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Realtor Blogs Are the New Billboard Advertisement
Every Realtor has a story to tell and you are no different. You could write books about amazing homes, first time buyer jitters, nightmare listings, and dream contracts. But as a real estate professional, how do you translate all your experiences into attracting clients? Finding the perfect way to obtain leads is a challenge. You want prospective clients to come to you for advice on floor plans, financing, and the fundamentals of real estate transactions. Building trust by providing quality information and sharing your experiences are the best ways to attract new business. How do you advertise your knowledge and skills? Old school real estate marketing used to get your foot in the door. However, opening doors today requires a continual online presence. Prospective real estate investors want to know they can rely on you to provide them with solid information based on a winning track record. They want a lot of information and they want it now. Get your messages across by building a regular blog. Your Home Buyer Clients Will Thank You Realtor blogs build your connection with buyers. Remember the time you sold a home to that nervous first-time buyer? A half dozen visits to the property were required before writing the offer. Every visit had a new question, a new fear, and a longing to know what happens next. Now the same kind of buyer can enjoy those repeated visits through 3D tours and get their questions answered through your blog. Writing about your experiences lets you share the information your buyer is seeking. You build trust by providing buyers with the answers to their questions before they commit to your Realtor services. It's all about providing useful knowledge demonstrating much-needed transparency in the process. Explain initial deposits and financing, the importance of proper measurements and floor plans, and help your potential client grasp the undertaking of buying a home. Plus a blog provides a way for you to showcase your personality and resourcefulness by writing what you know. What About the Sellers? Blogging about nightmare listings you have seen helps your seller to understand the importance of presenting a property well. Be truthful about the feedback you received from those scary listings you've happened upon. It is never a good thing to open a door, be met with the wafting smell of dog feces, and be greeted by the perpetrators. True story! Clutter, junk, and debris do not positively manifest into presentable listings. Online Is Always On Knock, knock. Who's there? It's just you, the local Realtor, canvassing for listings in the neighborhood. Introducing yourself door to door is a daunting task with minimal results. Engaging with potential clients requires more than just a 10-second introduction at their doorway. Let your clients come to you… ONLINE. Your webpage is your virtual business card and a Realtor blog is your billboard. Adding to it regularly keeps both buyers and sellers coming back for information and unlocks a world of sales opportunities. Sharing engaging unique stories about your experiences educates the reader. It gives them time to get to know you and trust your expertise. Online is all the time and your clients will be searching for information about you at all hours and any day of the week. A Blog Also Supports Your Website Over 90% of buyers start their search for property online. What are they looking for? Information. Google and other search engines rank your web pages based on content. Interesting, informative, good content helps you get to the top of the list. Why is this important? Engagement transforms into potential leads. All your good advice and entertaining stories tell Google to recommend you in a Realtor search. Ranking on the first results page means leads are just a click away from your website. Once the leads get there, and the longer they spend perusing your blogs, the faster your website ranking grows. It's like watering a flower; if you want it to grow, you have to provide food. If you want a garden, you have to fertilize. Feeding your leads with high quality blogs help them blossom into future clients. If you're dreaming about the ideal client, an amazing listing opportunity, and ultimately a sold sign with your name on it, start blogging. The three billboards on the local highway aren't working like they used to.
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How to Start Your Own Blog
Why should you want to have your own blog? Because today, 90 percent of home buyers are searching online during their house hunt, according to Google and the National Association of Realtors. In addition, more than twice as many people start their search online versus contacting an agent. For real estate, building and maintaining your online presence is more important than ever. The good news is agents can raise their online presence in several ways. You can enhance your online activity by consistently engaging on social media channels such as Facebook and Instagram. With local video content, you can build a following on YouTube or TikTok. But if you want to boost your business and your online profile, your best investment of time may be starting a blog. After all, a study from Orbit Media shows that 54% of businesses who utilize blogging gain strong marketing results. Know before you start down the path of blogging this one fact: you must love to write (or at least be a competent writer). If it's a struggle for you to develop new ideas or find you are always "too busy to write," then don't blog. Where do you begin writing your blog? If you enjoy writing, blogging could become your "go-to" marketing tactic. But starting and writing a real estate blog means more than just whipping up a few paragraphs and posting it online to share with your audience. Successful bloggers recommend you avoid "writing just to write." Instead, focus on creating good quality writing rather than a longer word count. And you will need to be patient. Having a successful real estate blog won't happen overnight. Instead, you will undergo a process of trial and error to determine what most appeals to your client base and makes them want to come back again and again. The benefits can be well worth the time invested. A real estate blog can help you increase your online visibility while at the same time showcasing your talents and expertise. Unlike visibility achieved on social media, people spend more time on your site as they read what you have written. Therefore, traffic gains from blog posts are much more meaningful than traffic generated by paying to boost a social media post. The key to getting started is to create the proper foundation, invest time in planning a schedule, and find that unique "hook" your blog has that makes it stand out from others. Here are 6 essential tips you need to know to start your own blog: Write for your niche: When starting a blog, brainstorming is a core component to gather your ideas and figure out the best topics to attract readers. Therefore, you should write what you know. Focus on the real estate niche that's your specialty. It's easier to write a topic that you deep knowledgeable about, as it will help you avoid writer's block. Use a catchy title and click-worthy headlines: For your blog title and headlines for subsequent posts, you want them to be attention grabbing. Keep in mind that potential readers will quickly glance at the headline before deciding to click or not to click. The headline for all your blog posts needs to hook people into wanting to read the content, or your work will be for naught. So, don't just rush into writing the title. Instead, take your time and iterate. Keep your title short (less than ten words), make sure it connects to your main topic or theme, and that your target audience understands it. Maintain a schedule: Like becoming a perennial top producing agent, consistency is key. A lot of agents have started a blog with a single post and never wrote a second one. Committing to a schedule is critical when starting your blog. Create an editorial calendar or schedule with proposed topics and deadlines for first drafts and target dates for final posting. While you don't want to blog too frequently, you must avoid long gaps between your posts. Being inconsistent in posting is the fastest way to lose the interest of your audience: they will go elsewhere. The most successful bloggers post two to four times a week, but you are not a blogger. You are an agent who blogs. Once a week is great if you can maintain that pace to keep your clientele engaged, and hopefully, wanting more. Be straightforward: Good blogs are easy to read; they are not college essays. While it's important to provide in-depth information and be specific, you should avoid drag on. Be approachable in your posts. Sharing valuable info, focusing on your main idea, and not overselling or being self-promotional will earn a larger audience. Resonate with your audience: Visualize your favorite clients with whom you have worked with. These types of people are the kind of readers you want to attract to your blog. Put yourself in their shoes: what information are they most interested in? What are the most frequent questions they have? You don't have to appeal to everyone, but you need to know who you want to reach. Observe what other blogs cover: Top real estate blogs and news outlets like Inman, RE Technology, RISMedia, RealtyTimes, and others have a style and method for the subjects they pick. Pay attention to that. These firms invest a lot of money to create content that appeals to their target audiences: agents and brokers. Staying on top of real estate trends and industry news can help you write your blog. They also can help generate ideas, especially when you can find a local angle that relates to an important national topic or trend. Finally, remember that a Tech Helpline expert is only a call or click away when you have any general tech questions! To view the original article, visit the Tech Helpline blog.
