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Top 10 Most Popular Articles from November

November 30 2016

novemberNovember was... quite an adventure. Between the presidential election, NAR Annual and Thanksgiving, I think it's safe to say that most of us are worn out. So it's with some relief that we're posting our round-up of the most read articles of the month--because it means the month is finally over!

There were some interesting readership patterns this month. Since October, we've been seeing a lot of articles talking about preparing for 2017. We don't often see these until mid-December, but this year, they're out early and in force. In fact, you can read one at #10 on this list. I guess that means that many of us are already mentally checking out of 2016.

That's okay, though. These cooler months are perfect for learning new skills, tools, and strategies to grow your business. Take the time to prepare yourself for the year ahead--we've got 10 great articles below that can help you get started!

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1. Facebook Housing Ads Run into Trouble with HUD
We talk a lot about Facebook advertising--and for good reason. It's one of the best ways to reach consumers, thanks to finely tuned targeting options. However, those targeting options are exactly what got the social network in trouble with HUD recently, who said that some targeting criteria may violate the Fair Housing Act.

2. 12 Proven Real Estate Lead Generation Sources
Lead generation can be hard work, but you know that feeding leads into your funnel is one of the most important tasks on your to-do list, so you keep doing it. Dirk Zeller, CEO of Real Estate Champions, recently recommended several ways to generate leads more efficiently. Here, we've taken those recommendations and expanded on them with tips and tricks relating them to you.

3. How to Take Incredible Listing Photos
Are you taking the best photos possible of your listing? If you aren't, it might be the reason the listing is still on the market. First impressions are so important and that's why you need quality photographs of your listing. Learn the tricks to using a DSLR with Dave Dugdale!

4. Ultimate Real Estate Scripts to Keep in Touch and Get More Business
Getting on the phone is a big part of being a real estate agent. But there are so many reasons to avoid it! Lack of time, forgetfulness and, most importantly, not knowing what to say. Today we'll go over some of the ultimate real estate scripts for keeping in touch with your leads and past clients. Armed with these scripts, you'll have more natural, effective conversations that build trust with your contacts and help you stay top of mind.

5. SentriLock Adds New Mobile Agent Safety Feature
Lockbox provider SentriLock's mobile app now offers an agent safety feature. Officially launched in October, the new update to the SentriSmart mobile app alerts others when an agent is in a potentially dangerous situation. Here's how it works.

6. 5 Tools Real Estate Agents Will Love
Maybe it's because we've just entered the fourth quarter of 2016, but our minds have recently turned to how agents can maximize what's left of the year and come out ahead in 2017. To that end, we've rounded up a few apps and online tools that can help. Several of these apps can help soothe the tax-related stings of being an independent contractor, while others are excellent weapons in your marketing arsenal.

7. 8 Tools to Automate Your Social Media
Much about social media requires personal touches and specific care and attention, but some tasks are very menial. Growing your community, timing of posts, as well as analytics can all be now done easily through online software programs. Known as "bots" or automation tools, these programs can help target potential new online community members, schedule posts, and show metrics that aid in the overall social media campaign. Here is the ultimate starter's guide to social media automation.

8. Growing and Maintaining Your Pipeline: 6 Do's and Don'ts
To be successful in real estate, you must utilize your time wisely to equally focus on the important aspects of your business like prospecting, converting leads, delighting clients, and processing referrals. While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to succeeding in maintaining and growing your pipeline in real estate, we've put together six do's and don'ts to guide you.

9. How Agents Can Help Military Veterans Become Homeowners
When it comes to housing, our service men and women face several unique challenges, from finding a home from abroad to navigating the confusing world of VA mortgage loans. This Veterans Day, we want to help you serve those who serve us to achieve the pinnacle of the American Dream--homeownership. Here are 5 tips.

10. How to Set Your Goals Now for More Commissions in 2017
Do you have a plan for how you can step up your game in 2017? We're not talking about having vague goals, but instead formulating a tangible plan that includes hard numbers for how many transactions you need to close to hit your income target, as well as how many leads you need to engage to generate those transactions in the first place. Here are a few things you need to keep in mind when formulating your plan for 2017.