The Effect of Social Media on Business

7 Oct

I recently wrote about my reasons why I really enjoy Twitter and how I think it can be a great tool for people to use. One of the reasons I mentioned was that Twitter (or social media in general) holds companies accountable. Although briefly explained in my previous post, I wanted to write about it more thoroughly. Social media can effect business by having a substantial positive and negative effect on the perception of the organization as well as creating actual results that can lead to greater profitability in some cases.

First, I will start with the negative effects social media can have on business. I recently read a BBC article talking about how organizations are handling this new social media trend towards business. I think the opening sentence deserves to be repeated here:

“Once upon a time companies could afford to be rude. Unhappy customers would grumble to a few friends, withdraw their custom, but there was little else they could do.”

However, today, in a world of followers, friends, views, and fans, a company that behaves this way is likely to suffer serious repercussions that can seriously effect the business in negative ways. More and more customer service is becoming key to an organizations success. Look at Zappos. That is a company with customer service at its very core, which, because of that, was sold to Amazon for over $1 billion dollars in 2009. In this BBC article, the author describes the story of Dave Carrol whose expensive Taylor guitar had gotten broken by handlers at United Airlines. After “nine months of complaining” to United and receiving no compensation Mr. Carrol decided to take out his aggression online and make a music video and post it on YouTube. Within months the video received over 1 million views and now has over 9 million views! Think about how incredible this is. I bet more people have seen his video on YouTube bashing United Airlines than people have seen the company’s own commercials on TV.

Side note: In a brilliant move, Bob Taylor himself (from Taylor guitars) decided to use the attention from this video and make a video of his own to not only offer Mr. Carrol a sympathetic apology and state his support of him, he also gave helpful tips on how to travel with a guitar and tell everyone about their guitar repair service! Genius! Not only were they sincere and supportive of their customer they suggested helpful advice and reminded people of their services offered. Brilliantly executed.

What makes social media such a great environment for business is people’s recommendations; good or bad. For the most part, when the people who I follow on Twitter and am friends with on Facebook have opinions or recommendations about products or services, I listen, and so do their other followers and friends. That’s powerful. If my friend on Twitter tweets about horrible customer service they have received from somewhere I am sure to listen and second-guess giving that place my business. The flip side is true too. If my friend tweets about how great a place was, I will often make sure I make an effort to experience it for myself. This can be for any kind of business, from restaurants to specific products or services. This form of marketing is far more effective and concentrated than almost any other form.

Second, social media can also have a tremendous positive impact on businesses. The more people who talk positively about a product or service the more ‘viral’ it becomes and the more people listen and act on those recommendations. That is what every business that engages in social media hopes to accomplish with their efforts: going viral. Not only does this lead to potentially new business, it also opens a door for communication and customer relationships to be formed which are vital. Learning more about your customer is never a bad thing. I recently tweeted about how much I enjoyed using Chipotle’s iPhone app and within 10 minutes I got a reply from the official Chipotle twitter account agreeing with me and not trying to sell me anything. I was already excited about Chipotle before receiving that, but because they took the time and effort to say a simple comment made me even more excited about the company overall. So simple. I have heard and read about other amazing stories of companies using social media to connect with their customers in meaningful ways that have either fixed present issues or reinforced that customer’s appreciation for that company.

Lastly, social media for companies can lead to substantial results, other than positive comments. I have read several articles detailing how various organizations are creatively using social media to connect with customers in a way that had never existed before. Not only are there meaningful relationships being formed between business and customer, but also real substantial results are becoming of social media in business. Social media is no longer just something teenagers do to talk to their friends. Social media is where the people are, and where the people are is where businesses need to be. Facebook alone has over 500 million active users, not to mention the 120+ million users using Twitter, or the millions of users using other social media channels. Businesses wouldn’t second-guess having a website today even though plenty did when the web first came around.

This may seem like a “no duh” to some, but I have talked to and read about many business professionals in the business world who are completely ignorant to the importance of social media for their firm. However, it would be difficult to make the argument that social media could be a form of sustainable competitive advantage, but there is no doubt that there lies many opportunities to be had for businesses to take advantage of this new form of communication and connection.

Interesting Findings:

Businesses Using Social Media Well

Dell Computers Making $1 million Using Social Media

Why Social Media is Worth Your Time

Any other stories of businesses using social media effectively? Share in the comments.

