I talk to and interact with real estate bloggers from all over the country. Lately it has occurred to me that some people go too far with blogging. I don’t mean posting every day — I do that, and that is one of the things that makes my blog work. What I mean by "too far" is that some spend four to six hours a day in blog-related activities.
For some it takes hours to write a single post. Some spend much of their time doing research about blogging and interacting with other bloggers. And others spend much of their time playing with the software and setup and tweaking the blog and Googling themselves and checking their page rank and trying out the latest widgets and plug-ins. Building a better blog can become an obsession and any blog can be made better.
There is a point of diminishing return. I have found over the years that if I have to spend more than eight to 10 hours a week on blogging I am working too hard at it. I monitor how I am using the time and if it is on something that is not directly related to the content that drives my blog I look for shortcuts. Time is money for the self-employed.
My eight to 10 hours is spread over five or six days and I hold myself to it. Some days I set a timer and when the timer goes off I stop. That doesn’t mean that I am off the Internet for the day. I participate in several social networks and use some time each day for that, too.
When I plan my day and look at how I am going to use my time I like to make sure that as much of it as possible is spent with activities that will generate revenue and grow my business.
If I were to prioritize the tasks involved with writing a blog, the first priority is gathering information so that I can create and deploy content. Some of my ideas come from reading, some from conversations with others, and some from my daily interaction with clients and prospects.
On average it takes me less than an hour to write a blog post. I take photos as I go and store them until I need them. If it took me two or three hours to write each post I am not sure I would even consider having a blog.
With everything there is a point of diminishing return. Bloggers who are spending four to six hours a day on their blogs are often giving up time that could be spent with friends and family or time when they could be enjoying some form of recreation or time that they could use for selling real estate.
Is it really worth it? There are many other ways to generate business, both on and off the Internet, and most don’t require such a huge time commitment. If you find yourself unable to participate in leisure activities or to spend time with your family, it is possible you have gone too far.
Teresa Boardman is a broker in St. Paul, Minn., and founder of the St. Paul Real Estate blog.
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