Today is my 1 year anniversary on ActiveRain… and I have some observations I’d like to share, and questions I’d like to ask the ActiveRain community.
It has been an interesting ride. I remember my first week vividly... I wrote like a mad man. In the first 4 days, I wrote 3 posts per day, and hit 10,000 points in that first week. I was addicted to the points, but most of all I was addicted to the community. Name one other place on the internet for the real estate community where you can come on as a beginner, post something, and have 100 comments in 24 hours. It’s unbelievable.
ActiveRain has come a long way since it’s humble beginnings in the summer of ‘06. We have seen many people come and go. We’ve seen many members that began blogging on AR become top bloggers around the country. We’ve seen Project Blogger, member carnivals, member contests, many great upgrades, and 40,000 new members.
Here are some of my observations and reflections on the AR community:
- Many critics discount the value of ActiveRain as a lead generation source citing that very few buyers and sellers are actually reading. I say: “nuts to that”. So what if there aren’t a large number of consumers on the site… there are opportunities galore if you know how to look for them. And by the way; I’ve never heard Jon, Matt, or Caleb tout the great success of ActiveRain as a lead generation source. It’s a community!
- For the beginning real estate blogger, ActiveRain is still the best place to start. I’ve been happy to refer hundreds of people to activerain that have never blogged before. It’s easy to get started, it helps beginners get their feet wet, the SEO results are quite good, and you have a whole community behind you willing to help.
- ActiveRain groups are one of the most undervalued and underused parts of the community. They are a fantastic place to learn tips, tricks, and ideas. I look at my group as an example. As a one stop shop to get news and tips on internet marketing for the real estate professional, it works very well because it filters out posts so you don’t have to look through a long list of postings for a particular day to find what you’re looking for.
- ActiveRain is currently the greatest opportunity on the web for vendors looking for real estate agent customers. It’s a gold mine out there. 45,000 hungry real estate professionals all online and looking for new ideas and networking opportunities. You couldn’t ask for a better place to market your real estate related services.
- ActiveRain is currently the greatest opportunity on the web for real estate agents looking for referral business. I’m not necessarily talking about AR’s new Referral Exchange. I’m talking about relationships. Networking opportunities. Friendships. I’ve never seen so many people come together as a community online than with the members of AR. There’s camaraderie. What a beautiful opportunity to create referral business.
- One of the best places online to get free real estate advice, and “insider” tips on internet marketing from some of the vendors that are willing to share. The thousands upon thousands of posts that have been written are a gold mine of information. If you’re doing research for a real estate related post, ActiveRain search is one of the best places to go.
- I’ve always been really impressed at the speed in which new enhancements and services are rolled out. This was especially true in the early days. I remember when someone would write a post, or post a thread in the forum about a bug or new feature, and most of the time these were addressed in hours, not days. More recently with the addition of Q&A, groups, localism and referrals, the design and functionality are all very good. The development team has really done a great job.
And now… it’s your turn to reflect on your time with ActiveRain. Here are some questions you can feel free to answer in the comments section of this post:
1. Name Yourself
2. Are you a real estate agent, loan officer, vendor, other?
3. How long have you been a member of AR?
4. What do you view as the greatest benefit of being a member of AR (including Localism)?
5. Have you ever met another AR member in person?
6. Have you ever received any direct buyer or seller leads from AR?
7. Have you ever received a buyer/seller referral from another member?
8. If you are a vendor, have you ever received leads/inquiries/sales from real estate professionals on AR?
9. Have you you noticed your ActiveRain posts/pages in the search engine results pages for your keywords?
10. Why are you involved in AR? 1.community 2.buyer/seller leads 3.referrals from other members 4.other (please explain)
Thank you to all the staff at ActiveRain for a great year!