NEW MEMBERS - Start Here

By
Real Estate Services with Zillow - Nat'l Outreach Mgr & Dir. of Zillow Academy

Welcome Active Rain New Members & Invited Guests - If you are looking to Active Rain as a place to get rich quick, or just score points, you're in the wrong spot.  However, if you're looking to surround yourself with incredible knowledge, experienced professionals, worthy relationships, industry support, and marketing ideas to grow your business and better your Blogging skills, you've landed in the BEST spot on planet earth. 

For months now, I have been welcoming "New Members" by adding links in your comments, and a welcome message to your "Very First Post" here on Active Rain.  Now, I still welcome you, and just include a link to this post. :-)

As a new member to Active Rain, I'm inviting you to join me on a journey which will hopefully guide you through our Active Rain "Land and Community."
I have spent numerous hours creating posts for other friends, members, and invited guests to help them speed up the "learning & success" process here.   My advice, take your time, get yourself set-up properly, and then enjoy the many benefits and privileges of being an Active Rain Member.

Please understand that there are a ton of helpful posts by many members here on AR, and this is no substitute for all the great stuff you will find here.  The intent of this post is to guide you through the set-up process, take you on a guided tour of some helpful and "Value-Added" posts and sites, simplify your learning curve, and minimize the time it takes to get you up and running with your Blog on Active Rain.  Let's begin step by step....

BEFORE YOU BEGIN:

The first step is to make sure your Profile Page is setup properly.  Your profile page on Active Rain is your personal web page within the community.  This is the place members and visitors will go to find out more about you, your business, services, products offered, and your experience. #1 How To Set-up Your Active Rain Profile, #2 How To Complete Your Active Rain Profile - Part II and #3 Your Active Rain Profile - Your Masterpiece  (also see Active Rain New Members - Getting Started )

NOW START HERE:

You'll want to be sure that all your "settings" in Active Rain are set to your specifications, and getting you the maximum results for your time and efforts here. This post covers all the settings options available on your personal settings page. How To Use Your "My Settings" Page  &  Active Rain Settings & SEO Benefits

THE NEXT STEP:

This next post is a compilation, which will give you some great links, ideas, and resources to really kick-off your Blog, and possibly answer some of the many questions you may have at this point.  The Bloggers Start-Up Kit is FREE for you to use and refer to when needed.  You will find many of these links and this information posted there.  Blogger Startup Kit

ADDING ASSOCIATES and SUBSCRIBING: 

Adding associates and subscribing to their Blog is what keeps Active Rain alive and thriving.  It's another big part of the relationship building process here.  There are a couple things to know about when doing this.
So You've Added Me as an Associate
 

BEING THE FEATURED AGENT ON ACTIVE RAIN: 

You are now ready to go to the next level with your Active Rain Blogging experience!  Many new members want to know how to get to the coveted "Featured Member" status in their geographic areas.  There is an easy explanation of how to do this, and yes, it can be you.  You will get out of this community as much, and even more than you put into it.  Here's how.
Do You Want to be the "Featured Member" in your Area

OTHER QUESTIONS YOU MAY HAVE HERE ON ACTIVE RAIN:

How do I know if anyone is reading my Blog and why should I care? 
Who's Reading Your Blog - 3 Ways To Find Out

We all have to learn by our mistakes, but sometimes, can we learn by others?  7 Mistakes to Avoid on Active Rain

What makes a good post on my Blog?  Is there a formula? 
5 Principles to Creating an Effective Post

What do I need to know to keep from getting frustrated here? 
Warning ALL Active Rain Members - You Can't Go Back


MARKETING AND FARMING YOUR BLOG:

All of us started here just as you have, learning as we go, advancing by trial and error, and gathering data from others to try and be more successful in our attempt to grow business, build referrals, and establish relationships.  Here's a post that will help you market your Blog more effectively, instead of just waiting for someone to hopefully find it by a Google "Keyword" search, or through osmosis and luck.  Marketing and Farming Your Blog

TOOLS FOR YOU TO USE: 

Is there something I should know before I begin my Blog? 
Successful Blogging in the Real Estate Industry

Why would I want to use or include Video on my Blog or in my posts? 
Video and Your Blog - See Future Technology

What does Google have to offer me, my Blog, and my business for FREE? 
20 Google Tools for Your Business

Where do I find cool photos, graphic, clip-art, and stuff for my Blog? 
FREE Photos and Graphics and Clip-Art

What is a widget, and how do I add them to my Blog or sidebar? 
Widgets: How to Add Them to Your Blog

How do I keep up with the stuff I want to know more about? 
Staying "Alerted"

How do I use my Statistics Page on Active Rain and why? 
Using your Active Rain Statistics Page to Improve Your Blog

How can I create custom maps for my website or Blog? 
New Tools for Your BLOG - Customized Mapping

I'm a REALTOR®, can I add my Listings to Active Rain? If so, where and how?
Activerain MLS On-line

JOINING ACTIVE RAIN GROUPS:

There are over 3000 Groups here on Active Rain.  This area is entirely up to you as far as which ones to join.  I suggest you take an hour, look through them all, and determine which ones will benefit you most.  As you create posts on Active Rain, you'll want to add them to "Topic Related" groups, so choose wisely.  Please DO NOT add your posts to groups if they are not ON TOPIC for that group. 

