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Delta Media Group Blog

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Increase your real estate business…by blogging?

Blogging was all the rage six years back…in real estate and amongst several other industries.

You probably remember headline after headline on, well, blogs by bloggers blogging about how blogging was the future of your business.

In many cases, there was little or no data in those blogs. There was no proof that blogging was really becoming as profitable as claims made it out to be. And you might have given it a try for yourself on one of the dozens of blogging platforms that constantly seemed to pop up each month.

You did it for some time, you didn’t see the results promised, and you might have found it was difficult to maintain. Soon, you didn’t keep up with it, and you noticed many of those bloggers preaching about blogging were no longer practicing what they preached as well.

Is blogging making a comeback now? Perhaps it never left.

An article released last week detailed how a website saw staggering results by publishing 150 blog posts in 50 days. The website saw an 800 percent increase in “leads directly generated via inbound marketing and content,” a 901 percent increase in referral traffic, a 500 percent increase in blog organic traffic, and many more.

The article piggybacked off another, which detailed the impressive results a company saw by posting 50 blog posts in 25 days, including a 481 percent increase in overall website traffic.

The moral of the story: blogging still works.

But blogging doesn’t just work. In fact, it takes a lot of work to make blogging work. Fifty, or 150 blog posts take a lot of time to write, regardless of the amount of days you’re looking to write them in.

Blogging also takes a lot of research, and, if you’re not a writer by trade, a good amount of proofreading and maybe even assistance from others who might be more grammatically sound. A blog is not a diary; the content in it is even more important than the frequency by which you post.

But, like many of the real estate marketing tips we (cough) blog about, blogging isn’t rocket science. We've provided a list of helpful real estate blog tips before, and created this four-step list to help you maximize your blogging efforts:

1. Set up a blog
2. Connect it to your website
3. Start writing
4. Never forget who your audience is and what they’re interested in

If you are using Delta Media Group, steps 1 and 2 are already waiting for you. If you regularly read our real estate blog, you should have an idea for step 4. That leaves writing as your only major responsibility.

Of course, there are many more tips you can leverage, like sharing your blog posts on Social Media, linking relevant keywords to sections on your real estate website, and even crowd-sourcing story ideas from your audience. But you can grow to learn and utilize those. Baby steps.

Blogging helps boost SEO value because blogging helps with long-tail keywords that most websites just don’t key on as well. According to an article published Tuesday, Eighty percent of content is transactional or navigational, yet 50-80 percent of search queries are informational in nature. Blogging is built more around natural conversation than transactional on-site content, like that found in most property descriptions.

Search engines are interested in providing the best possible results for searchers on any given topic. In fact, Google has taken broad steps to punish complex affiliate and linking networks designed to boost SEO. As that has occurred, simple answers to questions and solutions to problems have returned to where they belong—the better organic results in search engines.

Does blogging sound like a good idea for your business? Delta Media Group can help. Contact us for real estate blog, SEO or website assistance and inquiries.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

More customer activity added to Customer Information Screen

Our goal is to give REALTORS® using the Delta Platform access to all customer information. Quick, easy access!

Today we took another step closer towards this goal by adding Delta System auto-responders to the history.

With today's change, REALTORS® now see the auto-responder email that their customer was sent when they created their account.

Our goal is that soon all REALTORS® will be able to see the full history of their customer in one convenient location in chronological order.

Home warranty status support added to help you market properties better

We're continually adding new features to our platform. If you watch our blog and our Facebook Page you already know this.

The latest feature we added to our data translation system is the support for home warranty information coming from an MLS feed.

This may seem trivial, but in some real estate markets home warranty information may matter on the selling and listing side. 

For some companies, a home warranty is a differentiator. It's used to get listings. In cases like this, you may want to show if a listing has a warranty or not on your web sites.

So, we've added support for 'home warranty' status on listings on our IDX listing feeds. 

In order to get the home warranty field added to your MLS translation and to your real estate property search display you will want to contact our customer service department. We would be happy to get this added for you provided your MLS makes the data available!

Avoiding Social backlash: When automation meets emotion in a time of tragedy

The news rocked the country almost as hard as the explosion rocked the finish line of the Boston Marathon.

Amid the fire, injuries, heroes and confusion over the tragedy, the world watched.

The news actually broke on Twitter, then quickly spread through other Social Networks, then television and radio news networks. The next morning, the newspapers had the printed stories. Magazines will soon follow.

Word spread fast through digital mediums, and most everyone connected to the Internet or smartphone knew what occurred within an hour of it occurring. And a few savvy digital marketers quickly urged their cohorts to cancel all their pre-scheduled social media posts.

Many did, and saved themselves from appearing insensitive in the wake of such a tragedy. And a few did not and received a great amount of backlash, or responded negatively when their automated marketing tactics were brought into question.

Companies and marketers making bad timing judgments isn’t anything new. It was even discussed in the Season 6 premiere of famed advertising drama "Mad Men."

But in an age of digital speed and push-button editing power, it’s a bit less excusable.

The NRA drew fire when an automated tweet promoting guns was sent from an associated account in the early morning hours following a mass shooting at an Aurora, Colorado theater.

As a real estate agent or brokerage, you’re probably less likely to make such a misstep, and less likely that it might draw such national outrage if you were to.

