Category Archives: Uncategorized

New and Improved ActiveRain Leaderboard

I reblogged this post to give some additional exposure to the new ActiveRain Leaderboard.  This in my opinion is a nice supplement to the City/State pages that use to feature the ability to find specific individuals in various States under a selected category. Great job on the post Kerrie, thanks and kudos!  🙂

Via ActiveRain Corp.:

We are pleased to announce the new and improved ActiveRain Leaderboard! We couldn’t have done it without the amazing feedback of our Community over the last couple of days. Thank you all so much!

ActiveRain wanted to create the best possible layout for all of our members.  A place where you can easily see how you rank within all of AR, your state, your professional group etc.

The new style is sleek and sexy…take a look.

ActiveRain Leaderboard

As you can see, I have narrowed my search down to Real Estate Agents in All States.  You can also add state, county, and city for more localization. 

If you are roaming around and your name is in the list you can hit the “show me” button on the bottom right and it will take you to the page you rank on with your profile highlighted. Please keep in mind that if you are not a Loan Officer in New York and you have that specific search open, the “show me” button will not appear.

The new design will make it easier and more convenient to find what you’re looking for;  whether it be a referral or simply to see where you rank amongst other members.

Another great tool is that you can access the leaderboard from your main profile.  If you click “My Home” on the top right hand side of AR you then see your smokin’ hot photo with a few stats below.  The “Rank in State”, “Rank in County” and “Rank in City” all link to the leaderboard.

ActiveRain is always working hard to stay on top.  We try our best to provide you with the tools you need and are asking for.  The new ActiveRain Leaderboard is our newest addition.

We hope you like it!

Kerrie Greenhalgh



Follow ActiveRain on Twitter and Facebook



Building, Managing, and Protecting Your Online Reputation

How Do You Manage And Protect Your Online Reputation?

A few weeks ago I was reading an article about “BIG Corporate Companies” that were missing the boat by not getting involved in Social Media. “They are missing out on the ability to track and manage their brands, their names, their business and reputations” or something to that effect.  It got me thinking about how important it is to connect on-line and know what’s going on around you at all times, or at least as much as possible.

“The On-line world is also the Off-line World making them both one in the same.  What happens Off-line ends up online, and what happens On-line gets spread quickly Off-line and visa versa. It’s known as “viral” in both worlds.

How do you manage and protect your reputation in the off-line world?  In order to build, protect, or manage your brand or reputation, you have to interact so you can hear the chatter, the rumors, the buzz, the testimonials, or even the whisper when someones talking about you or your company? No matter what, whether it’s good or bad, people do talk.  In the social media world, even more-so.  Good news travels fast, and often times, bad news travels even faster.

How do you know when someone is talking about you, your company, or your business in the on-line world?  What are people saying or whispering on LinkedIn, Twitter, MySpace or FaceBook?  What about your past or current clients, your sphere of influence, or even your competitors?  Would you even know?  I think many of the Larger Companies and Businesses DO know the power of Social Media Marketing and the importance of Networking.  I see it more and more, they are wanting to stay close and connected to what’s being said about their products, their services, their company and business, or even them as individuals. 

Managing and Protecting your online reputation isn’t just for the Big Corporate Companies….

…it should also be important to you.

Here’s some ideas and suggestions that can help you in the new on-line social media and off-line networking world.  Let’s start with the simplest and basic of all tools.  When was the last time you ran your name or Company using Google?  Google Search.  This is typically the first thing we learn and try to do regularly to see what shows up in the search engine results.  This is a great and basic way to find out how about your online Internet presence.  What shows up?  I still do this on a weekly basis.

Next, there are some free and simple tools available to help you get a better handle on what’s being said across the WEB.  Start with Google Alerts, it’s an easy way to setup specific keyword searches.  Once those specific words or terms are found and indexed, notifications are emailed directly to you.  Setup alerts for your name, your company, employees, your brand etc.  Some even setup Google Alerts for their competition or other specific business topics or “interesting” terms and phrases.  This is a good start to keeping yourself connected and informed.

Many of you will remember the “viral” video “United Breaks Guitars!?!”  I wonder how long before United knew they were famous on Youtube? I bet they have multiple alerts setup now… maybe not…  :-O

United Breaks Guitars
Full Story: – In the spring
3 months ago 5,796,268 views sonsofmaxwell


Now you can stop reading right here of course, unless you’d like to go a little deeper….

Ok, you’re still reading so you must want more.  You should consider what happens and what gets said on sites like Twitter and Facebook.  Let’s be honest here, if someone wants everyone else in the world to know something, they post it on Twitter and Facebook.  It’s the fastest way to gather and spread information, but at the same time, it’s the fastest and easiest way to build or destroy a name or reputation.  Look what happened to Wal-Mart and Target last Christmas. A classic example of the “Thrill of Victory” and the “Agony of Defeat.” is a tried and true method of finding out who is talking about you and what they are saying. Twittergrader, and Facebookgrader are a couple of other products you can check out from Hubspot.  If you’re looking for more of that “visual” display of your online presence, then check out spezify. This one is not only informative, it’s fun and entertaining at the same time. Addictomatic is another one you should visit, you’ll love the compilation of content it will pull up using various resources to do all the work for you.  I always suggest starting with your name or company when visiting and trying these sites.  You will be surprised at some of the things you’ll find.

Now let’s dig really deep for gold!  Measuring your online presence and influence. and each have devised their own internal way for determining your influential impact in the on-line world.  SocialMention which is a similar service will “grade”  your results based on your participation in a variety of places.  The last site I’ll mention is StepRep, this is one I use daily.  You can receive daily email updates on the results Steprep finds, and the social networking aspect of it certainly can’t hurt when building a positive reputation.

We’ve all seen what can happen to a company or individual via the Social Networks albeit from a single tweet, a note on a FB wall, a Video on Youtube, a photo on Flickr, or even a Blog post or article on a website.  There is great power in the hands of those millions of consumer messages that get transmitted over the cyber-lines each and everyday.  No one can protect your good name or business but you.  That was until now… there is online help.  Sleep better at night knowing you have done your best to manage and protect your business and reputation.

Don’t forget your ReBlogged posts, it’s good to keep up with what others are saying and adding to them.

These may not be the catch-all, fix-all, but it’s a start to “managing and protecting your online reputation.”


REALTORS® – Important 100K Announcement!

If you’re a REALTOR®, Broker, or an Agent and member of ActiveRain, this is a MUST READ!  Last month, over 100,000 consumers searched ActiveRain for Real Estate in specific cities using the “Search For Homes” feature.  I was just in a meeting with Bob Stewart and Doug Ching going over the stats and analytics reports.  Folks, this is no joke, consumers flock to AR and used this tool in their quest for finding homes.  

So why is this so important and why should you care?  We’ve discovered that most of our Agent and REALTOR® members DO NOT have “Hit Router” Campaigns setup.  That means these searches are NOT going to your IDX lead generating sites.  WOW, look at these numbers and stats.  I’m sharing this with you because while you are out there searching for tools to better your SEO and Blog, consumers are searching our network interested in homes in your area, and in most cases, we have very few members with campaigns setup in these areas.

And the list goes on and on and on… in fact, there are 600+ cities that had more than 100 searches.

If you’re a REALTOR® member here, please don’t miss out on this crucial opportunity to take advantage of the Hit Router Campaigns that each of you have access to.  If 487 people searched San Diego last month for “Homes For Sale” and not a single member has a campaign setup there, this means those possible leads are lost to another company that may in fact be selling them off.

The key to making this work for you is:
#1 – Setting Up Your City Search Campaigns, and
#2 – Making sure you have a good lead capture IDX site where this traffic will land.

After researching some pay per clicks sites out there, Brokers and Agents are paying upwards of $3.00 per click to capture these leads from other sources like Google.  AR campaigns start at .49 cents per click.  I can’t emphasize enough the value and gold mine you’re sitting on here.  Please take a few moments to look into this, the urgency here is that if our members aren’t interested and don’t take advantage of these “campaigns” fairly soon, they will end up being sold to the larger companies who are already willing, able and want to capitalize on these Clicks.

ActiveRain members need to be aware of this while you have the opportunity to jump on it. This is HUGE!!  We want our members to get first shot at directing these home searches to your IDX sites, and will do everything we can to get this information out there to every REALTOR®.  Bob Stewart is doing a price comparison of some other pay per click sites to show you the difference in value here, I’ll add that link shortly.  I would also assume that the home searches conducted here are of higher “quality” than they may be on some of the other generic pay-per-click sites. 

This is one of the most important posts and announcements I’ve written on ActiveRain.  Home searches are taking place on Activerain right now, these stats are proof.  We want YOU to be able to help complete the process in finding these people homes.  Please, contact Bob or myself if you have any questions or need more information regarding these stats, or if you just need help setting up your hit router campaigns

This should be given priority consideration today.  Thanks.

Your Social Media User Name – Is It Too Late?

Seems there is always something new to be learned and discovered.  Twitter, FriendFeed, Online Webinars, the Information is flying around the WEB 2.0 World at high speeds and at high altitudes, but if you try to grab on to some of this stuff, it’s amazing what you can learn from being connected to these Social Media Networking and Marketing platforms.  At todays webinar, we discussed your “User Names” and how they should be selected and used on the web.  A great site was mentioned that will search your name on multiple sites to see if it’s available.  So why is this important?

The questions?

Is it too late?  Does someone else already have your user name or do you?  What should your user name be?  Your real name or a company?  Should it be your name with a title?  IE: BradRealtor?  Maybe a memorable slogan, or a cool phrase?  I can tell you this, when I forget anything about anybody, I just Google their name.  I think I even do this sub-consciously.  Today, it was suggested to lock up your “real name” to be used as your “Brand”, and to capture that “name recognition” you deserve.  Who will find you?  Google will, your family will, your friends and neighbors will, and the people who search you out when your name comes up in certain circles will too.  Let me explain…

It’s Your Name.  What’s In A Name? 

Referral business for one.  If someone refers you to another person, how do they do it?  Your nick name, your company, your slogan or your catch-phrase?  No.  IMHO, I think in most cases people use other peoples names. Real names.  If I’m at dinner with friends, and you mention someone to me like Mary McCormick and her awesome site, I would probably remember her name before I would remember her site at:  So what would I do when I got back home?  I’d Google her name.  How about you; would you ever do a search for ActiveBrad?  Exactly….

A Possible Tool $ Solution! is a website that can search many of the social networks and social media platforms. It searches sites to see where you can Brand your name, and snag it before someone else does.  Now I’m not saying you should go join all these sites, but do take stock in the ones you feel are beneficial to you, your on-line presence or your business. 

So now you’re just one click away from making some important decisions… should I be using my real name and which places should I be doing it?  (seriously pondering right now…) Will people search me as Brad Andersohn or ActiveBrad or my former TheEscrowGuy?  Hmmm… guess I have the same dilemma as some of you…crap, I hate when this happens.  LOL~ 

Right Now, you’re probably realizing like I am, that in some cases, it may be too late to change, even if your user name is available. The Google placement and SEO you’ve gained to this point, might not be worth losing…or is it???  It’s like the same dilemma you have when deciding to change a phone number, or an email address.  What user name are you using on the Web, and is it getting you the best possible results?

Hopefully this post will catch some of you before it’s too late….one way or the other.

Email Signatures – How Good/Bad Are They?

There are so many technology tools in Real Estate today, I think half the battle is determining which one’s work and which one’s don’t. No matter what you use in your business to promote and make yourself available to consumers, family, friends and clients, I think an up-to-date signature on your email messages should be a top priority. I receive hundreds of emails on my ActiveRain and Yahoo accounts. So yes, I have seen many of YOUR signatures. :-)) (Brad Grins…)

Do you have your number or contact info there? Is your signature branded with your company logo and current photo? Are there links to information about you or your business others might find useful? Do the links work, or do they need updating? Or is your signature just blank?

I read some Blogs recently that say why a signature is not necessary. IMO, since email is the most commonly used form of communication along with text messaging, how important is all this anyway? I guess this is a choice every individual needs to make. Only you know your thoughts and what you believe regardless if you decide to share that opinion here or not. See, there you go thinking about it.. lol~

Here’s a service provided by “Email Ideas” and at first glance, I like the product they offer. The one I am using here and on my email signature over at, is a FREE signature eCard. It has a link to create your own, and an advertisement up the side, both of which will disappear if you decided to pay for a service like this. It’s a pretty cool layout with the HTML embed links, so I thought I’d share it with you.

