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First Day Hikes

First Day Hikes

First Day Hikes

Anyone looking to start their New Year's resolution for better health can start the year off on the right foot by participating in any of 10 First Day Hikes that will be held at Nationwide State Park properties on January 1.

First Day Hikes are part of a nationwide initiative led by America’s State Parks to encourage people to get outdoors. On New Year’s Day, hundreds of free, guided hikes will be organized in all 50 states. Kids and adults all across America will be participating in First Day Hikes, getting their hearts pumping and enjoying the beauty of a state park. Last year nearly 28,000 people rang in the New Year, collectively hiking over 66,000 miles throughout the country! For information in your state visit the official First Day Hikes website.

The hikes are led by park staff and other knowledgeable volunteers. You can be a novice or go for a walk in a park that has a little more distance and requires a bit more endurance! Go on your own, bring the kids or get a group together to enjoy some camaraderie. It’s just a walk, not a race so you can go at your own pace. Pack a little hot chocolate and some snacks and just enjoy the beauty of the state parks natural resources.

Here in Wisconsin we may have muddy trails instead of the beautiful snow covered trails that we usually have. It was 48 degrees here in my town yesterday and we have very little snow covering our lawn any more!

Find a First Day Hike Near You.

Pack extra socks, mittens, warm water, sunscreen and snacks in your backpack.Here are a Few Tips For Hiking in Cold Weather

  • Dress in Layers. It may be cold when you start, but you will begin to warm up as you walk. Overheating, believe it or not, can also cause hypothermia since excessive moisture can’t escape.
  • Wear a Hat. Most of the heat you lose from your body goes out from your head. This is because your head is filled with oxygen-carrying capillaries that feed our brains and consume 1/3rd of our body’s energy. (Betcha didn’t know that figure did ya!?)
  • Wear Comfortable and Warm Boots. Wear an extra pair of socks so your feet stay warm. Throw an extra pair of socks in you backpack in case you need more warmth or your socks get wet!
  • Keep the Water in Your Bottle Warm. In the summer time you always bring a fresh bottle of cold water, but in the winter time cold water will chill your body faster. In the winter time, that is not your goal!
  • Don’t Forget the Sunscreen! I’m almost certain you weren’t expecting that one! Just like summer days, the sun reflects off the snow and can give you a snow sunburn.
  • Be Prepared for Shorter Days. Begin your hike early enough that you don’t have to rush. Take your time, enjoy the views and take time to have a break now and then when necessary. Find out when the sun sets in your area and plan ahead.

The American Hiking Society is also offering prizes for pictures. So take some pictures and submit them to their website you may just win a prize from Columbia, Brooks Range or other outdoor suppliers.

Who knows? This may be the beginning of a year-round activity for you! Hiking is not just for summer any more!

FYI – First Day Hikes Will be Held at Nine Parks All Across Wisconsin

  1. First Day Hike State Parks in Wisconsin.NewPort State Park
  2. Pennisula State Park
  3. Harrington Beach State Park
  4. Kettle Moraine State Park
  5. Mirror Lake State Park
  6. Buckhorn State Park
  7. Richard Bong State Park
  8. Devil’s Lake State Park
  9. Stower Seven Lakes Trail
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Dominate Local Marketing – Part II

Dominate Local Marketing – Part II

On Friday I told you a bit about how to dominate your local market. As we all know, most of our real estate business comes from the local community. Sure you spend lots of money to advertise all over the world, but why do that when you have hundreds of opportunities in your local area.

After I explained why improving your online Local Marketing is important, I offered several do-it-yourself tips. Then I reminded you that today I would complete the post with Off-line Optimization. Finally, and most importantly, if you don’t have the time to be doing all this, I offered a super-huge discount to have us do the whole thing for you! Look for coupon at the end of this post.

How to Optimize for Local Search off Your Website: 

Register your business with Google+. Because they offer the largest search engine, you can get some good results for your keywords and long-tail keywords.

Hundreds of Directories

The more local directories you are on in your community (online and offline), the more people can find you. Some additional ideas are to become a guest blogger, talk to and about other people in your industry (in a complimentary way), and become the community expert in Real Estate.

