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Put Your Data On The Map

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My day job is currently with a title company and we send our customers lists several times a week of for sale by owner lists and foreclosure lists.  These typically come in a CSV (Excel-readable) file format.  I’m the lucky one to generate these TPS reports and when I look at them, I think, “Drat! If only these spreadsheets weren’t so ugly and non user friendly and organized in a way that made sense.  Maybe if I could easily see these FSBO’s on a map or show an investor where the foreclosures are so we don’t waste gas driving around aimlessly!”  Okay, fine, I don’t say “Drat”.

Mapalist to the Rescue!

I’ll forewarn you, they just got some great publicity, so the site is taking a little bit of a hit at the moment.  But basically, you put your addresses into a Google Docs spreadsheet (you know how to copy and paste, right?)  Below is a map of all of the homes in various states of foreclosure in my county.  Click on the map to see all of the details.  Depressing, yet easy to look at!

It’s SO Easy

It literally took me less than 5 minutes to find the report on our terribly disorganized corporate share drive, copy the data to Google Docs, wait for Mapalist to load, register and go through the whole process.  So simple!  Now I can plan my driving route, see which neighborhoods are busiest, plan my stops during the weekly brokers tour or just look at a pretty map.

What uses can you imagine for this tool in your real estate business?

Nick runs a new media marketing consulting company helping real estate professionals learn how to implement new media tools into their marketing arsenal. He frequently gives presentations on generational marketing, green marketing and advanced online promotion. Nick is active on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.

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13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. Paula Henry

    August 14, 2008 at 9:02 pm

    Nick – Cool Tool – great for determining the best areas to check out at a glance.

  2. Kim Wood

    August 14, 2008 at 9:13 pm

    I have been waiting and waiting for something like this! The map our MLS prints is less than desirable – so I look forward to checking this out.

    I don’t think I’ll use it to send out FSBO lists, but arranging Buyer Tours would be great!

    Now if I could input addresses into my GPS and *it* determine the best route to take…I’d be a happier camper! Can you help?

  3. Lani Anglin-Rosales

    August 14, 2008 at 9:16 pm

    I *love* this!!! How easy is this! I almost wish this was kept secret!!! lol

    It’s always been complicated mentally organizing addresses and data points and even MORE complicated when having to do data entry. I’ll be tinkering with this, thanks!!!!

  4. Jamey Bridges

    August 14, 2008 at 9:22 pm

    Ok, this is pretty sweet! I have been a big fan of Google Maps, but this really makes it easy to integrate data with their application, thanks for sharing.

    I think this will be cool for listing agents too, who want to quickly show all the listings they have in a neighborhood 🙂

  5. Todd

    August 15, 2008 at 7:51 am

    Maplist is cool, but just regular Google Maps supports this too. If you already have a Gmail account, sign in and click “My Maps”. You can even create custom icons for the push pins. After adding all your listings, just copy past the embed code into the side bar of your WordPress blog and that’s it.

  6. Vicki Moore

    August 15, 2008 at 1:05 pm

    Way cool. Thanks. I’m definitely going to use this.

  7. Nick Bostic

    August 15, 2008 at 1:07 pm

    Paula & Lani – I totally agree, to me the best part is the easy visualization of data.

    Kim – sorry, not sure how to import into the GPS yet 🙁

    Jamey – good idea! Maybe have one map of current listings and one of sold?

    Todd – I’m not sure how you can get regular Google Maps to do this, I just spent some time looking into it and didn’t see an option to upload a spreadsheet of addresses directly into Google Maps. The only way I can see to do it is manually, which definitely isn’t very efficient IMHO.

  8. Todd

    August 15, 2008 at 1:25 pm

    No need to import from Excel! Just type your listing’s address into Gmaps then edit in My Maps. You can also upload GPS data into My Maps ( Take GPS device with you in the car as you drive through neighborhoods where your listings are ) and make a sharable “driving tour”:

    Importing KML or GeoRSS to Your Map

    Once you have created a map, you can import KML, KMZ or GeoRSS data into your map. To do this, create or open a map and click Import.

    https://local.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=68480#import

  9. Rod Rebello

    August 15, 2008 at 4:56 pm

    I’ve used a similar free capability at http://www.zeemaps.com. They import a csv file with addresses and related info to create a google map with code to insert into your web page. I’ll have to check out Mapalist too.

