic (and business). I have since lost that ability, and am looking forward to having Listing Press available in my area… Soon?

  11. Bob Wilson

    July 16, 2009 at 4:24 pm

    Jason, Thanks. I’ll be in touch.

  12. Missy Caulk

    July 17, 2009 at 10:02 am

    I’m terrible with plugins, but I do have a WP. org blog and a raw data feed.

    So this sounds awesome.

    Can you be hired to integrate into my WP blog?

  13. Jason Benesch

    July 17, 2009 at 4:48 pm

    Sure email me: jason (at) listingpress (dot) com and we can chat about what type of data you have and how we can integrate that in to your blog.

  14. Paula Henry

    July 18, 2009 at 9:58 pm

    This is an awesome tool and leave it RET to bring it to life.

    I have one question for @tcar – How can Chad be told “no”, unless NAR has the power to make his Board allow indexing. As we all know, NAR backed down from issuing an official opinion on this and left it to the individual boards. MIBOR would not allow this.

  15. Todd Carpenter

    July 19, 2009 at 8:28 pm

    Paula,

    Cad asked if NAR has a problem with this product. The answer is no. I can’t speak to what local boards will do.

  16. Sam Ingersoll

    July 20, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    Here’s a link to a Home Details page. We put in Google Street View : )

    https://www.jamesaharner.com/listing/4532193/

  17. Sam Ingersoll

    July 25, 2009 at 9:54 pm

    LISTING PRESS demonstration site online at PAHouseQuest.com

    It only has test data but should have fully TReND MLS information next week.

    I’ve done a lot of customization to integrate it with a StudioPress Streamline and Agent themes for a Realtor friend of mine who owns the website.

    The Listing Press plugin works really, really well…and allows us to do some really awesome designs for maximum lead capture.

    Take a look and shoot us some feedback. PAHouseQuest.com

  18. Bob

    August 11, 2009 at 11:57 am

    The ability to have them integrated is slick, but the seo value of indexed listings is minimal as most sites dont have the ability to juice 1000’s of pages. Adding temporary content (listings are temp as they are gone once pending/sold) doesnt equate to better rankings. It may bring traffic, which it the value, but one shouldnt assume it will move you up the ladder for “city real estate”.

  19. Adam Bailey

    August 13, 2009 at 3:55 pm

    I would like to us this plugin but can you get signed up with my MLS? We are part of mlspin.com in Boston. They are easy to get the data feed from.

  20. Brandon Green

    August 20, 2009 at 2:08 pm

    Danilo–are any Washington, DC are real estate agents using it yet?

  21. mark

    November 6, 2009 at 5:22 pm

    I went to listingpress.com and they seem to have site issues. Can anyone update on the listingpress availability.

    • Benn Rosales

      November 6, 2009 at 5:30 pm

      It’s working for me, just try the site again for more information, it’s up to the site owners to update availability to curious consumers imo.

  22. Jason

    November 6, 2009 at 5:31 pm

    Hey Mark,

    We have received a huge response from community and due to it’s custom nature we are currently only implementing it on to Real Estate Tomato sites. (My other company, which allows me trouble shoot instantly)… You can email me at jason (at) realestatetomato.com to chat more about it.

    Thanks.

  23. Sam

    November 6, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    We have implemented ListingPress plugin into StudioPress, AgentPress, and Frugal WordPress Themes.

    Most of our designs actually give you 8 different ways to let consumers view data – from Huge photos and Full Screen Maps down to smaller photos surrounded by sidebars with lead capture and social networking elements.

    Take a look at the AgentPress demo (i should give a affliate link here : ) and imagine it full of MLS listings with a Search Results page just like the home page, but with a much better Property Details page.

    We’ve done so much customization and work with the plugin that we can customize and integrate the Listings however you want or you can use one of our current designs.

    I did take some of my examples and our Sales site offline for awhile. The designs are optimized for Lead Capture and SEO and so I don’t want to tip any other IDX companies off until we really re-launch quickly.

    (For example we don’t want the individual listings to be indexed by Google…we have a special page design that contains special fields and a layout that is much more SEO friendly.)

    Still, I’m happy to show tech savvy, aggressive agents what we’ve done and let them decide if it’s a good fit for them.

    You gotta get approved by your MLS, but we can usually do the tech and set-up work within a few days.

    Jason at Real Estate Tomato/ListingPress has really given real estate agents a HUGE opportunity to customize their website’s user experience based on the needs of their market, rather than the one-size-fits-all Designs and Registration forms of most IDX companies.

    We can help you for several hundred to nine hundred bucks usually….or you can hire them Canadian fellers or other IDX companies to do a custom design for $4,000-$10,000.

    • Trent Wilson

      November 6, 2009 at 11:05 pm

      This looks like spam to me.

  24. Benn Rosales

    November 6, 2009 at 8:00 pm

    A simple question leads to a one-two spam punch, enough already.

  25. Sam

    November 6, 2009 at 10:35 pm

    Whatever, Ben.

    Why don’t you try taking a look at what people are offering before whining about them offering it.

    If you take issue with the product, that’s fine and worthy of debate.

    I’ll restrain myself from commenting on what I think of “social media consultants.”

    • Benn Rosales

      November 6, 2009 at 10:40 pm

      Sam, you can say what you wish about me or anyone else, it does not excuse your abuse of the forum Im providing you.

    • Bob Wilson

      November 6, 2009 at 11:17 pm

      Sam, if you want to pitch your services, Benn has pixels for sale on the right.

    • Jay Thompson

      November 6, 2009 at 11:30 pm

      Wow, calling one of the primary blog owners a whiner because he pointed out a comment on HIS blog was spam seems WAY over the top Sam.

      Sorry, but a 10 paragraph 300 word comment that contains nothing but blatant self-promotion for a product you are selling IS spam.

    • Nick Bastian

      November 7, 2009 at 12:18 am

      “Why don’t you try taking a look at what people are offering before whining about them offering it.”
      No offense but… Don’t you have a blog where you can offer your product?

  26. Jason Farris

    November 6, 2009 at 11:48 pm

    Spam belongs in the can!

  27. Matthew Hardy

    November 7, 2009 at 12:15 am

    Cordiality is key.

    Some time ago I posted a comment on AG that included links. I was curious as to why there was a delay in seeing my comment appear so I inquired as to the policy and Benn explained it exactly as he did above. I respect both his approach and wishes.

    As the phrase “Real Estate Magazine” indicates that something – notably advertising – is being offered for sale, I wouldn’t think it appropriate to make too detailed a selling proposition here at AG; we have are own site for that.

    That being said, I am damn tired of all the hypersensitivity about what is “right” regarding “selling”. I may not see the sea-change Benn sees regarding selling in the modern world, but I am willing to be wrong and Benn be right if it helps make me better at what I do. Discovering *how* to be effective in getting and keeping customers may change, but *that* getting and keeping customers is our intention has not. Are we really more sophisticated now than we were in the 1950’s? (I can’t answer that with certainty as I was not yet an adult at the time.) Perhaps so, but surely all accumulated knowledge regarding business-building did not pass away with the advent of the internet.

    As I’ve seen other blogs eviscerate their guests while demanding perfect civility from them, I think Benn has offered a reasonable balance for valuing vendors for what they bring to the industry while offering good, objective analysis of tools that may be useful to readers.

    A few years ago we participated in the-industry-biggy trade show. I climbed some stairs for an extensive view of what struck me as a showroom floor full of crap. So, I can’t really blame real estate practitioners from being vendor leery. I can, however, state that some provide real value, obviously.

    We’re all in this together to some degree and cordiality is key.

  28. Diane Guercio

    November 7, 2009 at 9:40 am

    I thought that Benn had already piqued the interest of anyone who would be able to use the plug-in. I had heard a little about this, and was intrigued after I had read the post.

    We are all trying to make a living, and for us- all of us-, it involves sales. Regarding sales: I think we are not seeing so much a change in triggers regarding purchase; we are seeing a higher expectation of respect during the sales process. (I wasn’t an adult in the 50s either, Matthew, but have looked at a little of the advertising that worked, apparently, and it involved humiliation and more peer pressure than is overt now.)

    That said, is a blog an appropriate forum for advertising? There are spots for it in sections so you can ignore it, just like when you use Google products for “free.”

    But wouldn’t it be nice to keep an ideas forum as pure as we can? Respect me enough to realize that I can Google you to find your links. And I will.

  29. Sam

    November 7, 2009 at 11:29 am

    Blatant sales pitches stopped working because the pitch-ers had nothing of quality to sell or lied about the quality of their products.

    This is true in the Real Estate industry where very few agents could actually claim and prove that they could sell homes for more or help clients buy for less better than other agents.

    So instead of helping agents to focus on their Unique Value Proposition which has to do with Product Selection, Quality, Service, Price, Likability/Trust and reflecting that via a good copywriter and a little work collecting statistics and testimonials – vendors first sold people on lousy technology gizmos.

    Now vendors are selling agents on Social Media strategies.

