Social media can provide banks opportunity to shine

London (PRWEB UK) 25 October 2012

Social media can provide banks opportunity to shine

THE US banking sector has been slow to make use of social media and is only now playing catch-up with other industries, according to a new report released today.

The ‘US Banking Sector Social Media Report’, co-authored by Cicero Group and DigitalMR provides new analysis into what the sector is currently doing and how it should address its social media strategy.

The research found that despite many banks now operating on platforms including Twitter and Facebook, many are still failing to provide basic engagement with customers and understand what people are saying about them.

With over 93 per cent of comments being made on Twitter, the report suggests banks should be willing to use social media as a tool for providing stronger customer service and addressing potential issues directly over these channels. The report found that it may not only resolve issues quicker, but also allow the banks an opportunity to improve the level of positive relationships with current and potential customers. Ultimately, social media represents a key medium for banks to develop closer relationships with their customers in order to encourage them to recommend and advocate their products online.

Some banks are ahead of others, but the majority are still failing to grapple with the basics. One recommendation in the report is that banks can use digital media to illustrate their corporate social responsibility initiatives, making business plans more digestible and a tool for recruitment.

Commenting on the research, Cicero’s Head of Digital Chris Jackson said, “With over half the US population now on some form of social media platform, US banks would be missing a trick by not having a coordinated social media strategy.

“It not only allows banks to improve their reputation, but allows them to interact with customers and resolve any issues there and then. The key message from the report is this: it is possible to have millions and fans and followers, but without a strategy to use and engage this audience, then the use of social media is limited”.

This report is an entry into the world of social media for the uninitiated, but at the same time it can be a benchmark for the banks that already track their online reputation using social media monitoring tools. It is advisable to use multiple sources in order to validate the sentiment reported for banks in other sources.

For further information on the report and its contents please click here:

Notes to Editors:

Results are based on 2 million comments posted by consumers between April 2011 and March 2012 on the major US banks including: CitiBank, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, US Bank, American Express, HSBC, Capital One, Barclays, JP Morgan Chase Manhattan, Morgan Stanley, TD Bank, PNC Bank, Regions Bank,

Discover Bank, Suntrust Bank, Bank One, Orchard Bank, Countrywide Bank, Key Bank USA and Sovereign Bank.

About Cicero Group:

Cicero is an international consultancy specialising in corporate communications, digital strategy, government affairs and thought leadership generation for policy, business and consumer audiences.

About DigitalMR:

DigitalMR understands what people think and feel when they share views online. It is a specialist agency which provides a holistic approach to web based market research. It specialises in utilising social media research, especially active web-listening, and online communities to enhance its business consulting approach.

The agency has pioneered new methods in online focus groups alongside tools such as video diaries, bulletin boards and online ethnography. DigitalMR is headed by founder and MD, Michalis Michael and has offices in London UK, Nicosia Cyprus, Warsaw Poland and Columbus Ohio, in the US.

For further information:

Chris Jackson

Head of Digital

Tom Hogg

Commercial Director

Ocius to Demonstrate Advanced Mobile Apps for Apartment Residents at 2012 NMHC OpTech Technology Conference

Dallas, TX (PRWEB) November 12, 2012

Ocius, a leading provider of convergent billing and utility expense management solutions to the multifamily industry, today announced it is demonstrating the My Resident Network App for iOS and Android devices in booth #325 at the NMHC OpTech Conference & Expo, November 12 – 14 at the Hyatt Regency in Dallas.

Ocius is also showcasing its convergent billing and utility expense management services, and will be providing a preview of its soon-to-be released My Property Network℠, property management app that allows Apartment Managers to provide their renters with “anytime, anywhere” access to viewing and paying their monthly rent and utility charges.

My Resident Network App

The My Resident Network mobile app lets apartment residents setup a secure mobile account and pay their rent directly from their smart phone just as they would via the My Resident Network online web portal. Residents can view their current monthly statement, make rent payments, see their utility charges, and review other account information.

