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BULLHEAD CITY - Ten years ago, if a company wanted to get more exposure, it would print flyers, make some phone calls and maybe even have a sign spinner on the sidewalk.
Today, the nature of marketing has changed. What once was a tangible medium now is an Internet-based model that relies on the use of social media. The utilization of Web-based social networking sites such as Twitter, MySpace and Facebook has opened doors between businesses and clients, allowing for a greater flow of information.
For local business people like Evan Fuchs and Nikki Reagan, business means communication and transactions in real time, online.
The spread of information, says Evan Fuchs of Bullhead/Laughlin Realty, in an integral part of the real estate business. With national reports daily about the dire state of the mortgage scene and rising foreclosures, Fuchs found himself in a different position.
“There's so much bad information out there,” mainly because, he said, real estate markets differ quite a bit regionally. National averages are not always indicative of the reality in specific locations. “Locally, our market is very different.”
Fuchs says Bullhead City is on the rebound, with the numbers indicating a possible balancing of supply and demand for homes in the city. And he decided to do something about it.
“I kind of look at it as my job to get what I know out there without spin,” said Fuchs. “Sometimes it's better, sometimes it's worse but it's the truth and I think that's what people want to see.
“I've got a little bit of techie going through me,” he said, noting that his fascination with technology helps him more easily spread information via the Internet.
First came the Web site. Then the blog. Then the podcast.
“Social media opens a lot of doors,” said Fuchs.
From its inception 10 years ago, Bullhead/Laughlin Realty's Web site has seen considerable monthly traffic and brings in “a ton” of business. “I've definitely found business through my blog,” he said.
Through the development and integration of the regional multiple listing service (MLS) - a database of home listings in the area - Fuchs met fellow Tri-state Realtor Todd Tarson of Kingman. After a few months of comparing notes via their individual blogs, Fuchs and Tarson realized the next step was podcasting.
“We talk about real estate and we do market updates, that sort of thing, but we also just kind of chat,” said Fuchs, of their now weekly Internet broadcast. “It's real casual.”
The co-hosts of Mohave Real Talk connect via Skype, an online phone system, record the show and post it for free download on the Web site.
Fuchs says he favors Social media because it simply gives his audience what they're looking for without pressure or hassles, which helps build trust.
“Our thing really - and this is what the Web site, podcast, blogging are all about - is to be a source of information for people,” he said. “I don't like things getting crammed down my throat, so I try not to cram things down people's throats. ... We just put information out there and just hope that people find it useful.”
My hat's off to Evan for making the podcast become a reality. So far I've had plenty of fun being a part of the show. We hope the podcast helps some become more familiar with the local market(s) and promise to give some insight into Realtor membership and other industry issues as well.
Thanks again, Evan -- and that sure was a very nice article.