    Most of what I see is not “respect” for the consumer – that should be about improving the quality of your product/service – but rather fooling the consumer by focusing on the “Likability” part of the UVP and/or communicating things that have nothing to do with why an Agent’s service is better.

    For example, Agents are told to post about local market statistics. That’s fine for generating traffic, but doesn’t say a thing (usually) about how the agent will use those statistics to help, for example, a seller realistically price their houses, or proof that the agent knows how to do this better than her competition.

    It used to be that your friends were your friends and the sales guys were sales guys and you could tell the difference. Now courses are being taught on “how to pretend to be friendly and helpful so you can sell your junk.” I understand it and even have advised on people how to do it when I couldn’t get them to improve their product/service…but it’s a little distasteful.

    (BTW, my last home sale after 1.5 years of being an “agent” was a 1.25 million home but I soon quit working as an agent because I thought my taking business away from really experienced/great agents was a crappy deal for consumers i..e my product wasn’t the BEST and I didn’t have time to improve it, so I Stopped Selling It.)

    If you are not doing at least 6 transactions per month – stop worrying about Wuffie and Twitter and Blogging. Learn how to improve what you offer so it is better than your competition, how to succinctly communicate that (hire a copywriter), and get yourself a Home Search site “that captures leads,” and then follow-up instantly and constantly.

    I’ll get off IDX sites for a moment, and recommend Matt Jones Favorite Agent “Listing Presentation” and a few of his Calculators that can help you show Sellers why other agents are lying about the effectiveness of their marketing strategies and when they say the home will sell.

    Ari Galper, who is not a real estate guy, has the best way to offer a service or product in a straight-forward way without either False-Relationship Building or coming off as a sleazy salesman.

    And yes, pick up a book or too on Usability in website design like “Keep it Simple”, subscribe to Marketing Experiments, hire a $15 php programmer out of India, and download the ListingPress plugin and design your own search website.

    At any rate, my apologies for my spammy “sales pitch”. I actually really care about helping people and have seen a lot of agents hurt by bad advice and so when I see something that has the potential to “democratize” and “effectivize” realTech then I get excited.

    Matthew and Diane, I really appreciate your comments.

    P.S. Are “ideas” forums really about sharing good “ideas?” I can’t stand Bloodhound Blog’s nasty libertarian politics and bad business advice…but at least he’s honest about saying agents are stupid for building his business by posting on his site rather than on their own websites.

    Ben, I am very curious. How much of your business comes from how this blog positions you as an expert? Are the ads a money maker…or is all this just a break-even thing?

    • Benn Rosales

      November 7, 2009 at 11:53 am

      Sam, I approved your comment because I want the world to see how you do business. It’s unfortunate that I’ve offended you to such a degree and I’m truly sorry for that. You really are the one in control here as how you react demonstrates your ability to meet and handle the public. I wish you success and hope you’ll realize the opportunity I’ve given you. Good luck.

  30. Ken Brand

    November 7, 2009 at 11:41 am

    There’s a difference between “sharing” and “selling”.

    Sometimes selling is disguised as sharing, when it’s done poorly, it screams “spam”. I hear “screaming”.

    My other comment, when I get busted for a misdeed, I repair my relationship by apologizing sincerely, not blaming.

    My 27cents.

  31. Jay Thompson

    November 7, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    Spammy sales pitches aside, what I’m struggling with Sam was this comment:

    Whatever, Ben.

    Why don’t you try taking a look at what people are offering before whining about them offering it.

    You’re in Benn’s house, and some modicum of respect for him seems prudent. (Which includes, IMO, taking 2 seconds to spell his name correctly).

    You’ve spoken volumes about how you approach business and customers. And people.

  32. Sam

    November 11, 2009 at 10:57 pm

    Benn, I apologize for the “whining” name-calling. What I really meant to say was, “Hey, why are you calling Jason’s spam,” and, “Fine, I’ll change the wording on mine.” (I am aware I get carried away.) And yes, as Matthew pointed out, your forum is more helpful and respectful than most.

    Jay, see the next post.

  33. Sam

    November 11, 2009 at 11:09 pm

    Here’s a serious point, since both of you and Jay challenged my approach to business, customers, and people…

    : )

    For the last 15 years, I’ve worked to help families with counseling, childcare, education, better schools, nicer neighborhoods, less crime, and healthcare. (Google it.) I’ve most enjoyed advocating for children with special needs (our son has Down syndrome) and Adoption (we adopted a “drug baby”). These have included taking phone calls and emails from parents at all hours from parents who had just found out their child would be born with or had a disability, and taking apart a County Foster-care agency that had let a pedophile staffer be quietly discharged to go work at 2 local schools.