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How to Blog: What to Write About
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How to Blog: Getting Started
Contacting a real estate agent is rarely the first step someone takes when they decide to buy or sell a home. Usually, they do a bit of research first, searching online to find out how much it will cost, how long it will take, and what it will entail. They use the internet to figure out as much about the process as they can so that when they're ready to make a decision, they will feel confident about it. Only then will they use the internet to find or contact an agent. That's why blog content is so important. It's an SEO magnet and an opportunity to build trust with future buyers and sellers. Rich with keywords and helpful information about buying or selling a home, a blog is one of the best places potential leads can go to get the answers they're looking for.
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Commit to a Blogging Strategy in 2021
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Real Estate Content Marketing: 5 Easy Tips to Follow
When you're investing in content, you're focusing on providing value to your potential clients. This makes content marketing one of the most effective ways to generate seller and buyer leads. Wondering how to make real estate content marketing right? Check out the five tips below. They will focus on the most effective content types to give you a headstart.
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How to Write for ActiveRain and Get More Points
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It's Time Your Real Estate Blog Posts Got GRAPHIC!
Kevin Vitali, a real estate agent servicing Northeastern Massachusetts, gives us some great tips to catch the attention of web surfers with eye-popping images for your real estate blog. Let's face it, sensationalism sells! With so many options to choose from on the internet, you need to grab a viewer's attention. So, it's time your blog posts got graphic! Along with a snappy headline, don't forget an eye-catching blog graphic to go with your post. The graphic is equally, if not more, important than the headline itself. How often are you scrolling thru your Facebook feed and a photo or graphic captures your attention and makes you want to click on the link and see what it's about? Nobody knows how great your article is if they don't find it. Great blog graphics are shareable graphics!
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Blog Writing Tips for Realtors
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Your Real Estate Blog: How to Turn It into a Lead Magnet
No matter where you live in the United States, most people will find your real estate business online. One of the best ways to take control of your real estate brand is by blogging. A blog is a gold standard for generating traffic, leads, and building relationships. Blogging keeps you top-of-mind with your readers while it positions you as an expert through helpful, informative content. Also, when you blog regularly, you benefit from an SEO standpoint. Google favors websites with relevant, unique, and engaging content.
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How to Promote Yourself and Stay Connected with Clients
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If You're Not Real Estate Blogging, Do It Like a Giant FAQ
The excuses for not real estate blogging are the same common ones over and over, including: I don't have enough to post about. I don't have the time to write blog posts. I am a terrible writer, can't spell, etc. There are others, but those are usually the top three. Let's debunk these, starting at the bottom:
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Real Estate Marketing 2020: Special Dates and Themes
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5 Blogging Mistakes... and How to Fix Them
Blogging has been a pillar of a powerful marketing plan for some time now, and has the staying power of a long-term, sustainable strategy. It helps drive traffic to your site, effectively nurtures leads and can be an incredible brand enhancer by helping to position you as a thought leader. However, you can't just blog for the sake of blogging, nor can you think to cheat Google's algorithms with keyword stuffing just to get ahead in the search engine race for its coveted number one position.
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111 Blog Ideas for Real Estate Professionals
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The Dos and Don'ts of Content Marketing in Real Estate
"Content marketing" is a buzzy term, but it's basically what it sounds like: You create content of value (photos, blog posts, videos) as part of your real estate marketing plan. Different from — though complementary to — the ads you place with just your name and photo, content marketing pieces don't feel like marketing. They give buyers and sellers a sense of your expertise, while also building brand awareness and trust.
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December Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
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Blog Reboot: 5 Ways to Revive a Tired and Neglected Real Estate Blog
The new year is approaching fast and so is your chance for a blog reboot! If your goal is to put out more content in 2019, there's no better time to step back and reframe your blog ideas and posting goals. Before you get started, think about what makes you likely to come back to a website. People tend to revisit sites that offer value — and we don't just mean monetary value. As a real estate professional, you have a wealth of knowledge about topics that most buyers and sellers will have to research before they get started on a transaction. Put this knowledge to use to gain blog fans who come back for more. Below are five foolproof content ideas that you can deploy as you make a 2019 blog plan.
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November Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
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35 Awesome Blog Ideas for New Real Estate Agents (Part 2)
Real estate professionals: it's time to start blogging (or get back to blogging). According to WordPress, over 409 million people view more than 21.4 billion blog posts each month, which means there is no time to sit around uninspired. While you might be short on ideas (but not enthusiasm), we're here to remove any barrier between you and writing great blog posts. Previously, we covered real estate listings and local events, happenings, news and community insights. Read on below for suggested personal topics and tips and tricks.
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October Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
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35 Awesome Blog Ideas for New Real Estate Agents (Part 1)
Real estate professionals – it's time to start blogging (or get back to blogging). According to WordPress, over 409 million people view more than 21.4 billion blog posts each month, which means there is no time to sit around uninspired. While you might be short on ideas (but not enthusiasm), we're here to remove any barrier between you and writing great blog posts. Below is a list of blog ideas for real estate agents sectioned into groups: real estate listings, local, personal, and tips and tricks. Read on for some serious real estate blogging inspiration.
