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What’s Going On In Tennessee? It’s Not JUST Great Country Music, Baby!

By Jennifer Taylor, Director of Internet Marketing, New American Mortgage

Interviewed: Joe Anderson, Market Leader.

New American Mortgage office in Tennessee

So, what’s really going on in Tennessee? It’s not just the country music talent; it’s the NEW mortgage talent, as well. New American Mortgage launched its first office in Tennessee in January 2012 and has quickly outgrown its current 6,000 square foot office, in Green Hills, and is now relocating to a larger office on the West End. The new office is nearly double the size as the old one. They currently have 16 loan officers in Tennessee and are constantly hiring more. New American Mortgage in Nashville is quickly gaining notoriety for its exceptional service and commitment to its reverse processing platform (A.K.A. Clear-To-Close (CTC)). Through New American Mortgage’s systematic approach to processing loans, Nashville has rapidly gained market share by closing purchase transactions in less than 20 days, as well as, full renovation loans between 20-30 days. We are a full-service mortgage banker and have all the other standard products, such as Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, FHA, VA, USDA Rural Development, THDA Bond Program, Home Path, and Reverse Mortgage.

For more than 30 years, Inc. has celebrated the fastest-growing companies in America. Because of our commitment for high-service standards and execution, we have recently been recognized by Inc. in the 2012 Inc. 500 Magazine as the FASTEST GROWING privately held mortgage company in America. Now, how did we do that?! When we came into Tennessee and planted our flag, we committed to our company’s mission to be, the premier REALTOR® Centric mortgage company in each and every market that we serve. What does REALTOR® Centric mean to us? It started with the two founding partners of New American Mortgage, Toby Harris and Casey Crawford. They both held REALTOR® licenses and worked in the real estate business before entering the mortgage business. They understand the unique demands and challenges faced by REALTORS® who try to create a referable experience for their clients. During the genesis of New American Mortgage, every decision was made in light of creating the most REALTOR® Centric model possible. Our goal is dedicated to providing our REALTOR® partners with service, the old fashion way. We are known across the United States as the mortgage company that has new energy, but old traditional values. We don’t just do things the old fashion way, we are up-to-date with the newest technology and tools. We constantly bring value to our REALTOR® partners, not only with our CTC process, but with our effective, practical marketing techniques. Our biggest and greatest investment has been in our employees and partners.

If you’re interested in partnering with us, please contact our Market Leader, Joe Anderson, at (757) 718-0025 and/or Joe.Anderson@NewAmerican.com. You can also contact our Branch Manager in Tennessee, Nathan Graham, at (615) 671-9711.

 

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EdgeRank – Facebook’s Holy Grail

By Jennifer Taylor, Director of Internet Marketing, New American Mortgage

Facebook EdgeRank's Formula

I’m sure right about now, you must be thinking, “EdgeRank… Facebook EdgeRank… What?…” Well, whether you knew about it or not, Facebook has an algoritum that governs what is displayed on ones’ news feed and how high on the news feed it will go. This is different from the original Top News (which is now called Top Stories) and Most Recent. I’m sure everyone is fairly familiar with those three terms by now. When Facebook integrated the Ticker (you know, the annoying thing on the right hand side of your Facebook home page?) not everyone’s post is shown anymore on the regular middle part of your news feed. Some people have been pushed to the Ticker and the “lucky ones” are placed in the middle of your home page.

Facebook's Home Page

Let me explain a little further and take a step back… The algorithm was first published during Facebook’s 2010 Developers Conference (F8) in San Francisco, CA. It HAS been around for quite a while now, it’s just morphed into something else (like a Jabberwocky… JK). From a business standpoint, it’s actually BRILLIANT . Facebook figured out how long ago how to get money (and even more money) from their consumers. Facebook is free, but they have to pay their employees somehow, and it’s not with the Mafia Wars money that we give them! I’ll go more into that a little later. The EdgeRank is an ever-changing score for your Facebook Business Page(s)/Fan Page(s) AND Profile Page. The score determines who sees each post and how long it will be shown in someone’s news feed (Top Stories/Most Recent/Ticker).

Even though, the picture above does depict a formula, no one knows for sure what the formula really looks like. Just like Google’s PageRank, marketers have a good idea of what that correct formula is, but no one knows, except for the company itself (Facebook/Google).

