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There’s always something to howl about

When you’re not busy searching for Maricopa County real estate, you can have yourself a great Maricopa County picnic: Just whip up some tasty Maricopa County sandwiches and pack some frosty Maricopa County beverages, but remember to keep an eye out for those nasty Maricopa County scorpions

Comes news today that a keyword-packed fake weblog is every bit as attractive and satisfying as an inflatable spouse. I don’t doubt it for a minute, but if the objective is to snare random morons by deception, I think a “stealth” web site is a better-yielding joy-doll.

I swear to god it’s Groundhog Day in the real estate industry — 1974 every damn day, over and over again. Does real estate weblogging offer a path to transparency? Not if it’s just another sleazy gimmick.

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  • 18 comments

    18 Comments so far

    1. Brandon Kitchen July 27th, 2007 7:39 am

      I love this post! I think the title humor may be lost on some though ;-)

      I just started reading BHblog and love it. As a fellow ‘introvert’ tech geek turned real estate broker, I identify closely with a lot of your opinions on technology and the real estate business.

    2. Tim July 27th, 2007 5:20 pm

      Back to the future was a big hit, too. And the re-runs still pack ‘em in. Why change when the way we’ve always done things seems to work just fine–after all it’s only a movie (an the Internet is just a fad).

    3. Sock Puppet July 27th, 2007 5:39 pm

      The first link was to RSS Pieces talking about the Long Beach Real Estate Blog getting some great lead generating results. The two bloggers in question being Laurie Manny and Brian Brady. I hardly think they justify being lumped in with phrases like “fake weblog” and attempting to “snare random morons by deception”.

      Also those inflatable spouses you linked too are only 3ft tall, are impossible to clean and tend to develop slow leaks in the early models.

      -Athol

    4. Greg Swann July 27th, 2007 6:34 pm
      • Title: Long Beach Real Estate Resource – Long Beach Real Estate-Downtown Long Beach Condos
      • Post: Hiring YOUR Long Beach Realtor
      • Post: Relocating to Long Beach-Resource Guide
      • Post: Long Beach Home Bathroom Remodels
      • Post: Long Beach Home Kitchen Remodels
      • Post: Long Beach Backyards-Ponds and Nasty Swimming Pools
      • Post: AVP Crocs Tour Bud Light Long Beach Open Comes to Alamitos Beach and Downtown Long Beach July 16-22, 2007
      • Post: Belmont Heights-Long Beach Ca Market Report-2007
      • Post: Downtown Long Beach Condo-$75k Remodel-For Sale

      > I hardly think

      I believe you.

    5. Jay Thompson July 27th, 2007 10:49 pm

      First sentence in current post:

      “Well, today’s Long Beach mortgage rates report begs you to deal with experts when buying a home in Long beach or refinancing your Long Beach mortgage.”

      Must admit, I’m a little surprised to see this out of Brian. But it’s Laurie’s blog (and Brian’s?) and hers/theirs to do with as they please.

    6. Sock Puppet July 27th, 2007 11:59 pm

      Just sounds like you’re complaining about SEOed titles Greg.

      I agree with Jay that Brians first sentence is stomach churning, but once you’re past the titles it’s mostly pretty straightforward reading.

      I thought the “Search for Homes Now” and “What’s My Home Worth” buttons are pretty good ideas.

      Just sounds like you’re pissing on someone getting results from blogging.

      -Athol

    7. [...] The premise: The commercial value of real estate weblogging comes from making a visceral connection with future clients, ideally leading to viral results, not spam-trolling for short-term leads. In other words, where keyword-packed tapioca content may score well for now on search engines, and may bring in filled-out web forms, it will not create the kinds of enduring connections that result in repeat and referral business for generations. Certainly none of the people brought in by search engines will become loyal readers or subscribers to the weblog: There’s no there there. Even worse, spamvertising in weblogs surely repels at least as many people as it seems to attract, and the people repelled are very probably the ones most likely to yield significant viral results over the years. You’re not only not building bridges, you’re blasting the bridgeheads. [...]

    8. [...] The premise: The commercial value of real estate weblogging comes from making a visceral connection with future clients, ideally leading to viral results, not spam-trolling for short-term leads. In other words, where keyword-packed tapioca content may score well for now on search engines, and may bring in filled-out web forms, it will not create the kinds of enduring connections that result in repeat and referral business for generations. Certainly none of the people brought in by search engines will become loyal readers or subscribers to the weblog: There’s no there there. Even worse, spamvertising in weblogs surely repels at least as many people as it seems to attract, and the people repelled are very probably the ones most likely to yield significant viral results over the years. You’re not only not building bridges, you’re blasting the bridgeheads. [...]

    9. Kris Berg July 28th, 2007 1:43 pm

      Athol – Down, boy! I have to agree with Greg that making this kind of keyword rich content your primary goal is the tail wagging the dog. I happen to be a big believer of delivering a message first and worrying about SEO later – or never. I love a good Google ranking as much as the next guy, but it is the couple around the corner, not the couple in Atlanta, that is my target audience. So, SEO be damned. I will continue to write what I write, I will pick titles and posts devoid of the big-fat-important keywords if it makes sense and amuses me, and if I accidentally accomplish both a strong LOCAL following and some search engine ranking, yippee for me!

