A Successful Los Altos Real Estate Partnership

This week, the Los Altos Town Crier profiled this web site, and our partnership with Tony Campitelli of C4 Marketing. Below is the news story written by Ya-an Chan …

Homebuyers from Germany or South Africa may know nothing about Los Altos and are not always in a position to visit before making a real estate decision.

Tony Campitelli & Carol CasasLos Altos resident Tony Campitelli, former vice president of marketing at Laszlo Systems in Silicon Valley, saw this as a gap in real estate marketing. Most realtors do not have the time to explore new ways of real estate marketing because they are occupied with the day-to-day tasks of getting a new listing, finding a hopeful buyer or finishing the paperwork, according to Campitelli.

“So I came to this conclusion,” he said. “I’m going to help them.”

Campitelli founded C4 Marketing LLC, a new approach to real estate marketing that allows buyers to discover the community beyond the standard online descriptions of the property. He said C4 Marketing provides an online marketing system with professional corporate branding that assists real estate agents who “want to take the business to another level.” It presents realtors online as the experts of the areas on which they focus.

David and Carol Casas, of Intero Real Estate Services, tested the new concept. They built a Web site, Move Into Los Altos (www.moveintolosaltos.com), in collaboration with Campitelli and C4 Marketing. The site features property descriptions and detailed information on the area’s schools, business associations, cultural activities, parks and local government. It includes blogs with updated information about upcoming community events. As a result, prospective buyers not only are informed about the property, but also have a picture of the type of community they are considering.

David Casas, a Los Altos City Councilman, said Campitelli’s company, which integrates multiple media platforms, is an example of the Los Altos community’s entrepreneurship.

“In a time of economic turmoil, to know that we have residents creating opportunities, creating business and creating ideas is wonderful,” he said.

Since the launch of Move Into Los Altos, the Casas’ have worked with homebuyers from such countries as Taiwan, Japan, India and the United Kingdom.

Campitelli said he continued refining the initial system and officially founded C4 Marketing in January 2009. The “C4,” Campitelli said, refers to C-4 plastic explosives, as in explosive marketing.

The Casas’ said they are impressed with the results. A property at 190 Hillview Avenue they recently put on the market sold in 23 days. A New Jersey company found MoveIntoLosAltos.com by searching on Google, approached the husband-wife team to help relocate an employee’s family.

“As they found (David and Carol) online, they’re realizing that David and Carol are the knowledgeable experts in the community,” Campitelli said. “They know what’s going on, they write about the shows, the Farmers’ Market, the movie night – they’re telling a story about what it’s like to live here.”

Realtors can launch multiple Web sites, including community- and property-specific sites, write blogs and link videos, which they post on YouTube, to their Web sites.

A main benefit of his new advertising tool for real estate, Campitelli said, is the analytics provided by the system. The report shows the most-searched keywords and which sources generate the most traffic (i.e., direct traffic, referring sites and search engines).

The data, he said, give realtors direction on the types of content that are most effective.

Carol Casas said the analysis not only helps realtors to understand where their marketing dollars are most effective, but also allows home sellers to track how many people are viewing their property information.

For more information about C4 Marketing, call (650) 619-6678 or visit www.c4marketingllc.com.


Green Town Los Altos

Carbon FootprintA year ago, Carol and I were offered the opportunity to conduct an assessment of our carbon footprint. We participated in a very thorough assessment of our home, cars, travel, and life choices. The best part of the process was receiving a mini-tutorial on how best to ensure we made informed environmental choices.  

Who is this group helping Los Altos think green, be green, and live green? Green Town Los Altos.

It is interesting to reflect on the impact the organization has had on the community since they formed almost two years ago. For background, Green Town is a non-partisan environmental organization comprised, in part, by residents who live in Los Altos. They are working towards educating other residents to change behaviors and to reduce waste, water and energy use at home, in businesses, in schools and in our local government. Additionally, and more broadly, they have chosen to participate in collaborative Bay Area efforts to influence regional sustainability.

From helping the recent Rotary Art Show successfully divert 70 percent of their waste product out of the landfill, to helping the City’s Environmental Commission frame a set of recommendations for the upcoming 2010 Garbage contract … Green Town continues to engage residents, and the City, in a meaningfully productive dialog.

While there are many organizations that help make Los Altos a unique and wonderful place to live and raise a family, Green Town has clearly been able to tap into the interests, passions and desires of many residents and local businesses.

Green Town Los AltosRecently, Green Town’s Board proposed a business cooperative for the local restaurants, designed to help them switch to environmentally preferable take-out containers and products … at affordable prices. The proposal supports an underlying environmental initiative, with a tangible economic benefit as an outcome for the businesses that choose to participate.

Last week, I had the chance to survey residents at a local restaurant which has already made the switch to environmental containers. A unanimous outcome of their opinion was their appreciation that Le Boulanger, in Los Altos, had chosen to take the environmental lead within their chain of restaurants. Their remaining restaurant locations are now planning to make the switch as soon as possible. As an aside, Le Boulanger has an abundance of great bread and food products to select from. The day I visited, the restaurant was packed.