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How to Use Your Real Estate Blog for Lead Nurturing
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September Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
Creating fresh, unique content is an easy way to make an impact and grow your social media audience. However, coming up with content ideas to write about can be hard! Instead of spending hours trying to come up with new topics for your social channels and blog, check back with us each month for a list of ideas you can expand upon. Find September's topics below to get started!
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Combine Your Blog with an Email Newsletter for More Leads and Traffic
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August Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
Posting fresh, unique content is one of the best ways to make an impact and grow your social media audience, but coming up with content ideas can be hard! Instead of spending hours trying to come up with topics, check back with us each month for a list of ideas you can expand upon. Find August's topics below to get started! Tip: Sharing pictures of happy clients in front of their new home is great! Just remember to have them sign a photo release form first.
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How to Leverage Content Marketing for Lead Generation
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Why You Should (Really) Start Your Own Blog
At its base level, content marketing is simple: provide unique industry or product insight in exchange for personal information. Forms of real estate content can range from one-page infographics to an in-depth video series on staging. However, the time (and budget) to create unique content isn't quite as plentiful as the ideas on what you can offer. Thankfully, getting started with content marketing doesn't have to take too much time or money. A great option to distribute helpful, informative and even entertaining content is to start your own blog. Here's why blogging is important for your real estate business:
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July Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
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June Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
If you want to make an impact and grow your presence online, creating fresh content for your blog and social media channels is a great place to start. Unfortunately, coming up with content topics can be hard! Instead of racking your brain trying to come up with content ideas, check back each month for a list of ideas you can expand upon. Find June's topics below to get started! Tip: Repurposing your old content in new ways can result in great resources for your clients and save you time since you aren't starting from scratch.
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What Do I Blog About, Anyway?
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Document Your Day-to-Day to Become Your Market's Thought Leader
There is a very common phrase when it comes to content marketing: Document, Don't Create. For you Realtors that want to beef up your content marketing strategy and build your own brand, this is going to be the magic bullet that allows you to do this--and more easily then you imagined. But how exactly does this work?
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May Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
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April Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
Creating fresh, unique content is an easy way to make an impact and grow your social media audience. However, coming up with content ideas to write about can be hard! Instead of spending hours trying to come up with new topics for your social channels and blog, check back with us each month for a list of ideas you can expand upon. Find April's topics below to get started! Tip: Use hashtags (#) to help people outside of your normal social reach find your content. Download a printable version of these topics here!
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March Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
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February Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
Creating content is an important, but time consuming, part of doing business online. Instead of spending hours trying to come up with blog and social topics, be on the lookout for a list of ideas from us each month that you can expand upon. Find February's topics below to get started! Tip: Keywords that can boost your SEO are an inherent part of your content when you choose topics that discuss local events and places. Download a printable version of these topics here!
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January Content Ideas for Your Blog and Social Channels
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8 No-Fuss Real Estate Marketing Ideas to Try this June
Are there tumbleweeds blowing through your blog? Is your Facebook business page gathering dust? For many agents, the biggest hurdle to an active online presence is figuring out what to post. And that's totally valid—you're busy doing at least 184 different things for your clients. But if you neglect your blog or various social accounts, you risk prospects thinking that you're either out of business or a bit careless. So lock up (set to private) or delete the profiles you don't use, and commit to a consistent posting schedule on the platforms you do use. Fortunately, June is a month rich in post ideas for real estate (it is National Homeownership month, after all!), so getting started should be easy. To make it even easier, we've outlined a bunch of blog and social media post ideas you can use to rejuvenate your online presence. Take a look at the ideas below:
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10 Technologies and Tools for Real Estate Agents
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6 Real Estate Blogging Tools and Gadgets Worth Considering
Here are a handful of blogging gadgets (tools, apps) that you might find useful. 1. Calmly – Writing App When I write blogs, I typically use a notepad program before publishing to my WordPress website. I find it easier to focus using the plain, no frills, no distraction approach of the simple notepad. That is until I stumbled across this online writing tool: Calmly. Calmly is professional text editor that is so inviting to just WRITE. You can format content, add images, save your work, etc. But it's the simple writing interface that me won over. Check it out – maybe it's a match for your blogging needs as well. 2. HemingwayApp – Readability Tool If you are concerned with the "readability" of your blog posts, then this is a great desktop app for you. The HemingwayApp grades your readability on a grade scale of 1 to 24 (higher is worse). Then it highlights the text in your post that it recognizes as troublesome. It even offers suggestions and solutions for your writing. I don't use it. But it does seem useful enough to recommend.
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20 Time-Saving Real Estate Blog Ideas for Agents
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The Top 5 Digital Marketing Hacks for Real Estate Professionals
Real estate professionals must embrace savvy digital marketing strategies in our hyper-connected world. Within these strategies are specific tactics that can transform your marketing from the mundane to the magnificent. There's value in postcards, calendars, and business cards, but digital marketing is the best way for real estate professionals to leverage their money and time. Allow me to present the top five digital marketing hacks for real estate professionals. Blogging and SEO Many have extolled the virtues of blogging and its SEO benefits. It's for good reason, though. Consistent blogging on a hyper-local, neighborhood level establishes you as a trusted voice in your community. Consistent blogging also helps your name/brand show up higher in organic search results. Blog content is the foundation for search engine optimization (SEO). Blog content is also the fuel for your social media activity. Automate with IFTTT IFTTT stands for "If This Then That." On the basic level, you can use IFTTT to share your evergreen blog content to your various social media channels every day or even every hour. But beyond social media sharing, this internet tool can help you market and control utilities for a listing with your hands off. Smart-connected home tools and tasks (lights, Nest A/C settings, and more) are all manageable on IFTTT. Cool stuff like makes for neat "talking points" and digital marketing hacks for real estate. Have fun with social media marketing automation and more at ifttt.com.
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40+ Winning Real Estate Blog Ideas for Agents
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Blogging for Dollars: Cha-Ching! (7/20)
Wednesday, Juy 20, 2016 at 10:00 AM PDT Join us for Power Hour this week featuring rock star agent Debbie Reynolds and learn how she turns her blogging efforts into hot leads. Choosing the right content can bring your website to the top of search engines results pages which in turn generates free website traffic. We'll show you exactly how to get started, make a schedule, and get your blog posts to generate leads—cha ching! How often to post for maximum dollars What to include in your posts to help convert leads Writing tips to yield the biggest return Register now!
