Economist.com City Liveability Rankings: Vancouver, British Columbia #1

The well respected, if not sometimes controversial, economist.com came out with their Liveability rankings or what they describe as ” world’s most liveable city.” The findings provided by the “Economists Intelligence unit” rank 140 cities worldwide. The winner and #1 most liveable city in the world this year is Vancouver, British Columbia. Not one American city appeared in the top ten cities. It is interesting to note that three Canadian cities, Vancouver-Toronto-Calgary, were all ranked in the top 10 most liveable cities in the world.

Methodology

First the economist “quantifies the challenges” that might be presented to an individual’s lifestyle in 140 cities worldwide.They then score each city on 30 qualitative and quantitative factors over these 5 broad categories:

1. Stability

2. Health care

3. Culture and environment

4. Education

5. Infrastructure.

The Intelligence unit then assigned scores based on a 100 point system with a score of 100 being the most ideal, liveable city in the world and a 1 being the worst. The following are the rankings of the Best and Worst cities:

Courtesy of the economist.com Intelligence unit:

Realtor’s #1 Tool: Twitter The Social Media Broadcasting Tool With Power

Twitter.com

Reuters.com published this deansguide article October 21, 2008

FoxBusiness.com published this deansguide article October 21, 2008

The newest and most exciting strategy for Realtors who do not want to blog, refuse to blog, or feel they will never be able to handle the work schedule of a blogger have an alternative: leveraging Social Media sites. The #1 tool for exposure in Web 2.0 and for your business is establishing your writing platform via a blog. Yet the barrier to entry is often too high for people who don’t wish to keep up with the technology curve, research curve, avalanche of reading, and writing articles.

Social Media sites provide Realtors with the ability to create a strategy where you connect your profiles, writing, and media together within the system. This method provides added exposure, helps to create a persona, produces lead generation opportunities, and allows you to network on a global scale.

Strategies for twitter.com

This is one of the best site to utilize in my personal branding, my system of delivering my message, and my quest to create my differentiating factor:

1. Create: A succinct profile aka bio. This is your billboard and what attracts people to follow you if they have never read one of your “tweets.”

2. Follow people: Go to your most trusted twitter connection and “mine” their “following” list located on the right sidebar. This is exactly like mining a blogroll on a popular blog

3. People Search: Perform a people search and follow people in your industry

4. Company Search: Perform a company search and follow companies that are in your industry, competitors, niches that work with your niche

5. Direct Message: Send a direct message to someone you wish to connect with on twitter. Offer value, ask for feedback, provide your feedback, interact and collaborate

6. twitter Blog: Read the twitter blog for more tips and strategies

Free, sound bite sized at 140 characters, broadcasting messages sent real time with impact. In addition twitter is fast becoming one of the most powerful search engine optimized sites on the internet. Utilize twitter as one site to help defend your reputation while locking up the top 20 positions on a Google search of your name.

Blog Your Way to Employment, Branding, and Your Differentiating Factor With Inner Architect

Susan Dean

I am very happy to announce the first of two Inner Architect workshops titled “Blogging to Employment” November 18 and 19. The workshop is a detailed basic course on how to create an employment campaign utilizing your blog as the delivery system for your message. The goal is to provide people a plan on how to create their differentiating factor in order to stand apart from the estimated 1.1 million Americans who will lose their job in 2008.

Call to Action: If you know anyone who is unemployed, and I know I do at this time, please consider informing them of this valuable workshop.

Benefits for Attendees

1. Your own Blog: We will help you register and set up your first blog

2. Employment Campaign: Learn how to action plan an employment campaign so that you can answer the age old hiring manager’s question “So Bob what have you been doing the past 6 months to find a job?”

3. New Skill Sets: You will add to your skill sets-blogging, navigating blog software, Web 2.0 tools, and networking

Workshop 1:

Date: Tuesday November 18, 2008

Place: Silicon Valley Holiday Inn Express San Jose Airport

Time: 6:30-9:00pm

Workshop Fee: $75

Workshop 2:

Date: November 19, 2008

Place: San Rafael, CA Ace Conference Room

Time: 6:30-9:00pm

Workshop Fee: $75

Value Comparison: Blog Set-Up fees, as advertised on the internet, run from $200-$300 which only covers the registration and setup without any coaching. Blog Coaching and Training fees run from $70 to as much as $500 per hour

Class Size: We will limit classes to 20 so that each student is provided hands on personalized instruction.