My Property Network App

The Ocius My Property Network App provides freedom, flexibility and mobility for busy property managers. Using the app, property managers can view their residents’ utility charges, approve and post resident payments directly to their ledgers, post community messages for residents through a virtual bulletin board, and send text and push messages to residents through a simple one click system. The My Property Network App saves time and improves the efficiency of the property manager’s front office, and strengthens relationships with residents.

“Property managers and residents have gone mobile in a big way. They want to be unchained from the office. With our new apps, they’ll be able to complete everything digitally anywhere they have cell reception or a Wi-Fi connection,” said Keith Nelson, chief operating officer for Ocius. “We’re excited to be able to provide our clients with the tools they need to improve their efficiency and better serve their residents.”

Availability / Compatibility

The My Resident Network mobile app for apartment residents was just released and is now available for iOS devices in the Apple App store and for Android devices from the Google play store. The My Property Network tablet app is scheduled for release in Q4 of this year.

About Ocius

Ocius was the first company to provide convergent billing solutions to the multifamily housing industry and continues to lead this rapidly growing segment. Ocius also provides integrated Transaction Processing, Utility Expense Management, Submetering, and Resident Portal solutions. Ocius serves more than 100 clients and 15 of the NMHC Top 50 Apartment Managers, and processes more than $ 2 Billion in resident billing annually. For more information visit: or call 866-850-3500.

AdNation News Exclusive Interviews: Real Estate Trends

New York City, NY December 12, 2012 (PRWEB) December 12, 2012

AdNation News interviews Edina Realty executives Barb Jandric and Lynn Clare, Jonathan Miller, President & CEO of Miller Samuel Inc., and Dr. Jed Kolko, Chief Economist and Head of Analytics, at Trulia, Inc. about 2012 residential real estate trends and what’s in store for 2013.

An Increase in Sales that is Beyond Normal

Thus far in 2012, Edina Realty’s units of sale are up 20 percent over 2011, and this growth is in line with the growth that has occurred in the Minneapolis/St. Paul market, Jandric says. This growth has taken place as foreclosures have slowed drastically, as much as 60 percent from their high, she explains.

“If there is normal anymore, a normal rate of increase in sales is always single-digits,” Jandric says. “You can see what a strain being up 20 percent has on the inventory in the market,” she adds. “I do not want 20 percent growth, I think it might be more than the market can handle,” she explains. “We would be happy with growth being in the three to six percent range,” she comments, noting that growth is measured by the number of units, not by prices.

Plenty of Buyers, Not Enough Inventory

With inventory at a nine-year low, Edina Realty has a challenge that is being faced across the U.S. right now, and is echoed by our interviews with Miller and Dr. Kolko: plenty of buyers, and not enough inventory. In addition to the slowing of foreclosures, Jandric also attributes the lack of buyers to low interest rates. “So many people have refinanced, they stay put for now, because of these low rates,” she comments. Regarding the decline in inventory, “we saw this coming about a year ago,” Jandric says. “We are watching the market every day,” she adds.

At this time, many sellers cannot move forward because “they do not have any appreciation or any equity in their home,” Jandric says. Someone who bought from 2002 to 2008, “they really are not in a position where they can make a move and get some appreciation in their home,” she adds. In addition to homeowners who are “underwater” on their mortgages, there are some who would essentially walk away, even if they sold their home, because the equity in that home would mostly be swallowed by the remainder of the mortgage as well as closing costs. “At the end of the day, if they are walking away even, they don’t really have equity,” she explains.

Dr. Kolko notes that inventory is particularly tight in Arizona, California, and Nevada, which have relatively short foreclosure processes, “much less time than it takes in New York, New Jersey, Florida, or Illinois.” Those states with shorter processes “are much more of the way through their foreclosures than a lot of East Coast states are,” he says. With fewer foreclosed homes on the market, “that’s trunking the inventory,” he explains.

Miller, who is based in New York, explains that in New York and Miami, “you have got housing prices effectively stable or flat, and you have got inventory falling sharply, and falling fairly consistently for the last 18 to 24 months.” He adds, “There is a link between inventory falling and credit being tight.”

“Sellers become buyers when they sell, or they become renters,” Miller comments. “If you bought something five or seven years ago, and you sell it today, when you bought it, you bought it for 10 percent down,” he explains. “Today, you need 20 percent,” he notes.

