GOOGLE JUICE AND CHEESE...What Do They Have In Common???


GOOGLE JUICE AND CHEESE...What Do They Have In Common???

WHERE'S THE CHEESE?Did you know that there is a concern about the way we get points for blogging here on ActiveRain???GOOGLE JUICE

Did you know that some members have dropped off the blog roll because they don't think it is such a good thing to get points for what we do???...that getting Google Juice is thought of as the wrong reason to blog???

Sometimes there are posts written here on ActiveRain that are perfect for stimulating back and forth conversation and revealing attitudes about things that we, as members do and the reason we do them. I can't think of a better place than ActiveRain to engage in these conversations, especially if there is a genuine goal and forthcoming information that we ALL benefit from! Putting that aside for the moment, I ALSO THINK THAT GETTING GOOD RANKING ON GOOGLE IS AN ATTRIBUTE OF ACTIVERAIN!!!

Rick Obst wrote just such a post the other day and it did get featured, finally! Why Should We Invest Our Time and Money in ActiveRain? His post was written, from what I understand, to get the members who are active here on ActiveRain now to tell us all WHY? Why are they are active and why is there such uneven activity from many of the members, some even dropping from the scene; some just not participating. The other reason I guess, was to find out why the really BIG producers from certain market-places do NOT become members here on ActiveRain. These were very valid questions that he wanted to know for the benefit of all to see. Just how many Top Producers really do partake and benefit from ActiveRain blogging....that is the question.


WHERE'S THE CHEESE?GOOGLE JUICE AND "CHEESE" are the two very important reasons that I blog on ActiveRain versus some other places! I get Google Juice through my particpation on AR and I get the "Cheese" when I get encouragement, constructively critical comments on a post, and good solid ideas and information from other members here on ActiveRain!! Just like the mouse in the tunnel: If there is no cheese, I leave!

These are the two things that keep me here on ActiveRain as a very happy, and successful real estate professional (A Top Producer, by the way!)

As I explained to Rick on his post: It's just like Google Juice---there are rewards for a certain type of ActiveRain Member--the consistent blogger is the ideal member, of course and if there is no cheese at the end of the tunnel--there is no reason to go downTEAMWORK TO GET THE CHEESE that tunnel anymore!

I think that the way one gets rewarded (the Google juice or the cheese!) here on ActiveRain, beyond the great SEO, is the acknowledgment from the other members that we all get at one time or another---encouragement to go the distance, to make the statement that has an impact, to write a gem of a post that gets featured or to get another member to point out your particular effort through a re-blog. Those are the ingredients that add up to lots and lots of cheese and that will bring those little mice back down the tunnel here on ActiveRain. There-in lies the secret ingredient to getting members to stay here and be happy!

Where do you stand on this topic? ARE YOU A TOP PRODUCER WHO USES ActiveRain AS A SOURCE OF GOOGLE JUICE AND CHEESE???

Please comment below and let us all know the reasons you participate here in the Rain!!!






                                     **ALL INFORMATION AND CONTENT IN THIS BLOG IS ORIGINAL TO PAULA I. HATHAWAY.  The views expressed herein are my personal views and do not reflect the views of Douglas Elliman Real Estate


Paula I. Hathaway, Senior Broker Associate, Douglas Elliman Real Estate

Southamtpon Village Real Estate Specialist since 1995;  Also Specializes in North Sea, Noyac, Water Mill and Bridgehampton, New York

Diamond , Gold and Chairman's Circle Awards; Top Producer since 2005


Click here to see my Hampton's website to see all my listings; please email me or call me for all your real estate needs in Southampton, Bridgehampton and Watermill:



Comment balloon 140 commentsPaula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA • January 01 2012 11:58AM


Roy and Delores: Happy New Year to you  too!!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Excellent post and what a great analogy to explain a concept I've "understood" for a while but never been able to describe as aptly as you have done. Wishing lots of Juice and Cheese for you in 2012. 

Posted by Mark Delgado, Benicia and Vallejo, Property Management, rental h (houses for rent, Solano County & Glen Cove) over 8 years ago

Paula what is your defination of Top Producer? 

I am a very busy and successful realtor. I participate in AR because I learn a lot and it helps get me more business. The points are like a scale. I can tell if I am gaining or losing weight by how I look and how my clothes fit, but the scale, keeps me accountable.

Posted by Marcy Moyer, Probate, Trust, and Investment Specialist (eXp Realty of California Silicon Valley Probate, Trust, and Investment Sales) over 8 years ago

Activerain has introduced me to so many things that would have gone right over my head...  I have learned to use technology in my business, developed new business practices, learned about new areas I never even heard of before - and that's just due to reading Activerain. 

Through participating as a blogger, I've developed new friends in the industry and generated new business that otherwise would have gone to one of my competitors.  Google juice?  That's not the reason I blog, but I sure do appreciate it.


Posted by Margaret Woda, Maryland Real Estate & Military Relocation (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.) over 8 years ago

I am a newbie that started out looking for information and used it primarily in that fashion for the first while. I then started blogging a little more even though it felt like work. I then processed into doing more hyperlocals and noticed that I was to the top page of google in rankings. Now it is to the point that if I don't come here at least once or twice a day my eyeball twitches a little! We are like family here!

Posted by Rosalie Evans, The Evans Group, Sioux Falls, SD Homes For Sale (Meritus Group Real Estate) over 8 years ago

I'm here to connect with colleagues and prospects.  My articles cover a wide range of topics from professional to hyperlocal and those are used by both groups to establish an opinion of me and my work, which often leads to business.  The Google Juice happens on it's own by writing the right content.  I get two types of feedback; interest and leads from prospects (live and online) and thoughts from colleagues that sometimes better my business.

Posted by Bryan Robertson over 8 years ago

Hi Paula.  What a great analogy.  I have gotten a lot out of my participation on AR, especially the December Blogging Challenge.  Happy New Year.

Posted by Former Agent (None) over 8 years ago

Paula Active Rain is the best investment in time, energy and $$$ that I've made this past several years.  Obviously the google juice is great and I am also very pleased with the top notch professionals I've met all over the country and built tried and true relatioships with - awesome group of very smart folks!  I have learned so much from so many....laughed, cried and get excited about everyones wins.  Best place to be for all top producers and those that are making their way to the top spots.


Happy 2012 to YOU!


Featured in BananaTude

Posted by Anna Banana Kruchten Arizona's Top Banana!, 602-380-4886 (HomeSmart Real Estate BR030809000) over 8 years ago

Mark: Great! ..and thank you! I have a feeling that the way we get the most from this sight is in the very valuable relationships we build as we interact in our blogging...That supercedes even the cheese for me! :)

Marcy: In my company, we have a way that "Top Producer" is idenitfied. There are awards given out every year to those who have attained a certain level of GCI (Gross Commission Income) and those are the folks who get the designation...every company is different, I would imagine, so it really depends on how you yourself view yourself in your area. That's why I was not in full agreement with the idea that "no top producers participate here on AR". We have an agent who was voted Top agent in the whole country by WSJ--he is in another company but he would not be caught dead here on ActiveRain--he does millions in GCI, so go figure.

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Hi Paula - It is my understanding that I could get the google juice from other sites - a wordpress blog, BiggerPockets, etc. But having looked into those a while back, it seems that the fun would be missing. None of the other sites are really communities, and don't offer anywhere near the level of engagement with like-minded professionals, the dialog, the education, or the friendship (weird as it is, being friends with people you've never met). Or the laughs. I'm here because it's fun.

Posted by Dick Greenberg, Northern Colorado Residential Real Estate (New Paradigm Partners LLC) over 8 years ago

Google and Active Rain have been kind to me and helped to grow my business. May the New Year bring you health, wealth and happiness!

Posted by Maria Morton, Kansas City Real Estate 816-560-3758 (Platinum Realty) over 8 years ago

Margaret: Same here! I love to write--I can do it here and on top of that I can get a good solid critique that I would otherwise only get if I were doing a writing course! It keeps me on my toes here and meanwhile I am building a copy written portfolio of my writing!

Rosalie: Please don't let your eyeball twitch!! :) I do the same thing--twice a day: first thing in the early AM and then again at night--today is a bonus because I am not working!