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Twitter Love

1 Oct

I am fascinated with social media. I am especially fond of Twitter. Many of my friends have asked me why I enjoy Twitter so much and in an effort to explain myself more thoroughly I deemed it worthy of writing a blog post about it.

For those of you un-aware of the 120 million active user website called Twitter, let me briefly explain what it is. Twitter is a website where you have 140 characters to answer the question ‘what’s happening?’ and each answer, or Tweet, is ‘delivered’ to all those who follow you. Those who follow you can read your Tweet and respond by re-Tweeting your message, or replying to what you had to say. You can also choose to follow other people who answer the same question and interact and engage with them as well. This may seem like an unnecessary tool and a great waste of time, but I would disagree with you and here is why.

First of all, Twitter is not just status updates. It is that, and it is so much more, and it is the so much more aspect of Twitter that is why I think it is such a great tool. One of the things I love about Twitter is that it is unique to everyone. The people who I follow and am interested in are not going to be the same people you follow and are interested in. For example: I love technology, entrepreneurs, and cycling so I follow a lot of people associated with those things and thus get updated with information regarding all those topics. On the other hand, my brother is obsessed with baseball and music and follows lots of musicians, athletes, managers, announcers, etc. So both my brother and I follow different people (with some overlap) and get very different things out of Twitter.

For me, what I enjoy most about Twitter is the content I come across. Because of the people I follow, and the content they share, I read a lot of really interesting articles, blogs, and amazing videos all ‘customized’ to my interests. It’s also a great way to interact and keep up to date with friends in a very easy and streamlined way.

I think the best way to explain how awesome this can be is to share what kind of experiences I have had because of Twitter. Although these are unique experiences and something not necessarily every person experiences, I still think it helps explain why I enjoy Twitter.

Bike Ride with Lance Armstrong

Like I said, I enjoy cycling and follow people who are involved with cycling. The most famous cyclist being Lance Armstrong who also happens to be an avid Tweeter. Last September Lance updated his Twitter saying he would be in L.A. and asked all his followers in the area to go on a

 

Bike Ride with Lance Armstrong

 

bike ride with him the following day. Since I lived a short distance away, my friend Corey and I woke up really early and drove to Griffith Park where we met up with 500 of Lances local followers for a bike ride. We rode for about 2 hours during which I made my way to the front and snapped a picture of Lance as we were riding. I also took some video while he was leaving right in front of me. It was awesome and all because of Twitter.

Special Events

I also follow John Mayer who was also a devoted Tweeter. Last Summer he Tweeted that he was going to play an impromptu set at Hotel Café in Hollywood and tickets were only $5. When my friends and I read about this we rushed over to Hollywood, found parking, ran to Hotel Café and were met with a long line

 

Paparazzi Taking Pictures of John Mayer

 

of people and a sold out Hotel Cafe. Although we didn’t get to see the concert, we did hang out with some paparazzi and when John did come we snapped some photos. It was awesome and all because of Twitter.

Products

One of the people I follow is an entrepreneur in the tech industry who said in a tweet that he had found the best case he has seen available for the iPad and shared a link to the website. Having just purchased an iPad and unsatisfied with the cases currently available, I clicked on the link he had posted which led me to the DODOcase website. It was love at first site and exactly what I was looking for for my new iPad. Because of that person tweeting about that case I purchased it. It’s an awesome case that I love and I purchased it all because of Twitter. (I even wrote a blog post about how much I love the case).

Keeping Companies Accountable

I also really love that more and more businesses are joining Twitter in order to connect with their customers more and promote their business. What this also does is give us consumers a direct line of communication to the company to voice our opinions (good or bad). In my case, it was bad. After a VERY unfavorable experience with a certain gym (BALLYS TOTAL FITNESS) I decided to see if they happened to be active on social media. They were and I was happy to see it. I told all 150 of my followers on Twitter and all 650 of my friends on Facebook how Bally’s Total Fitness has the worst customer service (it’s true, they do) and to NEVER join their gym (seriously don’t). This led to their social media person contacting me on both Twitter and Facebook to try and solve the issue. After many back-and-forths the issue, of course, was not resolved and I am still very dissatisfied and still very pissed. That said, although Bally’s Total Fitness is an awful example of a company doing social media well, it has been interesting to see how businesses are using Twitter (good or bad). Companies are held accountable and it’s awesome and it’s all thanks to social media (including Twitter). I really think Twitter is great for business, which I will save for another post.

 

Update (10/07): Here is that other post about social media and business.

