My monthly columns (WordMagic and TechMagic) on Epowernews.com usually bring in a few questions, but this month’s article on using the Treo for Real Estate Agents really brought in a lot of questions, emails and calls.
Apparently there are MANY real estate agents, brokers, Realtors (and even virtual assistants, offsite contractors and remote professional outsourcers for this group) interested and asking questions about how to get started with the Treo.
My first recommendation is that you begin with the “Treo: The Basics” Topic in the upper left hand corner of this site.
I’ve answered as many of these questions personally as I can today — and I thought today would be a slow day to catch up!! Ha!
There are several other questions that have been asked that aren’t covered in the basic information there. Some of it may be covered in the “Treo: All Business” section or in the “Treo: Just for Fun” section.
If you are advanced, you may want to check out the “Tech Tips and Tricks” section.
Some quick answers to a few of the questions I got today are below:
Do you really use your Treo for everything like you say?
Well, lets just say that my MOTHER called me to see how I was doing without my Treo the other day, while I was awaiting the new one to be shipped. My MOTHER! So, you know it’s a serious thing. LOL. The new one arrived yesterday, but I’ve spent my “tweaking” time today answering questions on the Treo, rather than getting mine up and going. Maybe tomorrow…
What are the bare essential additional products for a new Treo, in your opinion?
Well, this site is dedicated to helping answer that question as a whole, but a quick, off the top of my head list of my “dirty dozen” would include: NoteStudio, Snappermail, TCPMP, SuperUtility, Audible, Card Export, BackupBuddy, iSilo, HiLauncher, Think Outside’s Stowaway Keyboard, Mundu IM 3, and eWallet. You can use the site search to read full writeups on these from previous posts here on WickedTreo. Or, if you read the newsletter at www.epowernews.com, you will see my article on the best of the best next month in my Tech Magic column.
I’d also highly recommend a good document program (I use Documents to Go right now, but am always looking for a better option), an excellent, protective case (I’m researching this again now — and will report my findings soon), and a great security program (Again, I’m still looking for that little gem myself).
And for goodness sakes — USE a SCREENPROTECTOR!!!
What Contact Database is the best?
That’s the million dollar question for any real estate agent, broker or Realtor — using any device, isn’t it? The Treo is no exception. I use the Palm desktop, but am looking for a nicer option. I’ve read so many bad reviews about the programs currently on the market, that I’m awaiting a newer, better version on some of the existing programs, or a new program altogether before I consider a change.
Some agents use palm-friendly versions of their online contact database programs and their website database programs. There are more of these out there than you might imagine at this point. None of them are “golden” according to the agent’s I’ve asked.
The main issue and concern here is to be sure what you use works — for the way you work. If you are carrying an outdated contact list in your palm, or if it doesn’t sync without fail to your computer or your online database — you have a big problem. Be sure you can export to a universal format when you are considering a contact database (tab or comma delimited files) so you can ensure that it’s portable without hand-keying everything, should you decide to change systems in the future.
There are programs that will make the Treo sync with Act! (I had the Palm version of Act! didn’t care for it much) and Outlook (several of these get good reviews, but I refuse to use Outlook on my computer due to security issues. It may work fine for you, the sync between Outlook and palm programs has improved recently).
So, what’s the best contact database? One that you use, that’s simple and makes it easy to find the information you need when you need it. One that synch with your data back at the office or online.
If the one you use isn’t easy and readily available you WILL lose data. That’s why a palm conduit is so important. If you wait “until I get back to the office” — the info will be lost as often as it’s recorded.
Now, it’s time for me to call it a day, I hope this helps.