Tighter credit has frustrated many who “are looking at low rates, and want to take advantage of the opportunity, but do not qualify to trade up,” Miller says. “Realtors are scratching their heads, with rates at record lows, and affordability higher than ever, but not enough inventory,” he comments.

Out-of-Home Marketing to Grow Inventory

Growing inventory was a focus of Edina’s 2012 campaign, and its new advertising agency, Preston Kelly, was selected to help Edina grow inventory more into 2013. As Lynn Clare, Vice President of Marketing since 2000, explains, “our out-of-home campaign this year will focus on encouraging people to list homes by demonstrating that homes are selling.”

Clare notes that out-of-home marketing will be a major emphasis for the company because “it gives us the best reach for our money.” She adds, “It allows us to capture maximum impressions along all of the main traffic arteries in our market with large 14 by 48 foot bulletins.” Edina will also be using “smaller boards to bring our message to specific neighborhoods, where we are in need of more inventory or market share,” she explains.

The Increased Importance of Digital Advertising

Miller notes that “97 percent of all home searches begin on the Internet.” Dr. Kolko explains that Trulia, an online real estate marketplace, is not a replacement for agents. “We help consumers find agents,” he adds. “One of the things that we offer is a national audience for listings,” he explains. “We find that about one-third of the searches on our site cross state lines,” he comments.

Edina Realty has eschewed television advertising for several years, due to its cost; digital advertising has become an increasingly important part of its messaging. In 2013, Edina’s “on-line campaign will focus on the launch of our new mobile, iPhone, and iPad apps,” Clare comments. Digital marketing “will also be used to support our open-house events, and drive consumers to begin their home search right from our banner ad widget.”

More Inventory on the Horizon?

Miller predicts that, in much of the U.S., we will soon see more foreclosures come into the market. In 2010, “there was a tsunami of foreclosures coming on the market,” he says. In October 2010, the “robo-signing” scandal erupted in the media, when major lenders were “rubber-stamping foreclosure notices by the tens of thousands.” As a result of this scandal, in 2011, “foreclosure volume fell by one-third, not because it was getting better, but because the servicers were afraid to foreclose, as they were subject to lawsuits and litigation.”

By all measures, new construction is rebounding. Dr. Kolko notes that in San Francisco, rates of new construction have already returned to normal, even as it is still quite low in Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Sacramento. In Minnesota, where most of Edina’s offices are, Jandric believes that a “normal market that brings in construction the way it needs to” is a couple of years away, although “we still have a tremendous amount of construction.”

High-End Real Estate as the New Global Currency

In New York and Miami, and in some other markets (including Phoenix), there has been growth at the high-end of the market due to foreign buyers, flush with cash. Affluent Brazilian buyers “single-handedly revived the Miami market,” Miller says. Prices of high-end real estate in Brazil “are so astronomical, they are coming here, it is a bargain.” High-net-worth buyers from overseas are treating U.S. luxury real estate “as some sort of safe haven, really for capital preservation, as opposed to making some sort of return,” he comments. Miller notes the irony of this, seeing as “real estate and mortgages were the cause of the credit crunch.” In San Francisco, Dr. Kolko notes, there has also been growth at the high-end of the market, and much of that growth has been fueled not from overseas but from those who have become wealthy from technology companies.

Thus far, this trend has not taken place in Minnesota, Jandric says. “I think 93 percent of the people who buy in Minnesota are from Minnesota,” she comments, noting that Minnesota is not a warm-weather location like Phoenix and thus does not draw as many second-home buyers. Jandric has seen one sign of growth at the high-end, however: lakeshore property as second homes. At one point, “lakeshore was absolutely dead in the water,” she explains. “We are starting to see that market pick up again, and have a pulse, although it still has a long way to go,” she adds.

Miller notes that there have been “record prices set at the top sliver of the market,” including a recent $ 47 million single-family home sold in Miami and two sales over $ 90 million in New York City.

Looking Ahead

Policy made in Washington always has the ability to impact the real estate market. “We are watching closely to see what happens with capital gains’ taxes, and with interest deductions on mortgages,” Jandric says. Edina Realty will continue to monitor potential policy changes, and this would be the case no matter who had been elected in the 2012 cycle.