  10. Matthew Rathbun

    August 16, 2008 at 8:19 am

    Very cool! One more idea I can still from Nick… I love AG, it makes me look like a great instructor 🙂

  11. Michelle

    August 17, 2008 at 12:59 pm

    I dinked with this a bit, and I was able to open the title company xls file directly to google docs from gmail, save it and then access it easily from mapalist. but I do know how to copy and paste, just didn’t need to ; ).

  12. Doug Devitre

    August 19, 2008 at 7:42 am

    This is more for those that educate than sell real estate.

    Here is what I did for the top 50 REALTOR Associations in membership: https://www.retechtraining.com/custompages_reports.php?key=g228387

    Forgive the link back to the site… more importantly I wanted to show you how it can work across the country too for real estate educators.

    Has anyone else tried the translation gadget on Google Docs for international clients?. It rocks!!

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Social Media

How this influencer gained 26k followers during the pandemic

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Becoming an influencer on social media can seem appealing, but it’s not easy. Check out this influencer’s journey and her rise during the pandemic.

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Influencer planning her social media posts.

Meet Carey McDermott – a 28-year-old Boston native – more widely known by her Instagram handle @subjectively_hot. Within a few months, since March, McDermott has accrued a whopping 26k following, and has successfully built her brand around activism, cheeky observations of day-to-day bullshit, and her evident hotness.

“It mostly started as a quarantine project.” Said McDermott, who was furloughed from her job at the start of shelter-in-place. “I had a lot of free time and I wanted to do an Instagram for a while so I thought, ‘I might as well take some pictures of myself.’”

To get started McDermott, used a lot of hashtags relevant to her particular niche to get noticed, and would follow other influencers that used similar hashtags.

“I definitely built a little online community of women, and we all still talk to each other a lot.”

Like many popular influencers, McDermott engages with her audience as much as possible. She is sure to like or reply to positive comments on her pictures, which makes followers feel special and seen, and subsequently more likely to follow and continue following her account. She also relies heavily on some of Instagram’s more interactive features.

When asked why she thinks she has been able to build and retain such a large base in just a few months, McDermott explained: “I think people like my [Instagram] Stories because I do a lot of polls and ask fun questions for people to answer, and then I repost them”.

But it’s not just fun and games for @subjectively_hot – Carey wants to use her account to make some substantial bread.

“I’ve gotten a bunch of products gifted to me in exchange for unpaid ads and I’m hoping to expand that so I can get paid ads and sponsorships. But free products are nice!”

Additionally, McDermott was recently signed with the talent agency the btwn – a monumental achievement which she attributes to her influencer status.

“Having a large Instagram following gave me the confidence to reach out to a modeling brand. After they looked at my Instagram, they signed me without asking for any other pictures.”

To aspiring influencers, McDermott offers this advice:

“Find your niche. Find your brand. Find what makes you unique and be yourself – don’t act like what you think an influencer should act like. People respond to you being authentic and sharing your real life. And definitely find other people in similar niches as you and build connections with them.”

But McDermott also warns against diving too unilaterally into your niche, and stresses the importance of a unique, multi-dimensional online persona.

“[@subjectively_hot] is inherently a plus size account. But a lot of plus size Instagrams are just about being plus size, and are only like, “I’m confident and here’s my body”. I don’t want to post only about body positively all day, I want it to be about me and being hot.”

And you definitely can’t paint this girl in broad strokes. I personally find her online personality hilarious, self-aware, and brutally anti-patriarchal (she explicitly caters to all walks of life minus the straight cis men who, to her dismay, frequent her DMs with unsolicited advice, comments, and pictures). Her meme and TikTok curations are typically some of the silliest, most honest content I see that day and, as her handle suggests, her pictures never fail in their hotness value.

For McDermott, right now is about enjoying her newfound COVID-era celebrityhood. Her next steps for @subjectively_hot include getting paid ads and sponsorships, and figuring out the most effective way to monetize her brand. The recent spike in COVID-19 cases threaten her chances of returning to the place of her former employment in the hospitality industry.

With so many influencers on Instagram and other platforms, some might find it hard to cash in on their internet fame. But with a loyal fanbase addicted to her golden, inspiring personality, I think Carey will do just fine.

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Social Media

This LinkedIn graphic shows you where your profile is lacking

(SOCIAL MEDIA) LinkedIn has the ability to insure your visibility, and this new infographic breaks down where you should put the most effort.

