Keller Williams Thanksgiving Turkey Fesses Up to YouTube Good Looks

turkey.jpgOnce again, it’s time to count my blessings

  • Still have most of my feathers
  • Drumsticks still attached
  • Still look marvelous in Groucho disguise
  • No embarrassing YouTube video yet

Thanking all the great people at Keller Williams Danville and the San Ramon Realtors Marketing Association for all they do for the community and each other.

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In San Ramon CA Generosity is as Close as Your Local Realtor

images.jpgToday’s the big day. The annual food drive at the Keller Williams Danville Market Center. We are expecting a new office record. The Food Drive for the Contra Costa County Food Bank is just one of the many community actvities that we involve ourselves in. The “One Warm Coat” project is another that is also happening this weekend. We passed out about 200 bags in our San Ramon CA neighborhood.

Being new to real estate, I did not realize how involved real estate agents and their affiliates are in their community activities and charities. At the weekly San Ramon Marketing Meeting, there always many announcements and what struck me is how generous the local Realtors, affiliates and agents are. I don’t think people in general know how much charitable work these people are doing.

I’m thinking of doing a survey to get a better feel for how much time and money San Ramon and Contra Costa County Realtors, real estate agents and affiliates do contribute.

Keller Williams Cares is our in-house organization for taking care of people in need. Agents bring in aluminium cans and bottles which are turned into cash. When your cell phone goes off in a team meeting, you get to pony up $5 to KW Cares. Rick Geha and other Keller Williams Univ. trainers often require a $20 donation for special trainings of 4 hours or more. All of this and more goes back into the community.

You would think that being bombarded by weekly charitale needs would wear people down, but every week the wallets come out and there is plenty of good cheer and humor that accompanies the whole process.

I am blessed to be in such generous company. One of the many things I will reflect upon this Thanksgiving week.

What’s Love Got to Do With IT

love.jpgWoke up this morning thinking this very thing. Why? I haven’t a clue. Perhaps because the 8 day retreat I am attending.

Here are a couple of things I was going to get around to mentioning:

Did I mention I love working at Keller Williams in Danville?

The Harper Team is a three person team consisting of me (the new kid), my brother, Craig, and his wife, Tracey. For the first time in my life, I’m getting out of bed and loving to go to work. Working with my brother is great. He has a tremendous amount of knowledge and skill in marketing and technology. Getting to know Tracey better has been a real eye-opener. She is one hell of a Realtor. She’s also a very nice person and has a great sense of humor.

How about that Jim Walberg guy. If you haven’t met him yet – go to his Caribbean Real Estate site. He is working hard to LIVE SLOW down in the Virgin Islands. He hopes to be there permanently in about two years.

And then there’s Chuck Miller over at Fidelity National Title who is VP of the San Ramon Marketing Association. I have, as yet, not done business with Chuck, but that is not the point of this post.

The point is that these are great people, nice people. Each of them has a great sense of humor and it is them and many others in this small corner of the world (San Ramon Valley) that seem to be part of the answer to why I find myself jumping out of bed singing Tina Turner tunes.

Take a Clue from Bill Shue

shue.jpgCame across this post today from Bill Shue – Stop the Insanity. Bill speaks right to the point I was making in my post – Educated Agents are Great Agents.

We’re very fortunate here at Keller Williams in Danville to have a company and staff that support our efforts as agents to build successful real estate businesses. We, The Harper Team, are involved in a coaching program that involves four conference calls a week with groups of agents around the country.

I hear agent after agent giving examples of how their broker is working against them instead of for them. The major message I keep hearing from these agents is – it’s not okay to be different – continue doing things the way we have always done them. Part of the problem seems to come from other agents in the office, that complain when somebody innovates and gets creative.

In our farm, San Ramon CA, we are doing everything we can to make ourselves visible. We spend a couple of hours every day scouring the Internet for ideas, knowledge and new technology. Take a look at these two items I found today – House4Cell & MasterCard
Each of these holds great potential for savvy real estate agents.

My advice – Take a Clue from Bill Shue – get in the game of your success.

TECH it up a Notch

walk.jpgYou can see this image full size here.