Actively Participate, Become Famous

If you are participating in social media, and networking groups, people will come to know and recognize you. Think about networking, social media, inbound links, and regular media options.

Trade Links

I don’t mean you should get into a big Link Exchange forum. I am suggesting that you ask your local service providers if you can put a link to their site on your site and ask for a reciprocal link in exchange. The more incoming links you have from HIGH ranking websites, the more recognition you get from Google.

Creating and maintaining a successful social media strategy is time-consuming.Publish Your Content on Your Social Media Platforms (especially Google+)

Google considers shared content on social media to be even more important now than ever. Not that Google+ has business pages, social and regular searches are more closely coordinated. Many of you may not know that Google+ pages have started to show up in local search results. If you use the local keywords as I explained earlier, you’re Gold, Baby!

Guest Posts

You have enough to do already, why would you want to post on someone else’s blog too? Easy, more incoming links. You must be allowed to use your byline and /or author profile at the end of your blog post. Write about relevant topics and be sure to include your short bio and  website link at the bottom.


Reviews can be the bane of your existence or they can help you rise in the ranks! 77% of shoppers use reviews to make a purchasing decision. If your client reviews are accessible and reflect great integrity, you are more likely to have the buyer or seller get in touch. Remember, negative reviews are not ALL that bad if you can respond to them genuinely, and ask how to do better. We are human and make mistakes and how you manage mistakes is just as important as how you manage your business!

Where Are You Listed? Are You Listed?

Use an online tool to search directories to find out where your website is located and if the information is correct. GetListed.org provides a huge database of directories and websites where you can CLAIM your listing and be certain that you have accurate information, your website link, contact information and any other ways for people to reach you.

Local Businesses do have the power to reach the top on the search engines organically, but it is hard work and time-consuming. It goes faster if you understand what you are doing; however, it would go even faster if you hired someone to do it. Someone like Social Marketing Fusion.

Get up to 40% off our Local Marketing Package.

With this package you get:

  • Social Media Analysis & Report
  • Resubmission of Sitemap to Google, Yahoo, Bing and Ask
  • Check Google Blacklist
  • Build Additional Links
  • Submission to 20+ Search Engines
  • Submission to 50+ Local Directories
  • Weekly home page update for Website
  • Geotagged Photos Uploaded to 3 Photo Sites
  • 1 Video Uploaded/Edited/Optimized to Youtube (you provide video)
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Real Estate Blogging Business Better Than Ever!

Real Estate Blogging Business Better Than Ever!

In 1996 I started my first “virtual” company. I had two boys, a husband working full time and a computer on my kitchen table. I was starting an outsourcing service.

The first time I turned on the computer, the sound was on full blast and I didn’t know how to change the sound so I yanked the plugin from the wall…the next day I called Best Buy to ask how to change the sound!!

I’ve grown a lot since that time. My boys and my business have too.

When I was a general Virtual Assistant, it was more difficult to choose clients and I became a “Jack of All Trades and a Master of None. Then in 2000 I realized I wanted and needed more focReal Estate Blog Experts will Grow in 2017 to be THE Go-to Real Estate Blogging Experts!us,  so I decided to niche in Virtual Real Estate Services. I had done that, done mentoring and training and coaching for real estate for 16 years now. But once again, I really want to hone in on a nice niche, so I am reinventing my company to become THE Real Estate Blogging and Social Media Expert.

My journey has been a long, enjoyable one, over 20 years. Each time I have made a change, it has been for the good of my business. My husband has taken an early retirement (mandatory with the FAA) and I am really focusing on tasks that I really enjoy. I love to write!

Today I sat in on a webinar with Neil Patel (you know the famous “content” guy who has helped companies such as Google, GM, NBC and Salesforce; just to name a few? He is a Genius when it comes to building your business. I listened to him speak for an hour. I got lots of great ideas for my business from the webinar alone and still ended up buying his program! You know, I probably could have “gotten by” with just the notes from the webinar, but why not really give your business everything you’ve got?