Bryan: That is such a good way to use this venue! I guess I do the same thing but I must say, sometimes I just like to write and this is the place I do it--I don't have the discipline on my own to be a writer in the sense of the typical writer, but I do have a substantial number of people who read my blogs and I have also built a base of professionals here whom I respect. I have had good exchanges with them--even some business from them too!

Aimee: Thank you---I do like the mouse and cheese analogy too--it is very apropos for the feedback I get from everyone here! The Goolge Juice speaks for itself and most of the members here do appreciate it!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Anna: You are so terrific!! Thanks for the feature and I can see why your blog has such a following--I too have met so many great people, like you, here on AR that it is one thing I am so thankful for! I am going to be doing alot more interaction here on AR in 2012 too so I will see you around!!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Dick: I agree! I have tried wordPress and in fact post quite a bit there but I get nothing back--it's all quite dry. Unless I am using it like another site i.e. FB or Twitter, it does not have what I need in terms of interaction!...ActiveRain is so much fun! I also have learned so much--in terms of tech knowledge, I am head and shoulders ahead of everyone in my office!

Maria: Thank you and happy New Year to you too....enjoy the exchanges you will have in 2012 here on ActiveRain!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Encouragement is a huge reason I became an AR member.  While my blogs are limited, I know that someone out there will read something I post and comment.  Some of those that I follow on Active rain have outside blgos that get ZERO comments but they are loaded with wonderful feedback here on AR.  Another reason is to truly test the waters and see what kind of results I can get by utilizing AR.  My membership is pretty new and I am excited about what the new year holds!

Posted by Jennifer Robinson, NMLSR# 190994/AL#50092, Conventional, FHA, VA, Step Up and USDA (Starkey Mortgage - Where PEOPLE come first!) over 8 years ago

Paula, Great topic and thank you for keeping this discussion going!  I greatly appreciated your input and encouragement on my initial post well before it was featured.  I have a Google alert on my name and once the post did get featured the alert notified me that Google had picked it up.

For me, ActiveRain is a great educational source filled with nice, sharing, and caring real estate professionals at all stages of expertise.  The Google juice and fellow Rainer comments are just two more reasons to chase that cheese!

Posted by Retired from ActiveRain over 8 years ago

Paula, I am here because of the education and google juice. I am found on google. I have a niche, but I am not a top producer in my market. I don't care to be top producer. If I were then I wouldn't have the time to blog on ActiveRain. The top producers in my market are not active, they may have a profile setup, but they don't blog. Being a top producer in my market means to be a part of a team, to manage a team, to list REO's, or broker/owner of a property management company that services hundreds of clients. Seriously, how could they have time to blog when they probably have little spare time left for their families.

Posted by Pamela Seley, Residential Real Estate Agent serving SW RivCo CA (West Coast Realty Division) over 8 years ago

Great post, fun to read and think through it.  I have been postly pretty regularly for about 6 months now and am looking forward to those relationships you talk about.  Happy New Year!

Posted by Joy Daniels (Joy Daniels Real Estate Group, Ltd.) over 8 years ago

Paula, what a great topic, being an independent broker and wanting interaction with other inductry professionals is the prime reason I read pretty much everything in the featured blog postings.  Have fully utilized my Activerain capabilities but that is one of my resolutions for 2012.

Happy New Year from Innerloop Houston Texas.

Posted by Linda Jamail Marshall, Broker, ABR,QSC,RECS,ACRE - Innerloop Houston, Tex (Linda Marshall,Houston Texas, Linda Marshall, Realtors®) over 8 years ago

I am not the top producer in our office,but probably in the top few. I am here for the encouragement an ideas that we bounce around here!

Posted by Rob D. Shepherd, Principal Broker GRI, SRES (Windermere/lane county) over 8 years ago

The little red hens here on Active Rain are just as busy, prolific contributors on stand alone blog posts, Inman, Zillow Trulia, and other social media platforms to extend the reach, frequency of their marketing streams. Why the disparity? Preaching to the choir. It's the 90/10 rule of the real estate, any jungle. Creating a better, more memorable, helpful, time and gas, money saving experience for our real estate buyers and sellers. That's the point, target. Not the tally or color of the little AR blogging platform square next to your name. Results is the bottom line.  Can the buyer, seller relate, connect, engage to what you post? It's how you do it, how often, not where.

Posted by Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573, Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker (MOOERS REALTY) over 8 years ago

Jennifer: I would like to see how long you have been actively blogging--that is the key. The encouragemnt you speak of is the cheese that I mention and I LOVE CHEESE!!! Don't you? There is also plenty to go around right here on AR and ANYBODY can get it if they feel so inclined--that's what I love about AR! Good luck to you in 2012...

Rick: Glad you stopped by--I did appreciate your post to the degree that I wrote this one! That is very telling! :) I would be interested in how you get the Google alert? Is that something you do on Google or here on ActiveRain? Anyway--Happy New Year and good luck in 2012!

Pamela: Very interesting! It does not always pay to be a top producer does it? I myself have no family here in Southampton so I do have lots of time to plug away here on AR in addition to selling real estate!... but I can see your point about the need to be available for your family!


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago


WHAT a brilliant way to explain some of the reasons to enjoy Active Rain.

Wishing You Much Continued Success and a Great Year!

Posted by TODD PICCONI 909.908.7376 PASSIONATE ABOUT YOURMOVE, Patient, Persistent and Passionate About Your Move (TODD PICCONI REAL ESTATE) over 8 years ago

Joy: And Happy New Year to you too! Good Blogging luck in 2012 as well...those relationships just happenas long as you are participating here--posting and commenting. Some only comment here! So either way..Good Luck to you!

Linda: The same to you too--I am sure once you put down roots here, write a post or two--maybe even get featured,  you will certainly find the benefits everyone is talking about here! This is THE place for RE professionals in my opinion!

Rob: Top Producer or not, this is the way to the top of Google--blogging here on AR gets the best juice for the best ranking on any search engine; that's why the cheese is so good..."Let them eat cheese" is jy new motto!!


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Andrew: CONTENT! Now, that's what I am talking about! That's the result of eating all that cheese and drinking all that juice--or is it the other way around??? You, my friend have hit it on the head with your comment--and nothing shall put asunder that which you have pointed out here! Thank you and Happy New Year to you !

Todd: Why, thank you! I hope this post has the impact on the non-active rainers that it has had on the active ones! Happy New Year to you and enjoy 2012!!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula, I'm a service provider with a product that sells luxury homes faster; so I'm a niche market for high end homes in Houston. I am not consistent because this is a "spare time" engagement for me. When I get busy, I may not be here for months. I come back for several reasons .. to practice the art of writing; to "listen in" on what is being discussed --- one benefit is I can ask you guys "what do you think?" about this. when it would not be appropriate for me to ask my own client base. I also learn a lot by tapping into the resource data resident on A/R, as well as the experiences shared by the membership. My clients are all top producers for multi-million$ homes and are not interested in this platform .... I'm 5 for 5 of being told "not interested" (to their credit, they did come over and look).  Houston Association of Realtors gives all HAR members free blogs and many members use that or interact via Linked In. Our HAR blogs are "hooked-in" to our MLS so that gives us a pipeline right to MLS users (our target market).  I'm intrigued by clever title-ing and clever contstruction of content, interesting use of graphics  .. I feel the content quality has degraded in just the short time I've been here, but I noticed a difference when I came back (again) in the Fall --- lots of "usual posters" MIA, too. So, thanks for asking ... and remember ... while it may be the early bird that gets the worm -- its the second mouse that gets the cheese. hee hee

Posted by Judith Sinnard, The SMARTePLAN Lady (SMARTePLANS; Houston, Texas) over 8 years ago

It is interesting to see people come and go and one of the more respected bloggers I follow has totally bailed on AR with the 'own your content' argument. I have to say I'm not happy to see Market Leader.

Posted by Danny Dietl, Buy, Sell, Lease - ( over 8 years ago

Judith: Thank you for such a good summation of the way this sight is viewed from your perspective--and I appreciate that you are NOT a real estate professional but I can see that you are very plugged in to the real estate community. The area I am working in is also a "high end" luxury home market---The Hamptons enjoys the international involvement as well so I can see why the "Top Producers" here can get the feeling that AR is so out of the realm of where their buyers come from. For me, however, this is where I come for technology changes, new forms of marketing and a real contact with real agents who like to share ideas, as do I. In the future, the connections we enjoy on this sight will be considered "the way" to do business, in my opinion. Linkedin is just another sight like FaceBook or Twitter to me and the only connection I made was from on Linkedin was someone Ihad not heard from since 1998...she had borrowed money from me and then moved to California--never ever paying me back...even after I told her to pay me back before she moved. This is the problem for me on FB--I can't get into the mundane chit-chat that is dominating those sights--the other ones, I don't know anything about them. Thank you for sharing your experience here on AR! 

