Monday, September 26, 2011

Is Facebook Stealing Your Time or Adding to Your Face Value?

It’s impossible to ignore the influence of online social networks in modern society. Facebook’s worldwide membership has grown to exceed 800 million active users.

75% of Americans and 83% of Canadians with Internet access are now on Facebook... and it has quickly become a primary form of communication for the 18-34 year-olds who will make up the next generation of first-time buyers.

Use Facebook to stay top of mind with the many people who already know, and like you—a strategy that could help you generate more referrals, build a thriving business and ultimately earn more money.

How to Transform Facebook from a Time Waster to a Money Maker

Make Your Communication Matter by sharing meaningful information to a wide audience and make certain your media sources are credible. It makes sense to highlight the events and happenings which are of interest to local residents, but it’s usually best to resist the urge to post trivial details like what you ate for breakfast. To keep from offending anyone, you may want to avoid polarizing topics like politics or religion and, depending on where you live, (like here in the Triangle) … possibly even sports teams.

Using Facebook to market listings or brag about sales could cause you to appear less than genuine. It’s often more effective to sell softly and gently remind people how you can help them.

Mind Your Professional Reputation

Limit the amount of personal information you share. Clients could get the idea that you are not working hard enough for them if they see countless references to golf outings, vacations or other social events.

Monitor your friends for bad behavior. You know it’s critical to keep your profile squeaky clean, but you may occasionally need to “un-friend” individuals who post negative comments or inappropriate photos.
Ask for testimonials. Your clients who have had a good experience may be willing to post a testimonial about you on their page for their friends to see.

Take time to read and understand Facebook’s terms of service and what commercial activities are allowed or possibly prohibited.
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How to Manage Social Media Marketing

Think of social media as a powerful communication tool which can be used to build relationships with the clients and prospects in your database. It’s also a quick and convenient way for you to stay in touch and position yourself as a valuable resource in the community.

Set goals and come up with a plan for your networking activities before you begin. Get comfortable with one social media platform before attempting to incorporate others. Block a small amount of time each day for posting content and communicating with contacts online; don’t allow yourself to get distracted and waste time that could be dedicated to other important tasks.
If you have used Facebook to keep up with friends and family in the past, you may need to make adjustments to your profile, including security settings, before you incorporate it into your business strategy. Your profile could eventually be viewed by hundreds or possibly thousands of people you don’t know yet. To make a good first impression, use a quality photo that looks professional and expresses your distinct personality.

Once you get your profile started, it’s important to keep track of what is happening on your page and quickly deal with any questions or negative issues that arise. Try to engage others in two-way conversation. It’s quick and easy for people to respond to your prompts and you may be surprised at what you learn.

Remember online interactions should not replace time spent in more personal and effective forms of communication. It’s still important to send handwritten notes, make regular phone calls or pop by from time to time with a small, thoughtful gift. Social networking makes it easy to connect with new people through others that you know.

When you come across new contacts online who seem interested in your professional activities, try to meet them in person for coffee or invite them to a mixer in order to further the relationship.

© 2011 Buffini & Company. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.

Eddie Brown

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Setting Goals and How to Achieve Them

The Coaching rules for achieving success rarely change….
Although an individuals perceived  definition of success or failure may change as you reach a milestone….or a pitfall.

For example: Do you think a homeless individual who obtained a job paying $40,000 a year which enabled them to rent a home to shelter their family would define themselves as successful?

Or on the other hand, would a person whose income dropped from $250,000 to $40,000 due to the bad economy, (which forced them to sell their home and then rent)…should they consider themselves a failure?

What about the person who reached their income goal this year…what happens if they don’t do even better next year… will they still feel successful? The point is…everyone’s definition of success is different.

Success is: The ability to first recognize opportunity…secondly to form a plan to leverage said opportunity… and third to develop the skills necessary to execute the plan.

Be Decisive- Every decision you make in life alters your final destination…Go after your goals with conviction. You will never find your true potential until you push yourself past your comfort zone.

Stay Focused- Focus can be like a magnet…a powerful force which pulls you toward your goals…without focus success is fleeting!

Have Written Goals- What gets written gets done! An unwritten goal soon becomes a figment of your imagination…and like umbrellas and pens almost always ends up lost.

Involve trusted people around you- Shorten your learning curve by involving others who may have more experience or knowledge or someone who has already achieved the goal you desire.
Surround yourself with good people…My Father once said to me “If you want to see your future…look at the people you associate with”… you become who you associate with…It’s like when playing golf, you tend to perform better when you partner with someone who plays a few steps above your skill level…you rise to the challenge!

Welcome the inevitable failures- A key to future success is to learn from your own mistakes…Don’t be naive about the benefits of failure …it forces you to slow down long enough to re-group, re-adjust, and re-set your plan.

Into every plan an occasional grenade will be lobbed…goading you into quitting…giving up. This is where true success lies…by refusing to lay down and expire …your persistence in the face of failure will be the true measure of belief in yourself!

Bottom line is you have to expect to get a few dings here and there as you pursue your goals. Learn from the experience and don’t fear the unintended failure…Letting fear ride shotgun is not always a bad thing…just don’t let it take the reins and run your plan into the ditch.

Lastly Take Action- You can’t “hitch-hike” your way to success…because it comes dressed in overalls and looks a whole lot like hard work!

Unless you take action, life will become a string of missed opportunities and you will never attain the goals you desire. All Success Comes Down To Execution!

Today is the day to plan, focus and take action on the activities required to reach your goals…tomorrow may be too late!

Eddie Brown ©2011

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

How Frequently Do You Communicate With Your Clients?