Come find out why you need to establish your brand, discover your differentiating factor, and add to your skill sets the latest Web 2.0 information.

Realtor’s Hyperlocal Sales Tool #1: Unigo.com Highlights Universities In Your Area

Location, location, location is the old adage. In today’s Web 2.0 world a Realtor’s marketing campaign should be hyperlocal, hyperlocal, hyperlocal content. One of the hot buttons for parents when purchasing a home is the educational opportunities in the city, county, and region you represent.

Long Ignored

Most Realtors cover all of the bases when understanding an elementary school district, middle schools, and high schools in their area. The next step is to cover and highlight the junior colleges, colleges, and universities in your region. Unigo.com is a great tool that you can suggest to potential buyers as a form of research. It is also a great source for the Realtor to stay current on the schools in their area.

Unigo.com is a brilliant yet simple concept: poll thousands of college students on their universities. Have these students provide reviews and reports about everything the University has to offer. Describe academic and living conditions. Create audio and video resources; and package it all together so parents, students, and entrepreneurs can learn more about the institutions

Realtor’s Tool

If you have a great University or a concentration of great Universities within the region you sell, San Francisco Bay Area is a prime example with Stanford, Cal, Santa Clara, and the California State University system as well as a huge Junior College system,  you must consider this a strong selling point in real estate.

Unigo.com: Find, Review, Explore

Find: this is a rich search system that can pinpoint nearly every major university in the land

Review: this allows you to rate your university adding information for others to consider

Explore: this section aggregates all the information for your investigation. Sections include College Reviews; Video; Photos; Documents; and student Profiles

Unconvinced? About Us Document:

“Unigo is the world’s largest platform for college students to share reviews, photos, videos, documents, and more with students on their campus and across the country.

It’s also the best place for high school students to find out what life is really like at America’s colleges, and to make friends to help them find the school that’s right for them.

Unigo is the result of a nationwide grassroots movement to get the truth out about college life, and it’s growing bigger every day. Want to join?”

5 Strategies to Branding “You”: Realtor’s Guide To Career Success

Branding "You" to be memorable

Branding

Reuters.com published this deansguide article September 2, 2008

What exactly is the definition for the word “branding”? We are talking about creating an aura, a perception, and a truth about a person, service, or product that allows people to identify and recognize them instantly.

Branding according to Whatis.techtarget.com definition

Branding “You” What Are You Waiting For?

You spend a lifetime promoting your employer, their products, and their services. You derive your substance factor from your experiences. Is it not about time you tell the world about you and why you are special?

Tips To Branding “You”

1. Recognize: You are a brand. You have recognizable qualities and you must consider yourself special in order to promote your unique qualities

2. Begin the Shift: Recognize you are worthy of brand recognition and begin to shift the emphasis to your qualities and differentiating factors that make you unique. Why are you so effective? How can you deliver value? Begin to market you as the source

3. Education to Expertise: in order to become a brand, you must be knowledgeable in your niche. Gain confidence and expertise by studying and learning about your business from mentors, online resources, workshops, seminars, and books. Building your knowledge base builds confidence in you as well as your potential clients

4. Writing Platform: create a writing platform with the goal of establishing your own blog within a 3-6 month period. The following are places to start:

a.) Submit articles to ezinearticles.com

b.) Create a newsletter

c.) Become a contributor to a blog

d.) Ask to contribute to a newsletter or local newspaper

5. Public Speaking Platform: Create a workshop or speech aimed at providing value to your audience.

a.) Ask to represent your company at local meetings or conferences. Work up to bigger venues

b.) Ask to speak at your Kiwanis Club, Rotary, or Chamber of Commerce

c.) Create a Free workshop for you affiliate partners

d.) Join a industry organization and submit your request to speak

Results

The best strategy to support your career as an entrepreneur or as an employee of a company is to create the brand of “You.” In so doing, you become recognizable to both potential clients and potential employers.

