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"Tips For Using and Maintaining E-Lists!"

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Louis Cohen Photo
10/2/98 Interview with Louis Cohen

Beach Realty of Brevard
1904 Highway A1A
Indian Harbour Beach, FL 32937

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Cohen's Mega List of Real Estate Professionals

  1. In two years, Cohen has grown a base list of a few hundred email addresses to 5,600+ email and web addresses with descriptions of service sand service areas.
  2. He keeps list members informed of what is happening in RE along the Space Coast of Central Florida.
  3. Including lenders as well as Realtors, the list gives Cohen lending contacts he otherwise would not have.
  4. Referrals of clients moving into the area come through the list; Cohen generates referral fees by referring prospects to agents in other areas.
  5. Cohen's list is one of the most comprehensive on RE professionals because of its detail - contact information, designations and special facts; as a service to Realtors, Cohen posts the list on his web page to be downloaded free.
Adding to the List

  1. Cohen searches the Internet via major search engines (Excite, Yahoo!, Webcrawler) to find the best RE-related sites in certain areas; he sends them an email invitation to participate in his contact system.
  2. The invitation explains that the purposes of the database are to keep members informed of Real Estate happenings, to facilitate referral business and to distribute the list around the world.
  3. Anyone who returns Cohen's questionnaire tacitly agrees to join the list, so in distributing email messages, Cohen is not sending spam.
Strategy for a Local Market

  1. A Realtor could search for email addresses of homeowners in the local area and then send them a message giving them an opportunity to opt in to receive a regular newsletter.
  2. Software such as NetMailer or WorldMerge could be used to keep track of list recruitment and newsletter distribution while maintaining a personal feel.
Advantages of NetMailer

  1. NetMailer applies word processing mail merge features to Internet email; names, addresses, salutations and other fields can be personalized to create custom messages for mass distribution.
  2. Fields can be added and customized at any time; the user can set up categories to organize a list - for example, Cohen divides his list geographically and also by specialty.
  3. NetMailer is also useful for tracking procedures and for keeping what you do personal in tone.
Tips for Using and Maintaining Lists

  1. With a well-organized list, you can customize groups to receive particular messages; groups could be centers of influence, clients,prospects and general home owners; geographic areas and types of service are other organizing principles.
  2. Don't make your list too generic; if you search news groups, qualify your entries; try posting your intention and allowing people to sign up.
  3. NetMailer helps verify good email addresses by rejecting incorrect formats and checking for duplicates; wildcard searches assist in honoring requests to have addresses moved when you have partial information.
  4. To keep your list as current as possible, send messages regularly requesting that personal information be verified or updated.
Availability of the Beach Realty List

  1. Realtors are invited to download the list from the company web site,; the executable, compressed database is in ASCII format, so it can be imported into almost any database program.
  2. Entries include Realtors, lenders and other RE pros throughout the world; the list is subdivided into a national list and one for the state of Florida.
  3. The list is free, but Cohen asks that anyone using it refrain from sending spam; he describes his generous sharing as good business practice.
  4. Cohen has received considerable business from list users; his Internet sales now exceed his volume of business from his local MLS.
Real Estate Business Resources

  1. Buyers from the Internet usually find Cohen; he has multiple web sites and is active in several that have an MLS search database; most of Cohen'scyberspace buyers are coming from the Northeast.
  2. Beach Realty lists properties on different services; favorites include Florida Listing Service, a searchable database using "fuzzy logic"; when there are no exact matches, fuzzy logic will return the next closest match.
  3. A nationally oriented list where Realtors can post properties free without belonging to an MLS is Yahoo! Classified, which has a database section for residential and commercial sales, and for rental properties.
  4. The best thing to do to attract attention for a property of any kind is to use a photograph.
  5. Achieving business success is a combination of marketing your properties and marketing yourself; utilize all sections of the Internet: web pages, list servers and news groups.
  6. List servers primarily provide exposure to other professionals, but Real Estate news groups are more broad based; individual web pages are good for communication and advertisement providing they are recognized by search engines - get your key words right!
  7. Cohen's favorite Real Estate sites on the web include Becky Swann's, and
Detailed instructions for importing the Beach Realty database can be requested from Cohen by email to

Contact Information for Louis Cohen:

(v) 888-389-7355
(f) 407-777-1049

Real Estate Sites & Tools in this Briefing:

Beach Realty database
Florida Listing Service
Yahoo! Classified

Good sites for RE news:
Inman News