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July 2010
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September 2010

RealBird Webinar Tomorrow: Leveraging Google Services, RealBird and WordPress

Where: Online - Register here

When: September 1, 9 AM-10 AM Pacific time

What: Leveraging Google services, RealBird and WordPress

Topics: 

  • Setting up your Google services including GMail, Google Maps and more
  • Using Google Maps to drive traffic
  • Setting up a Wordpress.org blog (self hosted WordPress) 
  • Claim your dirt !
  • Create community pages
  • Using the Google keyword research tool
  • Using the new RealBird Wordpress plugin
  • Leveraging RealBird to attract buyers and succeed with sellers
  • Social media for business development
  • And plenty of time for Q&A

Please join us tomorrow if you have time: You can register here for free


RealBird Testimonial of the Week

Our day is always made when we receive a success story from one of our members. After all, the bells and whistles of the RealBird platform is only as good as the real, closed business they generate for you.

Below is an actual testimonial from Denise Hamlin of Iowa City, Iowa that we received yesterday (highlight by us)

Iowa City Homes for Sale

"Today I had my fifth closing this year from leads from Realbird. In fact, I have more leads from Realbird than any other source. (Not all of them result in sales of course, that would be too much to expect). Buyers seem to like the interface and search experience with Realbird. Since it's branded it's easy for them to contact me too. Add to the buyer experience all the features that Realbird offers agents you really get a lot of bang for the buck. Buyers want a simple way to search for homes. Realbird offers that. Agents want lots of bells and whistles. Realbird has got that too. I am big on trying new ways to reach clients on the Internet and to date Realbird has been the most effective method I've found. (And least expensive). The great thing is that I know they are always trying to improve the system too. They have a cutting edge way of approaching real estate marketing and sales and I'm more than happy to tag along and profit from their expertise. I have been a Realbird Pro member since December 2009 and would recommend them to others in a heart beat."

Denise - Thank you very much for sharing your success story with us. 

Please take a look at Denise's Iowa City real estate blog and see how she implemented the RealBird map-based real estate search on the homepage. You can also follow her on Twitter or fan her Facebook Real Estate Page.

If you have your RealBird Success Story, please share it with us, we have plenty of more days to be made !

Thanks

RealBird.com


Introducing global settings for your Single Property Websites

Global Settings For The Listing Publisher

We just launched the first version of the global settings tool for your RealBird single property websites

This is a long due feature and now with the first release , you will be able to do way more in way less time and you will be able to utilize advanced RealBird features easily.

Up till now you had to set up otherwise common features every time you created a new property website (other than your contact information set in the profile like your name, social media sites, blog, photo etc.) While these were actually small issues, we realized that when you manage dozens or even hundreds of active and sold listings on RealBird, these few seconds of extra time add up quickly. 

A good example was the very unique and powerful live chat feature that you could use to turn your RealBird property websites into virtual "open houses". Even those people who originally added this feature to their listings, eventually stopped doing it due to the extra time it took to set it up for each new listing.

Not any more, the global settings tool for the Listing Publisher now allows you to set these features once and all your new listings will default to these settings. You can of course apply these new settings to all of your existing listings as well.

Live-Chat-RealBird
Listing courtesy of Ashton Coleman. See it live here

What's included in the first version of the Global Settings utility?

  1. You can add the Listing Broker info at once and all your new listings will default to this value. You can change it to something else listing by listing, in case you list somebody's else listing with their permission.
  2. You can turn common features on and off for all of your listings, including Google Local Search, showing of your recent blog posts on the property sites etc.
  3. You can create an additional page, one that is added to all of your listing websites. A good example is an "About Us" page that allows you to talk more about yourself, link to external resources like your website and even add your Facebook Real Estate Page to establish relationship with your visitors (tutorial)
  4. You can add a live chat widget (Meebo, Plugoo) to your listing websites and you can turn those into virtual open houses, your clients will be able to chat with you live while on the website.

What's next?

In our next release of the global settings for listing websites, we will add a website theme customization option. As many of you know, you can customize RealBird listing websites with stunning background designs and make it look completely unique, beautiful and engaging. Right now, you have to do this one by one, with the next version, you will be able to create a global design theme for all of your listings rather than using our default theme and only customize individual listing designs if needed. 

We will announce these additional features as soon as they are launched. Until then, make sure to check out and use the new Settings feature on RealBird. It's a one time task and your existing and new listing websites will be so much more powerful tools for online marketing. 

Well, we hope you like it and that this new feature will make you even more productive. Should you have questions, just email or call.

Thanks

RealBird.com


Facebook Page Real Estate application updated

Facebook will roll out an update for the Facebook Page layouts on August 23. "Boxes" will be eliminated and the custom tabs content area will be reduced to 520px wide. In fact, we already saw these changes on our own RealBird Facebook Page so we decided to not wait until the last minute:

The RealBird Facebook Page Real Estate application is now updated to provide the photowall FBML code optimized for the 520px width. 

Facebook Page Real Estate RealBird Application
 

If you have been using this RealBird feature already, you can just overwrite the existing FBML code with the new one or add it fresh from the RealBird member area (Widgets>Lisitng Widgets). 

To learn about this feature and other ways to utilize the RealBird platform, please 
join us at the next RealBird Webinar on August 18, from 9 AM to 10 AM (Pacific Time)


Real estate property websites on mobile devices

RealBird on iPhone
Did you know that RealBird has been providing an iPhone optimized presentation for your property websites since 2007?
Chances are, not many of our new members know that the RealBird single property websites render differently on iPhone than on regular desktop browsers; mainly because we did not promote this feature much. We had a few recent discussions with some of our members regarding adding more support for mobile listing presentations and the time has come to put priorities on these features. 

We will post a poll on our Facebook Page shortly to see which smartphones do you want us to focus on.

There are two segments of users to consider: 

  1. Supporting the majority of smart phones that consumers use who may end up looking at your listing presentations on their mobile devices and 
  2. Supporting the platforms that are widely used by real estate professionals who could benefit from these mobile features at listing presentations

Below is a pie chart that shows the distribution of the mobile devices used to access the RealBird single property websites in the last 90 days (I assume the chart represents mostly consumer traffic)

Screen shot 2010-08-09 at 12.04.03 PM
 

As expected, iPhone and Android rules the pie, followed by Blackberry. There is nothing surprising here, but it's worth noting that Blackberry is either 1) less used by consumers or 2) less used for browsing for homes for sale or 3) both. Also, Clicky did not show any stats for iPad, I am not sure why, not even one view over a 3-month period and I am sure there were some (like myself). 

There is no special link or action that is required to see the special iPhone version of your listing website. The same Url will render the user interface differently on an iPhone and on a desktop browser. So if you have an IPhone, just pull up your regular RealBird listing websites (e.g. email it to yourself) and see the iPhone layout.

So here is the poll question: Which smartphone do you use?
Just add as a comment here or on our Facebook Page

Thanks !

RealBird.com