How To Make The Most Out Of Social Media


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Social media has taken marketing to a whole new level. Social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are the perfect outlet to showcase your business and your listings. The key to marketing through social networks is to produce quality content and update it frequently. As 90% of all homebuyers use the internet when searching for homes, a social network is a great way to reach out to many potential clients.


Formulate a plan

The first step is to make an outline and create a plan. You need to determine the type of friends and followers you want to attract, how much time you can spend maintaining the sites and determining what makes you different from other realtors. 

Make informative posts

When posting updates, your posts should be informative and provide a unique look at interesting content. Don't just post links to your listings but also other real estate-related posts containing information about real estate transactions that buyers are interested in reading, even posts that have a little light humor to them. Anything that is engaging to your readers and keeps them returning to your page to read more.

Interact and expand

Interact with your followers by replying to their posts, answering any questions they may post on your page, replying to comments they may leave on your posts and replying to and sending direct messages. Expand your social network to include local community groups and professional real estate groups on the social networking sites. This can help you spread information and increase your reputation.

Build up a local reputation

Be sure to build up your reputation in your local area. By joining local community real estate groups you can meet others who are interested in real estate, whether they are selling or buying homes. This enables you to grow your contacts- other real estate agents can provide you with information, photographers that can help with your listings, inspectors that can help with your transactions and homebuyers that may become your clients.



 

A Quick Look At Information Security


Define security policies

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Creating security policies is essential. If you have data flowing through different programs, devices and outlets, and no control over who has access to it, this can be a huge security risk. Policies must be set defining which users have access to data. Some users, such as clients and sources will not need information to sensitive company data, while some users such as secretaries and sources may not need access to confidential client data. These policies must be clearly defined in order to avoid a huge disorganized mess with many security holes. With the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) movement taking hold in many real estate brokerages, mobile access policies must be defined as well. Other policies should include passwords, antivirus, firewall, Wi-Fi, software development, logging and account management.  You can find many policy defining templates here


Secure the office network

If you have an office, it will have either a wired or a wireless network. A firewall (or router) should be configured to monitor all incoming and outgoing traffic for protection of company data on all office computers, as well as agents (and clients) who may use laptops on the wireless network while visiting. Web filtering should be set up in order to prevent malware from being installed by malicious sites. An intrusion detection system must be in place to prevent hackers from gaining access, as well as logging so any intrusion attempts, successful or not, will be logged. The access point (such as a router) should use the strongest encryption available (WPA2) and should be protected by a very strong administrator password.

For more information, be sure to check out the Top 10 Tips for Real Estate Agent Information Security in order to better protect and control your information.



 

Best Uses Of Evernote For Real Estate Agents


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Evernote is one of the most popular cloud services, and one of the best text and document cloud apps on the web. It has many uses in real estate, and actually most (if not all) aspects of a transaction can be handled directly from Evernote. This makes it possible for a real estate agent to go completely paperless and perform all real estate business from mobile locations. There is no necessity for an office anymore.

Evernote has features that allow real estate agents to quickly jot down important notes either by typing or by audio, which can be useful if you are driving down the road and need to jot down a thought, idea or memo that you may not remember later.


Create, edit and legally sign documents within Evernote

Documents can be created directly within Evernote or they can be transferred from another cloud service such as Google Docs in Google Drive. These documents can then be shared directly with your client if they have Evernote, or you can share the documents by using Dropbox or some other cloud service. By using Docusign, documents can be legally signed by yourself and the client without making unnecessary trips to and from an office or place of business. This saves much time and money and helps speed up transaction completion times.

Easily share documents and files with clients

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For even more efficiency, you can use a cloud synchronization and backup service such as cloudHQ to sync your data from Evernote to other cloud services so that the documents can be shared with clients much faster. For instance, by using cloudHQ to automatically sync your files from Evernote to Dropbox , you will have a copy in Dropbox immediately which can then be shared with the client by simply dragging and dropping the file into a Dropbox folder that you are sharing with the client.


Backup is essential

By having a sync set up between Evernote and Dropbox (or other cloud service of your choice), you will also have a complete database of all files for easy searching. If you have files stored in Dropbox, Documents stored in Evernote and Google Drive, and more files stored in Box and SkyDrive, you may have a hard time searching for all of your files. But if you set up cloudHQ to sync all of these cloud services to one backup cloud account, you will have a complete, searchable database of all files. It's very important that you keep a backup of all files anyways- in case something happens and you experience data loss in one of your other cloud accounts, you will still have a complete secondary copy of all files and it can easily be restored.

Take photos directly from Evernote

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Photos can be taken directly through the Evernote app on a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet. If you have a decent camera on your device, this makes it easy to flip on the Evernote app and start taking snapshots of a property, which are then automatically saved to the Evernote notebook of your choice. Even if you don't have a decent camera on your phone but you have a good stand-alone camera, you can take your high-quality photos with your camera, send them to Dropbox, and, using cloudHQ, sync them to Evernote so you have all of your listing and transaction files organized in the same area.