Deals

Not one of my favorite uses of Twitter but something that a lot of people are interested in are the freebies you can gain from Twitter. In an effort to gain more followers, many companies will have drawings to give away products (seems to always be an iPad) to people who follow them and retweet their message. I have never won one of these contests nor has anyone I know, but that could be reason enough for people to get something out of Twitter. This is maybe thanks to Twitter.

Make Money

Making money using Twitter can happen in many different ways and people are still finding out really interesting ways to do so. I never have myself, but I have read and thoroughly enjoy reading how people have done it. One story I recently came across (through Twitter) was how an indie musician made $19,000 in 10 hours using Twitter. That is REALLY awesome and all thanks to Twitter.

Like I said, these experiences are fairly unique and more than anything they’re just really…cool. Even if I had not experienced these things I still would value Twitter because of all of the content I gain from it. I’m not talking about viral YouTube videos, but actual content that, for me, has seriously impacted me in significant ways. Not so much because of the individual tweets themselves, but for the places that the tweets lead me to on the internet, such as articles, blogs, breaking news, etc. Lot’s of people don’t see the point of social media and Twitter and that’s fine, but for me it is something that really interests me.

While Twitter is a great way to find interesting things and connect with people, actually connecting with people in real life is way better. So let’s not stop doing that.

If you’re unsure of how to get started and are really interested in Twitter or other social media I would suggest going The Yellow Sandbox to learn more about how to get started with social media.

Use Twitter? Have any cool experiences come from using Twitter? Let me know in the comments.

Searchable Legacy

20 Sep

Earlier this year it was announced that the Library of Congress (the largest library in the world whose mission is to “sustain and preserve a universal collection of knowledge and creativity for future generations”) will archive every tweet ever tweeted on Twitter since 2006 when the service first started. This is HUGE….kind of. Well, more like really interesting. This is INTERESTING. That’s better.

What is so interesting about this, at least to me, is to think about the implications this seemingly simple decision will have on our world. Think about it. Every tweet you have ever posted (assuming your profile is set to “public”, which most are) and will post in the future will be saved and archived in the Library of Congress….forever! That means my kids, grandkids, my great-grandkids, etc., etc., will be able to search and read every tweet I have ever posted for as long as I have Twitter. I can imagine my great-grandkids doing their family history project in Elementary school and the teacher encouraging her students to research the Twitter archives for their family history. That is part awesome and part scary. My future great-grandkids are going to think I’m super lame always tweeting about Apple products, blog posts, and other nerdy things from the early 2000’s. And who knows what kind of stuff I’ll be tweeting about in my 60’s or 70’s!? Think about it, old people love using the same products and brands they used in “their day.” I think we could still be tweeting and using Facebook and blogging the same when we’re all old hanging out in retirement centers with super fast Google wireless internet from space.

Maybe my Facebook profile will still be around by the time my great grandkids are alive and instead of a ‘fan’ page, you can create a ‘family tree’ page and connect all of your family members together, living and deceased. By that time I would imagine Facebook would be close to world domination so I don’t see why that couldn’t be possible. My future family members could look at my profile and see the progression of my life as it happened through pictures and wall posts.

You thought it was bad when your parents got on Facebook, imagine what it will be like when your KIDS get on Facebook!

Perhaps Facebook should start implementing family privacy preferences so our kids can’t look at your pictures past a certain year. You wouldn’t want them to leverage specific pictures from your college days in an argument.

Thanks to the Library of Congress I will literally have a searchable legacy. Every story I tell about my early life to my grandkids will be fact checked to make sure grandpa isn’t telling fibs again! This also puts things into perspective for me and makes me put a whole lot more thought into how I answer the question “what’s happening?” on Twitter. It’s interesting to think about this uncharted frontier we call Social Media and where its place will be in history. I’m sure we have only scratched the surface with what’s possible. When my great-grandkids read this one day maybe they’ll write about this blog post in their family history project…or maybe they’ll be too busy reading past updates from Ashton Kutcher.

Tacking to Complete Goals

13 Sep

I consider myself to be a “goal setter”. I set a lot of goals for myself in order to be more productive and complete the tasks I think are worth putting forth time and effort. Being of the goal setting type, I always have enjoyed hearing or reading about how other people accomplish their goals and what “tactics” they use in order to accomplish their goals. I think that setting goals can be a great practice for accomplishing tasks that are important to you and a great way of getting things done. Not everybody is a goal setter, but for those of us that enjoy setting goals, here is what I do.