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Blog-O-Rama! Everything you need to start blogging (7/13)
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Blogging BootCamp: Keywords and What to Blog About (5/19)
Thursday, May 19, 2016 at 10:00 AM PDT In our third bootcamp class, we will discuss keywords and what to blog about. It's important, if you are going to take the time to create content for your blog (or website) that you know what kind of things to focus on. In this class, Bob will share how to best go about deciding what to write about in your blog. We'll cover: What is the long tail and how do you target it What are the 5 best types of blogs you can produce If you only have limited time to devote to blogging, what gets the best return Register now!
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Top 5 Questions Realtors Have About Blogging
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5 Post Ideas to Kick Your Blog or Newsletter Into Gear
It's March and the busy spring selling season is quickly approaching. If your blog or business social media profiles have been in hibernation all winter, it's time to give them a nudge. Getting back to posting regularly can be a challenge, so we're making it easy on you. Here are five topic ideas that you can write about for your blog, Facebook page, email newsletter, and more. 1. Top 5 Mistakes Sellers Make About Pricing As an active agent, you likely have plenty of first-hand experience with sellers who have thought that their property was worth much more (or less) that it actually is. Use those experiences to write a post that educates potential sellers on sound pricing strategies. List common mistakes that sellers make and explain how your readers can avoid them. Don't forget to mention that homeowners can't rely on the automated valuations they see on search portals, and explain why. That opens up the opportunity for you to talk about how you price a home and the tools you use, like CMA software or RPR, that help you price properties accurately. 2. Local Spring Break Ideas for Families Spring break's not just for rowdy college kids; K-12 students typically get a week off during the spring, too. That means parents will be looking for ideas for family trips, or for entertaining the kids closer to home. Write up a list of family friendly "getaways" that are a short drive from the area you serve. This post can double as an informative post that attracts the attention of out-of-towners that may potentially be looking to buy or learn more about your area. Not all families have the opportunity to take a spring break vacation together, so, alternatively, you can list local activities or fun daytrip ideas instead.
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Your Blog and Creating Content That Will Serve You in the Future
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4 Topic Ideas to Get You Back in the Blogging Game
If you're looking for a reason to start or get back into blogging... we've got your motivation right here. Every November, writers of all stripes participate in events that encourage them to kill the excuses for a month and just put pen to paper (hand to keyboard?). The idea is to create a writing habit that will last into December and beyond. National Novel Writing Month, where participants attempt to write a 50,000 word book draft in 30 days, is the original and most well known event. But for real estate purposes, we think National Blog Posting Month is the challenge to take on. While this event requires participants to write one blog post every day, we're going to make it simple with a mini-challenge--commit to writing just one post a week to shake the dust from your blog. We promise you'll feel accomplished by the time Nov. 30 rolls around. Like I said, we want to make it easy for you, so we've conjured up a list of topics that you can use to get the blogging juices flowing again. Week 1: Do You Need a Permit for that Remodeling Project? Many agents focus on topics relevant only to consumers currently in the buying or selling phase. Don't forget your past clients, though. Topics that are relevant to them as homeowners are the best way stay connected with them through your blog. In this post, provide a list of home improvement projects that do and do not need a permit. Explain why some projects do, and how they differ from those that don't (generally, projects that require significant changes--wiring, plumbing, additions--need a permit; cosmetic ones like new paint or countertops don't). In your list of projects that do require a permit, be sure to say who needs to obtain that permit--the homeowner or the contractor? Also, if you have knowledge of the average time it takes for a permit to be granted, include that information to help your readers plan ahead more effectively.
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4 Back-to-School Marketing Ideas for Agents
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4 Ways to Drive Traffic to Your Real Estate Blog
Companies that blog have 97% more inbound links and generate 67% more leads per month. Just having a blog, though, doesn't mean it will automatically produce leads. A real estate blog is no different. If you are going to spend all that time designing a website and creating content to publish, it just makes sense to do it well. 1. Know Your Audience Part of having a blog people like and share virally is posting good content. Keys to good content: Aimed at the right audience - You need to decide who you are primarily targeting. Whether that's other agents, home buyers, or a specific subset of home buyers, it's good to know who you are talking to, for it will affect your writing and how you market your content. It's relevant - If your audience doesn't care about your content, they won't read it. A good tip here is NOT to post "Pick me!" articles all the time. Once in a while is okay, but if your main aim is to promote how good your services are, it will be a big turn off to readers. For example, first time home-buyers care about how to navigate the home buying process and will gravitate toward insider tips and "what to expect" pieces. Agents, on the other hand, have different needs than clients and will therefore care about different things – like "How to manage your time well" and "What to do when your client goes crazy." Timely posting - Timing matters when publishing content. What time zone is your primary audience in? You worked hard on your content and you want the most amount of people reading it. Once you find a good time of day/week to post your content, stick to it. Readers respond well to consistency. Try to post at least once a week – you want familiarity. The more your posts get out there, the more people will remember you. If you start posting more than four times a week, though, it starts getting a little too post happy – you need a happy medium. You want people to pay attention to your posts, not ignore them because it becomes more like white noise.
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Real Estate Blogging Tips for Beginners
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The Best Worst Sales Call I Ever Received
Here's the scene: I'm driving home in my car after showing houses, and my phone rings. It's an out-of-state number, not atypical since I regularly get calls from home owners wanting to move to the Phoenix area. So I answer my phone and it's a sales call. Ugh. I'm almost never rude to sales representatives calling because I've done my fair share of cold calls, mostly when I worked in commercial real estate. I listened to his sales pitch. He's trying to sell me the number one spot on Bing.com for "new homes in Chandler AZ." I ask several questions and being polite I ask if I can call him back. He says, "No, I can't take incoming calls," and he's really pushing the "I can get you the top spot on Bing for $99." I end up hanging up after a while. Thank goodness this sales representative called me because it gave me keywords for my next blog post. I've been writing more articles about Chandler, Ariz. My office is in Chandler and I'm active with the Chandler Chamber of Commerce (which is the third largest Chamber in Arizona). I often struggle to find new article ideas, so this was a great help. Here's what I did: 1. I Googled "new homes in chandler AZ" to see who was on page one of Google's results. They were all big companies, mostly home builders. So my initial thought was, I can't beat out these big websites with a blog post. 2. "No Video?!?" I noticed there were no YouTube posts that popped up. Google loves to add YouTube videos to the first page of its results. Google owns YouTube, and if there are applicable videos (they have to include the keywords), they will be front-and-center in Google's search results.