There are three ingredients in Facebook’s algorithm, which are the following:

  1. Affinity Score - Note: How connected a particular user is to the Edge.
  2. Edge Weight - Note: Each category of edges has a different default weight.
  3. Time Decay - Note: As a story gets older, it loses points because it is essentially old news.

The formula that Facebook has shared to the public is the following:

Facebook's EdgeRank Logo

∑ ue wde

ue = affinity score between viewing user and edge creator.

we = weight of the edge type (status, comment, like, tag, etc.).

de = time decay factor based on how long ago the edge was created.

If one types in “EdgeRank” in Facebook’s Help Center search engine, a post will appear called, How does my news feed determine which content is most interesting?. There are also two links that appear under it called News Feed (Home) and How News Feed Works. I’ll let you read up on those yourself.
For those of you that are less “techy,” I’m sure you’re more than ready to hear my layman’s terms about all this. Well, just remember that your interactions with people on Facebook are extremely important. You should be influential to your connections/fans. From a business/fan page point of view, one should post at the right time (for many of you this will eventually be the time that your target market is on Facebook), use clear call-to-actions, and post photos. Everyone thinks I post a lot of photos on Facebook… well, there’s actually a reason and now you know. Photos seem to get shown, liked, and commented on more than a regular post. The following print screens are the exact same post. One, however, is posted with just the link and the other one is posted with a photo. Which one grabs your attention more? I’m just telling you from my experience, the posts with photos get more likes and comments than the ones without. 
Test Post 1
Test Post 2
I know a few of my Facebook friends know about Facebook’s algoritum. I can tell because they pretty much JUST ask questions. What they’re doing is getting their EdgeRank UP by asking questions. I feel like I’ve lost them as a friend though. They feel more like a bot on Fookbook. If one asks a question on Facebook, your friends/fans usually chime in. For example:

Facebook post: I'm writing an article about Facebook's EdgeRank... very technical, but very interesting! Do you know what EdgeRank means?

You see?! It’s as simple as that! It’s really not that hard. It just gets a little tricky when Facebook changes their algoritum. Also, take note that the type of interaction on Facebook is important. For example, a comment has a greater value than a Like.

What does all this mean? The higher EdgeRank that you and/or your Facebook Business Page (Fan Page) has, the less you have to advertise on Facebook to get your posts to be seen. There are other ways to get your posts seen, but that’s for another day…

Until next time, my Ninja Marketing Warriors! :)

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Marketing Mashup – November 21, 2012

By Jennifer Taylor, Director of Internet Marketing, New American Mortgage

New American Mortgage's Marketing Mashup

Hello everyone! I’m sure you remember our awesome Ninja Monday Marketing Mashup posts. I remember them too… :-) ! I still write on Mondays from time to time, but what I didn’t realize when I started the ever so awesome Ninja Monday Marketing Mashup was that I am usually not available to write on Mondays. *Face palm!* I’m usually flying on an airplane across the United States for New American Mortgage (getting engaged on an airplane – HA! True story by the way) and/or speaking somewhere. I could write Ninja Monday Marketing Mashup ahead of time, but as most of you know, online marketing changing as fast as I can type. So what’s my solution? I’ve changed the series to just New American Mortgage Marketing Mashup. What does this mean? If I’m too busy to write on Monday, I can write on TuesdayWednesday, etc. - any day!

So… let’s cut to the chase! We all know why you’re here – to get your Marketing Mashup Fix! Here we go… Today I’m going to list some Facebook Business Page (Fan Page) MUST HAVES for REALTORS®.

  • Social Connections: Display all you listings with Social Connections by REALTOR®.com. Once you have it installed (which literally takes less than 60 seconds), go into the back-end of Facebook and switch the title and image to reflect your website. To do this, go go to Edit Page, Update Info, Apps, Edit Settings, and change the Custom Tab Image, and Custom Tab Name. When I was in Nevada this last week, I had the pleasure of working with Lindstrom & Associates from Keller Williams Realty. They asked me to install tabs that would pull their MLS (Multiple Listing Service) listings, blog, and YouTube channel. I did so and branded it to mirror image their website. See below:

Lindstrom And Associates' Website

Nice, aye?! :D

Lindstrom And Associates Las Vegas Real Estate's Facebook Business Page (Fan Page)

