Monday, February 4, 2008

What It Means to be an e-Pro

When you see “e-Pro” as one of my professional designations, what does that mean?

e-PRO Certification is an online training program offered by the National Association of Realtors® to certify real estate professionals as Internet Professionals.

Now, as an “internet professional”, having the e-Pro designation does not mean that I spend all of my time working on the internet. The internet is a tool which the e-Pro uses in their business to serve their customer’s needs. You can do many things to buy or sell a home using the internet, but nothing can replace the ability to actually visit the home you want to buy or sell.

The Connected Consumer has very different expectations than offline consumers and dealing with them effectively requires a different approach. The e-PRO Certification course guides students through completing a Technology Plan of Action for their business and introduces them to many techniques for evaluating and using Internet tools.

e-PRO Certification is not only about technology. The e-PRO Certification Program establishes a baseline of online competence, and it also introduces its students and graduates to the best aspects of Online Community...the Internet is about the power of people connecting with people.

I earned my e-Pro designation in 2004.

Since then, my curiosity about the internet has only grown, and is always centered around the basic theme – how will this benefit my customer?

There are so many ways that I’ve grown my arsenal of marketing tools since earning my e-Pro designation, including my own website (so buyers and sellers can learn about my service), floor plans and virtual tours of my listings (so buyers can preview a home before driving over to see it), mobile e-mail and text messaging (for instant access), and blogging (so buyers and sellers can learn a little bit about who I am and how I work).

So when you’re looking for a Realtor®, be sure to ask if they are e-Pro certified.

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