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7 Must-Know Ways to Kill It Online
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10 Reasons to Start Blogging
There are articles and blog posts all over the Web about blogging for real estate. Most of the "experts" agree that blogging can be very effective if done properly. So how can blogging be beneficial to your real estate business? A Blog is about creating a relationship with your potential prospects and clients. It can and should be one of the tools in your marketing toolbox. By creating a real estate blog about your area, happenings and commentary, you can begin to position yourself as an "expert" on the area and real estate trends there. Readers of your blog can then "subscribe", like in a magazine subscription, and have your real estate blog comments and articles delivered to them daily in their "news reader". 10 Reasons You Should Be Blogging If You're In Real Estate 1. It's a great way to build a brand and grow an audience. Lots of real estate agents have built a name for themselves by creating a real estate blog. Focus on writing relevant and useful blog content over the long-term and soon enough, you'll be known as the "go to" agent for real estate in your area. 2. A blog is much more than just an online journal, it's a cost-effective way to market your business and attract a steady stream of buyer and seller clients. If you focus on creating community and real estate content that appeals to the interests of buyers and sellers, a real estate blog will easily help you sell more houses. 3. It's a great way of establishing yourself as a credible expert by consistently publishing articles that share your knowledge over the buying and selling process. The key is to write content that directly addresses the type of client you want to work with. In other words, if you want to work with buyers, write helpful articles that help explain everything there is to know about the buying process.
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Develop a Killer Online Strategy
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What's So Great About Your Real Estate Market?
Recently CNN Money profiled Oregon in an article called What's so great about Oregon? Everyone's moving there. Of course, it doesn't hurt that they have a great football team and an ongoing hit show about their biggest city (Portlandia). But your real estate market has just enough going for it, and you're the one to communicate that message to your customers and potential clients. For many people relocating to your area, the real estate agent is going to be the key to understanding the neighborhoods, schools, job market and so on. This will be enacted through a content strategy on your blog and social sites. But before you dive headfirst into your real estate content strategy, it's important to know what your audience is looking for, particularly at different stages of the buying and selling process. Customers have a fairly one-track mind when it comes to their real estate path. Buyers want home listings, sellers want to know the value of their home, and neither are really interested in you as a person, but rather what you can do for them. It's as simple as that, and that realization should shape your real estate agent marketing. So how do you stand out from the crowd? Too many real estate agents make the mistake of talking about themselves in a sales meeting or real estate agent marketing instead of directly addressing and offering solutions to a prospect's needs. An agent's content strategy should be the following: Who do I want to reach? What do they want? How do I get what I want by giving them what they want?
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Blogging for Real Estate, Profit, and Fun
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December Blogging Plan: 5 Topic Ideas
Here we are--the last month of 2014! If you've been following our monthly blogging plan series, you've got nearly a year's worth of posts that are helping you to establish your brand. If you haven't been keeping up, now's a great time to start. The holidays offer plenty of easy topic ideas, making it easy to stay on the blogging wagon even amidst all the seasonal hustle and bustle. It's a busy time of year, so we're offering just five topics ideas--roughly one per week--for the month of December. 1. The Holiday Post(s) Tree lightings, parades, charitable causes, and more--these are all candidates for blog topics. Know which neighborhoods have the best holiday light displays? Share your knowledge! Like we said, there are plenty of easy post ideas during the holidays so take advantage of them. There's no need to cram it all in one post, though. Identify a few topics you'd like write about and you can drip out the seasonal posts all month long! 2. How to Appeal Your Property Tax in [City/County Name] Depending on your area, winter property taxes may be due very soon. Chances are good that there are consumers in your locale who think their home's assessed value is too high. Write a "how to" post that tells homeowners how they can appeal their tax bill. The idea here is to demonstrate your expertise and capture those searching for info on appealing their tax bill in your. The key is to encourage searchers to reach out to you for information on comparables or tax records. Don't forget to include your phone number and email in your post!
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November Blogging Plan: 5 Topic Ideas
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Four Ways to Increase Blog Traffic
The company blog is here to stay and is still one of the best promotional tools agents and brokers have at their disposal. A well-crafted blog will drive traffic to your website and increase your visibility to potential customers. It's a great place for agents to showcase their talents and expertise. Scroll down and read our four easy tips for driving traffic to your real estate blog. You don't have to create the original content: Well, you do but the content does not have to created in-house. It just has to be published on your company or personal blog for it to count. Busy agents and brokers should consider hiring a local freelancer to generate quality content. If your real estate business has a tight budget you still have options. Try looking to local universities for help finding quality writing interns. Talented students are always looking for professional experience. Bonus Tip: When you hire out for a blog post, make sure to let the writer know about any search engine optimization strategies you're running so the article is written SEO perfect. Write about what's hot: You don't have to go in blind when it comes to content creation for your blog. Look to Twitter to see what is trending with your customers and tailor posts that hit on these subjects. This will increase the chances of customers reading your blog. Keep an eye out for popular news stories circulating among your customers and identify opportunities to add your own commentary. Bonus tip: This is where you can check for what's trending on Twitter!
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October Blogging Plan: 6 Topic Ideas
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Anatomy of the Perfect Real Estate Blog Post
Lately, we've been speaking with more and more clients and prospective clients about the intricacies of inbound marketing for real estate. When discussing these concepts and best practices, blogging, of course, comes into the conversation. Aside from the obvious "I don't want to blog!" objections we get from Realtors®, the surprising thing we are finding is that many agents have no real ideas as to what the best practices are for blogging and what steps to take in order to create the perfect, optimized real estate blog post. Because of this, today I'll break down for you the anatomy of the perfect real estate blog post. Before You Start, Remember Your Ideal Clients I've blogged about client personas many, many times. The reason I keep touching on client personas is that they are critical in every way to the success of your marketing efforts. This has never been more important than in your inbound marketing efforts. You need to know who your ideal clients are, what their interests are, what life stages they are in, and how you can appeal to those things. If you do not know these things, what you write will not appeal to them, they will not be typing long tail searches into sites like Google, and you will never show up in their search results. This is the WORST CASE scenario. Not only are you not getting seen by your ideal clients, but you are also wasting tons of time writing about stuff that nobody is ever going to look at. Use those client personas to pinpoint the topics you are going to write about and the keywords you want to rank for in the organic searching your ideal clients are going to be doing on the web.