Click Here

Whether you use a service like EmailIdeas, MyBlogLog or any other eCard / vCard service, I think it’s important to have information like this made readily available in a professional and easy to read format or layout.

Have you updated your email signature lately? Do you need to? Is it good or is it bad? Don’t be afraid to ask others and get their opinions. That’s what I did.

Try this tool yourself for FREE. If you don’t like it, nothing ventured, nothing gained. If all this post does is get you to re-evaluate your email signature, then it has served it’s purpose. The “EmailIdeas” eCard works with the following:

Here’s another sample eSignature from the “MyBlogLog”” site, it’s more of a social networking style. There’s many others out there I’m sure. These are not only good for email signatures, they can be used here on AR like below, or on your outside Blogs and websites, even as a graphic or Brand on your snail mail and letters. I kinda like these tools and the price.


Brad Andersohn
Community Builder
ActiveRain Corp.
Fairfield, CA, 94534
Phone: 707 718-6773
Visit MyBlogLog and get a signature like this!

Marketing and Farming Your Blog

Isn’t it great when you write a post on a topic you’re passionate about, and you get a string of intelligent and informative comments?  This creates an awesome platform to educate, and share your knowledge and experience with your clients and other consumers.  Are you waiting for them to come find your great post using Google?  Do you hope they just find your post by coincidence, or from a keyword search?  If you want to be proactive, and get this information out to readers and clients everywhere, they’ll need to know that it’s there.  Are you “Farming Your Blog?

Many Active Rain members subscribe to each others Blogs, so we know when there’s a new post.  Many of our comments are made by those members.  In fact, the majority of comments are from other members, but the public is still finding and reading them as well.  They are probably a little less likely to subscribe or even comment, as they are not AR members.  It’s a fact, they are reading your Blogs. 

So how do you get the word distributed outside of the Active Rain Blogosphere?  Here’s an idea: Get your individual posts or even your entire Blog out to all your clients first, before they try to find you, and maybe find someone else.  Use this tool as you would any other farming tool!  Farming with Newsletters, Recipes, Just Listed and Just Solds etc.  Let’s farm your Blog!  🙂

Every post on Active Rain has a tiny icon below it (especially yours) that offers you this opportunity!  Are you using this powerful little email tool? 


When you use the internal email function here at Active rain, you have to select each individual, one at a time. 
Here’s what that looks like when you prepare it for your client, friend or someone from your email database.


This is a great way to send your post to individuals you feel may be interested in your topic, idea, or discussion thread.
  Now if you want to send your post to multiple individuals, that’s different!  Some large networks and companies see this as spam.  If you are sending your post to email addresses you have in your Outlook, Yahoo, or Google databases, then is this really spamming?  I don’t feel it is.  Government says you can’t call, now they have the “Do Not Mail Me” list, and at $3.50 per gallon for gas, who’s gonna drive and knock on doors? 🙂   I say EMAIL!!


Here’s a great way to send your post by email to everyone in your database.  Just create a cover message in your email, then BCC: a copy to everyone else in your database.  You’ll have to use an accurate link back to your post. IE (The Holiday Gift)  What better way to drive readers to your post, instead of waiting for them to maybe find you someday.  Not only will you be driving readers to your post, you’ll be driving more visitors to Active Rain and Localism.  Either way, ultimately, everybody wins.

Take it one final step further, why not email your entire Blog to your email database.  Instead of just sending a link to a particular post, send the link that contains all your posts, or your RSS Feed, or even your profile page.  Let them choose which topics and posts they’d like to read.  The point is, you are bringing it to them, and this is how to increase your readers, your business, and Active Rains continued growth and success. 

We can always put links on our business cards, our flyer’s and signs, but are we using our email to really market our Blogs?   Not just a link in the signature of a reply either, are you sending email to anybody about your posts or Blogs?  This one is easy and may payoff in “Big Dividends,” I’d try it.

