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Five Essentials For Your 2015 Marketing Plan

2015-marketing-executive-resume-trendsBy Rebecca Chandler

Putting together a budget and a business plan for the coming year can be daunting, but with these five essentials, you can make sure your marketing plan is on track.

1. Don’t rely solely on search results for traffic to your website.

Optimizing your site for search engine optimization (SEO) and spending money on search engine marketing (SEM) are good tactics for driving traffic, but your overall strategy should include advertising your web (and mobile) sites offline.  Interrupt the day of your target prospect on the real streets of your real town with your url and you’ll drive more local traffic to your site.  Local printed real estate magazines, direct mail, display ads, even your brochures and business cards – all reach your prospects offline and drive the to your site.

2. Fully leverage mobile marketing this year.

Consumers this year will spend more time on their phones than watching TV or surfing on their laptop and mobile screens become the primary screen for accessing digital content.  Make sure your own website is optimized for mobile.  Do you have your own app?  Text code lead generation?  GPS enabled yard signs?  The mobile evolution is here.  Joining is not optional anymore.

3. Market your brand, not just your listings.

The problem with using only your listings for lead generation is that, as they sell, you have less exposure, and fewer leads.  Buyers and sellers looking for an agent to represent them are looking at more than your listings.  They want to know that you are knowledgeable, professional, and trustworthy.  A listing on an aggregate site does not convey those things.  Your brand needs a professional local marketing campaign to stay in front of local buyers and sellers – and strong branding paves the way to successful lead generation.

4. Make your sellers happy happy happy.

Happy clients become an extension of your marketing message.  They tell their friends and neighbors, post on social media, and their endorsements are vital.  Make sure they are overwhelmed by providing more than anyone else.  Professional photography, staging, local advertising, mobile marketing, and great service will make your sellers sing your praises – to a new set of clients.

5. Look for a trusted marketing partner.

Looking for a bundled marketing package from a professional real estate marketing company will not only save you time, but also money.  Packages from The Real Estate Book include local print, wide web exposure, personally branded mobile tools, out of market reach, tracking tools and more.  Scheduling a consultation with your local representative is a good way to get 2015 off to a great start!

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Top 10 DIY Holiday Gifts for 2014

by Courtney Soinski

Now that the holidays are officially among us, it’s time to start thinking about gifts for your friends and family.

Gifts mean so much more when you throw in those special ingredients – love, thought, and a little elbow grease. Here are some easy and creative holiday presents you can create on your own. You’ll be the hit of the party!

1. Wrap Bracelet

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2. iPad Stand

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3. Santa Wine Bottle

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4. “Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtle” Ornament

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5. Thumbprint Necklace

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6. Stocking Hangers

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7. Holiday Ice Lantern

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8. Candy Cane Exfoliating Sugar Scrub

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 9. Christmas Tree Snow Globe

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10. Lampshade of Vintage Slides

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Turn Your Home into A Winter Wonderland this Holiday

The holidays are right around the corner, and they’re bringing a house full of guests with them. Lighten your load and impress your guests with last-minute decorating ideas at values worth celebrating.

Put on a Holiday Light Show

lightsFew things make your home feel more like the holidays than a spectacular display of lights. Outdoor lights will help make yours the most festive house on the block. They’ll brighten your mood and provide a warm welcome to visiting friends and family.

Insider tip: A good rule of thumb is 100 lights for every foot and a half of tree or shrub you want to cover. Of course, if you love lights and want to brighten the block, you might want to double that amount.

lights3Start a new holiday tradition by adding some fun and color to your porch or yard with a GE 5-ft Brown Winter Berry Branch Tree, GE Super Bright LED Sugar Plum Light Set or a set of LED Acrylic Gift Boxes.

To round out the display, line a staircase with potted poinsettias. Use a mix of different-color plants for a lush look. Poinsettias come in a variety of sizes (4- to 10-inch pots) and start as low as $6.

Deck the Halls

tableFill guests with holiday spirit as soon as they walk into your home by embellishing the foyer. Start by grouping scented candles or votives on a side table for some soft lighting and cheer. String holiday cards or ornaments around a mirror or tuck them in a frame.

Fill glass vases, jars or lamps, such as the Portfolio 19-in Clear Fillable Lamp Base, with ornaments or pinecones and faux snow for a wintery feel. foyerLastly, set up miniature Christmas trees in the front hall, such as the allen + roth 5-ft Pre-Decorated Tree.

In your main living area, simply find the focal point and decorate around it. Frame the hearth with two pre-lit artificial or live Christmas trees and hang a wreath above the mantel.

mantleInsider tip: For live Christmas trees, water the tree daily and make sure the trunk is always submerged in water. Use a tree stand that fits your tree, so you don’t have to whittle down the trunk. Cover your tree stand with aluminum foil to prevent your pets from drinking out of it. Tree sap and water can be a lethal combination. Decorate with LED lights; they stay cool to the touch.

Source: Lowes

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2014. All rights reserved.

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