      If I want to dominate the first page of Google for “San Diego Real Estate”, I would have to completed compromise my content and, more importantly, my style. Which brings us to the point of Greg’s follow-up post. Who are we trying to please here? It is my style, for right or wrong, which allows people who just might need an agent someday to make a connection, not the number of times I used the words “Best Realtor in San Diego”.

    10. Sock Puppet July 28th, 2007 3:32 pm

      I agree there are style choices to be made Kris, but it just seems to be that Greg’s response to RSS Pieces saying someone in their stable is getting a goodly supply of leads from blogging is loosely summed up as “oh yeah, well you guys suck”.

      I thought that was called an ad hominem argument on this blog.

    11. Laurie Manny July 29th, 2007 12:16 pm

      Yawn…………..

      What is your San Diego home worth? What a buyer is willing to pay.

      This “week”: How to TP a Scripps Ranch Home and have fun

      Ask the Brokers – Exterior maintenance of my San Diego condominium is not my problem… Or is it?

      A Longer Look Back – San Diego and Scripps Ranch Market Trends (Hurry Up, Altos!)

      You want “pizazz”? Scripps Ranch real estate trends revisited.

      Scripps Ranch Quick Stat’s for May 2007 (per SANDICOR)

      The San Diego Union may turn their back, but my San Diego Blog will be still be here

      How is the Scripps Ranch real estate market? Just great, and different.

      Sigh……..

    12. Greg Swann July 29th, 2007 1:04 pm

      > Yawn
      > Sigh

      Shoe pinch? That’s the threshold to self-improvement. I’m sorry you were misled, probably at considerable expense. Now that you know you were, you have a chance to learn to do better. Projection solves nothing, although it’s a common-enough vice. Pointing you finger back toward yourself will serve you better, but that’s your business. My own concern is that other people don’t get the idea that spamvertising is a viable marketing strategy. It isn’t — as you acknowledge with this affected pose.

      PS: You could not have picked a worse target for your bogus comparison. Kris Berg writes for BloodhoundBlog because she writes better than anyone I know.

    13. Brian Brady July 29th, 2007 1:19 pm

      This hypocrisy is astonishing !

      All of the critics have used this strategy within the past six months. Now, sitting on top the heap, they attempt criticize those who have achieved success from it.

      Greg, this is “Intellectual Socialism”, and you know exactly where I’m going with this.

      PS- Kris is a great writer, who is extremely effective at using keyword rich content in her titles and articles.

    14. Greg Swann July 29th, 2007 1:30 pm

      I can’t tell if you’re joking, Brian.

      Am I to understand that you don’t understand the difference between using proper nouns and keyword-packing?

      Is there some difference in your mind between “Long Beach Home Kitchen Remodels” and ordinary kitchen remodels?

      Moreover, have you overlooked the fact that the content under discussion is created for no purpose other than Google-spamming?

      We are talking about a philosophy of fake weblogging purveyed by a vendor. Laurie Manny is an unfortunate victim, but neither she nor you advance her interests by insisting that she hasn’t been sold a bill of goods.

    15. Kris Berg July 29th, 2007 2:46 pm

      > Yawn
      > Sigh

      Ouch. And to think, this wasn’t even my post. Aside from the fact that your remarks were kind of mean, let me point out why they were misguided. First, my comments to Athol had absolutely nada to do with your blog or your approach to blogging. I did not attack your philosophy; I shared my own.

      >PS- Kris … is extremely effective at using keyword rich content in her titles and articles.

      Not entirely by accident, but mostly. If we write an article on Scripps Ranch (a distinct zip code) housing trends, would it make sense to title it anything else? And, yes, sometimes I throw “San Diego” or “Scripps Ranch” in the title because that is my audience for a particular post. Yet having done that, I give absolutely zero thought to repeating the keywords in the body. If they come, they come naturally and because they make sense. If you don’t believe me, go play “count the keywords” yourself. I fail miserably under your model. So, Brian gives me far too much credit.

      Laurie, you have found a recipe which works for you, and I applaud you. Our styles are different, and that is what makes the world go ’round. Now, pick on someone else, please.

    16. [...] For the uninitiated, the title is a bad joke. Moving on… [...]

    17. Sock Puppet July 29th, 2007 3:46 pm

      I don’t think Laurie was trying to pick on you Kris, just defending her position.

      Considering Greg called her work a fake weblog, compared her site to a cheap sex toy and said she was trolling for morons, I think Laurie has been pretty restrained.

      -Athol

    18. [...] ‘Open source’, ‘Blogging’, ‘Web 2.0′, the importance (or impotence) of Search Engine Optimization is the buzz of the Internet, and especially hot in the real estate and mortgage verticals.  Regardless of the lingo used, one thing is evident…The big WWW has evolved (very) dramatically.   There are new rules since the web has gotten smarter; it’s a very different beast than the gigantic digital archive of static pages it used to be. [...]