I had set an aggressive goal in July to have purchased a house by September 1st of this year. While that goal was lofty, it was still very much achievable. As I said in my earlier post, I am currently unemployed and pursuing real estate investing in order to make the most of my time without a job. While trying to complete my goal of purchasing a house (or any goal for that matter) I ask myself one question several times a day:

“What can I be doing right now to be more productive and get closer to achieving my goal?”

Asking myself this question keeps me focused on the goal I have set and helps me determine the steps necessary to get closer to achieving that goal. This question also helps me break my goal into sections and forces me to think of what can be accomplished next. I like to break my goals into these sections because it takes away the feeling of being overwhelmed by a huge goal and keeps me focused on my set main goal.

Buying a house, for example, can seem slightly overwhelming when looking at the big picture. However, there are many smaller steps in-between where you are now and buying a house. One of my professors once used a great analogy between accomplishing goals and sailing. Let me explain. In sailing, you don’t go straight from point A to point Z in a straight line. Instead, you tack. You make many turns and go from point A to B, B to C, C to D, and so on until you reach your destination of point Z. The same is true with completing your goals. You have to “tack” and go through the necessary steps in between you and your final destination (or goal). With every turn of the boat you are moving forward towards your desired goal. Also, you always want to have your focus set on where you ultimately want to end up and through determination and “tacking” you will arrive at your goal. So, in my example of buying a house, it could look like this: Where I am now is point A and purchasing the house is point Z. One of my first “tacks” could be determining how much money I can invest, point B. Point C could be finding a real estate agent. Point D could be touring a house. These “tacks” continue all the way until you have reached your goal of buying a house. Now, I’m not saying it only takes twenty-six “tacks” to buy a house (could be much, much more) but, it illustrates my point. Thinking about how you can “tack” towards your goal can be really helpful as you determine the steps necessary to get there.

Also important, is the timing factor of goals. There are some goals that have a constraint of time and require a due date to be put into place such as turning in an assignment for school or your taxes, for example. I think setting due dates for all your goals is important because it adds some pressure and keeps you moving towards completing your goal. That said, what happens when you don’t achieve your goal by the time you had planned for? This just happened to me when I had not accomplished my goal of purchasing a house by September 1st. While this can be very frustrating and discouraging, what you do after the deadline has passed is more important than the due date. I knew I wanted to still pursue real estate investing, so I had to take a step back and re-examine my goal, and make a new timeline for my goal. I also had to ask myself “is this goal still worth pursuing?” The answer was yes, so I had to press forward, and continue tacking towards my goal. This takes tenacity and perseverance (two things I am actively working on) in order to continue towards your goal.

I hope after reading this you can set some goals that are important to you and that the analogy of tacking has helped you view accomplishing your goals as more manageable and less overwhelming. Now, go set some goals and be productive!

DODOcase Provides the Perfect Mix of Traditional and Contemporary

30 Aug


When it comes to technology products I am the type of person who prefers my products as they come: naked.  No matter how “delicate” or “breakable” the front and back glass may be on my new iPhone4, you won’t be seeing any case on it, even if it can improve cell reception.  My reasoning for this is not because I find some sick pride in leaving my tech toys unprotected, it’s simply that I think cases can take away from the already beautiful design qualities of most products.  It is worth it to me to be a little extra cautious with my products and forgo the often ugly and bulky accessories.  That said, there is one case that has caught my eye.  So much so in fact, that I went ahead and bought it.  The case I am referring to is the DODOcase for the iPad.  I purchased my iPad and adhered to my same “no case” guideline until I came across the DODOcase and my world of rules and regulations for cases came crashing down, I was in love.  Every iPad case I had seen up to that point was cheap, bulky, or not functional enough for what I would even want in a case.  However, the DODOcase had everything I was looking for.  Handmade in San Francisco “using traditional book binding techniques” the DODOcase is a work of fine craftsmanship.  Made to look like a traditional Moleskine notebook (which I love) the DODOcase blends traditional with contemporary in perfect harmony.  From the outside the case appears to be your everyday black leather-bound notebook.  That is until you open it up.  Once inside you are met with a vibrant red cover on one side and a shining black iPad on the other, fit snugly with rubber holders inside a custom bamboo “tray”.  This tray still allows access to all of your buttons and ports without sacrificing any strength or hold of the iPad itself.  Not only does the DODOcase look beautiful it has almost all the functionality you would want in a case for your iPad.  You can fold the front cover to make for easy hand holding or place it on a table for optimal angle typing and of course you can stand it up horizontally for optimal viewing of video content.  Overall this case offers everything that one would want in a case for their iPad, especially for those who, like me, are of the anti-case type.  Also, for $59.95 the price is right for this handmade beauty, although the wait of one to two weeks could put a damper on your immediate iPad case needs.  But let’s not forget it’s HANDMADE (I love saying that) in San Francisco by traditional bookbinders, one to two weeks is totally worth the wait.