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Danny: I don't know what the "own your content" argument is so maybe you can enlighten my case I use "" so I own my own content on AR. In terms of Market Leader, I have mixed feelings but I will say that the level of participation of all the members here on AR is what will keep it above the "fray" so to speak. My own feeling is that we as members keep the whole boat afloat so it behooves the owners to keep us happy, no?

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

I am in the top 2% of agents in our MLS closing just over 60 sides in 2011. (those numbers may not be a "top producer" in other markets) I started blogging the last week of August this past year. I started after gaining a new understanding of the benefits of blogging through taking the IMSD designation. In my short time here, (not even at 100,000 points) I am already number one in my city and number 2 in my county. (This is another reason I am here...because others in my market haven't figured out the benefits) I am here for the SEO and am already dominating the first page for a number of searched key words for my area. I read blogs everyday and have learned a lot of things that help...but primarily it is the Google Juice from SEO written posts that keeps me here.

Posted by Ken Brandon, Camp Lejeune, Jacksonville, NC (Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage (Jacksonville, NC)) over 8 years ago

I have been on Active Rain for a while, and while I blog some, I have never had a plan, in fact I don't even log in everyday.  I am ranked #1 in my city, and county, so that tells you few agents are blogging in my market.  I have decided to study and learn how to increase my google juice, my SEO, and expand my business through using Active Rain.  The points are a way to help me keep score.

Posted by Karen Steed, Associate Broker Haralson Realty (Tallapoosa, Bremen, Waco, Buchanan, Temple, Carrollton) over 8 years ago

Paula -

Re your question to Rick in 23:

Sign up for Google Alerts at   Just tell them what you want to be alerted about, like your name and/or your company name and how often you want to be "alerted".

Posted by Jim Hale, Eugene Oregon's Best Home Search Website (ACTIONAGENTS.NET) over 8 years ago

Ken: I can tell you are quite an asset to the ActiveRain website---how, you say? I can tell because you are so straight forward about why you are here--There really is no better reason because it does matter what your ranking is on Google! Do you know who the people are that say "It makes no diffference where you rank on Google--the buyer and seller out there don't care who comes up on Google first--they know those are not the real producers!!!" The people who say that are the ones who have no clue!!! They do not have one scintilla of knowledge about the way Google operates or the way the consumer thinks and THEY KNOW THEY DON'T KNOW IT; they think we don't either!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Karen: Good for you; because as I said to Ken above here, IT DOES MATTER WHERE YOU RANK ON GOOGLE! With you blogging on AR you put yourself in a better position than the other agents out there--Why? Because ActiveRain has the better Google connection--the Google algorythms are totally in alignment with ActiveRain and therefore we, who blog here, get the juice from that connection! The buying and selling public knows this and those are the people who use Google when they want to find something on the's all about content too--that is what pushes you higher on the rankings. You have good content, ActiveRain, and you have the connection between Google and AR. What more could you want? In my market, I rank higher on Google than most of the other agents in my company because of my participation here on AR. Good luck to you and your plan for 2012!! :)

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Jim: Thank you so much--I guess that means you read the rest of the comments here? :) Happy New Year to you !!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Hi Paula,  And Happy New Year to you !!!   Juice, cheese, its all good ! 

Posted by Bill Gillhespy, Fort Myers Beach Realtor, Fort Myers Beach Agent - Homes & Condos (16 Sunview Blvd) over 8 years ago

Bill: :)

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula, I see that Jim gave you the Google Alert link before I could get back to you.  Jim has the #1 ranking in Lane County, Oregon and I'm #2.  I don't think that I'll ever catch him (not that it matters), but reaching 500,000 points is my goal this year.  Hopefully I'll find the time to write many more content-rich posts too.

I was unfamiliar with, so thanks for mentioning it.  The "own your content" argument has been out there for awhile and I probably need to make a decision about this.  Besides AR, where else do you post?

I had a long conversation on Friday with a Market Leader representative on behalf of a new client who liked an agent's website powered by Market Leader.  I'm not sure if I'm going to recommend that he use them yet, but their "click to close" system is interesting to learn more about.  We'll see if ML continues the "hands off" approach with AR.

Posted by Retired from ActiveRain over 8 years ago

Paula, I am on ActiveRain for Cheese, Juice (and yes, I did get it - despite a small agent in my market) and friendship I have developed here is more valuable than anything else.

Posted by Praful Thakkar, Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale (LAER Realty Partners) over 8 years ago

Great post and excellent job of following up on and responding to your comments!  I blog for SEO and feel AR simply shortens the learning curve for many different things related to our real estate businesses.  Just from reading the comments here on this post I picked up a few great golden nuggets that I can quickly implement in my business.  But let's be very clear.  There are many ways to be a top producer and I know many agents who make $1M GCI and up and never blog and do not have an AR account.  For the most part we are in the lead generation business and how you generate those leads varies from market to market, agent to agent.  Systems are important as well as consistency.  Whether it be blogging, lead gen, database management, marketing, all need to be systemetized.  Again, great post!

Posted by Dylan Taft, Ulster County Area Consultant (Dylan Taft Broker/Owner Taft Street Realty, Inc.) over 8 years ago

Happy New Year!  People get what they give and that is what you should expect.

Posted by Yvette Chisholm, Associate Broker - Rockville, MD 301-758-9500 (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.) over 8 years ago

I have been less consistent here on the rain in 2011 because I am on facebook too much! (confession)  I only have so much rear end time! But part of my 2012 plan is to get re-connected here, and back in the regular swing of blogging and reading others blogs. I have gotten some great information for my business here, ligit referrals and a place to vent, listen and gain more knowlege about the industry. Active Rain is, was and always will be a WIN-WIN for me!

Posted by BethAnn Long, Realtor, CRS, e-PRO, Spokane Wa Real Estate (RE/MAX Inland Empire) over 8 years ago

Rick: I don't really blog anywhere but here--I have been known to put some of my posts from here on WP but I don't think that really counts--Google does not like copy and paste and I know that but still, I will put a post there to see if I will get any comments--nada! Nothing--zip! I still do not know the "own your content" argument so I would appreciate an update from someone......

Praful: I appreciate your candor and I think you know your market better than all the BIG guys, I'll bet!

TSR: Thank you for your input--and I do the same thing you do--I pick up all kinds of nuggets here on AR! I also know that the really big producers do not blog---they get their business from very different sources than we ordinary mortals get ours--someone has to do it!! (if you get my drift! :) We have a Sotheby's agent here who does so much business that I left that office because of him---any leads I got, he knows the people too through his connections--he never let me do any business. He does that to everyone and the only agents that work with him are trust fund "kids" who don't care--they want the "Sotheby's" connection.  He would always find out  that I was working with someone and in 2 minutes he had them in his pocket and his car and that was it!!! He also was designated the top agent in the country by WSJ so how do you compete with that??

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Yvette: I don't quite get what you mean unless you are saying if you put it out there you will get it back....Happy New Year..

BethAnn: That's great--I hope you have good luck getting back into the swing of things her on AR...anything I can do for you, just let me know!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula,  Great post!  We never know what will give us the google juice and subsequent buyers/sellers or contacts of other sorts until we put ourselves out there.  AR has been a great option for me at the right price even though my consistency has not been the greatest.  

Posted by Sara Homan, Realtor, Homes, Farms & 55+ (Coldwell Banker Ellison Realty 352-209-4044) over 8 years ago

I'm here for two reasons: I learn something almost every time I visit, and I want to build up my online presence and take advantage of the great opportunities it presents. I also like you folks and enjoy reading what you have to say.

Copyright: you own the copyright to your materials (photos, blogs, etc.) from the moment you create them, without having to register. Registration gives you some additional rights, but it is not necessary to protect your basic ownership and ability to sue if someone steals your work.

