Technology

Online communities build buzz for real estate biz

Part 1: Savvy agents warm up to community-based sites

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Editor's note: Real estate agents are learning that online community sites can be useful in reaching their target audience. Agents can use community Web sites to raise awareness about their services and drum up local business, while consumers can use the sites to rate, review, recommend and reach agents in their desired locations. This three-part series uncovers how a few savvy agents are using these sites and building their own. (See Part 2 and Part 3.) Be where the people are: It's a basic principal in advertising – and real estate professionals are learning that online community sites can be useful in reaching their target audience. While there are examples of online communities such as MySpace that attract a global audience, others tap into the old real estate adage of "location, location, location" by drawing users from a specific geographic area. Real estate professionals can use such sites to raise awareness about their services and drum up local business, while cons...