Also, Digg.com founder and all around internet celebrity Kevin Rose uses one and made a great video review of why he bought it which can be found here.

Check out the DODOcase website: http://www.dodocase.com

Dust to Dust: A Theology of Death & Dying

23 Aug

This week I decided to have a guest writer for my blog post. I took part in the making of a short film used as a school project last semester and I thought the project was not only very well made but also had a great message as well. My friend Greg wrote, directed, and edited the project and I was the “lead”, if you will. Take the time to watch the video below and then read what Greg had to say about the meaning of the movie. Greg is an excellent writer so if you don’t feel like watching the video you can come back to it later and read what he wrote now, you won’t be disappointed.



I am Greg (did you catch the allusion?). Colby asked me to make an appearance on his blog to write about a short film we made together (along with Matthew Rongey and Ashley Garcia). My role, I suppose, would be that of writer and director, but Matt and Colby are the true film nerds who made the technical stuff happen. And Ashley deserves all the credit since she drove to La Mirada all the way from Santa Barbara just to help out (and to see Colby, I guess).

The film is about death if you haven’t picked up on the theme yet. It was the final project for a capstone class at Biola University entitled “Jesus, Lord of All.” At the end of a semester-long study about death and dying, I was given an assignment in which I had the freedom to say whatever I wanted by whatever creative avenue I wanted. Throughout the semester, I read just about every stance, philosophy, and approach to the subject of death and its effects, from Hindu reincarnation to evolutionary natural selection to vague spiritual estimations. I read both emotionally charged essays by parents who lost children in horrific events and academic treatments that approached death like it was Algebra. After all this, I really only wanted to say one thing: The Bible is right in its understanding of and approach to death.

The Bible is the only source that offers a completely holistic explanation of death. In other words, it gives death’s entire story, beginning to end. It does not just speculate about what comes after death nor does it simply offer tidy solutions about getting beyond its pain. It addresses everything about death, from its origins to its universal inevitability to its defeat. It was this story that I wanted to communicate in the film. It has basically four parts, which I will try to survey very quickly below.

Part One: The Origins

Death’s story begins with life. We were created to have and enjoy life, to have relationships, and to experience wholeness. We were made to understand death as a foreign concept. We destroyed this by rebelling against God. Granted, Satan stands in front of the pointed finger as well, but it really is our own fault. We were the ones to seat death at its table in our world. As a result of our rebellion, we were subjected to death and its minions. God, the one who had every right to abandon us and leave us to death’s wishes, began his pursuit of humanity at the moment of our fall.

Part Two: The Pain

From there, the pain and fear is not ignored. The Old Testament writers were plagued with worry over death. It was the evil of all evils and was the thing from which Israel longed to be delivered. The Pslamists were constantly asking God for deliverance from death and praising him when it happened. The wicked are associated with death and those who do evil find their destination to be death. Nowhere does the Bible tone down or paint over the absolute atrocity that death really is.

Part Three: Jesus

One definite pattern in the Old Testament is that the deeper the sorrow over wickedness, the deeper the advent for redemption. In the New Testament, we are introduced to the object of that advent. Jesus is the culmination and climax of death’s story. He not only brings the solution, but is himself the solution. He does not come to make pithy statements that bring false comfort and hope, sending us only into a deeper state of confusion. Rather, he takes the burden of death and the sting of death onto himself, as he is the only one who has the power to defeat it. And defeat it he does. On the cross, Jesus goes to war with Satan, the father of death. Jesus is raised from the dead signifying his victory over death and leaving a bitter taste in Satan’s mouth.

