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Advertising and Best Practices

Having spent some time in an agency and then working in companies that used me to do their advertising there are many tips that remain pertinent in today’s world. The first is to know your audience. One is not trying to sell to every person in the universe. The goal is to target those who might be interested in your particular brand. The question is how does one find them and then convert them to your goods.

The first thing is to know the market. Magazines, radio programs, television shows, and so forth, need constant examination for their content and special promotions. Good editors will often contact you if they are doing something special and think you would be interested in helping sponsor that program.

The next most important thing is presentation, and that is everything. Unless your advertisements are appealing and spot on with information that matters no one will take heed the message. For instance, if you are selling a truck don’t present it with a family picnic.

The other thing that tops the list is giving the audience a free take-away. That doesn’t mean food but a thought. One of them that sticks in my mind is when advertising land around a lake that was sealed by a land bar that prevented any nasties from entering it.

My ad included the words “shark free, fish filled waters of the ever blue Smith Lake”. The picture this presented was so good I was invited to read the ads on the radio by one of the best presenters in the business. Without images to enhance it the suggestion of blue water and great features really got the message across and the land sold rapidly.

There are some other tips to make an audience drool but above all stay on message. The use of animated images is not my idea of good practices unless one is dealing with such as ‘Looey the fly’. This ad was produced by a top author in the advertising agency where my experience started.

Good lines, a bit of comedy, and a good take-away image will sell anything. It takes skill to recognise them and a good writer to bring them to life. The bottom line is to get the attention of the potential buyers and not to turn them off with poor ads. If they interested in listening to and watching your ad they will usually buy from you.

Virtual Home Tours for Real Estate Marketing: Benefits and Best Practices

Gone are the days of advertising real estate through classified ads. Back then, you had to find a good listing in the paper, follow up with a phone call inquiry, and arrange an in-person. Thankfully, the information age offers countless real estate marketing tools for distributing property information online. The savviest real estate agents now create a virtual home tour for each of sale properties; this saves time for agents and buyers alike.

Of course, this is only the most obvious advantages for creating a virtual tour; we list a few more below.

1. Virtual tours are easy to share online.

It is easy to share a virtual home tour across blogs, social media sites, and listing databases. The best virtual tour applications even provide HTML code for easy posting to online databases like Craigslist.

2. Fun and easy.

Too many real estate marketing tools feel like hard work; they are boring and time consuming to use. However, it’s easy and fun to make a virtual tour. You don’t even need a video camera. Simply fill out a few property details, upload photographs, and select your animation and music. That’s it!

3. Describe a property’s personality.

A virtual tool will definitely provide the kind of basic information that consumers need to make a rational choice about whether this could be the right property for them. The number of bedrooms, the neighborhood, nearby schools – these are the facts buyers need, and a virtual home tour should include all of this information.

However, a virtual home tour can also reach buyers on a “gut feeling” level. Indeed, a tour video can quickly convey a property’s “personality.” Those who depend on real estate marketing tools to earn their keep can tell you that intuition, emotional reactions, and gut instincts play an important, influential role in property sales.

4. Forward-thinking real estate marketing.

Technology expert Cisco has estimated that videos will represent 80 percent of Internet traffic by 2015. By creating up virtual video tours today, you will be better positioned for tomorrow’s real estate marketing trends.

5. Increased volume of high quality inquiries.

The bottom line is that you will get more high-quality inquiries if you create a virtual home tour for each of your listings. Buyers are more likely to pursue a property if they have the kind of rich information that a virtual tour conveys.

As you can see, there are plenty of advantages to using virtual tour videos as one of your real estate marketing tools. However, like all marketing tools, virtual tours can be more or less successful depending on your technique. Create a powerful tour video by following these tips:

Insist on excellent lighting. Humans are naturally drawn to light; if the property photos in your video are well-lit, you will receive more property inquiries.

Choose universally appealing animation and music to accompany each virtual home tour. You may be a big fan of Nirvana, but that doesn’t mean you should put “Smells Like Teen Spirit” as your background tune for a new condo listing. Choose lyric-free, upbeat music and limit the number of sparkly animations you choose.

Share with past clients. Remember that referrals are the best form of advertising, because they’re free and effective. Include a few links to virtual tour videos for current offerings in your newsletters to past buyers.

Loose Tea Review: Tips and Best Practice

How to get loose tea samples:

Obviously you can review any tea that you already own but you can also try your luck at contacting tea companies or online tea stores to see if they will send you some samples. Just point out how great it is for the tea company that for the cost of a few grams/ounces of tea they can have free advertising on your blog that you will promote across numerous social media websites.

I would suggest contacting whole leaf tea companies directly via social media sites. All that the company will ask for in return is a link to their website which will help them in terms of SEO.

Brewing the loose tea:

When reviewing your loose tea sample it is important to brew it using the exact guidelines given to you by the company. If it says to use water at a certain temperature, you should make the effort to do this as the company will know what temperature the tea tastes best at. It is the same when it comes to the amount of tea to use. If you posted a negative review but had not brewed the tea how the company suggested this would not really be fair to the tea company.

What to look for:

The look and smell of the dry leaf – is it the same as the picture on the company’s website? Does it smell fresh and clean? Is it broken or whole leaf?

Aroma – how does the smell change while it is brewing compared with the dry leaf? Is the fragrance from the tea balanced or over powering?

Taste – Most importantly how does the tea taste? Does it match the description or is it different? Do you like it? Can you notice subtle flavours coming through?

Multiple Steeping

The great thing about loose tea is that you can brew it more than once. Often you can brew it 4 or 5 times. I find it’s best to just keep going until you notice less or unpleasant flavours.

Be sure to mention these in your review and I think it is essential to do at least 2 re-brews.

Words to use

Aroma/fragrance – use to describe the smell of the leaves

Patina – the build of tea on the inside of cups and teapots

Grade – the quality of the leaves

Steeping – when the tea is brewing

Emotive – how the loose tea makes you feel

Descriptive words you could use to describe your loose tea sample:

Citrusy, fresh, clean, full bodied, creamy, mellow, strong, over powering, weak, fragrant, sharp, verdant, grassy, floral.

The number one thing to remember when reviewing loose tea:

This actually applies to anything review! Be honest! There is no point in giving a positive review for no reason and no point in being negative just to play devils advocate. If you want to build up credibility you must be honest otherwise your readers will soon get bored.