Miller believes that uncertainties about future policy, i.e. the “fiscal cliff” that will occur when tax cuts signed by President Bush in 2001 and 2003 expire, have weighed on the minds of many potential sellers. “What do sellers do when they do not know what to do? They do not do anything; they sit,” Miller comments.

Much of the East Coast is still reeling from Hurricane Sandy. “Typically after a big disaster, lots of new home construction and sales are delayed,” Dr. Kolko says. “At the end of the construction season, new home construction might get pushed into next year,” he explains. “At the same time, there will be an urgent need for repair,” he adds.

“Demand for construction work and rebuilding goes way up after a disaster,” Dr. Kolko says. “Even though that will not be construction of new homes, there will be a lot of repair to existing homes,” he comments. “Hurricanes tend to push up prices a bit, depending on how much housing gets destroyed,” he adds.

“Aside from the most extreme disasters like Hurricane Katrina, people typically do not leave the area permanently,” Dr. Kolko says. “If the disaster reduces the housing stock a bit without reducing the population, that will push prices up,” he adds.


Barb Jandric became President of Edina Realty in 2011 after a long career with the company. Lynn Clare has been Vice President of Marketing at Edina since 2000. Edina Realty is part of HomeServices of America, a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate, and is the largest residential real estate company in the Midwest with more than $ 5.5 billion in annual sales. It has been the leading real estate broker in the Minneapolis/St. Paul market for 12 consecutive years.

Edina Realty

6800 France Avenue South, Suite 600

Edina, Minnesota 55435


Dr. Jed Kolko holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University. He oversees research programs for Trulia, and previously held leadership positions at the non-profit Public Policy Institute of California as well as Forrester Research. He has also worked for what is now the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) as well as the World Bank. Trulia is an online real estate marketplace, which displays 4.5 million residential real estate listings and receives 22 million unique users each month.

Trulia, Inc.

116 New Montgomery Street, Suite 300

San Francisco, California 94105


Jonathan Miller co-founded Miller Samuel, a family-owned real estate appraisal and consulting firm, in 1986. He publishes market reports for Miami and New York that are considered the “report of record,” and relied upon by government and financial institutions and members of the media. He represents the residential real estate sector on New York’s Mayor’s Economic Advisory Panel, and has been quoted in national media including “The New York Times” and “The Wall Street Journal.”

Miller Samuel Inc.

21 West 38th Street

New York, New York 10018

Bulletin Board Trimmers: One Special Means to Decorate Classroom

When you are teaching a child, then motivating him/her for the better education would be your first priority. And to do so, you need to be really seasoned with different ideas for your classroom. Your teaching technique should be creative enough to drag child of any age. Many effective ways to convey your education to the child will definitely ensure the quality of education. Students are required to be motivated with the help of different teaching tools. But it is very much important that students should be convinced enough to adopt this kind of ideas of teachers. To do so, teachers need to come up with new ideas to decorate the classroom and make the environment of the class conducive for the student. They might prefer to decorate classrooms with the help of bulletin boards.

If you are putting only bulletin board to decorate the classroom, then it might not become so appealing for the students. But when you are adding more pinch of salt with this kind of decoration, then classroom decoration becomes very attractive to any student. And to do so, you might add bulletin board trimmers around the edge of the bulletin board, which will definitely enhance the visual appeal of this item. These trimmers occupy one surface area of the bulletin board and this kind of design gives better visual appeal of the product. You can find different types of bulletin board trimmers, and you need to choose one from this variety. These are very much decorative and they contain certain simple designs like letters, solid colors and numbers. These trimmers make any bulletin board aesthetically beautiful and they can be used to impart proper education to the child.

Bulletin board trimmers are found in the market in sets. You can find these kinds of teacher supplies at reasonable price. Many trimmers are found in jazzy kind of design and few are found in simple design. Variety of colors is found in these types of teacher supplies, because bulletin boards are meant to be acquired for educating kids. In a classroom, students are supposed to get exposed to different kinds of activities. And this kind of classroom supply definitely helps to give more input in any kind of knowledge sharing technique. Thus, before choosing bulletin board, you need to be assured about the purpose of buying this product. And as per the needs, you need to buy this product from any reliable source.

