Too Busy to Blog About Real Estate?
I totally get it. It’s hard being a real estate agent these days because you are literally doing the jobs of four people, and it’s hard to find the time to think of content, let alone write about it coherently. Even the best writers get hit with writer’s block if they don’t have the space to think freely. Quick question: how many notifications have you received either on your phone or your computer while you’ve been on my website? All of these distractions kill your creativity and your ability to come up with new ideas.
But I do have some tips for you that will help to make this a little less painful and time-consuming for you.
7 Tips for Consistently Creating Content
- Keep an Evernote file or Google Doc file on your phone and your computer where you can quickly write down your ideas of what to write for a future blog post. Did a client ask an interesting question during a walkthrough that may help someone else? Add it to the file. Do you see new decorating trends, is there something you wish sellers would stop doing before putting their home on the market, or maybe you passed by a new restaurant you haven’t been to yet. All great things to blog about, so add them to your file for later. Pro tip: If you’re using Evernote, you can simply record your ideas vocally.
- Create an editorial calendar. And it’s much easier than it sounds because all an editorial calendar is is a plan of what you’re going to write and when. You can do this by printing out blank calendars or adding your post ideas to your Google Calendar. The hard part is following it, and not getting overwhelmed by the process. Some people think you need to plan an entire six months or a year in advance, but that’s not always the best idea. As I was telling the lovely Marlene Diaz on a call yesterday, I recommend planning your blog posts around the seasons. It’s so much easier to visualize what to write about this way, just be sure to avoid sounding like the cliche REALTOR with posts like “Don’t Forget to Spring Forward!”. And NO recipes. Save those for the chefs.
- Follow a blog post template. Using a template makes organizing your thoughts so much easier because you don’t have to think about where to put everything. I don’t always follow this model, but Derek Halpern of Social Triggers has a fantastic template called The Perfect Blog Post that you can follow, and I highly recommend that you start there whenever you get stuck.
- Understand that it doesn’t have to be a novel. Seriously, people have the attention span of a goldfish (sadly, it’s true) these days thanks to all of our distractions, so it’s okay to write a blog post that’s only 300 words or so. Any less than that and your SEO efforts might go down the drain, but don’t NOT post just because you don’t have a whole lot to say.
- Have another person edit your posts. On thing our clients love about working with us is that we’re another set of eyes for them. We can look at a written piece more objectively than the author can and point out what they may have missed. We also have some excellent tools we use that work so much better than spell check to help our clients write even better blog posts. And while (at the time of this writing) we don’t blog FOR our clients, we are given some really rough drafts to work with that turn out quite nice when we’re finished.
- Choose the best images that you can. Your own photography is best, and there isn’t any reason (I don’t think!) that you can’t repurpose some of your listing photos (that you own) to enhance a blog post. The picture doesn’t always have to match the content exactly, so get creative with your images! And don’t ever, ever, EVER forget to name your image something that is relevant to your post and add your alt tags. That’s SEO 101 right there, folks. If you don’t have your own images, don’t go looking on Google for something; that’s called stealing. People tend to look down on that. Look at Stocksy when you want amazing photos, and Deposit Photos when you don’t want to spend much. As a perk, our clients can pick any photos from Deposit Photos that they like for their blog posts for free.
- Publish and SHARE! Sounds obvious, right? For some reason, people forget to share what they’ve written, which means no one knows about it. Send it out in a newsletter to keep connected to your SOI and subscribers. Share it on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn (an incredible untapped resource for most agents), Pinterest, maybe even Instagram. Is it a seasonal post? Put a reminder on your Google Calendar to reshare it next year (don’t forget to add the link to your calendar or next year you’ll forget). Reblog it on real estate sites (you’ll want to change the content up a bit though) and if it’s helpful content, refer to it when helping people. Highlight it on your website. Put your content to work for you!
Tweet: Are you too busy to blog about real estate? .@AprilSullivan has some great tips on her blog! http://bit.ly/1T8bmKi
Publishing great content takes time, but it doesn’t have to be so hard and stressful. Get your ideas out of your head and onto some (digital) paper, and if you need to, call in the professionals to help keep you consistent. Aim for a minimum of two blog posts per month and two newsletters. Increase it to weekly when you can, and I promise you, you’ll get more subscribers.