    I practiced as a real estate agent for only 1.5 years because I was disgusted by what I saw agents and lenders doing. EVERYONE with half-a-brain knew houses were over-priced. EVERYONE (except one guy I know) sold people homes and got them financed anyway.

    Predatory-lending and Predatory-Realtoring was rampant.

    How many people reading this right now went right along with it?

    How many houses did they sell to families under the ethics shrug, “Well, it’s their choice… they’ll just buy one from someone else anyway?”

    Financial stress is the #1 cause of divorce. Broken finances = Broken families. I’ve worked with these families and have felt the consequences. I quit the real estate business rather than skip away with commission checks.

    Seriously. I’ll put my track-record of treating people up against anyone’s including his-most-awesomeness-Jay! lol Everyone loves Jay.

    Anyway, I don’t much concern myself with with what people “say”…I like to dig into what they actually do/did/done.

    I’m a misfit and when I’m not bouncing onto blogs like this … usually to do what many people do at bars on weekends i.e. let off some steam and end up acting inappropriately …

    …I’m deadly serious about driving every bad real estate agent who did this stuff and has no clue and no remorse…out of business.

    And, yup, this has pretty much to do with real estate search sites that capture leads and dominating the search engines.

    P.S. No, I’m not really trolling for business here. I’ve taken “Social Media Strategies 101” too – hell, I’ve taught it – and am perfectly capable of acting “appropriately” in order to “build relationships and generate business.”

    Hey Benn, don’t forget that “101” chapter about how to allow criticism of one’s self on one’s own blog so as to give one’s self more credibility. Not that that’s what you are doing…I’m just sayin’. (That’s a Jon Stewart reference.)

    I’ll check back here in a week.

  34. Anonymous

    March 28, 2016 at 10:26 am

    What’s Happening i’m new to this, I stumbled upon this I have discovered It positively useful and it has aided me out loads. I hope to contribute & help different users like its helped me. Great job.

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Social Media

*New* TikTok Insights launch: Content creators finally get audience analytics

(SOCIAL MEDIA) The popular short-form app, TikTok, finally launches the anticipated Insights feature, where content creators can view target audience data.

Published

on

Two girls filming on TikTok.

Marketers searching for the zeitgeist which means TikTok scrollers pause to watch their content and then click through to buy a product have a new tool to help make that happen.

  • TikTok Insights offers marketers bite-size bits of user demographic information that will help build content that leads to sales.
  • With TikTok Insights you can learn more about your audience’s behavior, their interests, and their general sentiment toward brands.
  • TikTok Insights is free to use. Marketers can find TikTok user demographics by using filters to determine what they’re looking for.

The demographic info can be age-focused, focused on specific types of marketing, or even as specific as holiday or event marketing.

This is a step in the direction marketers have been asking for as they create content for the TikTok platform; however, creators looking for detailed analytics like they get from meta need to wait. Insights doesn’t offer that for now.

Like TikTok says in its own analytic information,

“While analytics are helpful in understanding the performance of your videos, you don’t need to create future videos based primarily around them. It’s best to consider the bigger picture, lean lightly on analytics, and use them as a source for insight rather than strategy.”

Marketers trying to key into reaching TikTok’s billion users worldwide are left, right now, searching for the magic that leads to consumers making the jump from the platform to using their purchasing power.

For marketers that means keeping things creative and collaborative, two key factors in TikTok’s success. And that success is huge. Users spend an average of 52 minutes on the platform when they log in and a staggering 90% of users say they log on every day.

TikTok Insights will help marketers find ways to connect, but the content TikTok is looking for is authentic.

And while entrepreneurs can bid for advertising like other social media platforms, they need to remember when planning that spend, that most TikTok marketing success stories are more accidental than planned. Have fun with that knowledge. Instead of pressure to create the perfect plan, TikTok Insights allows marketers to keep it creative and to find a way to tie it into what they enjoy about the platform.

Like all other social media marketing, focus on creating content that stops the consumer from their continual scroll. Make it a challenge and keep it real.

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Social Media

Grindr got busted for selling users’ data locations to advertisers

(SOCIAL MEDIA) User data has been a hot topic in the tech world. It’s often shared haphazardly or not protected, and the app Grindr, follows suit.

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Grindr on phone in man's hands

If you’re like me, you probably get spam calls a lot. Information is no longer private in this day and age; companies will buy and sell whatever information they can get their hands on for a quick buck. Which is annoying, but not necessarily outright dangerous, right?

Wrong.