Your entrepreneurial business is positively effected when potential clients know you, like your brand (You), and understand the value you bring to the table

Your employer’s business is positively effected when customers know you, trust you as their “brand”, and understand the value you bring to the organization you are working for with the client’s best interests in mind

“Expert vs Expertise”: How Are You Perceived In Your Business Niche

The most powerful tip I can give anyone who needs to believe in themselves or someone who needs to be knocked down a peg (been there and done that in both cases) is to understand the difference between the words “expert” and “expertise.” In order to build your confidence in your business become an expert or educate yourself further which will raise your level of expertise.

Are You a Expert?

The word expert is bandied about and utilized far to often and out of context. It makes the person claiming to be an expert look foolish if they do not understand the definition.

Answers.com an expert is “a person with a high degree of skill in or knowledge of a certain subject.”

Wikipedia.org describes an expert the same way as answer.com with this added requirement “someone widely recognized as a reliable source of technique or skill.”

Analysis: If you wish to claim to be an expert then you should have a rich portfolio of news articles, blog articles, media interviews, or any guest appearances on substantial programs related to your expertise and niche. Essentially you have to be recognized as an expert by the public at large

Do You Have Expertise?

Expertise is knowledge and skill in a particular subject without being recognized as an expert by the public on a regional or national scale.

This is the right way (in my opinion) to present yourself, and the method I choose, when discussing your knowledge level.

Note: There are differing levels of expertise and almost everyone has expertise in some subject or skill

Final Final

You can actively become more educated by taking classes or seminars in your niche. The work you put in to raise your level of knowledge has 3 big benefits:

1. Confidence-you become more confident as your continuing education makes you “smarter” within your niche

2. Recognition-your clients and peers will recognize your hard work and your higher level of knowledge which could lead to articles or spotlights done on you by outside media sources

3. Credibility-you become more and more credible as a source of information and skill within your niche. Along with credibility comes the added benefit of trust. Clients and peers trust you as a go to source of information

Realtor John Harper Keynote Speaking Strategy: Become An Expert And Go To Source For Your Community

FoxBusiness.com published this deansguide article June 27, 2008

John Harper of theharperteam in Danville, California is the best example, template, for Realtors who understand the value of marketing yourself through public speaking. John is an expert, and I don’t use that term very often, in online networking aka social networking. Even more critical to his efforts is the fact that John is an expert in understanding the value of creating a public speaking platform within your business.

Learn How From John Harper

If you wish to understand how to become a go to source of free valuable information to your community as a workshop or keynote speaker, attend John’s presentation “Strategic Thinking About Your Career” Saturday June 28. The workshop is being held at “CPC” Job Seeker’s Group meeting from 9:30-11:30am at the Community Presbyterian Church ( 222 West El Pintado, Room #100 ) in Danville.

In my article for Active Rain How To Win New Clients, Build A Contact List, And Become An Expert In A Niche: Employment Networking Groups Your Ticket To Leads And New Partnerships” I outline the benefits of providing keynote speaking-workshops to employment groups.

Benefits of Public Speaking

1. Create Awareness: help people know you and your business

2. Community Resource: Establish yourself as a resource of free valuable information to your community

3. Build a List: Build a client list from your audience

4. Remain in the Public Eye: Remind your community that you are in business and there to help them all the time

5. Hone your Speaking Skills: Practice makes perfect, builds confidence, and creates expertise

6. Blog Content: Now you have a place, speaking engagement, to bring your blog articles to life. In addition your appearances provide blog content

7. Network: Become a go to source to help others network within your community of contacts

Realtor’s Business Diagnostic Test #1: A-E-I-O-U And Sometimes Y

How often do you perform a diagnostic test on your business, it’s processes, and the overall health of your organization? Now might be a great time to take on this task; the results may surprise you as well as provide areas to improve upon. When learning the English language one of the first concepts was your vowels. Borrowing from this lesson, try applying the “A-E-I-O-U and sometimes Y” diagnostic test to your business.

A-E-I-O-U And Sometimes Y

A- Alternatives: How often do you research different solutions (alternatives) that could be applied to your business processes or mission that would improve what you already do well?