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September Blogging Plan: 8 Topic Ideas
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Tips on Making the Most of Your Real Estate Web Space
At the end of the day, judging success in real estate comes down to closing deals and putting people inside homes. Studies show that 20 percent of agents are responsible for 80 percent of all the homes sold. This is a frightening disparity because no agent wants to be in the bottom of the barrel. Here are some quick tips to help your business get the most out of your blogs and lead capture forms. Be the local expert: Really be the master of the market you're selling homes in and try to be a local resource for homebuyers. What's the city or town known for? Where is the best spot to grab a beer? See live music? Educate young children? But knowledge is only half the battle. You can use this knowledge to develop blog posts that boost your competitive advantage. For example, an agent working out of Minneapolis probably already knows the city has some of the best public parks in the country. With this information you can write a blog titled something like, "10 Best Parks in the Minneapolis Area" or "Top Kid Friendly Parks in Minneapolis." Posts like this will increase your businesses website traffic, local creditability and visibility within the community. If you turn yourself into a resource for local information, the leads WILL follow.
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July Blogging Plan
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4 Techniques for Generating Blog Topics
Each month, we provide a blogging plan that you can follow. But what if you want to post even more frequently than twice a week? It's extremely difficult to come up with topic ideas! That's why I was so interested in an article I spotted on HubSpot: 7 Quick Ways to Curate Industry Content for Your Blog. I wasn't in love with all their ideas, but I do think a few are worth sharing. 1) Check out trade show blogs. As I write this, the NAR® Midyear conference is in full swing. Their blog is a great source for ideas an inspiration. And, as HubSpot points out, "Trade show blogs are some of the best places to find content, because they give good signals as to what's changing in your industry and what trends you should keep reading more about." There's also the Inman Connect conference and NAR® Annual convention which should provide excellent blog fodder. Many MLSs and Associations organize events, as well. Check out your local MLS or Association to see if there's any events coming up and if those events have a blog. (And if they do, offer to contribute a post or two to their blog while you're at it. It's a great way to get your name out there.) 2) Use Google Alerts. I've actually written about Google Alerts in the past. It's a good way to monitor what's being said about you online and, as it turns out, also a good way to generate blog topics.
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May Blogging Plan
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ActiveRain Has Moved: Why You Should Care
Blogging is a real estate strategy that started around 2004 and picked up steam in 2006. Rather than agents purchasing blog frameworks and having custom blog sites built, many choose to join real estate specific blog networks like ActiveRain. ActiveRain was aligned for a short time with MOVE, operators of Realtor.com, which led to a lawsuit. After that, the company became a wholly owned subsidiary of Market Leader. When Trulia completed the acquisition for Market Leader, ActiveRain came along with it. Today, Trulia announced that ActiveRain is now being rolled under the Trulia domain name as a subdomain – activerain.trulia.com. This is good news for a variety of reasons. First, one of the benefits of blogging is search engine optimization. It is very difficult for agents to get good SEO that allows consumers to visit their website. ActiveRain helps with that. You will find that a post on ActiveRain is often ranked higher than the same post on an agent’s website or blog. That is the benefit of being a blog of blogs – all of the agents in the ActiveRain network help each other out by blogging under the same network. Combining the excellent SEO of ActiveRain with the SEO power of Trulia will benefit both sites.
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March 2014 Blogging Plan
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February 2014 Blogging Plan
Is one of your resolutions to blog more this year? It should be! You blog is a great way to remain top-of-mind with current contacts and potentially reach new customers. Our monthly blogging plans make this easier by taking on the hardest part of blogging: topic generation. We're a little late this month, so we'll give you 3 weeks worth of topics and alternatives. Week 1: A [Your City] Classic Each city has an architectural gem – a building new or old that helps tell that city's story. For instance, in my hometown, we have a building created by Julia Morgan, the noted architect of Hearst Castle. In this blog post, you should include: Photographs of the noted building A brief history of the building An explanation of how it is representative of your city A discussion of the neighborhood in which the building can be found A discussion of homes with similar architectural features that are currently on the market or were recently sold
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Resolutions to Improve Your Business in 2014: Beef Up Your Website
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Michelle Obama, a Gown, and Blog Comments Gone Bad
A few weeks ago, I was checking my Yahoo! email and spotted a headline about Michelle Obama's outfit at a Kennedy Center function. I'm often an admirer of her fashion choices, so I clicked on the article. After glancing through it, I made the mistake of scrolling down to the comments section. I have rarely ever seen such hateful, racist, awful language – even in fiction. These were not comments about Michelle's politics or her husband's job performance (subjects upon which everyone is entitled to their opinion) – instead, these were vulgar slurs about her physical appearance, specifically her body shape/size and the color of her skin. What does this have to do with real estate technology? Quite a bit actually. Many agents and brokers have blogs. And, if you're actually getting traffic on your blog, you might be getting comments. And if you're getting comments, you might be getting inappropriate comments. Here's how to deal with it. 1) Require a login. The people writing the comments about the First Lady were doing so anonymously, with names like Truth Is Out There (who wrote of Ms. Obama in her elegant gown, "I saw something at the zoo like that"). Would they have said these things if their real names were attached to the comments? I certainly hope not.
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Best of 2013: 6 Web Properties You Need to Own Now
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Your 2013 Holiday Blogging Plan
With the hustle and bustle of the holidays, it's easy to let your blogging habits fall by the wayside. The festive season presents a wealth of easy post ideas, however, so make sure you're not neglecting your blog! We've rounded up a few topics that will help you connect to consumers by providing useful information. Thanksgiving Post Ideas Thanksgiving opens your blog to a wealth of topics. Start by scouring Pinterest or other online resources for recipes or serving presentation ideas. For consumers who prefer to avoid making a labor-intensive holiday meal, create another post that lists which restaurants will be open Thanksgiving day. Don't forget to play up the "giving back" aspect of the holiday. You can write posts about local charities, food drives, and volunteer opportunities in your community all the way through Christmas! Holiday Shopping in Your Area The period from Black Friday to Christmas is the biggest shopping season of the year. Kick things off by curating a list of Black Friday deals in your area. If you can, list specific deals and discounts, the store name and address, and when doors open. Bonus points for using maps. You can update and repeat this post throughout the holiday season, highlighting deals and sales from local businesses with each new version.