Recently, in our office (Keller Williams, Danville, California) there has been a lot of inspiring talk to increase our tech skills and knowledge. The FUTURE is the INTERNET! is the battle cry. And for sure, it partly is. But some of the people yelling this the loudest are sending mixed messages and they shouldn’t.

Here’s an example: You need to get a website and get it registered on Google and other search engines. And you have to get your keywords right. And other things. The problem is that these people (the undereducated one’s yelling out the message) are encouraging people to do this via their cloned corporate website. The chances of a cloned corporate website getting in the top ten Google results are just about nil if not totally impossible.

If you want to get your site to the top of Google, you need to really increase the depth of your knowledge and understanding. I know, I had a business doing just that for people. And the services that promise to get you there – I can do that too, but while I can still make and keep that promise, I can tell you – it won’t accomplish it in the manner you think it will and it certainly won’t bring you the traffic you think it will.

For sure, you need a website. And you need to grow your knowledge and skills. Number one thing to remember about your website – make it about the client, not you. 90% client focus – 10% you.

Here are three small things to start building your skills with.

NetVibes – go here, set up an account and start following a few blogs like this one San Ramon.Wordpress.com. Go here for a quick tutorial on how to use NetVibes

Google Alerts – set up alerts for your market area so you can follow what is happening in your backyard as it happens. I get daily updates on Keller Williams, Danville, San Ramon, Pleasanton, Dublin and the niche markets I am developing.

Google Base – put all of your listings into Google Base and make sure to use the keywords you think people will search on like San Ramon California Real Estate For Sale.

Get comfortable with those and then we’ll tech it up another notch.

Blogger’s Block? Google IT

write.jpgThis is about the best advice you can give to a blogger. WRITE BOLDdon’t hold back! Express yourself, but don’t offend. Challenge but don’t attack. Only write what you are willing for the world to see – they will hold you accountable for your words and position.

Give it to us Quick – If you can outline it or bullet-point it – hammer us handsome! We’ve got a lot coming at us. A great headline grabs your eyeballs by the throat and a great post gives it to your grey matter in a flash of recognition.
If you leave your readers saying – Heavy man, Heavy man – then you are the man/woman of the moment. You’ve doubled your fan club from you to two and who knows – maybe the word will spread.

How is it possible to get Blogger’s Block if your scanning 40 blogs or so a day and living your life with your eyes open? I don’t know, but I’m sure it happens. And that was my thought as I started to write this post with the following paragraph and the worm turned…

I had an idea for a posting today. I have the latest edition of Keller Williams – Out Front, our company’s slick news mag for our agents. It’s mailed out every two months and always contains a great selection of articles. It also points everyone to the company intranet for a whole other batch of good stuff. I thought I would list some of the topics covered, but at 6am on a Sunday in San Ramon, California, I wanted a challenge. So I Googled (image search) – “what to write” – and found this image.

The Power of NO

no.jpg
I was down in Phoenix this past week for the Craig Proctor seminar. We, The Harper Team, have been in his training program since July. We stayed at the Park Plaza North to save a few bucks. Big Mistake.

I just completed my first ever online customer satisfaction survey that the hotel requested of me. Normally, I wouldn’t take the time, but our experience at the Park Plaza was so bad, I had to take the time. I had thought about posting it all on the web, but then figured that would be wasting more of my time on something nonproductive.

But then they sent that request. And then it was time to write a post. So, here I am telling the world about the indifferent, rude check-in young lady, the nosiy air conditioner that keeps you up all night, the mold in shower, and the paper thin walls.

All of this to confirm that it is true what they say – a person having a negative experience will tell far more people about it than your average satisfied customer. It continues to amaze me how some people continue to operate as if there is not instantaneous global communication.

After all the Enron, Worldcom, Wall Street, Big Accounting, YOU-Name-IT scandals – you would think people would wise up. And then you read about HP.

The point of all of this being – clients expect good service – which they probably won’t talk about. But give them bad service and your name could be known around the world in a few nano-seconds.

If future business and a good reputation are not enough motivation to excel – keep the Power of NO in mind.