But the topic of automation still brings up a sensitive subject of keeping an ear to the ground, and being human in times of tragedy.

Real estate agents have long tried to market themselves as being personable family people who care about helping others find the house they might ultimately raise their families in.

Social media and digital marketing lends itself well to catering to that persona and showing others that you really do care, and relate to them both in happiness and heartache. You're not just a salesman, but a real person whom they can relate to.

In a digital world where marketing is growing so mainstream, you have the ability to leverage relationships. You can show yourself to be the real person that you are, and not just come across as so many do—as nothing more than a sales person.

Don’t misread what we’re saying—automation is an absolutely beautiful thing. We talk about it a lot and are very big proponents of creating sophisticated real estate technologies that allow you to easily communicate with your clients in an automated and personal fashion. We pride ourselves in providing one of the best all-around solutions for such communication in a busy real estate industry where multi-tasking is your middle name.

But automation always works best when paired with personalization. Allow your automated tools to work for the purposes they were built for, but allow yourself to work in the caring side as well.

You’re a person, not a robot. And you have this advantage over so many businesses that nowadays turn so many customers away with automated and outsourced customer service systems. Sometimes it’s refreshing for someone to just talk or connect with a real person, especially when that person is the one who might help their family make one of the biggest buying decisions in their lives.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Market Landing Pages for REALTORS®

As a REALTOR® using Delta's System you have the option of having Market Landing Pages on your web site.

Market Landing Pages are web pages specifically designed to feature a market of your choice with feature properties, new listing email sign-up form, links to additional markets within the market, market text that you control, a market map, and the ability to easily search properties within the market.

Here are two sample screen shots showing what these Market Landing Pages look like:

In addition to the above Market Landing Page screen shots, here are a couple screen shots showing what the additional Market Break Down pages look like for the school districts in the market along with the subdivisions in the market. Each page shows how many properties are in each area along with the average asking price and the average days on market.

These Market Landing Pages are very easy to setup on your upgrade agent web site that's powered by Delta.

First, you need to make certain you have the upgraded system. If you're not sure if you do or not just try and add a Market Landing Page. If you are not on the upgrade the system will prevent you from adding the Market Landing Page. If this is the case, either upgrade through the system or by calling your company web site administrator. If you need help with this you can always reach out to our support department at or 1-866-233-9833.

To help with the setup of the Market Landing Pages we've created a video showing you step-by-step how to create the page. Watch this video to learn more. If you have any questions please reach out to our support department.

Using tech to increase your commission rate

What’s your commission rate?

If you’re a listing agent, it’s a question you’re probably used to being asked.

And that means you’re probably used to answering it.

So you’ve probably memorized an answer, and you’ve probably prepared a list of reasons to justify your rate is what it is, because you’re probably used to being asked why it’s that high and if you could or would consider lowering it.

It’s not your fault. The age of the Internet and a poor economy has created bargain shoppers. They know real estate isn’t worth what it used to be, and they’re looking for the best value in a home, and to get the most out of their current house considering the high probability that it has decreased in value in recent years.

You explain that the market is coming back. You assure them of your qualifications. You tell your potential customer about your history, how many homes you’ve sold, how well you know—and love—the area, the average percentage of listing price your listings sell for, and a plethora more information that helps ease their worries.

They might be reluctant to pay your commission rate, because they know agents offered bargain rates during rough times just to get listings. They know some agents can’t expect full commissions when you owe as much on your house as what you’re listing it for. And they know there are discount brokerages out there that will offer value rates and lesser services, but they may seem like a viable option as well.

You have spent the past few years combating those obstacles. You’ve made an art of it. It’s all part of your sales pitch, and you’ve used it to gain a lot of listings.

But you’ve also lost a lot of listings. And you’ve gained some listings you later lost because the contract expired before you could sell the home.

And you’ve racked your brain trying to find ways to differentiate yourself from the competition, and show how you can better represent a seller than another agent with the same certification who might be willing to accept a smaller percentage for the same hopeful transaction.

You know the old means of doing business no longer provide the selling points they used to, because you haven’t seen the return on the billboard, newspaper and magazine ads.

The way to separate yourself is through your Digital dominance. You point out to your potential customer that you have the premier real estate website available. You, like most real estate agents, submit the listing to the MLS, which puts it through the IDX feed and on all subscribing real estate websites in the area.

But you also provide instant lead capture and response capabilities with the DeltaNet lead management system. You set up Seller Reports that email your client detailed updates on the Web performance their listing has had over the week and throughout its history.

Your listing is part of a detailed Market Watch report that your other clients interested in the area receive. And when shown on your website the listing displays much better, since you can add extra photos, photo details, additional content and YouTube videos of the listing.

Your mobile presence is another selling point, as you offer the best mobile real estate website in the market, with the best geo-targeted search capabilities by map, so anyone on the go can find your listing. And anyone that does find it can easily spread the word about it, since you have Social share options tied directly to the listing on your website.

You realize there are actually quit a few features that separate you from the competition, and most live online. But that’s how consumers shop for homes, and that’s where sellers need to be the strongest in order to get buyers.

And that’s where your advantage wins you the listing contract, and the higher commission rate that goes with it.

Contact Delta Media Group to learn more.