Part Four: Kingdom Life

During his time on Earth, Jesus inaugurates, or establishes, a kingdom of which he is the King. The inaugural address was his work on the cross and subsequent resurrection that allowed him to call the shots. When a person enters by faith into the kingdom, death is diminished and its power is removed. He no longer needs to fear his own earthly death as uncertain and frightening, but comes under the kingship of Jesus where death cannot enter. He can live like Jesus did and walk out to meet his own death knowing full well that it’s not the end. The Kingdom of Jesus is an earthly reality lived out through the Holy Spirit that offers comfort, hope, restoration, and joy in the midst of any of life’s circumstances. Those who live in the kingdom are strangers on the earth, anticipating the day when the full weight and glory of Jesus’ kingdom is theirs forever.

In sum, the Bible shows us the true face of death. It explains that it was our own wrongdoing that allowed this pain to enter. It does not deny that death hurts or that death is an evil thing and tells how God promises deliverance from death for his people. Jesus comes as God in human form and defeats death through his work on the cross, taking the punishment for sin and rebellion on himself. He is raised from the death and his eternal kingdom is established as the sole refuge from death.

Hope you enjoy the film and take away something valuable!


Greg is one of my best friends who I attended college with and who will be my friend for life. Also,  I have had the great satisfaction of being his roommate for the last two years. You can follow his Twitter here or his personal blog here.

Unemployed College Grad

16 Aug

Graduation day. Full of excitement and unemployed.

My Current Project

I just graduated college in one of the worst economic climates of recent years. Just last month, 131,000 jobs have been lost in the United States. Now, hold on. I have a four-year degree from a well-respected private university, getting a job should be no problem, right? WRONG. Let me tell you from a person currently living in the trenches of this job-hunt warfare, it has not been a fun process. I have sent my resume to over fifty potential employers with only a fraction even responding with an email confirmation, let alone an interview opportunity. Now, every time I send my resume somewhere I have the feeling I am sending it into a blackhole never to see it again.  I’m not telling you this so you can feel sorry for me (although, if you know someone hiring, go ahead and feel sorry for me and refer that person to my resume). I’m telling you this to explain my current situation and what I am choosing to do with my spare time to make the most of it (other than writing this blog).

A Brief History

For several years now, I have been very intrigued by the idea of investing in real estate. Growing up, my Dad always told my brothers and I really interesting stories of when he was younger and would invest in real estate with his Dad.  I always thought that that sounded like something fun to do while learning a lot of important lifelong skills and making some money on the side. So, over the past couple of years I started reading real estate investing books, asking questions, and just imagining what that would look like specifically for me. Fast-forward to Fall semester of my senior year of college. I had been learning a lot in my business classes and I wanted to actually apply some of the ideas I had been learning in a real business environment. So, I bought a notebook, called my Dad and asked him how I could get started in real estate investing. At that time, my goal was to purchase a home within a short distance from my school and rent it out to fellow college students. My thinking was that there was a unique opportunity to be had there because I knew the area, I knew the students, and I knew that they would be willing to pay a ‘premium’ price per month because so many people live in one house.

After working seriously towards this goal and working closely with a real estate agent, I began to think what my post-college plans would be. I decided that I would be moving home to the Bay Area after college and with the time constraint of the end of the school year, I decided to hold off on my real estate pursuits until I moved back home. Although I didn’t meet my original goal of buying a house that school year, I learned a tremendous amount about what it takes to seriously invest in real estate: A lot of work. Although real estate investing can take on many different forms, when I say “real estate investing” I am more specifically talking about purchasing single family homes that are somewhat distressed, add value to them by fixing them up, and then selling them and, hopefully, if done correctly, making a profit. (Note: I stay away from the term “house-flipping” because that generally has a negative connotation to some and is significantly more risky and usually involves never actually taking ownership of the property.)

Today

Since I have moved back home, my friend Kyle and I met up and came up with a plan to purchase a house to live in while we fix it up and sell it within 12 months. We set an aggressive goal of being in contract to buy a house by September 1st of this year. Since that conversation we have been working hard to learn the market, find our target price, and working closely with a real estate agent. Our focus has been set primarily on bank-owned properties that are in need of some work and have the opportunity to add value to them. While I continue to job search, I spend a considerable amount of my day pursuing real estate investing trying to stay as productive as possible during this unique time of post-graduation-pre-career. So far, we have made offers on two different properties. The first property we made an offer on, the seller (a bank) was not willing to go down to the price we believed the property was worth. The second property we made an offer on we are still waiting to hear back from the seller. That is where Kyle and I currently stand on our current real estate pursuits. I will cover what this looks like on a day-to-day basis for me in a later blog post. For now, I wanted to explain my current situation and how I am trying to make the most out of my time as an unemployed college grad living at my parents house.

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