What does your Blog have to say to the world about Real Estate, and how are you getting that word out there?  Is there any better way to compete and get results from all your hard work here?  As the media continues to get their Real Estate News into America’s homes by television, newspaper and radio, and the Internet, how are you doing it?  Or are you? 🙂 
All Content Copyright Protected © 2007
   Subscribe to Brad Andersohns Blog Add Brad Andersohn as an Associate   

Making Your Post, A Mini – Webpage

Over 20 Years Experience, Helping You Provide Your Clients, The American Dream! 

  • View My Profile
  • Memoirs of a Blogger
  • View My Associates
  • Get Linked In
  • Search Active Rain            
  • Real Estate Technology Group
  • Target Marketing Group 
  • The Title and Escrow Group
  • Solano County Network Group
  • My Corporate Office
  • Property Comp Information
  • Realtor Designations 
  • Bay Area Real Estate Tech Fair
  • Real Estate Website Links
  • Agent Freebies
  • My Escrow Blog
  • The Best Network in the World
  • My Music Blog
  • My Photography Blog
  • Creating a post to look like a website is in my opinion, a great way to market yourself and provide valuable information to the public on  Many are doing this already, but for some, maybe this will help inspire and motivate you to put a little more into your posts’ for the Localism website.  This is NOT a very good sample of a website looking page, but you get the “picture”.  It’s giving your readers the choices and options, the same as a kid would have, from the local Ice Cream truck!  (Remember These?)

    Today, I received a call from a consumer who found my “Short Sale” post on, and wanted more information about my blog.  She asked if there were any agents in my area that might be able to help her.  She’s a real estate investor.  I immediately networked her with an agent (Viktor Manrique) in the area she was interested in.  After I hung up, I had an after-thought, I should have combined other relative information with that post, regarding other issues like REO’s, foreclosures, trustees sales, even Active Rain MLS data. This would have been useful to her based on our conversation.  She liked that it was easy to reach me from my post too.

    The links above are just samples of what you can do to add to your Localism posts, and make them more valuable to consumers and other viewers.  If you are good with HTML like Craig Schiller, and others on the rain, you can make your posts look like a website, and encompass more tools, products and services for your clients.  If you’re “Not so Hot” with HTML (like me), there are members like Mike Mueller who have mastered the art of HTML, and you should take advantage of their knowledge and their services. 🙂  That’s Mike, The Mortgage Guy!

    I hope you’ll find this post to be a useful “sample” of some Blogging ideas for  This, is just a sample, and is for “Members Only”.  I am working on my actual Localism community “website post” which is coming soon.  Feel free to click around, then comment.  Active Rain has been a great learning platform for me, and the relationships I have developed here, are “virtually priceless!”

    *** Watch for my next post: The Non-Judicial Foreclosure  –   

    All Content Copyright Protected © 2007 –     

    The Judges Have Made Their Decision…


    First off, everyone's eggs in this contest were WINNERS! I was eliminated as a judge by my family, they thought I'd go broke because I wanted to declare all the entries winners. They were right. Here's how it went down:

    First, we reviewed all the entries. Each judge was given a small piece of paper to cast their vote. The judges nominations for the best egg photo were kept private, however the conversations were open and discussed as a family.

    Maureen's egg made us all laugh, and was very appreciated because of the time she must have put into it.
    I think she could win except: (The judges see me everyday, probably tired of looking at dad) LOL

    Mike's egg (smiley face with rabbit ears) could be a sure winner! My youngest judge commented that he felt Mikes math was scary. "That's a lot of money Dad!" I think he feels that if Mike wins, there would be no allowance for a couple years.
    (You know we love ya Mike)

    Linda's eggs were exquisite. The prettiest judge, (my wife) kept saying, "Go Back, Go Back, let's look at those again."  I think she coveted Linda's collection, and wished hers included some of these beauties. Lot's of comments on the "Tiny Paper Strips" egg.  Very Nice Collection Linda!!

    Ronda's entries were nothing short of "I WANT TO WIN THIS CONTEST".  The "Realty Theme" was very clever, I'd hate to see that house get egged…(sorry, poor humor).  Then she poached, I mean posted the "Eggs gone Buggy" and the "Sporty Eggs".  these were reviewed time and time again by the judges.  She had them all "scrambling" to make their final votes.

