I had a great time on stage yesterday with Jeff Turner, Gahlord Dewald and Wendy Forsythe talking internet marketing, building online influence, tracking and measuring results and the real value of conversations.
Also got a chance to hear some very inspiring speakers… I had never heard Tom Ferry speak, so that was a real treat… And the final keynote speaker, Keith Ferrazzi, gave an incredible talk on steps to improving business relationships. (Did I mentioned I also got to hang with so many cool people like Andy Kaufman and Herman of Hermanity! AND that my grandma came out to watch one of my presentations! Again, so much fun!)
My involvement was to give two presentations. The first on Building Online Influence and the second on 10 Things You didn’t Know You Could do with Your Smartphone. Both were a lot of fun to give and since I promised the audience I’d share linkes to each of the apps I mentioned in the latter presentation, I thought I’d share them in this post. Enjoy!
1. Take voice notes while driving
2. Scan text out of photos
3. Find your parked car
4. Use group chat to keep up with your team
Even better than the slideshare presentations, NAR just published the video recording of my Getting Started with WordPress presentation. If you’re interested in learning about why and how to get involved in using WordPress for your business website, I did my best to explain here:
It’s been a busy few weeks since returning from New Orleans and I’m just now getting around to posting my presentations on Slideshare.
I was pleasantly surprised at the interest in my talk on social media optimization… It was one of my simpler presentations as I focused on only two concepts:
The second presentation was the opening session for the Real Estate WordPress Camp that I helped organize with NAR… and what a great event that turned out to be. Some great speakers and I heard nothing but great feedback from the audience. My presentation for this event was really just meant to describe how professionals can use WordPress as their online marketing hub… and in particular how it can fit into the various elements of an agent’s business cycle. Here it is:
A few years ago, I wrote a post about how to get more value out of LinkedIn, but I really haven’t given enough love to the site since them… And I have an idea for how to change that. Starting this week, I’m going to start writing one recommendation each week.
I’m starting this “recommendation” project with Kris Berg because she’s one of my favorite people in the world of real estate… (Plus she doesn’t have many recommendations on LinkedIn which is a true shame! If you know and like her, you should stop reading this post and head over to her profile and write a recommendation for her as well!)
Why commit to writing a weekly recommendations?
I have two purposes:
It’s fun. I really do enjoy the process of complementing folks who I’ve enjoyed working with and wish I did more of it.
I want to play more with LinkedIn as a sphere building tool, but don’t want to dedicate a ton of time to the project. I’m guessing I can knock out a solid recommendation in less than 20 minutes a week.
With that said, there’s so much more to LinkedIn these days with groups, Q&A, job opportunities, etc. that I’m sure there’s much more I *could* be doing. If you have a more effective way to use LinkedIn, please share! 😉
I’ve been working with the NAR team to put together a WordPress event at NARdiGras, and couldn’t be more excited that we’re ready to start announcing details!
In a nutshell, we’ve broken the half-day event into two tracks — one for beginners and one for more advanced WordPress users — and the folks we’ve agreed to present are some of the most knowledgeable WordPress people in real estate. All the sessions will be be on the morning of Monday, November 8th.
The idea is that if you’re relatively new to WordPress (and even if you don’t have a wordpress site yet!), you should be able to leave the first track with enough knowledge to feel comfortable setting up a site and have an idea for what a successful website marketing strategy would look like.
For those who are comfortable blogging, Todd Carpenter is going to be hosting the Maximizing WordPress track. With Kelley, Steve and Gahlord as presenters, you’re sure to get tons of tools and strategies to take your online marketing to the next level.
I couldn’t be more excited to be heading to New Orleans again and look forward to seeing you there!
I know I’m a bit biased because the Inman team has been good to me, but I really love the Real Estate Connect events. So much fun! And a day after hosting the WordPress Workshop I’m just now coming down off the high.
Here’s a few of the photos I took of the session! So much fun!
The entire workshop was recorded and I’m pretty sure will be available to Inman News subscribers in the near future… Such an awesome group of presenters. Thanks to all!
Here was the workshop schedule along with links to learn more about the various speakers:
8:30am – 9:10 am Waaaaay Beyond the Blog:
Kickass Theme Development
Chris Pearson, Founder, Pearsonified & DIYThemes.com, @pearsonified.
Just some of the things I wanted to accomplish with this new theme include:
Really wanted a much cleaner look that didn’t feel overwhelming. It’s not in my personality to get too simple, but I knew I could do a much better job!