Grindr has admitted to selling their user’s data, however, they are specifically selling the location of their users without regard for liability concerns. Grindr, a gay hook-up app, is an app where a marginalized community is revealing their location to find a person to connect to. Sure, Grindr claims they have been doing this less and less since 2020, but the issue still remains: they have been selling the location of people who are in a marginalized community – a community that has faced a huge amount of oppression in the past and is still facing it to this day.

Who in their right mind thought this was okay? Grindr initially did so to create “real-time ad exchanges” for their users, to find places super close to their location. Which makes sense, sort of. The root of the issue is that the LGBTQAI+ community is a community at risk. How does Grindr know if all of their users are out? Do they know exactly who they’re selling this information to? How do they know that those who bought the information are going to use it properly?

They don’t have any way of knowing this and they put all of their users at risk by selling their location data. And the data is still commercially available! Historical data could still be obtained and the information was able to be purchased in 2017. Even if somebody stopped using Grindr in, say, 2019, the fact they used Grindr is still out there. And yeah, the data that’s been released has anonymized, Grindr claims, but it’s really easy to reverse that and pin a specific person to a specific location and time.

This is such a huge violation of privacy and it puts people in real, actual danger. It would be so easy for bigots to get that information and use it for something other than ads. It would be so easy for people to out others who aren’t ready to come out. It’s ridiculous and, yeah, Grindr claims they’re doing it less, but the knowledge of what they have done is still out there. There’s still that question of “what if they do it again” and, with how the world is right now, it’s really messed up and problematic.

If somebody is attacked because of the data that Grindr sold, is Grindr complicit in that hate crime, legally or otherwise?

So, moral of the story?

Yeah, selling data can get you a quick buck, but don’t do it.

You have no idea who you’re putting at risk by selling that data and, if people find out you’ve done it, chances are your customers (and employees) will lose trust in you and could potentially leave you to find something else. Don’t risk it!

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Social Media

BeReal: Youngsters are flocking in droves to this Instagram competitor app

(SOCIAL MEDIA) As Instagram loses steam due to its standards of “perfection posting,” users are drawn to a similar app with a different approach, BeReal.

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social media - bereal app

BeReal is one of several “Real” apps exploding in growth with young users who crave real connections with people they know in real life.

According to data.ai, BeReal ranks 4th by downloads in the US, the UK, and France for Q1 2022 to date, behind only Instagram, Snapchat, and Pinterest.

BeReal flies in the face of what social media has become. Instead of curated looks that focus on the beautiful parts of life, BeReal users showcase what they’re doing at the moment and share those real photos with their friends. Their real friends.

It’s real. And real is different for a generation of social media users who have been raised on influencers and filters.

As the app says when you go to its page:

Be Real.

Your Friends

for Real.

Every day at a different time, BeReal users are notified simultaneously to capture and share a Photo in 2 Minutes.

A new and unique way to discover who your friends really are in their daily life.

BeReal app

The app has seen monthly users increase by more than 315% according to Apptopia, which tracks and analyzes app performance.

“Push notifications are sent around the world simultaneously at different times each day,” the company said in a statement. “It’s a secret on how the time is chosen every day, it’s not random.”

The app allows no edits and no filters. They want users to show a “slice of their lives.”

Today’s social media users have seen their lives online inundated with ultra-curated social media. The pandemic led to more time spent online than ever. Social media became a way to escape. Reality was ugly. Social media was funny, pretty, and exciting.

And fake.

Enter BeReal where users are asked to share two moments of real life on a surprise schedule. New apps are fun often because they’re new. However, the huge growth in the use of BeReal by college-aged users points to something more than the new factor.

For the past several years, experts have warned that social media was dangerous to our mental health. The dopamine hits of likes and shares are based on photos and videos filled with second and third takes, lens changes, lighting improvements, and filters. Constant comparisons are the norm. And even though we know the world we present on our social pages isn’t exactly an honest portrayal of life, we can’t help but experience FOMO when we see our friends and followers and those we follow having the times of their lives, buying their new it thing, trying the new perfect product, playing in their Pinterest-worthy decorated spaces we wish we could have.

None of what we see is actually real on our apps. We delete our media that isn’t what we want to portray and try again from a different angle and shoot second and third and forth takes that make us look just a little better.

We spend hours flipping through videos on our For You walls and Instagram stories picked by algorithms that know us better than we know ourselves.

BeReal is the opposite of that. It’s simple, fast, and real. It’s community and fun, but it’s a moment instead of turning into the time-sink of our usual social media that, while fun, is also meant to ultimately sell stuff, including all our data.

It will be interesting to watch BeReal and see if it continues down its promised path and whether the growth continues. People are looking for something. Maybe reality is that answer.

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