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6 Tips for Realtors® to Build Brand Across Social Media Platforms
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Statistics: The Content That Keeps On Giving
This post comes to us from the WebsiteBox blog: How many ways can you explain title insurance, real estate negotiations, repair negotiations, surveys, or appraisals? It's all great content for your real estate website, and you can write it with enough originality to get SEO credit for it. "Original" for the search engines and "original" for the site visitor can be very different. What can you put on your website that is different from 90+ percent of your competitors' sites? What do you have to offer that your competitors do not? Actually, it's not much except personal information. However, there's something few of them are offering, or they're doing it in a lame and ineffective way. It doesn't matter if your site visitor is a buyer, seller, investor or appraiser. They're all very interested in market statistics. Which homes are selling and for how much? How many homes are selling each month, quarter, or year? What's the absorption rate? This type of data, or most of it, is available from most computerized MLS systems as market reports. In most cases, you simply click on the report link and give the system a date range, and you get an on-screen formatted data report. Once you've created the report, it's simply a "print to PDF" routine using any one of a number of very inexpensive PDF creation software tools. Over 99 percent of computers can open a file in the PDF format, so it's the way you want to produce it. Of course, you can also do these reports as blog posts or website articles. Here's how one successful website lead generation program does it.
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There's Blogging, and There's Blogging for Leads
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Guest Blogs and Other Content Strategies to Enhance Your Web Presence
This post comes to us from BrokerageU: Over the past several years, the number of bloggers populating the web has grown drastically. With so many individual voices vying for readers' attention, it's crucial that you know the right steps to take to make yours stick out and get the page views necessary to further enhance your business. Of the emerging industry blogs sprouting up across the internet, the housing, mortgage and real estate sectors are seeing noticeable growth. With the housing market on an upward trajectory over the past year or so, and sales and prices rising as inventory declines and attractive mortgage rates increasing affordability conditions, more prospective home buyers are coming off the fence and looking to make a home purchase. This has led to a renewed demand for real estate agents, as well. So how do you attract clients while adding insightful and original content to the blogosphere? Guest blogs are a good start. Real estate guest blogs Authority is key in any industry, so you will want to work to get your content published on industry-leading blogs like Zillow. Where your content is posted is crucial to where it ends up. If you write an engaging, relevant and original piece about the housing market and it gets picked up by an established blog like Zillow, you will likely see it shared across the social media spectrum.
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3 Tactics to Position Yourself as the Neighborhood Expert
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99 Blog Topic Ideas for Real Estate Agents
Guest contributor WebsiteBox says: A lot of real estate agents are using a blog to promote themselves online. A blog is a great way to share your knowledge and generate leads. If you create quality content and share it on the right social media networks, you will be able to drive traffic to your site and use lead capture tools to turn those visitors into leads. This idea sounds great, but putting it into practice can be a little difficult. Creating good content is hard and constantly coming up with new topics to write about can become frustrating--especially when writer's block sets in. So when you are feeling frustrated don't bang your head against your desk, check this list of 99 blog ideas for real estate agents. Here you will find blog topics which appeal to homeowners, buyers, sellers and anyone that lives in your city. 1. Basic Tips for Home Buyers 2. Basic Tips for Homes Sellers 3. Tips on Open houses 4. Tips on Home Staging 5. How to Market a Property Online 6. Tax Tips for Homeowners 7. Renovation Tips for Homeowners 8. Using Social Media to Sell Your Home 9. The Improving Real Estate Market 10. Basic Mortgage Tips
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What NOT to Blog About
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How to Write a Real Estate Blog: For Beginners
This post comes to us from BrokerageU: The Dreaded BLOG I could never quite understand why, but it seems that the more real estate agents I meet, the more it becomes apparent that there is some sort of consensus among most agents that they have decided to avoid blogging as if it were an infectious disease. Blogging could actually be one of the single most impactful steps that you could personally take to improve your website's rankings in your spare time (go ahead and insert the inevitable groans and eye rolls here). Stay with me for a minute. We all make the time for what's important. The fact is, that if capturing online leads is important to you, you have got to set aside enough time to blog, or else your website will be left in the wake of other sites who are cranking out the content. Let's even out the playing field. Think about it; you have loads of thoughts, opinions, and resources all rolling around in your mind. Let's make use of those! Search engines rank websites based upon loads of different metrics and you can improve your chances by featuring as much verified, unique content as possible on your website--on an ongoing basis. What is one way to continually add new content to your site? THROUGH BLOGGING.
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RSS for Real Estate
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Content Marketing that Generates Leads
Think beyond content that is simply informative or self-promoting. Create content that will encourage audiences toward action, boosting your business while promoting your brand. Develop a digital social neighborhood. What is your audience reading? Where are they going? Find contacts in your areas of interest and form a relationship with contacts in those respective fields. Arrange guest blogging agreements, link sharing and other networking tools so that you are visible to your audience through numerous lenses. Open the doors for easy access. If your content is behind a gate—any sort of registration process that must be completed prior to viewing the content—you're likely losing leads to non-gated competitors. Even the simplest registration may seem like a waste of time for members of your audience who have access to other sites offering comparable information without registration.
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Blogging On-the-Go With WordPress Apps
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Time to Dust Off That Blog?
There's no getting around it: Photos, video and other visuals are dominating social media and the web. But the core of your real estate agent marketing—or your brand—is its voice. In other words, you still have knowledge, experience, data and information to impart to your clients and prospects. And there's no better way to establish that than a blog, or regularly maintain the one you already have. Whether you read it on Facebook, heard it at a real estate conference or were advised by a colleague: Start a blog. And it really is simple. Set it up in Wordpress or another free program, add your bio and start cranking out the posts. But once you get into it, you soon realize it does take some work. What do you write about? How often do you post? How do you get traffic to the blog, and where do you promote it? Basically, how do you turn the time, money and effort into something that stimulates your real estate business and your marketing?
