Technology isn’t just the MLS on the Internet or a fancy iPhone. It’s so much more. Tools like computers, smart phones, contact management software, global positioning systems, online mapping, printers, scanners and digital cameras are just a few of the latest gizmos out there. The good news is that much of the new technology is free, or close to it. So, there’s no excuse not to use the free technological solutions that can do such a great job of helping you market and manage your real estate business. While we’re not recommending any particular brands, here are a few tools we can offer that will take your business to the next level.
Internet Based Email
By far, email is my favorite and most used online application. Not only do I have my personal email address, but I also have multiple business addresses for different businesses and purposes. My email is accessible from any Internet computer and my old emails are stored online as well.
YouTube for Video Marketing
YouTube, a Google product, is fast becoming the only place to go for videos of all types. Major TV networks and News providers load their segments on YouTube. If you are a real estate professional with property listings, you shouldn’t overlook the marketing exposure you obtain for your client with a video of your listing on YouTube. It’s guaranteed to impress even the fussiest seller.
On-Line Calendar & Contact/Task Management
There are many products currently available that are suitable for the real estate business. Be sure to find an application that integrates your email, calendar and contact/task management. Google and Top Producer both offer such a product. While the Google offering is free, Top Producer will set you back $29-$49 per month depending how many bells and whistles you hang on it.
Use Accounting Software for Tracking Income & Expenses
If you are into detail from an accounting perspective try QuickBooks, Peachtree or MSMoney. However, if you’re a little more simple-minded and want to spend as little time as possible in getting expenses and income into an online solution that’s also free, then try some of the online accounting packages available out there. Just Google “online accounting software” and you’ll find plenty to choose from.
Voice Mail Management
There are obviously many services to choose from for voice mail management. Careful consideration of all the features offered from each provider is in order. Some that are offered actually allow you to make entries via voice from your cell phone account. You can use it to do accounting, enter appointments, tasks, and more. This is a great tool for those of us who spend a great deal of time out of the office.
There are simply hundreds of Blog platforms for you to choose from. WorldPress is the most widely used blog platform in the world and it powers many sites that you wouldn’t even recognize as blogs. While the basic WordPress-hosted blog platform is free, you’ll want to look carefully at other platforms to make sure that what you select has all of the formatting and other powerful features you require. Most are very inexpensive or free.
Emailing Blog Newsletters
If you’re going to blog, and you should, be sure and make multiple uses of the content you produce. There are solutions available that can take your blog posts, create a nicely formatted email newsletter, and automatically send it out on a pre-assigned schedule. It’s a great way to create a user-friendly and current email contact system.
- The role of digital media to the success of London 2012 (blogs.cisco.com)