So, as I begin my journey to increase the number of clients I have for my niche in Real Estate Blogging and Social Media, I want to take every opportunity to make it so successful that I can retire too on what I make! More trips, more charitable donations and more life!

Owning and operating a business alone is challenging. I learn alone and I share my office with no one else! However, there isn’t anything I would have changed in the past 20 years. I had time with family, flexibility in working and I am happy doing my job.

Kathy Goldman, Real Estate Virtual Assistant and Social Media Marketing Expert.


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Dominate Local Marketing

Dominate Local Marketing

Today we are going to learn a little bit about how you can dominate local marketing and get ahead of your competition. Although the internet allows you to reach billions of people, most likely your potential business target market is probably just around the corner from you. What makes your business successful is your local community. With all the choices of Real Estate Agents and Real Estate Offices, how do consumers find your business first? You probably think you are doing everything possible to market your business online. But you are still not getting that top search engine ranking. However, don’t despair! There are a lot of things you can do to get more love from the search engines. From your on-page optimization efforts to your inbound link building, you can increase your domination.

Here are a Few Tips to Optimize Your Website to Dominate the Local Market:

Optimize all devices for Local Marketing to become the community leader!Why Should You Optimize for Local Searches?

  • Approximately 3 BILLION search queries contain local terms every month
  • 70% of online searchers will use local search to find offline businesses
  • 30% of Google searches are for local information.

(source: www.HubSpot.com)

How to Optimize for Local Domination:

Content is STILL King. Every new blog post is a new page that is indexed. This an opportunity to target a geographic search phrase, and to get found in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). Write About Complimentary Services As a real estate agent, you could write about staging, or landscaping or lenders or any other faction of the real estate industry. As long as you are writing well-informed content and it can be a valuable, relevant topic, then it can be great information on your blog. It also let’s other community members know you have written about them and creates good-will.

5 On-Page Elements to Optimize With Keywords for SEO:

  1. Page title
  2. URLs
  3. Page headers
  4. Internal links; and
  5. Page content

Use Long-tail Keyword Variations For example, use variations of Milwaukee Houses for Sale, Milwaukee Homes & Real Estate, Homes for Sale in Milwaukee. Use different variations. Check them with a keyword checker like the Google Keyword Tool.

Have Location Pages This is especially important in real estate marketing because your potential clients want to learn more about the city or neighborhood they may be looking at houses in.

Tell People Where You Are Let people know your business address, phone number and contact information. Create About Us and/or Contact Us Pages on your website and in your blog signature.

Write Hyper-locally Write about current events and news that are happening in your community. People love to know what’s going on.  An especially good topic is the local real estate market trend. Be sure to comment on the statistics you post to help people understand the stats they are reading and what you think coming trends might be for your community.

On The Go Be sure your site is optimized for mobile devices. Potential clients are driving around and if they see a sign, they can call. Maybe they find a neighborhood they like and they google it and end up on that Location Page we talked about.

Freshness Matters As I wrote recently on my blog, “Is Your Website Lemony Fresh?” If you are not consistently making changes on your website (especially the home page), the search engines will forget about you and their spiders won’t crawl your sites. These are all really good online optimization updates you can make to Dominate Local Marketing. These Tips take some time to get done, but you can do it.

40% off your Local Marketing Package.

Monday I will tell you more about what you can be doing off-line to maximize your domination. Just doing one or the other will not result in the same ranking you might get when you are optimizing both online and offline. OR I have a special Offer for you. Social Marketing Fusion is offering a discount on a monthly maintenance package for Local Marketing Dominance. The Discount is only good through December 31, 2016 but is more than half off of the normal monthly fee.

With this package you get:

  • Social Media Analysis & Report
  • Resubmission of Sitemap to Google, Yahoo, Bing and Ask
  • Check Google Blacklist
  • Build Additional Links
  • Submission to 20+ Search Engines
  • Submission to 50+ Local Directories
  • Weekly home page update for Website
  • Geotagged Photos Uploaded to 3 Photo Sites
  • 1 Video Uploaded/Edited/Optimized to Youtube (you provide video)