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5 Real Estate Blogging Tips
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What Every Real Estate Client Is Looking For
It's late afternoon Friday, and still he hasn't called. What's a real estate agent to do? Potential clients are out there, reading your ads, Facebook pages and other forms of real estate agent marketing, yet they are not contacting you. You've met them at the open houses, offered your business card, followed up with friendly emails, so what do you have to do to get them to get in touch? It's simple: An attitude adjustment. While agents may work hard to get potential customers to contact them, customers have no real interest in doing so. Rather, home buyers and sellers have a fairly one-track mind when it comes to their real estate path. In a nutshell, buyers want new homes and sellers want to know what their homes are worth. They are really not interested in you. So how do you stand out from the crowd? In their real estate agent marketing efforts, too many real estate agents make the mistake of talking about themselves instead of directly addressing and offering solutions to a prospect's needs. A content strategy helps you stay focused on what you have to offer and what your clients are looking for. REALTORS® should start each day asking themselves the following three questions: Who do I want to reach? What do they want? How do I get what I want by giving them what they want?
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5 Real Estate Content Marketing Ideas
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Google Reader is Dead?! 4 Alternatives to Ease the Pain
Google broke sad news to fans of its RSS reader today. The company announced that it would discontinue Google Reader on July 1, leaving users scrambling to find new solutions. Good alternatives will be hard to come by, though. Reader has the benefit of Google's massive data infrastructure behind it and is readily available to anyone with a Google account. Users have the ability to easily +1, star, or share any article to their Google+ circles. Did we mention the web based interface that lets you access your favorite blog and website feeds from any computer, or the mobile app that lets you browse on the go Sigh. While you can count us among Google Reader's many mourners, we're ready, willing, and (dare I say it?) even eager to explore replacements. Since we know that many real estate professionals use Reader to keep up with their favorite industry, news, and local blogs and websites, we've compiled a short list of promising Google Reader alternatives. 1. Feedly The most proactive of the bunch, Feedly saw the writing on the wall when it came to Google Reader's demise. They've announced that they're readying a "seamless transition" that lets Reader users easily transfer their favorite feeds to the service. The application itself is clean and beautifully designed. You can visually display your feeds in multiple ways--mosaic, titles only, magazine style, full articles, and more. With social sharing features and iOs, Android, and web accessibility, Feedly is our top Google Reader replacement.
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Blog With a Purpose
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Marketing Listings: DIY or IOU?
Guest contributor Erica Christoffer of REALTOR®Mag says: You've got a great new listing. Congratulations! But you know it's not enough to post it on the MLS and cross your fingers that it'll generate buyer interest. You need to get the word out through a marketing plan that will impress your clients and get the property sold. And whether it's mailing out listing flyers, using social media, or creating a video tour, you need to decide whether to do it yourself or go to an outside vendor for help. How do you decide between outsourced and DIY marketing? "It depends on what you're good at," says Daniel Webster Johnson, broker-associate with ­Resort Brokers Real Estate in Breckenridge, Colo. "Use your strengths." Johnson is all about doing what he's best at—­networking, writing, and Internet marketing. He outsources other marketing tasks, such as photography, video, and staging, which he used to handle with the occasional help of a full-time assistant. Last spring, he realized he no longer needed full-time help. Without it, he still made 2012 his most pro­ductive year since the beginning of the downturn. Finding the Right Professionals Fueling Johnson's success is his skill at building ­vendor relationships. He hosts monthly gatherings called "People We Trust," with other real estate professionals, mortgage brokers, contractors, and local business owners. The idea is to get to know one another's trusted associates and to generate mutual business.
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Unlocking Fresh Ideas for Real Estate Blogging and Content Marketing
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6 Web Properties You Need to Own Now
You know all about real estate, but what do you know about digital property? When it comes to building an effective internet presence, there are a handful of online "places" that you must leverage. Your "web properties" are online points of contact, like websites, blogs, and social media profiles. In our overview below, we list the different types of property you need, according to their importance. CRITICAL The following web properties are absolutely crucial to your online success. If you don't have them, you could seriously be hurting your business. Website - Don't have an agent website? Stop. Red light. Without one, you're making yourself invisible to the 90% of homebuyers who use the internet during their home buying search. At minimum, your site should have IDX property search capabilities, neighborhood information, contact info, your listings, and links to your other digital properties. Explore real estate website providers here. Facebook - Surprised to see Facebook on the "Critical" list? Don't be. With over 500 million active Facebook users, if you're not on this social network, you're invisible to potential clients. Agents with a weak (or no) website can use a strong Facebook presence to fill the gap by adding listing information, photos, open house announcements, and posting updates on local events.
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Your New, Weekly Content Plan
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Using WordPress for Real Estate: Part 1
Guest contributor Robert Larson of Diverse Solutions says: WordPress is now the website platform for more than 75 million sites worldwide. You don't reach a number like that, as well as being lauded as one of the most popular website creation resources, without a lot of evidence of success and positive reviews from users. Why has WordPress grown like this? It's simple to use, easy to create content for, a snap to do media from images to video, and there are thousands of third party themes and plugins/add-ons to customize sites to your specification. WordPress can be tailored for any business, but with many real estate specific themes, IDX plugins built for adding MLS listings to WordPress and other real estate features available, it's the perfect platform for the REALTORS® looking to build a website. In this series, we'll cover the steps involved in setting up a WordPress real estate site. So, let's assume that you're on the edge or you've made the decision to use WordPress to construct your real estate website ... what next?
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December Blogging Plan
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November Blogging Plan
From elections to Thanksgiving to Hurricane Sandy's aftermath, November presents a wealth of blog topics. We've rounded up eight more for you to help you jumpstart your writing. Week 1: What You Need to Know About Filing Insurance Claims In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, this is an especially pertinent topic. If your business is located in an area affected by the storm, be sure to urge homeowners who experienced damage to file a claim right away. Because claims are processed on a first-come, first-served basis, the high volume of claims is sure to delay payments significantly. For areas outside of Sandy's reach, offer practical tips for dealing with common issues in your area, whether floods, fires, or other problems. Let your readers know why it's important to make sure their home is not underinsured, and advise them to get their own repair estimates from a contractor before the insurance adjustor arrives.
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