Redfin has announced that they will discontinue “Sweet Digs”, the blogging program they instituted several years ago for each of their major markets. They paid individual bloggers, most with no real estate experience, to write about real estate in their respective cities. They initially hired 7 writers, and each were paid $200 a week, so this move should save them at least $5000 a month.
One of the problems that Sweet Digs had initially was that they were limited to discussing just their own listings, or risk violating MLS policies about “advertising” other agents listings without permission. They were first fined $50,000 in 2007 for doing that, but apparently didn’t learn their lesson and they were fined $25,000 again just 6 months ago.
I suppose $75K in fines and $5K a month in employee salaries, plus the costs for all the links they buy on Curbed (386 links and counting) wasn’t worth the SEO, even though it did propel them to the top of real estate search in many cities.
But if there aren’t any buyers, what’s the point?