We have had a lot of focus lately on mastering Facebook and Twitter. One aspect of online marketing that sometimes gets overshadowed, but is just as important, is the power of a blog! While at one point it may have seemed that only the super tech-savvy agents were blogging, it has become something that should be a staple in your marketing plan.
We recently sponsored a Webinar presented by Chris Smith, with InmanNext, called, “Blogging is no longer optional”, and we agree! Blogging is necessary to maintain an online presence. However, it doesn’t have to be as scary as you think. Here are a few ideas to help you along the way.
You think you don’t have the time to blog and don’t have anything to say. The fact is that content is all around you. Restaurants, parks, schools, local news…. the options are endless. So make an effort to keep your eyes and ears open to what is happening in your area. This will help you come up with content.
Each blog entry can be as short as a video or a few comments on a picture you post and it doesn’t need to take up a lot of your time. However, for the entries that will require you to sit down for an hour and write,the end result is worthit. Not only are you creating content for your blog and establishing your online presence, you are educating yourself on the topic in the process. This will make you better at your craft in the long run.
After researching your topic and writing your blog post, you are going to need somewhere to publish it. There are tons of great options to share your content. Here on ActiveRain is a great place to start. Another common platform is is WordPress, which Chris highlighted in the Webinar.
On WordPress, you can pick from different themes to give your blog the look and feel that you think will best represent you. One thing to keep in mind is don’t just limit yourself to the free themes. You can choose a low, one-time cost theme that represents you; just make sure it has a good support system that goes along with it. That way if you have
questions, you will have a great resource to go to for help.
When you have decided on your theme and written your content, make sure you are setting up your blog for success. You can do this by giving entries easily recognized titles for search engines, e.g. “Homes for sale in Orlando, FL” or “Bike trails within 10 miles of Chicago”. Categorize them correctly and tag them with your key words. This will set them up for search engines to index properly. The more eyes you can get to your blog, the better!
Another great idea once you have your blog going is to add in additional widgets or plugins. Useful tools that Chris discussed included a live chat option, Zopim. This allows readers to contact you directly (and let’s you see who is on your site!). This can be a great way to convert readers into direct leads.
We know that’s a lot of information to take in. If you want to see even more, take a look at the whole Webinar. Tip: Have your pencil and paper ready to take notes! There are a lot of good take-home ideas you can use to better your blog.
As always, we are here to answer any questions you may have!