Most Associates think the main complaint clients have is Real Estate Agents make too much money…
When in reality, the number one complaint most Managers deal with is the Client perception of the agents being poor communicators.

When representing a Seller client, discover how often and in what form your client wants to receive communication from you …How you ask? By first laying out your game plan to include your communication schedules …then ask if they are OK with the frequency and methods.
If you are not making contact on the client’s perceived time frames, and providing an update on the process of the sale or purchase, you risk a poor relationship with them. If their time frames are unreasonable, then by educating them from the beginning you can explain in advance why your schedule is more reasonable …after the fact the damage has already been done.
Showing Agent Feedback:
Listing Agents seem to always be frustrated by Buyers Agents who are slow to give feedback (or never give feedback) after a showing. Let the Seller know up-front how this will occur and how you will not receive feedback on every showing …That’s reality and just the way it is …
Advice to Buyers Agents …leave feedback, even if it is just constructive criticism …it’s the professional thing to do!
Also let the Seller know when you will be providing the feedback obtained, will it be as soon as received or once/twice per week? I personally prefer a once a week meeting with the Seller to discuss feedback, market conditions and pricing. It’s also a good time to ask if they have heard of anyone considering selling or buying a home. (Remember the Reticular Activator?)
Eddie Brown ©2011

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

How to Appreciate Failure as a Learning Experience:

One key to your future success is becoming acutely aware of the significance of failure…
Remember the quote: That which does not kill us, only makes us stronger!
There is nothing sexy about being associated with failure …but don’t be na├»ve about failures lasting benefits. The benefit of failure is not to make you quit…but to slow you down long enough to learn a lesson from the set-back. Grasp this disappointment as an opportunity to re-adjust your plan, (and goals if necessary), and then re-launch feeling more prepared to succeed.
Look at failure not as a braking system which grinds you to a halt … but as a part of your guidance system towards success!  An occasional grenade will be lobbed into even the best laid plans, prodding you to give up …but your response during the aftermath is where true success lies.
When your plan belly flops, it’s your persistence, (staring failure face to face), and your belief in yourself, your plan, and the desire to reach your goals must drive through!
This occasional chance to step back and re-group can and often does position you for the next important steps forward. The delicate balance is learning how to conquer your fears of failure while being able to feed and thrive on the tensions it brings.
Bottom line: Expect to get a few dings along the road to success. Like a fine wine which improves with age…you get better when you have failed a few times and been wise enough to learn from the experience. Like the t-shirt says “Been There…Done That! As least after a set-back you know what NOT to do!
Letting fear ride shotgun is not always a bad thing …just don’t let it take the wheel and run your plan in the ditch!
Eddie Brown ©2011

Friday, September 2, 2011

4 Ways To Enhance The Use Of Your IPAD With Your PC

Many people separate the personal computer and the iPad into two different worlds – the PC is for work and the iPad is for fun. But I think both devices don’t have to be on opposite sides. They can work together harmoniously. If you want to use your iPad alongside your PC, here are four ways to use the iPad to enhance the use of your personal computer.

There’s An App For That

All the methods described below are possible because of the availability of supporting apps. You’ll need two components to make the system work – the iOS app and the desktop app. All the desktop apps are available in both Windows and Mac versions, and all apps are free unless mentioned otherwise.

1. As A Second Display

What makes the iPad different from the personal computer is the size factor. Since the iPad is a big touchscreen display, why not use it to extend your personal computer’s display? Air Display can help you to utilize the iPad to be a second monitor.
Even though Air Display’s desktop app is free, the iOS app is not. The price tag is US$ 9.99, but I think it worth every penny. After installing both components, you can connect the two devices using WiFi and your iPad will be magically transformed into a second monitor.
01 air display
You can use the second monitor to mirror the first, or as additional screen real estate. If you choose the second option, you can easily move any open window from your computer screen to the iPad screen by dragging and dropping.

2. As An External Drawing Board

Some digital graphic artists rely on their digital drawing pad to produce their work. If you are one of them, or if you plan to buy a digital drawing pad, you can try to use your iPad as a substitute. There are lots of great drawing apps for the iPad that you can choose, such as Brushes, Procreate, Sketchbook Express and Pro, Adobe Ideas, etc.
But if you want to use a collaborative drawing board, where several people can draw on the same digital board simultaneously, you can try WhiteBoard. The lite version is free, while the pro version is US$ 2.99.

3. As An External Trackpad

Why not use the iPad as an external tracking device to work with your computer? HippoRemote is one of the many apps that will allow you to do so. Other than transforming your iOS into a trackpad, the app can also mimic a full keyboard. The lite version of the app is free while the pro will set you back US$ 4.99.
03 hippo
If you are a Mac OS X user, you can use the app to do multi-touch gestures. You can also use it to remotely control your presentation or your computer media player.

4. As A Gate To Access A Remote Computer

This one might be the most obvious use of an iPad in its relationship with the personal computer. But I won’t talk too much about this topic as there are already several discussions about it, including The 7 Best Free Remote Control Apps for the iPhone, The Best Free Remote Desktop Apps for Your iPad, and Access Your Computer From Anywhere on Your iPad.

Creating A Wireless Network

All the apps mentioned above require both devices – the personal computer and the iPad – to be connected to the same wireless network. But if your wireless arrangement doesn’t work, you could try to create a computer-to-computer network from your computer’s wireless settings and preferences. Then you can set your iPad to connect to that direct connection.
03a create network b
In my experiment, I found that all the apps worked better using a direct “computer – iPad” connection rather than using a home network.
What do you think about using the iPad to enhance the use of a personal computer? Do you have other usage ideas? Please share them using the comments below. And don’t forget to check out our collection of the best iPad apps.
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