E-Education: Do you seek to educate yourself, your staff, and your customers with the most up to date, cutting edge industry specific information on an ongoing basis?

I-Intelligence: I am not referring to your intelligence or smarts but rather industry information about trends, competitors, products, services, or changes that will effect your business and the consumer

O-Observation: Observation testing according to act.org “measures the skill people use when they pay attention to and remember work-related instructions, demonstrations, and procedures.” Do you pay attention and more importantly do you pay attention to detail within your business?

U-Understanding: Don Clark’s “Continuum of Understanding” has a great quote: The greater one understands the subject matter, the more one is able to weave past experiences (context) into new knowledge by absorbing, doing, interacting, and reflecting. Total Awareness of your business!

Sometimes Y-You: You and only You are the difference between your accomplishments and your failures. Your thoughts and your ability to dismantle doubt are the most important part of this exercise. If you feel intimidated then you will be but if you feel open to success then success will follow you

Realtor’s Marketing Strategy #3: The Product Is You-Would You Buy You?

Realtors often fail to understand that in consultative sales of any product or service people-buy-people. Unless you are representing a low-price strategy business model, the actual product you are selling is you.

Question: Would You Buy You?

If you believe that believing in yourself is a choice then you must understand how to begin the process. The first characteristic that shapes our reality is our self confidence. But how do you feel confident when you have never done something that feels difficult or foreign to your experience?

How Do I Build My Confidence?

1. Increase Your Knowledge and Expertise:

Enroll in classes from your state association of Realtors, NAR, adult education curriculum, or hire a specific expert coach to provide strategies

Read trade magazines, blogs, and periodicals related to your location

Being an “expert” is defined by Websters as “skill or knowledge representing mastery of a particular subject.” Life experience and a willingness to learn will help you become an expert

2. Practice Your Craft:

Repetition and critiquing your performances are the mainstays of any effort to improve. By seriously practicing, being mindful of quality, and relentlessly striving to improve you will become an expert and build your confidence in the process

3. Offer Your Work For Free:

Give free workshops, tutoring, mentoring, or offer your resources to businesses. The key to offering your work for free is the priceless feedback and experience you gain from this activity

4. Find a Mentor:

Look for someone who is successful in your niche. Surround yourself with positive people. Allow their positive habits to rub off on you. Make the commitment to expand your base of friends and acquintances

Quick Business Guide #1: The 5 Key Questions You Must Answer Before Launching Your Business

Watch this video of Jay Abraham to understand Key Question #3 in this Quick Business Guide

In order to understand the importance of preparation in going to market with any business, you must first install processes that will support your business. One of the most important overview processes to perform is answering the 5 Key Questions to starting a successful business.

If you do not have answers for any of these questions, it is important to stop and examine the “missing ingredient” that may create long term problems for your new startup.

The Five Key Questions

1. What is Your Substance Factor?

These are experiences, education, career titles, collaborations, successes, or lessons learned from failures you accumulated throughout your career that provide the “expert” substance factor that will give you credibility in your business

2. What Are You?

This is identifying what type of company you are about to launch and the market you are targeting

3. What Are Your Products, Services, and Market Strategies?

This is simply identifying whether you provide a tangible or intangible product, services only, products and services, and the strategy that allows you to cross sell and or up sell your customer base on an ongoing basis.

The #1 Market Strategy you can review before going to market is provided by the $7 Billion Dollar Man Jay Abraham in “3 Methods To Grow Your Business”

4. Who Is Your Customer?

Identify your customer, their demographics, their propensity to buy, and the habits this target market exhibits. Identify if you will sell to the general public, small businesses, large corporations, or a combination of the aforementioned. Investigate the possibility of opening up to a global-world wide market

5. What Is Your “Differentiating Factor(s)”?

What makes your product-service special or standout from the marketplace? Do you have an advantage that your niche competitors do not have in their businesses? Can you market this differentiating factor and make it a driving factor in your launch? How can you leverage this differentiating factor in order to convince an established business, in your niche and with established-developed channels into the market, to partner-collaborate-or present you to the marketplace?