  • RSS for Pages: Feature your 40 (or less) latest blog posts with RSS for Pages by Involver.
  • YouTube for Pages: Feature your 6 latest YouTube videos with YouTube for Pages by Involver.
  • Google Plus Tab for Pages: Stream your Google+ updates on your Facebook Fan Page with Google Plus Tab for Pages by Cercoe.
  • Pinterest Page App: Feature your entire Pinterest account on your Facebook Fan Page with Pinterest Page App by Woobox.
  • MailChimp: Get people to subscribe to your email list with MailChimp’s squeeze page by The Rocket Science Group.
  • PageModo: Create a Facebook Welcome Tab with PageModo by Thomas Kjeldgaard and Jakob Lykkegaard Pedersen.

Your BONUS Marking Fix:

  • AppBistro: Your central hub for Facebook tabs.
  • Involver: Your other hub for Facebook tabs.
  • JotForm: This is literally the easiest form builder I’ve come across. JotForm’s online form builder helps you create and publish web forms on anywhere, anytime. Use it to collect payments, registrations, leads, and uploads.
Until next time, my Ninja Marketing Warriors! :)

 

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Where Should One Vote On Election Day?

By Jennifer Taylor, Director of Internet Marketing, New American Mortgage

Person in a voting booth.

Election Day is quickly approaching. Do you know where to vote on Election Day? I didn’t until today. The first time I voted was in Pensacola, FL where I went to college. After I moved away, I voted in Escambia County, which is located in Pensacola, FL, via an absentee ballot. This year is my first year to vote in Virginia as a Virginia Beach resident. I was  just as confused as you might be. I’m even more confused, because I’ll be in Richmond, VA on business on Election Day. Also, I can’t find my voter registration card. What’s nice is that I just found out I can vote early, in person, at several locations in Virginia Beach and what I will need to bring with me. You might be able to vote early too.

Google Politics And Elections 2012

Good old Google has come to the rescue for me and the rest of the United States. If you go to https://www.google.com/elections/ed/us/vote, you can see where you should vote via Polling Place LookupBallot Summary (President & Vice President and U.S. Senate) is also listed on the same webpage. What’s even cooler is that they have all the social networks listed that is associated with each candidate. Their website, Google+ Page, YouTube Channel, Facebook Fan Page, and Twitter Page is listed for you to follow.

CanIVote.Org is also an excellent website for Election Day information. It can take you to your State Board of Election’s website. It also has the following things you can check out:

  • Voter Registration: Get Registered or Check Your Registration Info.
  • Find Your Polling Place.
  • Know What Kind of ID To Bring.
  • Make Your Vote Count: Absentee and Early Voting.
  • Learn About the Candidates.
Note: CanIVote.org is maintained by the National Association of Secretaries of State, the nation’s oldest nonpartisan professional association for public officials.
We’re not concerned with how you vote, just get out there and vote! :)
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Preparing for Hurricane Sandy. . . GangNAM Style!

By Jennifer Taylor, Director of Internet Marketing, New American Mortgage

:Hurricane Sandy at 8:29 PM on October 29, 2012

As always, New American Mortgage is working around the clock. Yes, we are open (as always)… even during hurricanes! We’ve weathered through many storms at our operations center in Virginia Beach, VA, and this one is no exception. Last year, we brought you the Top Ten Ways To Prepare For Hurricane Irene. This year, we’re bringing you something a little bit different.

So… what do people really do during a hurricane? Well… let’s take a look!

Last year, Toby Harris Sr., co-owner of New American Mortgage, felt like planking… and planking he did! Did I mention this is my boss?! Yes, we always find time to relax and have a little fun. :)

Toby Harris Sr. Planking at New American Mortgage in Virginia Beach, VA during hurricane Irene

This year during Hurricane Sandy, he felt like doing the GangNAM Style dance… and so did a few other folks out there! :D

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Ninja Monday Marketing Mashup – September 17, 2012

By Jennifer Taylor, Director of Internet Marketing, New American Mortgage

Ninja Monday Marketing Mashup

The Ninja Monday Marketing Mashup for September 17, 2012:

Recently, there has been talk about Facebook having their own search engine, but did you know you can already search for things within Facebook? For example, you can search people talking about trying to find a home, sell home, just got a job and will have to move. YEP! It’s been right under your nose all this time! I’ve never written about it, even though I do speak on the topic. The main reason I haven’t is because I don’t want to saturate the people with tons of responses. There is a proper way to respond to these findings. Well, since today is Ninja Marketing Mashup, I will divulge my knowledge! :)

If you type in a keyword or key phase into Facebook’s current search engine, click the magnifying glass, then Public Posts, you find your golden nugget at the end of the Facebook rainbow. If you do it without quotation marks, the posts will contain those key words through the entire post. If you put it in quotation marks, you will pull posts with that exact key phase. Does this work? You bet! I have taught on this particular thing for some time now to New American Mortgage‘s REALTOR®  partners. Back in May, I had the owner of a real estate company thank me for coming to their office. She told me that their office had made $27,000+ in profit in the span of 4 months, because of responding to these type of posts. I could make a huge list of testimonials about how much our REALTORS®  parrtners have appreciated us coming to their office and teaching them this. But think BIGGER! If you live in VA, search for FL. You can get money from a referral fee, correct?! ;)  Since I live in Virginia, I just went on Facebook to search, “Moving to Virginia.” See:

So what do you do once you find this? If I were a REALTOR®  (or Loan Officer), I would click on the guy’s name. I wouldn’t ask to be his Facebook friend (he probably wouldn’t want be your friend anyway). I would, however, direct message him. An example would be the following:

Good evening Travis,

I noticed (you don’t have to say, “I Facebook stalked you. And look what I found!” lol… just leave that out) that you might be moving to Virginia Beach, VA soon. Congratulations! I’ve lived in the area for X amount of years and love living here. If you need any help, please let me know. I’m a REALTOR®  (or Loan Officer) with X company. Prices and rates are at an all time low. It’s usually cheaper to buy a home than to rent. Feel free to contact me anytime. My phone number is X, my email address is X, and my website is X.

I would personally like to connect with you on Facebook through my Facebook Business Page (Fan Page), put the link to the Facebook Fan Page here. I provide valuable information about the real estate market, as well as fun things to do in the Hampton Roads area.

Sincerly,

Your Name

P.S. I thought you might like a home buyer’s guide. I have attached it to this direct message. (It can be anything. Another good value added thing you can attach is “The Top 10 Things To Do In X” with your photo and information on it.)

Well, that’s all for this week!…

Until next time, my Ninja Marketing Warriors!

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Ninja Monday Marketing Mashup – August 13, 2012

By Jennifer Taylor, Director of Internet Marketing, New American Mortgage

Ninja Monday Marketing Mashup

The Ninja Monday Marketing Mashup for August 13, 2012:

The Google logo written on a chalkboard.

  • Since many students are returning to school this week, I thought College Tips by Google deserved a spotlight. Whether you’re just applying to school or a college senior starting the job hunt, Google is there to help you every step of the way with tips, products, and services to help make life easier (minus an extra hand to help clean your dorm room)! Don’t forgive to look at each tab. There is information available for prospective college students, current college students, and college seniors.
  • With SurveyMonkey you can create and publish online surveys in minutes. You can view the results graphically and in real time. I love this program! It’s simple, fast, and easy. I use it to see what topics our REALTOR® partners are interested in, as well as how I’m doing as New American Mortgage‘s public speaker.
  • Need a email marketing plan? Check out MailChimp. MailChimp helps you design email newsletters. You can share them on social networks and track the results. They have an excellent “Forever FREE Plan.” You can send up to 12,000 emails per month to 2,000 subscribers. Also, think outside the box… you can create virtual invitations to send to your clients about an event you’re hosting.

That’s all for this week!…

Until next time, my Ninja Marketing Warriors!

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New American Mortgage Earned Position 128 on the 2012 Inc. 500

By Jennifer Taylor, Director of Internet Marketing, New American Mortgage

Map of New American Mortgage, LLC.