As I read the TOS, by participating here you are granting AR the right to use your materials in a number of different ways (republishing, etc.). But you still retain ownership. It's like granting a publishing company the right to publish your own the copyright and are giving someone else the right to publish it on your behalf.

This issue is more complicated than this very simplistic explanation, but it concerns me when the basic idea of copyright is so easily misunderstood.

Posted by Sonsie Conroy, Energetic, Enthusiastic, Knowledgeable Realtor (I serve buyers and sellers everywhere in San Luis Obispo County) over 8 years ago

I'm here for the google juice and to learn.  Some of the most innovative things in internet marketing I have learned right here on AR!  I have a very prominent website in my area, AR gives me yet one more platform to really take over the area as far as internet is concerned.  I log in, post blogs nearly every day... I always seem to learn something - whether it be from something someone has said on AR or just from researching the subject I'm blogging about.

Posted by Lainie Ramsey, Lake Texoma Expert (Homes By Lainie Real Estate Group) over 8 years ago

Sara: ...and that's a fact! We really need to put ourselves out there as you say--other wise someone else will put themsleves out there! AR is the perfct venue for doing just that...good luck in 2012--and with you r consistancy!

Sonsie: Me too! You have raised some concerns for me in that I was never made aware that AR could use my material without asking me for permission! They use it here because I am a particpating member--but after that they do not have my persmission!  Where else would they publish it? In a book perhaps? Because my plan right now is to publish my posts as a "guide" to new agetns in real estate....title TBD but I have a plan in the works to do just that---what does this "" do if they are not protecting my material?

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Lainie: Me too....I always find good posts that are helpful to me in so many ways....dosen't matter what time of day or day of theweek either! Totally valuable content here!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

I participate here because I love the community and have learned an awful lot.  I love the points, though, because they provide me with a measurement of how I am doing - something I personally need as incentive.  I love competition and find I do just a little bit better when I am competing - even with myself!  The Google juice, though, is what makes my phone ring!

Posted by Susan Haughton, Susan & Mindy Team...Honesty. Integrity. Results. (Long and Foster REALTORS (703) 470-4545) over 8 years ago

I am fairly new to AR but I joined to learn what others were doing with their business.  I have started blogging here and there mostly doing localism posts.  I created one post and found myself at the top of the google search for winterizing your St. Louis home!  I will continue to learn about google juice and AR and how the two help with my business.

Posted by Delores Campbell, Your St. Louis Real Estate Resource (Keller Williams Realty - Chesterfield) over 8 years ago

Susan: Great! Glad you know what works for you with your AR participation. Good luck for 2012 and I will see you on the blogs!

Delores: That sounds like you hit the big time already! Nothing helps you build your blogging confidence than acknowledgment like that!! good luck to you too!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula --> seems like I should start with let me count the ways reasons for being here.  The key is content and content is king. I recently read an article that describes the key to blogging, writing as if you are having a conversation with one of your friends. Do you feel this is an acquired style of some here who are so prolific? Honestly, there is not enough time in my day to read as many blogs as I would like to, but I manage to get around a bit and comment on blogs that share and enlighten me to new technology.  My Hyperlocal posts and market reports have "juiced" me with the first page of Google. The juice is sweet when that happens!!!

Posted by Karen Baker, Professional Help with Rapid Responses... (Sunset Beach and Beyond Realty) over 8 years ago

Frank and Karen: I agree that the best bloggers are the ones that do it coversationally.  It gives everyone a comfortable feeling and therefore an engagement is possible...if someone is talking TO the audience, that prcludes a dialogue. Through casual conversation, more is possible in terms of a two way communication...

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula - I am on ActiveRain for several reasons.  Google Juice is definitely a big part of it.  It also has been a great place to meet people, exchange ideas and learn.

Posted by Christine Donovan, Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M (Donovan Blatt Realty) over 8 years ago
I like the google juice and cheese. I like the PASS the Scripts, please, too. Great scripts here to incorporate in daily business. Not to mention encyclopedias full of endless real estate information,
Posted by Cheryl Ritchie, Southern Maryland 301-980-7566 (RE/MAX Leading Edge over 8 years ago

Google juice and cheese, the breakfast of blogging champions! And if you can manage to avoid the drama and petty sniping that goes on from time to time, that's a bonus! Great post to provoke conversation on a MOnday morning! Re-blogged!

Posted by Pat & Wayne Harriman, Broker/Owners, Wallingford CT Real Estate (Harriman Real Estate, LLC (203) 672-4499) over 8 years ago

Apologizing for getting Google juice is the same as apologizing for getting listings for being a member of Rotary or Lions Club !!! A Self Employed Person must always have a ROI on their time invested ANYWHERE !!!

Posted by Michael J. Perry, Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist (KW Elite ) over 8 years ago

    Paula I started with AR for the Google Juice, a word I had never heard until last April.  Once I started with AR, the thing I found amazing was how many different opinions there can be on any subject.  AR is the best place ever for seeing that.

    I learn a lot too. A previous post mentioned Market Leader.  I never heard of that until one minute ago.


Posted by Ron Climer (Keller Williams Realty Mountain Partners) over 8 years ago

Christine: I agree with being able to meet terrific people! Here,  we get the full benefits of developing relationships for business and just social reasons---I think it is the ideal place to got o do just that!!

Cheryl: That's a good one: Pass the scripts!! You happen to be right--how many times hae we been able to take away a great tag line or a good script to us e to talk to our clients--courtesy of ActiveRain!

Pat and Wayne: Happy New Year to you folks and thanks for the re-blog! Let's hope 2012 brings us all the good vibes that are represented here on this post! ...Makes it all worth while, doesn't it???

Michael: You are so right! "Anywhere we can get it!" is my motto!

Ron: The owner of the greatest social website in the world is Market Leader--I hope they realize how important that is!!


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Erica: Great! As I thought, because your name may not getmentioned by WSJ as an agent ranking number one in the nation does NOT mean we are NOT top producers!!! I believe that there are more Top Producers here on AR than certain people think there are!!! the basis for identifying a top producer also varies according to the market-place. Here in the Hamptons, if you looked only at the million$ top producers, you would find one, maybe two in certain just depends on the market-place!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula, Good to see this conversation continuing.  Michael J. Perry posted a comment on my original post this morning that I think belongs here as well:

More than 85% of real estate licenses leave the business in 12 months ! Why- they completely misjudged the real estate business ! Nobody told them that they needed to hit the ground running in Lead Generation !

On the other hand I have taught Prospecting to thousands(no exageration) of agents over the last 30 years sometimes in 7 hour sessions. Most in attendence take notes and participate in class discussions. But upon leaving class almost no one will prospect in a sustained way to build a successful real estate practice !

Blogging is LEAD GENERATION and a longterm way to brand yourself locally. It will take over 1,000 LOCALISM blog articles before you start to penetrate a specific market(lead-wise) on a consistant basis. Plain and simple most agents want to get rich quick and WILL NOT pay the price to build a successful business worth owning ! AR is no different than the need to Prospect !

Posted by Retired from ActiveRain over 8 years ago

Rick: Thank you for keeping me informed from your end---that is an interesting observation made by your commenter. I don't know if the idea gets very far unless someone really finds success with other ways of getting Google Juice....the profile with an agents company is the way most agents get Google Juice, if they are any good. I see fellow agents from my company come up in search rankings but they are not always there like I am because of my blogging!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Hi Paula, I think the best part about AR for me has been getting to know so many different and caring people. I saw Google Juice results right away. Still looking forward to some cheese - and wine.

I also love to learn, and the subjects presented here are right up my alley. I need to carve out some more time in the New Year.

Best to you in 2012!

Posted by Andre R. Aragon, Real Estate Photographer (Greater Tampa Real Estate Photographer) over 8 years ago

Hi Paula & Happy New Year:

I started with AR this past summer as I became more Socially Savvy (FB, Twitter,Blogging etc).  I had "heard" of AR but really did not know what it was or what they did and how in the world it could it help me in my business.   I have come into the new age of communicating and finding new clients by participating in AR and all the other social media out there.  Definitely the "Google Juice" was a big incentive for me to start blogging and commenting as it has definitely helped.  It is also good encouragement from other Realtors around the country who are dealing with similar situations that keeps you going as well.  I plan to be here for a very long time.

Wishing all of us a better 2012 and a housing recovery as well.




