Active Rain February 5, 2009

ANNLEE55 or, No Way am I Against Internet Marketing

Who or what is ANNLEE55? I’ll tell you at the end of this post.

After my post yesterday I received mostly positive comments but a few thought that I was either advocating that people cold call FSBOs instead of blogging or anti-blogging & anti web 2.0 for real estate altogether. One blogger said I “denigrated” what she did. Nothing could be further from the truth. I was calling for balance, especially in cases where all you do is blog and you aren’t making any money. If blogging makes you money that is great. DUH. Don’t fix what isn’t broken. There are some people who do the Internet better than others. They are to be applauded and emulated. Some do it poorly, literally and figuratively. They need to diversify their approach. Real estate is a multi-media practice, not a suicide pact.

When I When I started my own brokerage in 2005, the first thing I did was get a get a good website up. I now have several. I have a web page, blog, or extensive profile on directories for almost every niche I work. I’m not going to give you the keys to the kingdom in this blog post, but we are very happy with how our web marketing alone is making us money. A rather telling endorsement of my belief in the web is my efforts right here, on Active Rain.

In 1996 I knocked on Expired and FSBO doors. In 2009 my targeting of that segment is more hi tech, but I still target that market. You can target whatever market you wish. Do it your way. Whatever niche you work should not be done to the exclusion of blogging and web marketing (and vice versa), but most blogs I see don’t play to a niche, and that’s why some bloggers are unsuccessful.  

Consider this. Next to my laptop is a weekly business journal. It is filled with lis pendens, many of which probably need to sell. Some are short sales you can either list and sell yourself or refer to a short sale specialist and get a referral fee. They may not read your blog. They may not care about the new library or market stats. They are trying to figure out how to avoid a foreclosure. Now, if you blog about avoiding foreclosure they may find you. But you know what I’d do? I’d write them a polite letter. That isn’t an archaic, 1970’s troglodyte approach any more than the wheel, which, I am told, remains a popular device. It is a basic, and it makes money. Want to marry the 70’s and web 2.0 without wearing disco pants? Send them a letter or card that will drive them to needed resources on your blog or website.

I was criticised  for this statement: “If you aren’t speaking with someone daily about buying or selling real estate with you in the next 30 days, you aren’t selling real estate.” It’s true. And you can deal with people in person, via email, through online inquiries and many other things that don’t involve being a carnival barking door knocker. If you got a inquiry or an email asking about getting prequalified, you are selling real estate. The medium is not subordinate to the function.

OK- Me and ANNLEE55, now known as Ann Lee Faranda, on September 29, 2001:

Ann and Phil

We met on the old AOL personals in 1998. The first listing I ever marketed on the Web was ME.

We have 4 beautiful children and run J. Philip Real Estate together. And while some of you married guys might joke that this alone would have me shrieking & pulling out my hair at the very mention of the Internet, let me assure you that even in 1998 I knew and appreciated the possibilities of the medium. We were Instant Message buddies for 7 months before we broke bread. Now there are crumbs everywhere.

I get the Internet. It got me, too.