Tech Strategy: Zillow vs. Instagram

by: Custom Toll Free , December 19, 2012

Technology, Instagram, Affiliate MarketingWill Instagram be the latest Facebook victim, and what does the photo sharing app's latest moves mean for your tech strategy?


There is a huge difference between brands which offer value and those which simply take from their customers. The latter of course dooming many previously popular platforms and firms to a painful fall.


Instagram was touted as one of the hottest and most favorite photo-sharing services prior to being taken over by Facebook. Unfortunately, new privacy concerns stemming from the latest update to the site's terms and conditions could mean an end to its popularity.


Stating that the photo tool can sell users' information including photos without compensating them actually goes far beyond just being a privacy concern. Being able to make millions off of user generated content may be smart for businesses, but surely it is another nail in the coffin of Facebook.


At the same time, this week Zillow announced the roll out of complimentary websites for property management and rental professionals. We all know Zillow doesn't have the best reputation for quality tools but there is no denying the online real estate platform knows how to market. Zillow may even be using these sites to build and scrape masses of data and leads which are generated by users but the feel is totally different. They are offering to give away something of value versus take it. Same deal just a completely different way of presenting it.


So how can you apply this concept to your organization in the right way and avoid major brand killing flaws like Facebook's?


There are two important takeaways here in addition to recognizing the huge value of data and user generated content. The first is while you need to make money and monetizing your web assets is smart, don't do it at the expense of killing years of effort and progress. Is there an affiliate marketing program you can join which provides great value to your web visitors and following, while generating additional revenues?


Secondly, and especially with the massive smartphone surge we are seeing this holiday season, it's wise for businesses to have another game, another lead generation channel besides websites and social networks. Many real estate professionals have been stepping up their in game advertising but what about offline and outdoor advertising? Do you have the vanity numbers to control your local offline marketplace?


What if Facebook does go belly up, you lose your Twitter following, or your website is hacked and destroyed? These things happen every day. Make sure you not only have a good tech strategy which won't turn off customers but a smart marketing mix which will keep leads and dollars coming in no matter what goes down or which platform sabotages your user base.


For those in the real estate game Custom Toll Free has just rolled out a dedicated service for finding and reserving the best toll free numbers for real estate marketing, and it's well worth taking a look at…

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