Posted by Carri Schoeller, Realtor ABR, e-PRO,Sarasota Luxury Real Estate (BEX Realty) over 8 years ago

Happy New Year Paula - I am a top producer in my company and my market and my biggest problem with AR is the large amount of points awarded for joining contests and like... rather than rewarding participation.  I am in my office with an agent new to AR and with 1/3rd the posts I have and b/c of his time and energy with contests he has surpassed me in points and he has become #1 in my market on AR which is very frustrating to me b/c he has less than half the posts I have and his content is nothing like mine.  So, to me, this says AR can be more interested in th' other stuff more so than actual cotent.  I have been here for years and I have an AR blog and etc.  and I do find that frustrating... that is why I do not come here as often as I used to or blog here as often as I used to.  I still do visit and blog because I love the concept of AR I just find this whole points thing very frustrating.

Thanks for asking the questions and giving me a forum to vent! Julie

Posted by Julie Winter-Paez, Broker/Owner (Re/Max Property Pros LLC) over 8 years ago

Paula, I like cheese too :)

Posted by Tom Larsen, We Shop, You Save! (The Larsen Protection Team) over 8 years ago

I have been selling for 17yrs now up in Nova Scotia. To make things easy - here is one of my sales experiences.

- I made two simple posts on active rain . They were about St margarets Bay and oceanfront sales. My sort of slant

on the way sales were going.  I got an e-mail one day from a guy in Winnipeg he and his wife were heading east and

needed an agent. Would I be able to be free to show them properties on the 2 days they suggested?

They then sent me a list of the properties thsy wanted to view and wanted my opinion on them all.


The short of the whole story was that they came and visited 3 places. Took me all of one afternoon. She visited the one place  that made the most sense one more time. Did the offer up and within a day we had the place.

Turned out to be a $600,000 sale! Not bad for pay day for 2 postings?

The bottom line is Blogging works period!

Active rain is a well respected blogging platform and the SEO part is invaluable!

Have a Happy New year everybody!

Posted by Paul Viau, Nova Scotia Real Estate Blog + Photo Services (Nova Scotia Real Estate Blog) over 8 years ago

Great comments and definately something to think about. One of my resolutions is to become a more consistent blogger.

Posted by Scott Seaton Jr. Bourbonnais Kankakee IL Home Inspector, The Home Inspector With a Heart! (SLS Home Inspections-Bradley Bourbonnais Kankakee Manteno) over 8 years ago
Google juice, branding, sharing, and the pure fun of writing are all great reasons to blog. The Real Estate Community is often misunderstood by the general public. Active Rain bloggers keep us grounded.
Posted by Mike Moffitt, Unconventional Real Estate Marketing (Referral Resource Center, Inc.) over 8 years ago

I've been struggling with my own reasons since July, Paula. Will I stay or will I go? has been a question of interest to mainly me. Hopefully I'll be able to share my thoughts from sabbatical very soon in a blog post on Active Rain.

Posted by Glenn Roberts (Retired) over 8 years ago

Andre: You sound like the classic example of an AR member who gets the Google Juice AND the cheese! Keep up the good work, and I hope you have a successful 2012!

Carrie: great comment---I hope we see a housing recovery too--it is sounding more and more dire though with the latest news about the million + foreclosures that will hit the markets over the next 4 years...lets hopw it is not devastating! Hope you have a successful 2012!

Julie: Thank you for sheding the light you have just shed on the reason some members have left or stopped participating. I do not partake of the contests because of that very reason and I did notice that the blog roll is literally STUFFED with the contest comments--that makes me very frustrated, especially when I want to read posts! I find that I jump over the contest ones and go looking for the better content in the posts that are inspired by life and business n general--much more rewarding to me! It would be interesting to see how many other members do the same thing! Anyway, thank you for the great comment!

Tom: Perfect! Then you are an AR Ideal member!!


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Great post Paula, the information I get on AR is cheese for me, should blog more often. Happy, Healthy and Successful New Year to everyone.

Posted by Manoj Arora (ACE TEAM REALTY INC.) over 8 years ago

I think that some agents (top producers or not) just don't get it overall. I like the interaction vs other platforms like my own WP site. No one really comments there so it's hard to get a feel for help or suggestions. No visitors = no feedback. Here we have it.

I also feel that some agents are so used to attention they even expect it here when they are totally blaze & boring. It's hard to like someone when they keep hitting you over the head on 'how great I am - can't you see .......'.  I think the platform just smacks them right in the face that they aren't the only special person out there & in fact there are many other better agents. It can be a humbling experience.

I feel that I cannot get good ideas from the people I unfortunately work with. Not that they are underproducing people, just not forward thinkers. Blogging is still (but changing) for progressive thinkers.  An example would be on SEO. I took my website & made it one of the top 10 in the Northern IL region for REMAX.  I could not get help from my fellow office agents but I could get plenty of great ideas here.  I got ideas from people that took the time to share their success stories & unfortunate failures.  I appreciate their stories of learning.

Poor Rosalie #6 & here eyeball, I thought only I had that problem LOL.

Posted by Lyn Sims, Schaumburg Real Estate (RE/MAX Suburban) over 8 years ago

I'm not a realtor and have struggled with how to truly engage with the Active Rain community. I've run a handyman business for 8 years, been here for maybe 4 years and took the last year off so I could focus more on my new business.

I love learning from everyone on Active Rain and I'm honestly stuck on how to re-engage with posts. I need the goodgle juice first on my websites, and trying to sort out the right etiquette to introduce the articles here on AR. Unfortunately the way AR works, I can use their automated reblog on my system the way most of you do.

Posted by Tina Gleisner, Home Tips for Women (Home Tips for Women) over 8 years ago

Paul: Great, great story!! And I will be willing to bet that there are many others just like yours out there! I have gotten so many listings from my blog---people looking for someone to talk to about their home will search on Google and low and behold, my name comes up before anyone elses!!! Sounds like that happened with you too...nothing magical, just AR Google Juice and CHEESE!!!

Scott: Good luck with your more consistant blogging--have a great 2012 too!

Mike: You said a mouthful! I find that when I am upset or need a lift in general, I come to AR too! Perfect way to get my head back to normal!

Glenn: Now you have peaked my interest!! You need to get that post out as soon as possible for all of us who care, here on AR! Please don't delay--we need to see it and participate in what ever it is you need help with---we all care, you know!!!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula, after sitting on the sidelines for many years with Active Rain but taking advantage of the incredible amount of information here, I started looking at the top producers here and studying more about the advantages of blogging on Active Rain. This year I decided to include blogging in my IIPA! 

Posted by Mitch Muller - Charlotte NC Real Estate, Certified Residential Specialist (ProStead Realty Charlotte, NC CRS SRES over 8 years ago

I blog for business, the community is 'gravy'. If I was a top producer, getting plenty of business without blogging, I wouldn't blog. I don't intend to ever be a top producer, as I actually limit the number of clients I take at a time. I don't get a lot of calls from blogs, but when I do get them, they are great clients. And that's why I blog.

As far as contests and points go, I worked hard to get into the top 10 in my state, and I join contests to stay there. I don't believe anyone has called me because of my AR position in the State of Colorado, but I want to maintain that position. My choice.

One person who is coming up, threatening to bump me down a notch writes 'Members Only' posts. I'm completely aware that he will not have an advantage over me in the eyes of the public.  If he overtakes me, I could let that bother me.  But I CHOOSE to not let things that don't matter bother me. People waste too much energy worrying about what other people are or are not doing.

Really, how much of an effort is it to skip over posts you don't want to read, to read other posts?

Posted by Joetta Fort, Independent Broker, Homes Denver to Boulder (The DiGiorgio Group) over 8 years ago

Manoj: Good! Glad to hear it and I hope you have a terrific 2012 as well!!! POST MORE OFTEN so we can read them!!! :)

Lyn: You are so funny---your eyeball jumps too??? Anyway, thank you for the fabulous observations about the way this platform can literally "create" a better agent just by putting them in their proper place! I had not thought of that one but when you think about it, not only the blowhards get their wings clipped but the  withdrawn, down mood agents get to rise above it all and excell here--they are ALL given a second chance if they allow the members here to express themselves in relationship to how they appear to the public and take the words of advice or acknowledgement and move forward---all the better for it! What a great thing for a platform like ActiveRain to be able to accomplish!! Whew! You are so right on with your comment! Thank you so much and have a great 2012!!!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

The shared opinions here are extremely valuable and the more we share or exchange , the more knowledgable we become. We can pick and choose where we go from here. Although i had been a member since 2008, i was passive most of the time until more recently. I benefit from all the opinions. Im still exploring all the amenities here at "AR"....Posts such as this one are extremely comfortable to partake..either as a spectator or participant. Happy New year to all of the above.

Mike in Chicago

Posted by Mike Schneider, ABR, CDPE, SFR (10 YRS with Active Rain !) over 8 years ago

Paula, this was a great follow up post to Rick's recent post.  I have read every comment and your answers.  I am not a great blogger, and I'm not really good at sharing my personal experiences, but I do log in every day and I usually read and comment on several blogs.   I have started posting more small blogs -- mostly with my pictures because I am a good photographer.  Photography is my real love, besides real estate.  I'm still trying to get "google juice" from AR, although I have gotten a few leads from AR, so it is working for me.  I love reading about other people's experiences, and I do learn a lot from the sharing.  I also love the "cheese" or encouragement.  I have been having a hard time understanding the points and the race for points, but I have entered a few contests for fun.  I still have a lot to learn here, but I enjoy it and keep coming back.  Thanks for continuing the conversation.  Happy New Year and success to you in 2012. 

Posted by Roberta Kayne, CRS, ABR, SFR, RRS, Realtor, Re/Max Affiliates (Dublin & Central Ohio Homes) over 8 years ago

Because of blogging an AR I have received and closed 3 leads. Two cash deals over 600k each and 1 relocation buyer for $360k.  I love AR and will continue to sing it's praises while getting fat and drunk on my juice and cheese...Great Post..thanks

Posted by Tara Stone, NJ Estates and Stables (eXp Realty) over 8 years ago

I love your comparison. Tim spent on Active Rain is a valuable part of my day.  It is education, exposure, friends and business acquaintances, and Google Juice!

Posted by Sharon Parisi, Dallas Homes (United Real Estate Dallas ) over 8 years ago

Very nice analogy...well done Paula.

Very good way to distinguish the difference between the two.

Well done and great post.

Best wishes.

jimmy phan

Posted by Jimmy Phan, Phan real estate group in hickory (KELLER WILLIAMS REALTY IN MOORESVILLES, NC) over 8 years ago

Tina: And why is that? Why can't you use the re-blog??? Only "members only" posts can't be re-blogged I think...maybe someone else can address this because I never heard of that---and regarding using this platform as a Handyman business---there are inspectors, stagers, engineers, and the list goes on and on and there is more than enough room for your valuable input on ActiveRain!

Mitch: Great good luck to you  and you are so smart to have recognised the importance of blogging her on AR! (by the way--what is your IIPA?

Joetta: I agree--I do that, I bypass all the contest posts because I don't find them interesting; I have never felt that it prevents ME from doing what I do best here on AR. Maybe a little too much competition could be a reason someone feels that they don't like the results on the scoring board---because points will bring another agent up in ranking?

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Mike: Gad you like the post and that you are participating!! Let's hope there are many more posts that peak your interest...have a great 2012!

Roberta: You are so right about the follow up to Ricks great post! I felt he didn't get recognized enough in the beginning of his publishing his post and that was what drove me to write this one..(I use every means pssible to find great post topics) So his got featured and then this did too so i am very satisfied with the fact that members are getting a chance to express thier feelings about this amazing platform and it is eye-opening!

Tara: Terrific! I take  it that is your new years resolution?:) Talk about a reverse resolution! Most people wna to get skinny and not drink too much!! Heehee

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Sharon: Glad you like it! Enjoy the Cheese and juice and I will see you on the blogs!

Jimmy: Thank you--I always like to use food as an analogy! Makes people really think!!...and want to participate!


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula- Google juice is a great byproduct of blogging but the reasoning come back everyday is to learn from others. The metaphoric cheese is the reason I like AR. If I happen to post articles/blogs that get picked up on google then so be it. Why someone would be opposed to posting on AR because of points is a bit like has been mentioned in others comments-not taking a client from the other groups we belong to. Good post and happy new year. 

Posted by Timothy Mattingly, Louisville Homes for Sale (Louisville Homes Team Louisville KY over 8 years ago

Paula - I've been a Top Producer in my rural market since entering the business in '05.  While I love the Google Juice, and can tract some leads to AR - I'm really in it for the professional development and support.  No where else have I found such a treasure trove of good business practices, as well as a forum to examine the pros and cons of nearly every marketing tool available. The advice I've found on AR has been an invaluable tool for me as I continue my efforts to be the best real estate professional buyers and sellers could hope to hire.

Posted by Jeanne Dufort, Madison and Lake Oconee GA (Coldwell Banker Lake Country) over 8 years ago

Paula,  that was a good post, and your points are validated here.  Another point to make, the more we blog, the more points we accumulate.  The more points you accumulate, the lower the subscription cost is here a Active Rain.

Posted by Greg Gillespie, CRS / Broker Owner (GumTree Realty / Genesis Realty Services,Inc) over 8 years ago

I love your post. I am relatively new to Active Rain but I am very excited about the environment and the people here. I have learned a lot. Thanks for taking the time to share an important subject!

Posted by Sharon LittleJohn, 972-365-1084 NMLS#32965, FHA VA USDA Conventional (Summit Funding, Inc.) over 8 years ago

Luxury Valley Homes Christmas LogoWell Said Paula. We use AR to help communicate to potiential clients and for - Yup!, the Google juice. Our industry is extremly competitive and we need all the help we can get to remain a Top Producer. We have a team of agents and it is a source of pride that we can help them may a good living by providing the leads, education, and experitse to get them there. As a bonus we pick-up tidbits of information that helps us make our business just a little bit better. Good post and a great way to start the new year. Happy New Years to you.

Posted by Jane & Jeff Daley, PhD, Scottsdale Real Estate Arizona (Luxury Valley Homes Scottsdale) over 8 years ago

I like it here! There are a lot of friendly voices and an assortment of opinions and information. I would probably stay if there were no SEO improvement or points although, as you say, having some reward helps.

Posted by Marshall Brown, BSEE, CHI (Mid America Inspection Services, LLC) over 8 years ago

Paula,  I love that AR provides Google juice and that I can be perceived as an area expert.  I'm a successful Prescott AZ realtor who has a great referral base and recognize that I have to have an equally great web base to accomplish my real estate goals.  Those who are heavily into REOs and short sales may not find the value, but as an agent who resides primarily in the "Traditional" sale market, I benefit greatly.


Posted by Lesley Alward over 8 years ago

I have been a successful agent for over 27 years and started blogging on ActiveRain a few years back and then just let it go.  Last year of the blue I received a "please list me" call from a seller in Maine who I had never met.  When I asked how he heard about me, he said ActiveRain.  My immediate thought was "I'd better get back to blogging!."

I relocated to Sarasota from Central Florida in 2011 and have been blogging regularly since then.  My blog is linked to my website and I blog for consumers.   I want to establish myself as a knowledgeable local agent.  I blog about the area, neighborhoods, market updates, interesting things to see and do, features that are unique to our beautiful area, etc.

I have also enjoyed reading blogs by others and enjoy commenting as well.  The AR fellowship offers camaraderie and and endless source of advice and information. 

I am addicted!

Posted by The Keith Kropp and Wayne Rogers Team, Nowhere But Here (Michael Saunders & Company) over 8 years ago

AR has many benefits but as ith many things in life...yo get out of it what yo put into it. i ssupect that many quickly give up on AR as a resource when they do not get immediate results

Posted by Paddy Deighan JD PhD, Paddy Deighan J.D. Ph.D ( over 8 years ago

I guess everyone's "cheese" can vary.  Mine is the information that I gain from AR.  The "friendships" are just a bonus.

Posted by Jennifer Chiongbian, Real Estate Broker - NYC (Specializing in all types of Manhattan apts & townhouses) over 8 years ago

I like your post. For me, it is mostly about the cheese. I am a part time real estate broker and I just like to stay active and close to what is going on in the marketplace, as I do not get to participate everyday.

Posted by Stacey Brown, REALTOR (ILM Realty) over 8 years ago

Since I come and go here, I can't say ANYTHING is the reason I am here. But honestly, what keeps bringing me back is I lvoe buidling up a body of written work.  I have printed my favorite posts, and have them in a binder.  If I ever feel ungrounded, I go back and read them - especially the ones I have written about my family - my Mom, my aunt, my brother.  They are my favorites, and oddly got massive amounts of comments.

One about my husband generated 3.5M in sales two years ago.  Go figure. I have it in my "for buyers" and "for sellers" section on my website, and people connected with how I felt and hired me.

I have gotten business, made friends, learned a tremendous amount, and expanded myself through contests.  I mostly ignore the points, as you can tell by the fact I am so inconsistent. why I am not here every day, and blog every minute of my day???? I can't answer that, as there is much cheese here, and I have gotten nothing but good stuff from my time here.

Posted by Sally Dunbar, Fair Oaks Realtor - Fair Oaks Homes for Sale (Lyon Real Estate, Fair Oaks CA (Sacramento Area)) over 8 years ago

Paula, I think it's all of those things you mention and a little more. Writing for some can be very therapeutic (I know it is for me.) But many of us work in home offices, and don't spend a lot of face time with our colleagues. This can take the place of those meaningful conversations about business-related stuff.  Blog content can be re-used over and over. A link to a blog on a particular topic can save us a lot of time in the future, when that information is passed along to a new prospect or client. It's all good!

Posted by Karen Crowson, Your Agent for Change (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) over 8 years ago

It's a Cheese thing.....many may not understand.  It's all about learning from all those who plowed this field before me. Sure maybe eventually I'll make a friend or two on here but I need information and this is as good as it gets for me socially.

Posted by Karl Mengers, Main Edge Realty (Main Edge Realty) over 8 years ago

I have to be honest, I joined as an easy way to post my listings on the web and get it seen. But I have found so much more. Encouragement, comradery, friends and a whole lot of learning. Though I am still a newbie, 4 Months, I have quickly learned the value of AR and plan to continue.

Have a very safe and Happy New Year.

Posted by Debora Nichols, Realtor Anthem,Phoenix,Scottsdale,Glendale,Peoria (Residential Sales, Purchases, Investors, Vacation Homes) over 8 years ago

Great post and a great reminder of why we should participate on AR

Posted by Dan Edwards 425-276-7008 (Keller Williams Realty - Bellevue) over 8 years ago

It's the cheese for me, being based in Sydney Australia I am learning an international perspective which helps me deal with ex-pats in my daily work life here, I have also made some great connectiomns and friends and am sure business will develop from this as well, AR is unique, it is a community and is very valuable, if you contribute.

Posted by Geoff Grist, Author of Sold Above Market book (Mosman Neutral Bay Realty, Sydney Australia) over 8 years ago

Timothy: Very well put! I agree about the point thing and can't imagine that being a reason to NOT blog here! The points system is wha t it is and we can't do anything about it except avoid the point makers that we object to....

Jeanne: And I like your style! It fits my pictures of my fellow members that I communicate and commiserate with here on AR! Let's keep the bar that high so that the benefits of blogging here and the information that we exchange here does not ever fall below our high standards--OK?...OK!

Greg: There are benefits all over the place here on ActiveRain! I agree that the more we blog, the more benefits we all get in the end; and more cheese---it helps with the Google Juice too!

Sharon: You are more than welcome! I hope you  stick around and become one of the verbos members here who loves to blog too! Have a very prosperous 2012!


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Jeff and Jane: Do you know how refreshing it is to hear the pride in your voice(words) about your brokerage? That is such a rare thing and look how happy you are about making THEM happy!! Now that is a sure sign of success!

Marshall: I would too--I had a situation recently where I felt that I got the short end of the stick with something and in my conversation with one of the "guides" here, I was told that he would understand if I wanted to leave AR!! I told him: "You will have to fire me to get me to leave this platform!"...and I mean it!

Lesley: Well said! I am the same kind of traditional broker--I never did feel that I could do the short sale market a service. First of all I do not have that many here in this area in the first place and there is an agent here who has built his business this way...He pretty much handles all the short sales there are here.

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula, I love the different perspectives of other agents.  I also learn to appreciatet the complexities of the market in different areas of the country.  Google Juice is very important to my business and I respect the power of AR!

Posted by The Hollinden Team, Serving the Greater Louisville area (EXP Realty) over 8 years ago


I have found many benefits associated with my participation here, so I plan to stay.


Posted by Brian Madigan, LL.B., Broker (RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage (Toronto)) over 8 years ago

Keith:Me Too; and I do believe that the majority of active Rainers are addicted too...If I had to name a reason for the attachment-it would be that I can, at any time and place connect with someone here in the Rain. If I have an urgent something or another---I can get immediate help or give it too! This availablity has buit a loyal core that nevers wavers! I have not seen anyone active here, leave because he/she was not getting an abundance of everything that you could want in the way of real estate right here on ActiveRAin!!!

Paddy: How wise of you to pick up on that! ...don't forget we are talking about the population of a profession that has a histroy of becoming an agent and then giving it up within less than a year!!

Jennifer: You picked up on the right cheese! There are other flavors too that you may want to check out--advise that is free! before the rest of the planet knows about it, i.e. the QR codes were written up here on AR way before the average agent knew about it! Learinig how to make videos? Making real estate house tours! All of it is way beyond anything the other agents that I know have in their tool chest!!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Stacey: How honest of you---but watch out; once you get involved here on ActiveRain in a meaningful way--you too will become addicted--no more "every other day" any more! You will be blogging your brains out here every single day!!!

Sally: I am amazed!! The story you tell is so outstanding and yet you seem so surprised  with your participation and the results you have gotten! Please step back and admire your dedication even though it may not feel like dedication! That is another great thing about AR--you don't have to kill yourself to blog everyday--you can put in just as much time as you can afford and spend just the time that you want and you will still get results!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Karen: That is a great point---for those of us who work out our homes for whatever reason--AR is the replacement of the warm bodies that you will find in the office!

Karl: What a high complement! I hope we never let you down!! I am sure that you will have issues at some point as I did....but as I did, it is very easy to say: "What, Me leave this place??? Not on your life!!"

Debra: How sweet--I can see right now that you have found your AR wings and you are flying already, Newbie or NOT! Good luck with the blogging thing and plese give us all someting to look forward to by writing your Newbie experience in a blog post--DEAL?

Dan: Glad I could be the remindee! Happy 2012!!


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Geoff: Welcome to you from DownUnder! I hope you easily find the good things that are here and I look forward to reading a post or two written by an Aussie!!

Steve: Good; and you too--I would love to read something you have written; I will check out your blog and I look forward to a new one about you rexperience here on AR too!...maybe in keeping with or relating to this post!

Brian: I know your face and name and I can tell you have been blogging here awhile! Keep up the good work and let's see a post from you too in relationship to this post! Have a great 2012!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula, I wish I knew what or even how to test the Google Juice thing, and the effort associated. Writing does take a lot of time, just to prepare a few sentences. Most of the stuff  I read all says what to do. Is there anything concrete to see if it is making any difference? 

Posted by Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA (Winston Realty, Inc.) over 8 years ago

Winston: The best way to test it is as we all do--we write our brains out on local information especially..Get a pattern going so that you know when your post are going to be out there--say 15-20 minutes after you write the post and then go to Google and do a search of your area---using a word from your r title should use as much of the name of your area as possible...I sometimes just go and search: "Southampton, ny real estate agent", or "best agent in southampton, ny"--using your area of course and see what comes up. Let us know if you have any luck!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Winston: I just went to Google and wrote in the space: "best agent in Atlantis, Fla" and you come up on the 2 nd page---that means you need to work on your profile--use other members profiles as an example and get your revised profile out there---also  you need to get some good local content on your webpage--or here on lots of local things to do--or write about a segment of the market like waterfront froperties if you have any....that sort of thing and then do a search again and again until you fine your blog or your profile coming up on the front page---

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula, thank you for the advice. I feel I have 16 loose ends in all different directions. I have yet to come across a system other than somebody trying to sell you on the latest SEO thing. There has got to be a better method or at least starting with the basics to achieve some sense of achievement. It's very frustrating needless to say. I just hate wasting time.

Posted by Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA (Winston Realty, Inc.) over 8 years ago

Winston: You are NOT wasting time here on AR! Just start writing the profile thing and that will be a big step in the right direction! Good luck!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

I enjoy my participation here on AR...I rarely have to reinvent the wheel!

I recommended a lender to the site the other day and they were already a featured post!  I was so happy I sent them to the AR Path.

The points were a big deal to me when I started...wanted to get to 100,000.  They don't mean that much anymore but I still enjoy AR.

Happy New Year and thank you for your insight!  Joy

Posted by Joy Carter & Jeff Booker Brother and Sister Team, Trust Your Family's Move To Our Expertise! (Keller Williams Parkland/Coral Springs Realty-GreatFloridaHomes Team) over 8 years ago

Paula~I think the benefits are two-fold. The knowledge that I have gained from AR blogs is well worth the time I have spent. getting the extra benefit of Google juice is fabulous. We can all learn from each other and connecting with other like agents is huge too. At some point in our career we will need to help a customer in another state and this is a great place to make a good connection.

Here's to a great 2012!

Posted by Jamie R. Bell, Your Central CT Realtor (Bell Realty Group at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices NEP) over 8 years ago

The points give me something to aim for and to track what I am doing.  It helps while you are waiting for the Google juice to really pay off.

Posted by Gene Riemenschneider, Turning Houses into Homes (Home Point Real Estate) over 8 years ago

For me it's really pretty simple. Without Active Rain, I would not have a real estate business. I've met some incredible people and formed a support group outside of AR in which I've learn even more than I have learned here on Active Rain. They have helped me launch my new WordPress site which is getting great traffic...and LEADS!

I've gotten leads from Active Rain as well. I can for sure count 3 deals that came as a result of people finding my blogging work here on AR.

And who would NOT want Google Juice? How the heck are you going to be found with out Google finding you? Really?



Posted by Thom Abbott, Midtown Atlanta GA Condos For Sale ( |770.713.1505 | Intown Atlanta GA Condo Living) over 8 years ago

Paula, Great Post, AR is a great community, I learn so much from everyone here every day and my blog continues to grow in strength in the internet.  Thanks AR for all you do for all of us!!!

Posted by Mary Macy, Top Agents Atlanta Metro (Top Agents Atlanta Metro) over 8 years ago

Happy New Year Paula, excellent post.  I started on Active Rain two years ago New Years, it was a goal I had for a couple of years and finally realized that goal just about New Year's 2010.  Since then I have had the opportunity to interact with so many like mind real estate professionals, (ok a few unlike minded too) but that makes the world go round.  You have fed me with so many good ideas and goals.  I like the cheese and I certainly do appreciate the google juice.  We make good habits and bad habits and posting to the blog on a daily basis is a goal for me in 2012.  Inviting my clients, customers, friends and agents to my blog is another goal...thank you for your positive attitude!

Posted by MaryBeth Mills Muldowney, Massachusetts Broker Owner (TradeWinds Realty Group LLC) over 8 years ago

Hi Paula, excellent post, and I agree that is why we are on Active Rain.  Very colorful post also!

Posted by Bob Miller, The Ocala Dream Team (Keller Williams Cornerstone Realty) over 8 years ago

Great link between the Google Juice and cheese! I am a top producer in my office and I definitely use ActiveRain for the Google Juice! I also love watching my rankings go up through the state, so that is encouraging as well. It allows me to set goals for myself and have an easy way to track how well I'm doing. I love meeting new people on here and I learn so much daily when I participate, too, so those are strong reasons as well!

Posted by Sylvie Stuart, Home Buying, Home Selling and Investment - Flagsta (Realty One Group Mountain Desert 928-600-2765) over 8 years ago

Joy: I love to hear that! I enjoy this site so much say nothing of what it has done for my business. I get the best calls from the ranking on Google and it is the talk of the community that I have such good visibility--they all know why, just don't want to put in the hard work, I guess! "

Jamie: I look at those out of state calls as a real stretch and I don't know the other states but I love the idea that I have a roster of agents from AR whom I can recommend and that feels good!!

Gene: You are so right--and the points make you feel good on a bad day too---all you have to do is comment on a post to get more!! What a great thing for all of us....

Thomas: It would be worth while to hear how you get those results from WordPress--I blog there too and it is not the same as here where you do get participation--I find it rather belak over there on WP.

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Mary: I think that the real value is from the other members here too and AR has created something rather rare in that this kind of interaction, feedback, communication of all kinds--there just is nothing else like it anywhere---bope we don't ever lose it!!

MaryBeth: Thank you so much! As people comment here on this post, I can't help but feel like the benefits go even further than I originally thought. When I picked the term "Cheese" for this post, it all fell into place for me--had never thought of it as that before but now AR AND Google together make such a difference and for the first time I can see how really big this thing is---whoever came up with the idea of a place for RE agents (and the associated professions) to have a a place to "Vent", express themselves, share experiences (good and bad) give advice etc. is such a remarkable idea!

Bob: Glad you like the color---reminds me of a post I wrote about localism color some time ago! I think it helps to get the attention that other posts may not get too!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Sylvie: Isn't it the BEST? I can't believe how many times I have come home from a very bad day, got on the web and came here to vent or look for help! Where else can we do that??? ...and then to get rewarded for it too from both the Google Juice and the Cheese too...I love IT! Good idea to check our state and other rankings too. Thanks for the input!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

I havnt obtained any business from my blogging on activerain.  Have you?    I have been on the first or second page of google.  I havnt had a person call me and say "find me a home"

Posted by Gordon Cuffe (Realty First) over 8 years ago

this is a great place to post and get some really nice multi way conversations from across the country ... it is good to see the perspective of others and learn of their market ... and the Google benefit should never be overlooked ... 

Posted by Lehel Szucs, REALTOR of choice (All Seasons Real Estate, Inc.) over 8 years ago

Gordon: I have recieved so many calls from my blogging and from my own website which I got from from AR, right here...they are the best for website design! (see

Lehel: It is so great that you "get it"...kepp up the good work!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

The information here is great! I always learn something new =)

Posted by Jairo Arreola #SOLDBYVETERAN, VA Home Loan Specialist - SF Bay Area (PRG Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Jairo: Good I like to hear that--one of the main reasons I blog is give to information to other members--I  hope it helps you in your business!! Good luck in 2012!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Paula, Thanks for keeping this conversation going.  I hope that the ActiveRain staff have been following this thread and hopefully will use the comments from your post and mine to help build a stronger ActiveRain community.  Keep on posting!

Posted by Retired from ActiveRain over 8 years ago

Rick: It has been interesting hasn't it? I am finding that most members who are active have very little to gain from "gaming" the system here on AR....most of the members who commented here use it for getting a message out regarding their own market-place or getting an opinion out for the rest of the membership to benefit from....very few said they did not like the idea of being rewarded by points for doing what we do. So, from that standpoint, we should be very proud of this platform--it is of course, a result of all of us working together to keep the bar as high as it is!!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

I love the google juice, of course, but it's the cheese I really enjoy most!  I've made life long friends through this medium and value most my interaction with them.

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

Sharon: Me too! I value my interaction with everyone here on AR more than even the immediate office mates I work so closely with--why? because they (the agents I work with day-today)always question why I am on ActiveRain..and that leaves room for skeptics and I don't have time for skeptics. There is a narrowness to their thinking and I am an open book---much like most of the agents here on AR...there is no room for skeptics here on ActiveRain. In my opinion they just fade away if they do find themsleves on the website!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

I just found your comment on Google and found it very interesting. I have used Active Rain pretty hard for the last two months and we are slowly moving up in google. That being said I try to post blogs anywhere I can. Thanks

Posted by Rich Ranft, CAI, GPPA, AARE (United Country - Beloit Auction & Realty Inc.) about 8 years ago

Rich: Didyou  find it in a specific search? I would be interested to know what you searched for that it came up---I knwo I can get great ranking on Google but it's hard to tell how I come up for other people when they search..Thanks for finding me anyway!!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...A Local Expert in all The Hamptons (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) about 8 years ago
I absolutely love your blog and find many of your post’s to be just what I’m looking for. can you offer guest writers to write content for you? I wouldn’t mind producing a post or elaborating on many of the subjects you write in relation to here. Again, awesome web site!
Posted by Octavio almost 7 years ago