I wanted to play with the concept of a WordPress child theme… so I started with Twenty Ten as my “base” so I’d have built in access to some of the more interesting new features!
I thought I would focus the homepage on a few key areas that drive the most of my business… i.e. my speaking and consulting.
The result is that after more than a few hours, everything is “working” well enough to write this post (although I’m far from done with what I plan to do!).
Some of the changes I made:
The homepage is now a “static” page that uses the Smooth Slider plugin to highlight “featured posts”. I figure these are probably more relevant to someone who is new to my site.
I added a bit about myself to the homepage and filled out a bunch more on a page I call My Story. This is the part of the page I’m least “sure” of, but I think I like it and I’ll just have to look at the stats to see if others who land on 4realz find it interesting to learn a bit more about me… and the story itself is far from “complete”. I’m hoping to add some more photos and details over the next few days, weeks, and years! 🙂
I changed with the operation of the default “header” graphic on the theme. By default, there is no header graphic! However, it’s really easy for me to use the “set featured image” to add one, although the only place I’ve done that so far is on my speakers page.
I added a few things to the footer that I thought people might find interesting… like the Google Voice “call me” button, a twitter feed of @tyr mentions and my latest blog posts.
While I like I’m at a spot where the current theme is an improvement over the last, there are still a few things I’m hoping to do in the near future:
Improve how I track conversions on the page… I’ve worked with more than a few clients to use Google Analytics to track conversions, but I’ve never done much beyond adding the GA code to 4realz. I’m going to change that and play a bit more going forward!
(not 100% sure about this one)… I’m thinking of using the new MU-style hosting that’s available with the standard WordPress to host some of the “other” wordpress sites that are currently on my server. I’m not sure I want to take the time, but Boone Georges sure does make the multisite option look tempting.
In terms of what I learned by hacking away at a WordPress theme… I was super-impressed with just how easy the entire process was… and, in particular, how easy it was to build a child theme off of twenty ten. The WordPress team has done an awesome job with the child theme functionality!
If you made it this far in the post, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the new theme! 🙂
A few months ago, the Council of Residential Specialists asked if I’d be interested in giving a webinar presentation on SEO. Of course I was interested (It’s scheduled for tomorrow!) and in putting the presentation together, it forced me to reexamine the state of SEO… and how to really get value out of an SEO campaign.
If I could summarize my point of view it’s that creativity is key to a successful SEO campaign… at least if you want to have any impact whatsoever.
When looking at SEO factors, there are three main levers you can pull… They are to
Improve the on-site factors like titles, URLs, keywords, etc.
Improve user-interaction factors like bounce rate
Improve off-site factors like quality of inbound links and anchor text
If you’re creating interesting content on a decent blog platform like wordpress then you’ve got the first two areas because there’s only so much that can be done on your site to improve your SEO… and you’re more likely to end up spinning your wheels than get real benefits if you spend too much time there.
The real SEO benefits come from improving off-site factors like inbound links to your site… (Honestly, I’ve been saying this for years, and it’s one thing that never has and likely never will change in terms of SEO value!). One way to understand this better is that without quality inbound links, a site will never rank. However, a site with a horrible on-site SEO (title, URL structure, bad use of keywords, etc.) can rank just fine if it’s got enough quality inbound links!
So anyway, the point I really want to make in the presentation is there are some proven strategies for generating lots of quality inbound links… and ALL of them involve a bit of creativity and some time. If this is a topic you’re interested in, consider joining us tomorrow when I’ll dive deep into using social networks, social bookmarketing, social news and social group sites to generate great inbound links.
Other resources you might find interesting/helpful:
I’m working out of Portland this week in prep for the BuzzRE PDX event tomorrow (which is gonna rock thanks to an awesome speaker lineup!)… and the talk of the M Office is Aaron Majors’ success (and enthusiasm) for the SEO work he’s been doing on his Portland Homes site.
And it all couldn’t have happened without Linsey Planeta putting a ridiculous amount of time and passion into the day. She rocks!
One of the things I most enjoyed about helping to organize BuzzRE was organizing the presentations… I had every speaker email me their presentation in advance so I could fit them into one solid presentation that didn’t feel like it was jumping around too much. I’m pretty darn proud of the final product and super-happy to share it with you via slideshare.
What a great day! It really is awesome to see so many folks get excited about implementing advanced strategies and websites. If you’re looking for inspiration, check out this page of advanced real estate websites.