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Zolving another … network

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First, a funny observation. Just got my Realtor Daily email. It hailed the “new” real estate networking site, Zolve. You know, the same one Benn talked about, I dunno, in OCTOBER. I’m not saying…I’m just saying…

Anyway, the good thing about it is that it reminded me that I had planned on taking one for the team. Yes, I created a Zolve profile. I need another network to keep up with like Carpenter needs another sheep thrown at him…but none the less, here it is. (BTW – you should go over to facebook right now and throw sheep at him…he loves it and we will wait…)

I did see some two of the usual suspects out there – Jay and Shailesh. However, the pages looked just like mine when I got finished – unexcited about creating yet another “This is me and my view on world peace” page.

Here is the skinnie.

  • Evidently there has been 2,500 new profiles created last month. However, poking around, many of the profiles look like mine – bare bones to get that freaking completion bar to fill up.
  • The blog posts now total 89 (correction – 350. 89 is this week’s count only – thanks, Brian)…Sorting by most active, the most comments I saw were 4. Most of the comments throughout were from Brian Wilson – you know, the guy that owns the place

Here’s why I like it and will continue to see if it works out

  • Brian Wilson – The man is a Realtor and built the site while serving in the Middle East. If that doesn’t give him some street cred, I don’t know what will.
  • Referrals are a big part of my business. I live near a military town. Folks are always moving in and out. Another resource to try and find good agents are always a plus.
  • It was free.
  • You don’t have to log on to search profiles. This makes it easy for the consumer. I hate having to create a profile and log in to search for some one to give my business to.

And there you have it – or as much as I know for now. I’ll keep you posted.

Now I am supposed to go check out this “cre8buzz” network…but not today…I have had enough “profile creating” for one day.

Update – I had a problem with the “select a market” function of the profile creation. Sent an email from the “contact page.” Brian Wilson emailed me back, from his Blackberry, in under an hour. Points given for customer service.

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8 Comments

8 Comments

  1. Shailesh Ghimire

    December 3, 2007 at 2:30 pm

    April,

    Jay’s the usual suspect. I was in the wrong place at the wrong time.. 🙂

  2. Kelley Koehler

    December 3, 2007 at 2:33 pm

    I’m there too, although I haven’t completed my profile – I got to the part about inviting 5 other people to complete it and stopped. I asked Jay and Shailesh to join my spehere, but maybe they fell off, as they haven’t responded. Or maybe they did and I wasn’t told about it.

  3. April Groves

    December 3, 2007 at 2:52 pm

    Shailesh – you are guilty by association – maybe you should watch the riff-raff you hang out with 😛

    Kelley – You stopped the same place I did…and I didn’t see those guys on your sphere. But I did send you the desperate “add me” msg 😉

  4. Mariana

    December 3, 2007 at 3:18 pm

    Nope. I cannot join one more stinkin’ RE community … even if Brian is my neighbor! (Sorry Brian!)

  5. Jay Thompson

    December 3, 2007 at 3:54 pm

    I *thought* I accepted your sphere invite Kelley. Maybe I forgot.

    Brian’s a great guy, and I wish him well in this endeavor. But I do wonder if the world needs another networkingthingy.

    Arpil – if you get a chance, could you fix the link to me? I need all the link love I can get. 🙂

  6. April

    December 3, 2007 at 5:48 pm

    Mariana – I feel your pain…really

    Jay – Sorry…to many “http”s in the soup

  7. Brian Wilsn

    December 3, 2007 at 5:56 pm

    April, thanks for joining the network and for your perspective. I am sorry that I haven’t closed the circle on your question but we have had 232 people join today – an all-time high for us but it is keeping me busy answering questions and the like.

    You were only looking at “this week’s” blogs. Since our launch 6 weeks ago, we have had over 350, which isn’t too shabby. However, Zolve is not a blogging site; we offer blogs for our members who want to use this feature to drive traffic to their online brand. We are a real estate networking and referral site.

    Wait until tomorrow or Wednesday when you log in… you will see a screen for Zolve Connects which means for a specialist in helping military families like you, April, will be able to select “connect me” for that specialty amongst abut 50 other business specialties and professional interests.

    In a few days, you will receive an email from Zolve introducing you to the three Zolve members from around the world that show the most connections with you. You will have the option to “say hello” or invite them to your sphere of influence. If another member has a strong Chinese cultural background, she could select that as a “connect me” and build a national network of other real estate professionals that share that cultural background and want to work with like folks.

    My friend Marc tells me that I write too long of posts. He’s right!

    Brian Wilson, Zolve

  8. April

    December 3, 2007 at 6:15 pm

    Brian – You did a fine job responding to my question. I was very happy with the level of response it received.

    Thanks for clearing up the blog numbers. I went back and looked at the search filters. I also corrected the post.

    I will be poking around there. I am a firm believer that you never know where your next bid lead is coming from.

    And I always give kudos to the military service. Thank you…

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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.

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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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