You’re passionate about helping clients find the perfect home or sell their home for more. But even with all of that drive and those long hours, it’s hard to get qualified leads. Sound familiar?
You may feel like if you just had the website traffic, you could convert visitors to clients. But the traffic’s not there. And maybe what little you are getting just doesn’t seem that interested.
It sounds like you need to explore blogging for real estate. It’s the cost-effective and efficient way to get more traffic, capture more leads and turn leads into clients.
Let’s take a look at how it’s done!
Benefits of Blogging for Real Estate
The benefits of blogging for real estate are many. When you put a clear system in place along with great content, your blog becomes a magnet for potential home buyers and sellers in your area.
Here are just some of the great things you have to look forward to when you’re blogging for real estate.
Get More Traffic to Your Site with Blogging for Real Estate
You created a beautiful website. You love it. You know that potential clients will love it too.
But if you created a new website without any kind of promotional strategy, you may have noticed something interesting. It gets no traffic. How is that possible? Over 4 billion people are on the Internet globally. That’s over 40% of the world population.
It’s possible because there are around 2 billion websites on the web. In order to get any traffic to a specific site, you need a strategy.
Blogging for real estate is the first step in creating that strategy that will help you get more traffic.
More Visibility in Search Results with Blogging for Real Estate
Blogging helps you get more traffic in two primary ways.
First, a real estate blog focuses on topics that people are actually looking for. Websites that have blogs have 400X more pages showing up in search results. People who are looking for these topics find your articles.
Continue to consistently post fresh content on topics that your target is looking for, and you’ll see that visibility go up and up.
The second is through social media.
More Engagement on Social Media
You probably have a Facebook page. But what are you sharing? It’s important to share pictures and videos of great homes and happy new homeowners.
But people can only like so many pictures of happy new homeowners holding a new set of keys. You need more substance.
Post a variety of engaging, helpful content that anyone who’s interesting in buying or selling a home in your area will find useful. This is the kind of content that people not only like but also share. They actually visit your website to view it.
Blogging for real estate gives you an eventually endless supply of content to share.
Evergreen pieces like “how to stage your home” and “how to bid on your dream home” will be shareable again and again. You know what people need to know about these topics. Why not share your expertise with others?
Shows Your Expertise through Blogging for Real Estate
While there are strategies that a person can use to use create ads that people like, many people today are tuning them out. If your website just looks like one big ad, that will turn potential clients away fast.
Blogging for real estate gives you the opportunity to take a different approach.
Did you ever write a short story for high school English class? You may remember the teacher talking about “showing, not telling”.
Ads tell. Blog posts show.
Instead of telling potential clients how great you are or how many homes you’ve sold, show them your process. Show them that you’re good at what you do. Show them exact steps you would help them take to get into the home of their dreams.
Image courtesy of Neil Patel
This establishes you as an expert in their minds. If you continue to deliver consistently helpful and relevant content, they will follow you. You are now top of mind when they’re ready to buy or sell a home.
And if you sell commercial real estate, blogs are even more important. 59% of B2B marketers say blogging is the best way to reach business buyers.
Generates Real Estate Leads
Blogging generates 3X more leads than more traditional methods of marketing like local newspaper ads or billboards. And it costs a lot less. We’ll talk more about how to generate these leads below.
Blogging for real estate is a hands-off and efficient way to nurture a lead. While human interaction is obviously important, 67% of people say they prefer to be able to help and learn themselves rather than needing to speak with someone. While this may seem impersonal given the outgoing person that you are, know that they still need to you.
You’re simply nurturing many people through your blog content first. Then, when they’re a highly qualified lead that is worth your time to nurture in person, they will reach out to you. This helps cut the waste out of nurturing leads.
You can focus on the people who are most likely clients rather than wasting time with people who aren’t.
Encourages Buyers/Sellers to Act Now
You’ll really like this one. It’s a common problem in real estate. People just want to test the market. Or they’re not really sure if they’re ready to buy/sell now. They make inquiries that take time to answer.
You think sometimes you actually have a warm lead here. But they’re not serious. There’s no follow-through, so you don’t get paid.
A blog is great way to take people out of the indecisive zone to just do it. And because you’ve already written the article, you don’t have to give the same answers over and over again. Many potential clients find exactly what they’re looking for by reading the blog.
And in case you’re wondering, yes, people today do read. In fact, they read a lot. 57% of people say they consume blogs regularly.
So just how convincing can a blog be? Let’s take a look.
- People who find you in search engines thanks to your amazing blog have a 14.6% chance of becoming a client.
- People who find you through an ad, only have about a 1.7% chance of becoming a client.
Blogging for real estate encourages people to act now and work with you.
Works for You When You Can’t
You stay busy. Weekends. Holidays. Those don’t mean much to you. You’re working when there’s work to be done for your clients. Often it feels like there just aren’t enough hours in the day.
That’s why it’s so great that your blog works when you’re not. Having a blog can actually free up hours in your day.
Never feel like taking a much-needed break or getting a good night’s sleep means you’re missing opportunities. A blog works when you can’t. It’s there answering questions and connecting with potential clients.
The more blog articles you have up on your website, the more effectively you can use your work time. And as you continue to update your blog, you’ll keep getting results.
Graphic courtesy of Hubspot
It Keeps Generating Traffic Year Over Year
If you answer a person’s question you’ve helped that one person. But when you have a blog, you’re helping hundreds or thousands with just one blog article. Plus it keeps helping people year after year.
As long as you maintain your blog by adding new content and apply SEO strategies to stay visible in searches, your blog delivers traffic to you year after year.
And this isn’t just any traffic. These are people who are interested in buying and selling homes.
Blogging for Real Estate is Cost-Effective
Finally, blogging is so cost-effective. Compared to other marketing methods, blogging costs around 67% less and the benefits of it increase over time in a snowball effect rather than decrease as you’d find if ran an ad for a short time.
We’re not against ads. Blogging is just much more affordable as a long-term strategy.
Blogging to generate leads comes down to choosing the right topics. These are ones that people are looking for and are highly shareable in social media
And you need to have a clear way to capture that lead (email) so you can continue to engage this person in a more personalized way. Keep them informed about your latest blog posts with a monthly highlights newsletter. Or create some customized listings of new homes on the market.
As you build an email list, you’ll be able to send the same content to multiple people. That makes this a very efficient and profitable way to nurture leads.
How to Choose Topics for Your Blog
To have a successful blog, you need to create regular, consistent blog posts each week. A minimum of 1 per week is advisable. The average blog article length in real estate is over 1,000 words.
But more may help you achieve results faster.
You may be wondering, how am I going to have something to write about every week? There are some tricks of the trade you need to know about to have topics to write. Or we suggest considering a blog writing service like ours where our specialists do all the thinking, writing, and publishing for you.
1. Realize There Will Be Some Overlap
The first thing to realize is that you’ll have some overlap among your blogs. Sometimes people are looking for slightly different things. But to be thorough, you say things you’ve already said in other posts.
This is okay as long as it’s in the spirit of helping people. And the content should never be copy/paste. That will not only feel spammy to people who are reading more than one blog. It will hurt your visibility in search engines.
Originality and quality are important in blogging.
2. Keep Your Ears Open / Notepad in Hand
Pull out your iPhone and start taking notes. Make note of the common questions you get from clients again and again. These are potential blog topics. The more of these you cover, the less often you’ll get the same questions.
More people will be engaging with your blog. Your blog becomes a complement to your amazing one-on-one service.
3. Visit Real Estate Forums
Forums where homebuyers and sellers ask questions to experts is another great place to find topics to write. If you see a great answer, then provide a more thorough answer in your blog.
4. Build Topics Around Search Queries
SEO (search engine optimization) is essential to every successful blog. Part of SEO is having content that answers queries/keywords that people type into search engines like “Does a New Roof Increase Home Value?”, “What is curb appeal?”.
A keyword is actually a phrase of 3-6 words.
Use keyword search tools like Moz Keyword Explorer. They’ll give you about 10 free keyword searches each month. Then they’ll ask that you pay to continue. If you’re working with a professional blogging service, then they’ll likely have unlimited access to this tool or a better one to help you get the best results with your blog.
Learn some SEO writing best practices like putting your keyword and complementary words throughout the article in a natural way. Put the keyword in your title and at least one heading. You’ll also create an alternate title and description for your article. These will appear in the search results. Make them clickable and compelling.
Use your keyword there as well.
5. Address Common Challenges
You know very well what people go through when they are selling or buying a house. You know what problems they encounter since you obviously helped a lot of them in the past. So, start from there. Use your blog to provide solutions to buyer’s and seller’s most common problems when it comes to real estate.
Cover topics that solve challenges like,
- “Veteran home buying programs”
- “First time Home-buying assistance”
- “How to sell a home fast”
- “Top staging mistakes”
6. Cover Local Events
While most of your content should be timeless, writing about what’s new or interesting in your area is a great way to attract a local audience on social media and directly to your blog.
Is their a local art festival this weekend? Write about it.
Did a new trendy restaurant or yoga studio open up near a popular neighborhood? It’s time to check it out and share with others.
Consider your audience. Are they more interested in events like this?
Or this something else?
How to Capture Leads with a Blog
Now comes the fun part. You’re getting all of this traffic. But it’s important that you have some systems in place to capture a lead. Since they aren’t calling you, you don’t have their phone numbers.
If they’re not yet ready to hire you then they won’t give you their email without something in return.
Capturing a lead through a blog is more than just adding a “contact me for a consultation” at the end of the blog. That’s rarely effective. Instead, you need a clearly defined and trackable content marketing funnel.
What is a Content Marketing Funnel?
A content marketing funnel is a sales funnel that’s built around helpful content instead of the usual ad structure.
The wide end (top) of the funnel starts in a place were a lot of potential clients “hang out”. If you’ve been blogging for real estate and building your traffic, then they’re hanging out on your website.
Some of the people visiting your blog will contact you. But for the rest, you need to pull them into the funnel to turn them into a lead.
Once they’re in this funnel, guide them deeper into the funnel. Nurture them in a more personalized way until they’re ready to become a client.
Then, what you really want at the end of your funnel is not only a new client. You want to have nurtured and delivered service that turns them into a promoter.
- Shares how great you are on social media
- Writes glowing reviews
- Recommends you to their friends
- Continues to engage with your blog
Here’s how the process works.
1. Get Targeted Traffic
It starts with targeted traffic. Your blogging for business should be attracting people who are most likely to become clients.
Consider your niche in real estate. Do you cater to high end buyers or starter home seekers? Are you selling condos in the heart of downtown or on the outskirts of the city?
Most real estate agents we talk to say they’re not choosy. They’ll work urban and rural areas. Luxury sky rise or studio. They’re willing to work with house flippers or older couples looking for a home they can retire in. A client is a client.
But here’s the thing about blogging for real estate. You can establish yourself as an authority in whatever real estate niche you love. You probably wouldn’t turn work down. And you should be careful not to be too niche is if the demand isn’t there.
But if you can work on the types of sales you are most passionate about, you’ll get better results for clients. You’ll be happier in your profession. And you’ll get more great reviews. You’ll establish yourself as the agent or company to work with in that particular area of real estate.
Really think about who you want to target. Build your blog around them. And work out from there as needed.
2. Capture the Lead
Now that you have your traffic, it’s time to capture more leads as promised. There are several very effective ways to do this in real estate.
The Real Estate Calculator
Hire a web design company that can create a basic but very useful real estate calculator. In exchange for using the calculator, ask for an email.
This calculator could take the data provided to calculate:
- Mortgage payment
- Closing fee estimates
- How much it costs the seller to keep a home on the market for 30, 60, 90 days
- How much X home improvement may increase home value in X neighborhood
- How much utilities cost for X people in a home of X square feet in X neighborhood
- Max mortgage payment a person can afford
Keep the calculator as simple as possible to avoid a high price tag. But try to create a calculator that’s not easy to find on NerdWallet or other popular financial sites.
The Helpful eBook
You’re busy. So you may want to hire a marketing company to write this. Build a book around a compelling topic. Create at least one book for buyers and one for sellers. And you may choose to do more for segments within these groups once you see how well this works.
Really think about what a person who’s serious won’t be able to resist. An eBook for these purposes is typically about 10K words. That’s roughly 30-40 pages if you think of a print book.
For sellers consider topics like:
- 50+ Surefire Ways to Get the Most for Your House
- How to Sell Your Home Fast Without Giving it Away
- 25+ Thousand Dollar Mistakes Sellers Make (but you don’t have to)
For buyers consider:
- 25+ Thousand Dollar Mistakes Buyers Make (but you don’t have to)
- 25+ Clever Ways to Win the Bid Without Breaking the Bank
- 50 Low Cost Improvements That Can Triple Your Sale Price
- These 25 Warnings Say “Skip This Flip”
Make it compelling. Make it worth their while. Capture more leads through blogging for real estate.