Here's a couple groups I recommend if you're new here, and looking for some places to hang out and learn while starting your adventure here.  You can search ALL GROUPS, just click here.  You can also create your own GROUP by CLICKING HERE, but please do a thorough SEARCH first, chances are, that group may already exist!

Active Rain NewbiesBlogging Etiquette 101,   The Art Of Marketing You,    Practice Here!,  Blogging & SEO

SEARCHING ACTIVE RAIN:

You may want to search for others you know here, maybe some specific topics, keywords,  or even a particular Blog or post that may have the answers you're looking for.  There are a few ways to do this more efficiently and more affectively.  Finding What You Need - The Ultimate Search!

QUESTIONS YOU MAY STILL HAVE:

What is all the Fuss about Blogging, I have a website already. 
Should You Have A Blog or a Website

My Blog is great for the Cyber World, how does in benefit me in the Real World?   Your Blog in the REAL World

Which program is the best to build my database of clients? 
How Important is your Database? Think Inside the Box

Is there a tool that allows visitors to search just my Website or Blog? 
Do You Want Visitors Searching Your Blog

WHAT DOES "PAYING IT FORWARD" MEAN ON ACTIVE RAIN? 

Paying it forward is a term you will see used frequently here on AR.  It simply means to "Pay Forward" a kind deed or gesture to another member or person as you see fit.  It's like paying the toll bridge fee for the person in the car behind you.  They in turn pay for the person behind them, and so on, and so on.  It's a great way to give back to a community that gives so much to you.  It's OK to take from the "rain", but you must also be willing to give back, or "Pay it Forward" from time to time.  Paying It Forward, Active Rain Style

LASTLY, OTHER POSTS YOU MIGHT FIND USEFUL: 

FLOCK - The "New" Social Web Browser

Open Houses - The Controversy

REALTOR® - The Way It Should Be

Active Rain | A Referral Network & Business Goldmine

FINALLY - You are ready to be cut loose and set FREE to roam around the Active Rain Country, but before you go, I've started an AR Birthday Calendar,  so can you please click on the link below and enter your birthday?

ENTER YOUR BIRTHDAY HERE        

It's not that we need to know how old you are, it's that when your birthday comes, we want to do something special for you.  Members are important, and sharing that special day is just my way of having an excuse and good reason for "PARTY TIME" with you!!  :-)

Good luck to you in all your endeavors here, I hope that you'll get as much out of this place as the rest of us members have.  This truly is the one and only place that you'll find yourself coming back to, time and time again.  To find other informative posts here, just search the keywords, "Active Rain Community Support", or just CLICK HERE!

Don't be overwhelmed, give yourself 2 weeks to get through this post, and all the links and information here!  It took an entire year in the making! :-)

Content Copyright Protected © 2008   Subscribe to Brad Andersohns Blog   Add Brad Andersohn as an Associate

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Comments 262 New Comment

Rainer
72,673
Marian Gregor-Ann
Arbor area Real Estate
Keller Williams

Hi Brad, So glad that I followed your 'year in review' link. This is just what I needed! I've done the first few steps, now on to the others... I've posted 3 (w/ one featured!!!) , haven't found my voice yet. I suppose it will come. I'll look more.

December 22, 2008 09:28 PM
Rainer
72,673
Marian Gregor-Ann
Arbor area Real Estate
Keller Williams

Hi again, I forgot to mention. I'll plan to give a link to this post  to those that I've invited to AR.

December 22, 2008 09:37 PM
Ambassador
731,106
Brad Andersohn
ActiveBrad 707.646.1876
Zillow - Nat'l Outreach Mgr & Dir. of Zillow Academy

Marian - I have a better one called "Getting Started", there's a link to it on the main AR page.  You can also find more like this on my profile page.  Hopefully this will help anyone you invite get started.  Thanks. :-)

December 24, 2008 01:07 PM
Anonymous
Judy Schneider

Still a lot of information, But I am trying.

April 06, 2009 10:13 PM
Rainer
127,314
Dan Quinn
Dan Quinn
Prudential PenFed Realty

Took me months to discover this, but what a find!  Thanks Brad for this very informative post.

October 26, 2009 10:19 AM
Ambassador
731,106

Brad Andersohn

ActiveBrad 707.646.1876
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