Friday, January 13, 2012

How To Be THE Real Estate Expert Online

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Beachfront property. Courtesy Li Read
You can become a real estate expert online by writing from home.

Your local market real estate authority and experience are becoming more valuable online than ever before. Search engines are finally weeding out articles and websites that pretend to have an authoritative voice behind them but, behind the curtain, is someone who talks the talk but doesn’t walk the walk.



I know I had this experience when we were house hunting in 2004, 2007 and 2009. Potential agents and quick-sell artists online kept trying to convince me that “now is the time to buy!” and “you are sure to clear tens of thousands if you hold on to it for two years”.

Mind you, this before, during and after the big crash.  I look now and those same houses sit empty and have only decreased in value, not increased.

Your Opportunity
As mentioned many times in this blog, it's a good idea to work from home and explore any work from home opportunities. In fact, check out Work at Home to look at some of the available job types. The best ones are jobs that capitalize on your prior experience or passions.

This is where you, the local real estate expert, can come in by establishing your presence online and writing from home. Let’s say you are an out-of-work professional real estate agent and you are trolling the websites on the current market. There’s bound to be someone in a forum or Facebook conversation spouting off what they think the real estate market will do or won’t do in the local area. But you- armed with an education, certifications and experience- know the truth and can correct the facts easily. You might be spitting out your coffee at some of the crazy business you read.

How It Works
What you can do is create a basic web presence with your name, your contact information, and your licensure info.   If you used to work for a real estate company, chances are you had little to know control over how your profile was featured online. That could be bad business if those companies went under or garnered a bad reputation in your local area (read: Countrywide).

If you are unemployed or completely independent, there are better ways to do it now that cost little to nothing. There are sources like Squidoo and Blogger that can help you do it for free. Shoot, even make a Facebook fan page. Don’t make the page to be a “Sell! Sell! Sell!” page, but one that highlights your experience and consulting ability.  A few short blog posts a week on what’s going on in the local market will add to your credibility.

Here is an example of a Squidoo real estate page.
Here is my friend, Rico Glover, who advertises his Real Estate business with a Facebook page.

Communicate

Then look for those forums and conversations where people have questions that you definitely know the answer to. And give it to them. Give them free, professional advice about the current local real estate market. It’s even better if you know about the micro-markets in the local area. If you have a network of other real estate friends in other markets, tap them for information, too.

End every posting and/or conversation with your contact info and a link to your real estate page. This builds trust and authority.  What can end up happening is a grassroots reputation builder that makes you attractive to potential buyers and sellers by targeting your time to those who have questions, because people who ask questions are the ones that are most interested in what you have to offer them.

You just have to show them.

Paul

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