                                                                          MEET THE JUDGES_

    Each judge reviewed this post and then cast their vote.  It was then folded in half, and set on Dads desk, for the winner to be determined.  The judges agreed that the majority vote should win. If there were a tie, both entries would win, and if there were no majority, we would re-vote. Well, here are their results:


                                           The Winner is Ronda Myers – Waters from Porter County, Indiana

                                                                    CONGRATULATIONS RONDA!!!

                                                                              Picture of Real Estate Agent: Ronda Myers-Waters (Willems Realtors)

                                                                             YOU'RE THE WINNER!!!

    I think they selected your photo Ronda because there are 5 eggs, and we are a family of 5.  Also, anytime you show a 10 and 15 year old scooters, skateboards and sporty stuff, you're going to get their un-eggspected attention. The judges will not find out until the morning who won, but I know they can't wait to read this post.

    RONDA will recieve:

    • A Quality Printed Copy of her Winning Post "Sporty Egg Photo" ($5.00)
    • A Gift Certificate to the restaurant of her choice in the amount of $20.00
    • A FREE 1 Year Membership to the Activerain Real Estate Network! (Free & Priceless)

    I hope you all had a Great Easter Holiday. Today, Easter for me, meant Thanking my "higher power" for
    my family, my home, my career, my gifts and my friends all over the world. I hope today, you'll do the same.
    It's a good life and we are blessed!

                       An Extra Special Thanks goes out to these fine judges, My favorite People in the whole world!

                                                      The Andersohn Family

    Taking Title? – Don’t Advise! Be wise!

    When a buyer purchases property in California, often times they will ask us, or you, "How should we take title?"  We cannot advise the buyers, we can only suggest they speak to their CPA or attorney etc.

    Now, there is a tool that helps one understand the ways in which they can take title and the different methods of holding title on real property.  We provide this to our realtors and our buyers. There is an explanation of the different ways to hold title and the benefits or explanations of each. 

    Don't wait till the last minute to discuss this with your buyers.

    They may need time to review the information and then talk to their accountant to find out what's best for them.  When we're funding tomorrow and recording the next day, this is not the time for your clients to be concerned with "how to hold title". 

    Let me know if you need a copy of my "Methods Of Holding Title" marketing piece, I'd be glad to get you one! 🙂

    How To Use Interactive Google Maps Using Google Base Data

    AR University Presents – How To Use Interactive Google Maps & Embed Them Using Google Base

    This “advanced” sample above was created using Google’s API feature with Flash, Maps and Videos,
    Load then Click on any of the seven circles in the playback bar to jump to that location and video.

    This Wednesday, April 14th at 4:00pm PDT (7:00pm EST) ActiveRain University invites you to come by and learn “How and Why” you need to know more about Google Base, and the importance of using interactive and embedded maps into your Blog posts. This is not just for Real Estate Agents with property listings, there are multiple ways you can be using these tools to bring greater value, traffic, and SEO to your Blogs and content.

    Homes For Sale in US and Canada

    View Larger Map


    Create Your Own Custom Home Search

    We will be sharing and showing you how to:
    * Create and Customize Your Maps
    * Selecting Specific Neighborhoods
    * Embed and Resize Your Custom Maps
    * Add Custom Icons and Create Legends
    * Create Outlined Communities and Areas
    * Use the Markers and Mapping Tools
    * Save all Your Maps for Easy Future Access
    * Add Your Listings to Google Base and Maps
    * Promote Your Business on Google Maps

    Check out our new ARU Chat Room too, you’ll find more than just chatter there, you’ll find valuable conversations, links, and answers to many of the questions that come up during our variety of classes and trainings.


    Maps were initially created and invented to keep people from getting lost and to help them find their way to desired locations and destinations. I hope you’ll visit ActiveRain University regularly with that same concept in mind. We hope you’ll take this one hour to join us so you won’t get lost or left behind when it comes to using “Google Maps and Tools” efficiently and effectively. 🙂


    Here’s a sample search widget by Realbird using Google Base Technology, try it out!