At the end of the day, Green Town continues to make a difference. Like a diamond, Los Altos has many facets. This organization is yet another way for residents to get involved in the community. Check out their web site. I’m sure they’d warmly welcome you to any of their meetings or gatherings. We just might see you there.


Mid Summer Activities in Los Altos

Posted on June 19, 2009 by  
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Saturday, July 4, 10:30 am to 2:30 pm

Glorious Fourth Celebration

Los Altos July4th Celebration

The Community will once again celebrate the annual Los Altos-Los Altos Hills Independence Day Celebration from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Shoup Park, 400 University Ave., Los Altos.

The event is free and warmly welcomes families to the festivities.  Ye Olde Towne Band will open the commemoration with 30 minutes of music. There will be (very) brief speeches, with a lot of musical interludes by the band. Attendees are encouraged to bring picnic lunches, no food will be sold at the event. Parking is available but limited, at Shoup Park and on University Avenue.

The celebration is also supported by the Rotary Club of Los Altos, the Los Altos Town Crier, the Community Foundation, the City of Los Altos, Ye Olde Towne Band and Los Altos American Legion Post 558.

Saturday and Sunday, July 11 and 12, from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm

30th Annual Arts & Wine Festival

Los Altos Art and Wine Festival

The quaint village atmosphere of Downtown Los Altos transforms into a bustling center of activity the second weekend in July with the coming of the annual Arts & Wine Festival on Main and State Streets.

The highly-rated Arts & Wine Festival showcases the distinctive works of artists and craftspeople from over a dozen states. The Festival also features select vintages by the glass from local wineries as well as a wide variety of foods including Thai, Chinese, Mexican, All American favorites like sausages, hot links and roasted corn, sweets of all kinds, and more.

Over the years, this popular Festival has earned the reputation of being ranked among the top 75 in the nation. The event, which attracts over 150,000 visitors yearly, supports local arts and entertainment, Downtown Village revitalization, encourages economic prosperity and promotes a community atmosphere unique to the Downtown District.

Enjoy two whole days of free concerts from performers such as Double Funk Crunch, California Beach Boys, Debbie Thacker, and The WoogieMen.  The Festival is a great event for the whole family with a large selection of rides, activities and entertainment for children all weekend in the Kidzone.


Los Altos Relay For Life

Posted on June 16, 2009 by  
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There are many ways to get involved in Los Altos. One special event is the annual Los Altos Relay for Life. This weekend, countless volunteers will team up to participate for 24 hours and raise money towards cancer research, education and outreach.Relay For Life 

One day. One night. One community. One Fight. Relay For Life is a life-changing event that brings together individuals to celebrate the lives of those who have battled cancer; remember loved ones lost to the disease; and fight back against a disease that takes too much.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of Relay For Life, the signature fundraising event of the American Cancer Society. This is the sixth year for our local Relay, which will once again be held at the Los Altos High School track. Since 2004, the Los Altos community has generously contributed more than $2 million towards developing a cure.

The purposes of having the Relay are, in addition to fundraising, to educate participants and attendees about cancer prevention and early detection, to make the community aware of the Society’s research programs and services.

If possible, we invite you to come and participate. It is a wonderful opportunity to be a part of something special. You will witness the heart and soul of the Los Altos community in action.  We hope to see you there!


2009 Housing Trends for Los Altos & nearby cities

Posted on June 8, 2009 by  
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As we examine the most recent statistics regarding year-over-year trends, the market is beginning to strike a decent balance, at least for May 2009. There are opportunities still out there for buyers, and yet properties are selling at a good clip for the sellers that are not unrealistic about pricing. In short, we have a good equilibrium occurring, without a clear advantage for either buyers and or sellers in the current overall environment.

Below, we have included four charts that highlight: 1) Recent Inventory; 2) Pending Sales; 3) Closed Transactions for May; and finally, 4) A comparison of year-to-date, through May 2009, of homes that have closed escrow.

As of May 2009, overall Closings were up 25% and Sales were up 70% for the west side of Santa Clara County compared to May of 2008. After a slow start to the New Year, Los Altos continues to see a ramping up of homes going into contract; however, we remain roughly 50% behind our 2008 YTD volume. The good news is that we have sufficient inventory of available homes, as we head into the summer months.


Summer Solstice at Hidden Villa

Posted on June 3, 2009 by  
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June 2009

Saturday, June 20, 6:00 to 10:00 pm

Summer Solstice at Hidden Villa

Hidden Villa

Open air performance by well loved bay area chorus. All American favorite songs! Bring a picnic and stay until dusk.  There is a planned pre-performance reception at 6 p.m, and music from 7:00 – 7:45 p.m. You are welcome to picnic until dusk.

Special note about seating: Folding chairs will be provided, or you may bring your own lawn chairs and/or blanket to sit on. There is a charge for this event.  To register, sign up online or call (650) 949-9704.