Offer a Chance to Win
People love contests. In addition to your blog, share your contest on social media. Your prize should be something of unique value to your target audience. How about a:
- $100 gift certificate to a local home improvement store
- Tickets to a local event. You can run a campaign for a seasonal event or tickets that someone can use any time. Consider hiring a social media marketing agency to help you do this.
- Gift certificate for a local restaurant
In most cases, the prize doesn’t have to be huge to get people excited. If it gets little attention, consider upping the stakes to $500. Remember, you’re only giving away 1 prize. But you’re potentially getting 100’s or 1,000’s of new leads in a short time with a contest.
Nurture Your Leads with Email
Now, the fun part. Turning leads into clients. There are some very efficient ways to do this. If you’re feeling pulled in too many directions, you’ll like how streamlined and effective email lead nurturing can be.
In fact, email marketing has the highest ROI (return on investment) on any form of marketing. For every $1 you put into it, on average, you’ll make $44. That’s a really nice payout.
But to get that kind of ROI, you need to apply a consistent strategy. You need to have the right tools to ensure that the emails you send are very relevant to your leads. And you need to take a lot of the monotonous, busy work out of it. Busy work can eat away at your time with little benefit.
As you build your list, you’ll find that many of your leads have similar traits. You can use analytics and surveys to learn more about the leads. As you do, you’ll be able to send them more relevant content.
There are many important reasons you should segment your list. The more relevant the content is to the recipient, the:
- Higher the open rate will be
- More likely they are to click
- More likely they are to share
- Less likely they are to unsubscribe
- Much more likely they are to become real, paying clients
Let’s look at how you might segment your list.
- Create one newsletter template.
- In one, put links and short summaries for the last 5 articles you wrote for home buyers.
- In the other one, put links and blurbs for the last 5 articles you wrote for sellers.
- Write a headline for buyers and one for sellers.
- To your potential buyers, also send an email that includes information about newly listed properties. Regularly, seeing new listing will get them excited about buying homes. It will speed up the lead nurture time.
- To potential sellers, send a list of recently sold homes in their area. Seeing how much people are getting for homes like theirs in the general area will encourage them to contact you sooner rather than later.
And of course, in some cases, buyers and sellers are the same people. In that case you may want to segment in other ways.
You can take this a step further by segmenting home by:
- Price range
- Home types
- First time, Upgrading or Downsizing
- Generation (millennials approach home buying differently than Gen X)
If this all sounds like a ton of extra work, know that it can be. But modern email segmentation and automation tools help streamline everything. They pull and insert information automatically. They can add a person’s name automatically.
They make this a lot less labor-intensive than this sounds.
In addition to automatically pulling content into the right newsletters based upon the segmentation rules you’ve set up, automation does several amazing things to help you gain more real estate clients.
Automatically, send a welcome email to someone who just became a lead. Make it personable. Share a bit about yourself and what you’ll be sharing with them. The same email will go out to everyone. So you’re not re-creating it each time.
Welcome emails have the highest open rate of any type of email. It’s around 77%. But if you wait until you have time to compose and send it, that open rate drops to less than 20%. Timing matters in lead nurturing.
Create emails that go out automatically when they have an offer or a home they’ve been looking at gets sold. Show them alternatives to get them to call you before another one gets away.
You can even use automation to send out emails at the perfect time of day. Most people read emails like these at lunch time. Yet most real estate professionals sit down to compose emails at 8pm.
With automation it doesn’t matter when you have a free moment. It can be scheduled for the perfect time.
And even this can be segmented if certain people are more responsive at certain times of day.
Blogging for Real Estate: Capture More Leads
Blogging for real estate is one of the most cost effective ways to generate more real estate leads. It established you as an expert and effectively guides a lead into a content marketing funnel where you can nurture that lead into a client.
Are you struggling to get website traffic, capture leads or nurture them to clients? We can help. Contact us for a consultation. Not ready just yet? We get it. Take a look at the services we offer tailored specifically for real estate agents in addition to blogging for real estate.