Content marketing is one of those buzzwords that has now crept into real estate. Everywhere you look someone is telling you to do content marketing to sell more homes. You think to yourself “what does content marketing even mean?” Or “great one more thing I need to either figure out how to do or pay someone to do.”
Before we go any further let’s take a look at what content marketing really means. According to the Content Marketing Institute:
“Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”
Now what does that mean? Here’s what I think content marketing is:
“Content marketing is creating consistent, valuable content in the form of a blog, video, podcast or other medium. The content is for a specific niche to help them learn new things about your industry. The goal of content marketing to help your niche and generate a profit for your business.”
For example, let’s look at real estate content marketing. An agent starts a blog and provides valuable content on a consistent basis. The goal of the blog is to help those looking to buy and sell real estate. The other goal of the blog is to gain the trust of prospects so they become clients.
Content marketing is a win-win for all. The prospect gets a lot of valuable information they might not have otherwise learned. The agent gets business by being a trusted resource through the blog.
But creating quality content marketing is not easy. There are four things that make it hard to produce content marketing:
Time is the number one reason it is hard to produce content marketing. It takes a lot of time to write a blog post or create a podcast episode. Adding content marketing is hard when you are already stretched thin for time. For me an average blog post takes 3-4 hours to write, edit, find images and publish. This doesn’t include any research I do either. Producing good, valuable content takes a lot of time.
2. Lack of direction
There is a honeymoon phase that all content marketers go through. You have had all these great ideas stewing for months, even years, in your brain. You know the world will love what you have to say and can’t wait to get it out there. So you start writing your content and things are going great. Then it happens. You have creator’s block. You realize not only can you not think of anything to say, but you are running out of ideas. Then you start to scramble and write less than stellar posts. Eventually you give up on doing content marketing. This happens because a clear path wasn't created when you started doing content marketing.
Producing quality content marketing requires self-discipline. The self-discipline to create your piece before making phone calls. The self-discipline to do it on holidays or when you are sick. Or the self-discipline to do when you really don’t feel like doing it. It’s easy to let content marketing fall by the wayside if you don’t make it a priority. It does take a lot of work to produce and you must have self-discipline to follow it through.
4. Not a short-term solution
Many agents start doing content marketing because they heard that another agent is getting a ton of business from it. I'm sure that agent is, but ask them how long they have produced that content. Content marketing isn’t a quick fix for getting leads. In fact it can take a year of producing good, quality content before you will see a single lead. Many agents give up right before that happens too.
If you want to do content marketing do not get discouraged by these four obstacles. It is important to be aware of the obstacles so you can plan for them and aren’t thrown off track.
Content marketing is one of the best ways you can produce long-term, quality leads. It is a great way to connect with people and get to know them. It also gives you the opportunity to create a community of followers that you can help.
It really is a win-win for everyone!
Jennifer Snyder is a real estate marketing consultant, speaker and blogger at Marketing Ideas for Agents. She researches marketing ideas, tools and resources that will make real estate agents’ lives easier and help them grow their businesses.
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by Jennifer Snyder