The growth of New American Mortgage has been an interesting one. I started working at New American Mortgage on October 23, 2009. I remember years ago when my boss, Toby Harris Sr. co-owner of New American Mortgage, telling me, “Jen, we’re going to go BIG and we’re going to grow FAST!” It’s not that I didn’t have faith. We were smack in the middle of a recession! I remember smiling and saying something along the line of “I know!,” but thinking in my head, “Yeah, yeah.” He must have read it in my face, because he told me, “I know you don’t believe me, but we ARE!” Little did I know that almost three years later, on August 8, 2012, we would recieve an award from Inc. (magazine) stating the following:

Inc. 500 magazine cover

“Dear Casey Crawford,

On behalf of Inc., I am delighted to inform you that New American Mortgage has earned the position of 128 on the 2012 Inc. 500.

For more than 30 years, Inc. has celebrated the fastest-growing private companies in America. To be honored this year is a particularly notable achievement. To rank among the 2012 Inc. 500., your company had to thrive through three of the toughest years this economy has seen in living memory. Your success in such times is eloquent testimony to your team’s creativity, resilience, and tenacity.

As an Inc. 500 honoree, New American Mortgage now shares a pedigree with Intuit, Zappos, Under Armour, Microsoft, Jamba Juice, Timberland, Clif Bar, Pandora, Patagonia, Oracle, and other notable alumni. In addition to New American Mortgage the 2012 list added such powerhouses as Publix Supermarkets, CDW, Levi Strauss and a little social media company called Facebook. Welcome to a very exclusive club.

Congratulations to you and your team. You should be proud of all New American Mortgage has achieved to date. I wish you many more years of success.

Sincerely,
Eric Schurenberg
Editor in Chief
Inc. magazine”

Official Letter from Inc.:

New American Mortgage has earned the position of 218 on the 2012 Inc. 500.

Well, I would like to tell my boss, Toby, :)You were right!” And to my other boss, Casey, ;)He was right!” Congratulations, you guys! I’m proud to be apart of this amazing company. I’m looking forward to what lies ahead.

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Games of the XXX Olympiad Google Doodles

By Jennifer Taylor, Director of Internet Marketing, New American Mortgage

Google:

It’s time for a little Google 101Have you ever wondered what the meaning is behind to word, Google? Have you ever wondered when and why Google started to change its logo on its homepage? Well, today I’m taking you back to the basics in reverence of today’s Google Doodle, Hurdles 2012.

The meaning of Google comes from the word googol, which is the large number 10100; that is, the digit 1 followed by 100 zeroes.

  • The name ‘Google‘ is a play on the word ‘googol,’ coined by Milton Sirotta, nephew of American mathematician Edward Kasner. A ‘googol’ refers to the number 1 followed by 100 zeros.
  • The American Dialect Society chose Google as a nomination for the “most useful word of 2002.”
    • The 2007 movie, Knocked Up, was the first time I noticed Google’s product placement, if, in fact, Google did pay to be in the movie. It’s interesting, because in October 2006, Google sent a plea to the public entitled “Do you Google?,” requesting that ‘you should please only use Googlewhen you’re actually referring to Google Inc. and our services. In the movie, the older daughter is riding in her Aunt’s car and casually states “I Googled murder,” while in another scene Leslie Mann’s character asks Paul Rudd to “Google” their daughter’s symptoms to determine whether she has the chicken pox or a rash.
  • The verb Google was officially added to the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) on June 15, 2006, and to the 11th edition of the Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary in July 2006.
The Google Doodle:

A mom texting her child about changing the Google logo.

Having a little bit of fun with the corporate logo by redesigning it from time to time is unheard of at many companies but at Google, it is a part of the brand.

Here’s a little history behind the Google Doodle:

The 1st Google Doodle, which is the stick figure drawing that is placed behind the 2nd "o" in the word Google.

  • In 1998, the concept of the doodle was born when Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin played with the corporate logo to indicate their attendance at the Burning Man Festival. A stick figure drawing was placed behind the 2nd “o” in the word, Google, and the revised logo was intended as a comical message to Google users that the founders were “out of office.”
  • Google Doodles were designed by an outside contractor, until Larry and Sergey asked then-intern Dennis Hwang to design a logo for Bastille Day in 2000. Hwang is now Google’s chief doodler and doodles have became a regular occurrence on the Google homepage.

Today, August 7, 2012, Google’s logo changed to an interactive Google Doodle as part of the celebration of the Games of the XXX Olympiad. I have created a tribute to the Games of the XXX Olympiad Google Doodles.

Can you beat my score of 14.6 seconds (…with no mistakes)?!

 

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