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LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a must-have in the professional world. However, this social media platform can be incredibly overwhelming as there are a lot of moving pieces.

Luckily, there is a fancy graphic that details everything you need to know to create the perfect LinkedIn profile. Let’s dive in!

As we know, it is important to use your real name and an appropriate headshot. A banner photo that fits your personal brand (e.g. fits the theme of your profession/industry) is a good idea to add.

Adding your location and a detailed list of work-related projects are both underutilized, yet key pieces of information that people will look for. Other key pieces come in the form of recommendations; connections aren’t just about numbers, endorse them and hopefully they will return the favor!

Fill in every and all sections that you can, and re-read for any errors (get a second set of eyes if there’s one available). Use the profile strength meter to get a second option on your profile and find out what sections could use a little more help.

There are some settings you can enable to get the most out of LinkedIn. Turn on “career interests” to let recruiters know that you are open to job offers, turn on “career advice” to participate in an advice platform that helps you connect with other leaders in your field, turn your profile privacy off from private in order to see who is viewing your profile.

The infographic also offers some stats and words to avoid. Let’s start with stats: 65% of employers want to see relevant work experience, 91 percent of employers prefer that candidates have work experience, and 68% of LinkedIn members use the site to reconnect with past colleagues.

Now, let’s talk vocab. The infographic urges users to avoid the following words: specialized, experienced, skilled, leadership, passionate, expert, motivated, creative, strategic, focused.

That was educational, huh? Speaking of education – be sure to list your highest level of academia. People who list their education appear in searches up to 17 times more often than those who do not. And, much like when you applied to college, your past education wasn’t all that you should have included – certificates (and licenses) and volunteer work help set you apart from the rest.

Don’t be afraid to ask your connections, colleagues, etc. for recommendations. And, don’t be afraid to list your accomplishments.

Finally, users with complete profiles are 40 times more likely to receive opportunities through LinkedIn. You’re already using the site, right? Use it to your advantage! Finish your profile by completing the all-star rating checklist: industry and location, skills (minimum of three), profile photo, at least 50 connections, current position (with description), two past positions, and education.

When all of this is complete, continue using LinkedIn on a daily basis. Update your profile when necessary, share content, and keep your name popping up on peoples’ timelines. (And, be sure to check out the rest of Leisure Jobs’ super helpful infographic that details other bits, like how to properly size photos!)

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Social Media

This Twitter tool hopes to fight misinformation, but how effective is it?

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Birdwatch is a new tool from Twitter in the fight against misinformation… in theory. But it could be overkill.

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Twitter welcome screen open on large phone with stylus.

Social media has proven to be a blanket breeding ground for misinformation, and Twitter is most certainly not exempt from this rule. While we’ve seen hit-or-miss attempts from the notorious bird app to quell the spread of misinformation, their latest effort seems more streamlined—albeit a little overboard.

Birdwatch is a forthcoming feature from Twitter that will allegedly help users report misleading content. According to The Verge, Twitter has yet to release definitive details about the service. However, from leaked information, Birdwatch will serve the purpose of reporting misinformation, voting on whether or not it is truly misleading, and attaching notes to pertinent tweets.

Such a feature is still months away, so it appears that the upcoming election will take place before Birdwatch is officially rolled out.

There are a lot of positive sides to welcoming community feedback in a retaliation against false information, be it political in nature or otherwise. Fostering a sense of community responsibility, giving community members the option to report at their discretion, and including an option for a detailed response rather than a preset list of problems are all proactive ideas to implement, in theory.

Of course, that theory goes out the window the second you mention Twitter’s name.

The glaring issue with applying a community feedback patch to the rampant issue of misinformation on social media is simple: The misinformation comes from the community. A far cry from Twitter’s fact-checking warnings that appeared on relevant tweets earlier this year, Birdwatch—given what we know now—has every excuse to be more biased than any prior efforts.

Furthermore, the pure existence of misinformation on Twitter often results from the knee-jerk, short response format that tweets take. As such, expecting a lengthy form and vote application to fix the problem seems misguided. Simply reporting a tweet for being inaccurate or fostering harassment is already more of an involved process than most people are likely to partake in, so Birdwatch might be overdoing it.

As always, any effort from Twitter—or any social media company, for that matter—to crack down on the spread of misinformation is largely appreciated. Birdwatch, for all of its potential issues, is certainly a step in the right direction. Let’s just hope it’s an accessible step.

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