Jag Jenny shares knowledge on teacher supplies and bulletin board trimmers and that make you able to find the best school supplies.

Casting Back; Store is snapshot of summers past

Casting Back; Store is snapshot of summers past
She doesn't have to go far to recall her customers' faces — they smile down at her from snapshots posted on the bulletin board on the front porch. "These are people that came back and got … That still left a porch across the front of the store …
Read more on Lovely County Citizen

Communities in the making: Penn Staters come together through Yammer
A digital bulletin board and a connection point for 1,300 OPP staff, Up for Grabs is a good example of how Yammer can be used. Since 2012, group members have used Up for Grabs to sell such items as furniture, cameras and cars as well as meet new OPP …
Read more on Penn State News

Bigfork team competes at international event
After pin exchanges and pin purchases Hoveland said she has about 200 pins displayed on a bulletin board at home. Hubbard said one of the highlights of the trip was sightseeing at the World's Fair Park and taking an elevator ride up the Sunsphere …
Read more on Daily Inter Lake

Smart Women Have a Clear Message

A few weeks ago, while vacationing with my family in Park City, I injured my low back ice-skating with my daughter Jenna.  It was quite painful and required me to lay low for a couple of days.  I watched a few movies, did some reading and caught up on emails.  Some of the email promotions really “pulled me in” and got my full attention, while I found others far less interesting, causing me to leave the promotion quickly.  What was the difference?  What caused me to “linger” or “leave”?  This got me thinking about how Smart Women have a clear marketing message.

With all of the information we receive each day, it’s critical that you keep your message simple and easy to understand.  Getting laser clear on who benefits from your product or service (i.e. your ideal client) is key to your success.  When your ideal client reads your marketing message, you want them to understand quickly how you can help them.

Here are three tips to help you hone your message to your ideal client and ensure that when they open your email, letter, postcard or video they understand what you have to offer is exactly what they need:

1.  Offer Specific Benefits – You can go to Google or other search engines and obtain almost any “general” information you want online.  The days of offering “general” information and getting paid well for it are over.  In your marketing message, you need to share specific benefits or outcomes that your ideal client will get when they work with you or use your product.  Remember “WIIFM.” (What’s In It For Me?)  Your client has a problem and they want it solved.  Period.  I found myself “lingering” on promotions that were clear how their program or service could help me.

2.  How does it work? – Be very clear about how your program or service works.  Is it by phone?  In-person?  Online?  Let them know when the program begins, how long it will last and what they can expect.  If they can visualize your process, it will make it easier for them to make a decision.

3.  Make it a “no-brainer” – When you have an offer, make it easy for them to buy or sign-up right now on the spot.  Give them clear instructions on how to contact you or your team for more information.  I found myself attracted to certain promotions when I had easy to follow instructions on how to take the next step.

That afternoon, lying on the sofa reading my emails was a helpful exercise.  It gave me time to pause and reflect on my own marketing message and discover how I can serve women entrepreneurs more effectively.  I invite you to schedule some time for this as well.  It will make a huge difference in your marketing message, which in turn means more of your ideal client and greater income.  

Anything is possible.  Everything is waiting for you.


© 2010 Joy Chudacoff


WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it:  Joy Chudacoff, ICF, PCC, is the founder of Smart Women Smart Solutions®, a Professional Certified Coach to 1000’s of women, Motivational Speaker, and Entrepreneur.  She publishes a weekly buzz generating ezine, Reflections On Life and Business for Women Entrepreneurs.  If you’re ready take your life and your business to the next level, get your FREE Tips, FREE Report and FREE MP3 now at

Voice message broadcasting

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Message broad casting could be an extremely cost efficient if exercised appropriately. It will definitely give you with the several of the aimed superiority extends for your business Voice message broadcasting is turning more well-liked & being utilized through various businesses, campaigns, charity systems, & security interest companies.

Voice message broadcasting could be planned to deliver the communication to electronic device or live someone’s but in most cases explore demonstrates that a blended campaign workings preeminently.

For more info: