Editor’s note: The following article was created and uploaded by InmanWiki user Sellsius. It appears on InmanWiki.com, a new online real estate encyclopedia from Inman News. You can find the article and join a discussion about it by clicking here.
Here is a handy acronym to help you blog to atttract clients: B.E.E.P.
B: Build your brand. This should be the goal of your blog if you want to attract new clients and get referrals. Your blog is a reflection of you and your brand. What you post should show readers you are a person who is knowledgeable, experienced and someone they can trust. Good blogging also involves originality and creativity. If you blog like everyone else, how will your brand stand out? If you don’t care about clients, write whatever the heck you want.
E: Engage your readers. Ask questions, take polls, post quizzes, run contests, ask for input, anything which might cause your readers to respond, take action or come back excited. Go into your neighborhood and take photos or videos of people and places (especially people). Interview your fellow man, or woman. Engagement also requires responding to comments. If you create a dialog, you create a relationship. And building a real estate business is all about building relationships. Engage but do not sell — that’s what you have a Web site for.
E: Expertise. Show your readers you are an experienced expert in whatever area that may be. More than that, be a CARING expert. If you help artists find live/work spaces, or seniors find retirement communities, or first-time home buyers, blog about those experiences. Offer inside tips you’ve acquired over the years. Spill the beans. Share your knowledge and offer to help others. When you educate, you elevate yourself. When you give, you get. People prefer experts who care about them.
P: Presentation of useful content. This is the hardest to master because it involves writing skills and a bit of creativity. But here are some guidelines (beware of anyone who gives you a blogging rule). More than just cold hard facts, presentation is HOW you visually convey information. A wall of text, no matter how informative, is not easily digestible day in and day out by most readers. I call it textual torture. Avoid writing like you’re doing a term paper. Write in a conversational tone. Use words most people understand. (As a lawyer I have fallen into legal mode, using $2 words when a 10-cent one will do. Avoid this tendency if you are afflicted by it.)
If you have to write a long post, here are some stylistic tips to make reading easier on your faithful reader:
—Break up your text —Use headers —Bold text (even a scanner will get the gist. Try it on this article) —Use bullet points —Insert images that help explain your post or point of view (my favorite) —Add a break with a “read more” link.
Presentation requires a good headline and some copywriting skills. Visit http://Copyblogger.com for helpful tips. Presentation is also where your personality reveals itself. (Don’t forget to put an “About Me” link).
“Useful content” is anything which either:
—Satisfies a need —Solves a problem —Conveys knowledge —Lessens a hurt —Entertains or provides a pleasant sensory experience —Provides an economic reward or —Saves money.
Finally, don’t neglect the power of humor. Even the most highbrow of newspapers has a comic strip. And don’t forget to have fun out there.
–Contributed by Sellsius
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