By Susie Hale
“All real estate is local,” the saying goes. But what buyers and sellers really want to know is known as “hyper”-local information—the numbers and news that affect their specific community’s neighborhoods. When an agent shares information about the first day of school, the date of the high school football games, or how road construction will affect a morning commute, that agent becomes more than a home seller…he or she becomes a trusted resource.
The best agents already know this. Award-winning Texas broker Krisstina Wise, owner of The GoodLife Team, regularly posts graphs on the company’s blog showing average sales prices and closed sales for Austin. She also lists “Good Hoods” as well: neighborhood profiles with maps, news, schools and restaurant reviews—crucial in a town where eating out is a passion.
Ken Brand is a savvy Facebook poster of “cool things happening at Market Street in The Woodlands,” Texas. As sales manager of Prudential Gary Greene, REALTORS®, Brand regularly links to news that local homeowners may be interested in.
None of this is really new; it’s something agents and brokers have done forever—providing neighborhood-relevant information that creates trust and builds relationships. We just do it online now.
The free Housing Trends eNewsletter (www.HTEN.com) distributed by FrogPond, includes local information on real estate sales and price activity provided by MLSs across the country, in addition to community reports comparing amenities and statistics by zip codes. Plus, agents can insert their own hyperlocal content in the new “Messages” section located at the top of the e-newsletter.
For example, a message from Carlos Rafael Cruz, an Intero agent from Santa Clara, California, reads, “Corvette announces 35th Annual Corvette Car Show, August 21, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Main Street, Los Altos. Street traffic closing from First Street to San Antonio Road, but open to foot traffic. Come join me and the fun! www.sccorvettes.org.”
Another vehicle for providing hyperlocal information is The Breaking News Network, which delivers social media-sourced news and information. It includes the three things people want to know: real-time news, things to do, and all the deals in the city.
“Breaking Bergen News” (www.breakingbergennews.com) is a great example of one of the many communities covered by this service. Covering local headlines, restaurants and a live Twitter stream of locally tagged items, a small editor’s note asks readers to connect with @BrianMorgenweck. Real estate is just another tab, not the focus of the page.
To succeed in today’s real estate environment, agents must understand that they can still sponsor the local Little League team. However, your name must be just as prominent in the “wired” world as a neighborhood advocate. Are you out there?
Susie Hale is the Founder and CEO of eFrogPond, Inc.
For more information, visit www.FrogPond.com.
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