Modelry - A Random Walk through Internet Real Estate: Thank for You For Calling ActiveRain - This is Niki

Thank for You For Calling ActiveRain - This is Niki

Hi Everyone,

Happy Thursday!  As I told everyone, I am on our member services phone line.  Some people will end up getting me on the phone to help you with your RainMaker account or any other questions you may have.

Here are some of the people I have spoken with over the last couple of days.  At least the ones that are top of mind:

  • Ricky Ablaza and I spent time on the phone talking about copying and pasting from Microsoft Word into ActiveRain.  It was much harder and more complicated than it should be.  Bob Stewart told me that Microsoft Word embeds some strange HTML that does not sit well with ActiveRain.
  • I spent 30 minutes with an agent from Scottsdale Arizona who had recently signed up for RainMaker.  This was an eye-opening call.  She wasn't sure if blogging was for her and what the value of ActiveRain was.  So we went through a discussion of Internet marketing, how search engines work, why blogging and social media are important, and where does ActiveRain fit in the world of marketing.  She had concerns about blogging and what to blog about (which seems to be a pretty common question).
  • I received a call from an agent this morning with questions on adding HTML and button to her signature.  I needed to call in the cavalry (i.e. Rowena) to help me with this one.
  • I had a great call with Ron Tissier who just started and is looking at the Outside Blog as a way to supplement his personal web site.  We made sure it was set up correctly and walked through the "Post to" options at the end of the blog.  Again, when I had to explain the post to options to a new member, it seemed more complex than it had to be.  Ron also had questions about what to blog about. 

This is a great learning experience for me as we think about our products and our strategy as a company.


Nikesh Parekh

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Comment balloon 16 commentsNikesh Parekh • May 19 2011 02:19PM


Hey Niki, Sounds like you will be a great candidate to be and AR ambassador. LOL. We have been doing this for years and it is a great way to learn and to teach others.


Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) over 9 years ago

Hilarious picture. Outside blog is something that seems to stump a lot of us.  Boy do I have some questions about it . . . talk about being in the trenches :) This should initiate you quickly

Posted by Mimi Foster, Voted Colorado Springs Best Realtor (Falcon Property Solutions) over 9 years ago

"Bob Stewart told me that Microsoft Word embeds some strange HTML that does not sit well with ActiveRain."

The other day I tried to Cut and Paste from Word... it was a couple of paragraphs, but the "Hidden" Code in MS Word exceeded the 65,000 characters allowed in a Blog!

Good work, Niki.   Keep it up, thanks.

Posted by Fred Griffin Tallahassee Real Estate, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker (Fred Griffin Real Estate) over 9 years ago

Niki, I do need to make a call today for some help with a couple of things.  Maybe I will get lucky and you will be on the other end!

Posted by Trang Beuschlein, Campbell CA Real Estate - Campbell CA Homes for Sa (Homes for Sale in Campbell CA- Broker-BKR Realty) over 9 years ago

Niki, you area  man of the people. I hear they are talking of deposing McGinn. Maybe you could be the Mayor of Seattle too. It that a hands-free cell phone you have attached to your face?

Posted by Glenn Roberts (Retired) over 9 years ago

Two suggestions:

1.  Change the default in the visibility dropdown to DRAFT mode for when we're posting.

2.  You may want to consider sharing your screen or having the caller share theirs to make things easier when you're trying to explain.  Check out my recent post on how to share screens with

Oh, and way to go manning the phones!

Posted by Tara Cummins, Marketing Concierge, Strategy4SuccessNow (Stratagy4SuccessNow) over 9 years ago

Niki, baptism by fire allows you to get the same initiation as a newbie...that's good...i'd love them to fix the switching back & forth to html on a post so we could actually do it without all sorts of crazy stuff happening!...Tara's first suggestion is a must!  thanks for digging dirt to gold!

Posted by Ginny Gorman, Homes for Sale in Southern RI and beyond (RI Real Estate Services ~ 401-529-7849~ RI Waterfront Real Estate) over 9 years ago


I greatly admire the way you are going about learning the ins and outs of all the aspects of what makes AR work.    Not everyone would take it on the way that you have.  It speaks to a great desire to be the best and be prepared.  Hope you're having some fun with it along the way.

Posted by 1~Judi Barrett, BS Ed, Integrity Real Estate Services -IDABEL OK (Integrity Real Estate Services 118 SE AVE N, Idabel, OK 74745) over 9 years ago

Niki - you can call Ricky and tell him that his mistake was copying and pasting from Word. He needed to highlight the text, done in Word (however, the font should be Calibri) and then not copy, but drag it into the placemat in AR and submit. Exactly how I did it here.

And if he needs a more detailed description, you can find it in Dressing Up Your Blog.... Nirvana Recipe

Posted by Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL, Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices (Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408) over 9 years ago


Congratulations for taking on the phone lines under fire. I am impressed that you also openly admit you had to call in the experts. Great job, keep helping us move forward.

Posted by Nona Swann, Serving the needs of the Sellers in Brevard County (Swann & Associates Real Estate) over 9 years ago

Hi Niki... working the phones in ANY service organization is a great eye opening and learning experience.  I think the next step is a post about the larger lessons you are learning on the phones and how they have changed or shaped your perception of our community!  We can discuss when you get to Dallas next week!  :-)

Posted by Steve Shatsky over 9 years ago

Niki - You are approaching your new position in the right way, learning first hand about the issues that need to be addressed by talking to clients, blogging yourself and so much more.

Posted by FN LN over 9 years ago

Anytime somebody says they are using MS Word for blog posts, I say "use google docs instead" - the funny thing (called a wishlist) is why do we have to edit outside anyway? If AR editor was more robust this wouldn't be an issue (changing a font or size or color). You guys will get there eventually, I know that. Maybe as part of the IE9 experience upgrade? so great you take some phone time, gives you some real user experience day to day issues! -c-

Posted by Craig Daniels, Technology Instructor/Project Consultant (Tech Training for You!) over 9 years ago

I'm with Tara about making Draft to default for posting.....forgot to mention this on the survey.

Posted by Aida Pinto, Real Estate Broker (562) 884-6196 (Independent Real Estate Broker) over 9 years ago

I called in a while ago, and was told the same thing about Word.  I guess I thought it used to work.

Good job....stay on those phones.

Posted by Don Sabinske, Sabinske & Associates Inc. (Don Sabinske, Sabinske & Associates Inc.) over 9 years ago

Way to jump in Niki! This is an awesome way to really learn about AR and it's community! Kudos to you! 

Posted by Samantha Smith, Sam I Am Houses, Simply Texas Real Estate (214.422.0729 over 9 years ago