Real estate blogging first became a viable real estate marketing tool in the mid-2000's with a little-known platform (at the time) called Active Rain.
Since those fledgling beginnings, Active Rain has grown to more than 320,000 professional members. Zillow, Realtor.com, Homes.com and many other major real estate news sites have incorporated blogs into their websites. There are also untold thousands of agents who blog on their own websites, adding to what has become a crowded space.
Yet, even with the huge growth in blogging, it has proven to be a reliable method for real estate professionals to get business.
How to Create Business With a Real Estate Blog
Even with the increase in blogs in the online real estate space, it is still a great way to attract buyers and sellers to your website and to generate business.
In an age when more than 90% of home buyers are searching the internet for their new home, getting their attention and winning their trust is a great way to build your business.
By creating blog content that provides the information that buyers and sellers are looking for, a blogger can create business for themselves successfully.
Here are five ways that blogging can bring you business:
1. Go Niche...Go Hyper-Niche
By blogging about neighborhoods and communities where you do business, a local agent can attract buyers and sellers.
With neighborhood details, smartphone pictures (GPS tagged), and your own stories and descriptions, you can create niche content that is unique and rich with the information that searchers are looking for.
More and more these days, home buyers are looking on the internet for a lifestyle, which includes much more than number of bedrooms and baths.
They want to know what it's like to live in a community.
The large aggregators like Zillow, Trulia and Realtor.com don't have the local resources to provide this detailed information like a local agent does. They don't know the details that add up to an intimate description of a neighborhood.
By providing this nuanced, niche information on your blog, you'll have buyers and sellers contacting you, considering you their local expert.
Here are two examples of niche neighborhood pages that consistently garner calls and emails for our Frederick business:
- Maxwell Place Condominiums is as niche as you can get.
It is a 168-unit condominium development in our beautiful Historic District with the distinct feature of garage parking inside the building. It is one of the few condo buildings that is located on a linear city park, and it gets a lot of curiosity and attention.
When I caught on to the value of these niche community pages, this was the first page I created, knowing that residents and visitors alike are searching for information on these condominiums.
- Whiskey Creek Estates is a prestigious golf community of only about 2 dozen homes.
Because most luxury home neighborhoods like Whiskey Creek are small, agents don't often consider the value of creating a community page...after all, you may only get one or two inquiries in a year, or even a few years, right? Why go to all that trouble?
Well, depending on your ability to "get the appointment", any buyer who contacts you can end up in your database, or even in your car.
The great thing about these types of pages is that more often than not, the buyers who contact us about a certain community end up buying somewhere else.
But because they connected with our website, and connected with us, we usually get to win them over and help them find the home that they end up with.
So don't be afraid to go niche...really niche.
2. Provide Value - Answer the Consumer's Questions
By anticipating and answering consumer questions, you can win their trust and present yourself as the local real estate expert.
As internet search has become more intelligent over the years, more and more people are using search to get their questions answered, many times before they consult a professional face to face.
By offering your expertise on a blog, you can win the consumer's trust. And often, the more detailed and nuanced the information you share, the better your response will be.
So go ahead, answer all the nitty gritty questions that buyers and sellers ask you in real life situations.
If they are asking you IRL, you can bet there are many more asking online.
Here are some examples:
- My most trafficked Q & A blog post: "Is it a buyer's market or a seller's market in Frederick?"
By explaining the real estate jargon that we often take for granted, you'll be informing consumers and giving them value on your blog. When they are ready, they'll be more likely to contact you because you've already helped them understand a complicated subject that is often misunderstood by the layman.
Make it as niche as you can, not about a general idea.
There are millions of blog pages that offer the same old "10 steps to ______", and you won't be found in the midst of the noise if you don't make it niche and detailed for your market.
Remember: The nicher the richer!
Again, answering real questions that sellers care about.
And keeping it niche.
Here is a frequently asked question that takes some finesse:
- "Is X a safe neighborhood?"
You probably realized immediately that the reason for caution is that Realtors® have to step carefully when it comes to equal housing laws. But even though we cannot answer directly, we can provide the resources that will answer the concerns of consumers.
Take the opportunity to write a resource-rich blog post.
Link to all the local resources that answer their questions, explaining equal housing laws and pointing out your value to the consumer at the same time.
People are searching for "safe neighborhoods", so let them find your carefully crafted information when they do, and win their trust.
3. Video is Increasingly Popular
One of the best ways to get new business from your blog is to create more online video content.
Numerous internet marketing experts are predicting a huge growth in video use on the internet.
Even in the last few years, internet video consumption has grown incredibly.
Now is the time to invest in video technologies and training, and to practice your video skills. Whether it is videos of your listings, or of your neighborhoods, or if you create short videos of your Q&As, video is on the rise.
You'll be sure to stand out in your niche if you jump on top of this wave, and attract new clients through your vlogging efforts.
4. Use Social Media
Another way to get business through your real estate blog is to effectively work the social media platforms.
With your blog as your home base, you can use social media to drive people to it.
You should be connecting with people on social media every day.
While you don't want to overdo it, you do want to make it known that you are the local expert with the answers to their questions.
Your blog content can be shared on several platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, and more.
Getting social is a great way to amplify your message and your content.
5. Stay Top of Mind
Use your blog to stay top of mind.
We all know that the least expensive client is the one you've already got.
By offering great information on your blog about the community, about home values and about general topics that homeowners find valuable, you can stay in front of your previous buyers and sellers throughout the years.
Using your blog in combination with your social media profiles provides a one-two punch.
One of the best ways is to connect with them on social media and then let them know when you create content or even find well-written content that is of value to them.
They will more likely think of you when it comes time for them to make a move, because you have been providing real value throughout the years.
So What are You Waiting For?
Blogging is a proven method for generating business for today's internet savvy Realtor®.
Like every successful business model, however, it takes consistency and a commitment to continue to learn.
But, as the Chinese proverb says: