Jay Thompson is a former brokerage owner who spent over six years working for Zillow Group. He retired in August 2018 but can’t seem to leave the real estate industry behind. His weekly Inman column publishes every Wednesday.
“How do I get more seller leads?” This is one of the most frequently asked questions in real estate. Whether social media, traditional websites, lead aggregators and sellers, or the good old-fashioned blog, the internet lends itself to attracting buyers. Getting the attention of sellers is hard.
Why is that? The most obvious answer is buyers flock to the internet in search of homes. Sellers already have a home. They are searching for a real estate agent. They ask their friends and family for recommendations or reach out to the agent who sold them their current home.
Simply put, sellers are less likely to peruse the internet than buyers.
That doesn’t mean it’s impossible to reach sellers online; it just takes a little more effort than snagging buyers.
I brainstormed ideas for last week’s column, “99 blog ideas for buyers,” for about an hour. For this column, I thought about ideas for a week.
Here are 99 ideas for blog topics that can reach real estate sellers. These content ideas are useful for all online mediums — don’t limit yourself to blog posts.
The homeselling process
- How list prices are determined
- What is a CMA (comparative market analysis)?
- What is an AVM (automated valuation model)?
- What is an appraisal?
- The difference between CMA, AVM and appraisal
- What is an MLS?
- How listing sites can help you sell your home
- Typical closing costs for sellers
- What are real estate commissions?
- Are commissions negotiable?
- What do you mean I’m paying for the buyer’s agent?
- Should I have a for-sale sign in my yard?
- How does an agent market a home for sale?
- Preparing for home showings
- Will my agent attend showings?
- The benefits of open houses
- The drawbacks of open houses
- Curb appeal — why it matters
- X steps to improve your home’s curb appeal
- What are iBuyers?
- Should I get offers from iBuyers?
- Why do I need a real estate agent?
- Reasons to FSBO my home
- Reasons not to FSBO my home
- Why sellers should demand professional photography
- Do videos help sell homes?
- How to get a floor plan for your home
- Why your listing should include a floor plan on your listing
- When should I consider a price reduction?
- Selling a home in the COVID age
Your local real estate market
- Current market snapshot: Number of listings, average sales price, and time on market
- Is this a buyer’s or seller’s market?
- How long will it take to sell my home?
- How do I get multiple offers?
- All about bidding wars
- Understand the buyer’s mindset in a seller’s market
- Does my homeowners association (HOA) matter?
- Is now a good time to sell?
Real estate terminology
- What is escrow?
- What is due diligence?
- What is title insurance?
- What is the MLS?
- The relevance of days on market (DOM)
- What is an iBuyer?
- What does “as is” really mean?
- What is earnest money?
- What is disclosure?
- What should I disclose about my property?
- What shouldn’t I disclose about my property?
- The listing to sale price ratio
Offers, contingencies and contracts
- Break down the purchase contract section by section
- Explain contractual timelines
- What makes a great offer
- What are contingencies?
- All about seller concessions
- Dealing with multiple-offer situations
- What is “highest and best”?
- Is cash king?
- Escalation clauses
- What is a multiple counteroffer?
- How to select the best offer on my home
- What’s the deal with this buyer’s love letter?
How real estate works
- What is a buyer’s agent?
- What is a seller’s agent?
- What is a broker?
- How are commissions distributed?
- What is a Realtor?
- The Realtor Code of Ethics
- Duties and responsibilities of a seller’s agent
- Fiduciary responsibility
- The home listing process
- All about fair housing
- What is a pre-qualification?
- What is a pre-approval?
- How do VA loans work, and what is the seller responsible for?
- Should all buyers be pre-qualified before viewing my home?
- I’ve never heard of this buyer’s lender
What sellers need to know
- Tips for first-time homesellers
- Tips for repeat homesellers
- The best ideas for home improvements
- All about home warranties
- Should I sell or rent my property?
- Benefits of being a landlord
- Pitfalls of being a landlord
- What does a property manager do?
- Common mistakes sellers make and how to avoid them
- But Zillow says my home is worth …
- Buying a home while my house is listed for sale
About you and how you operate
- Highlight your mission statement
- Highlight your core values
- Showcase testimonials from past clients
- Discuss how your experience creates value for your clients
- Your listing marketing plan
- Post a map showing all your past sales
- Create a page highlighting past reviews
- Your ideal client
- What are your hobbies, hopes and dreams?
- What do you love about your job?
- What’s your “why”? Why are you a real estate agent?
Not every piece of content needs to produce a lead. Nothing you write will have universal appeal to everyone. Focus on providing helpful information in small bites.
The National Association of Realtors (NAR) produces a “Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers” report annually (it’s free for NAR members, and it includes incredibly useful data). The report consistently shows that sellers find an agent’s reputation, trustworthiness, and knowledge of the local market are critical factors in deciding which agent to use. Strive to satisfy those concerns.
It’s OK, good in fact, to inject your personality into your content. People tend to work with people they like, and your content marketing is the best place to get who you are out there. You’re good at your job, and many need your services. Let your content highlight who you are and what you know, and the prospects will follow.
Jay Thompson is a real estate veteran and retiree living in the Texas Coastal Bend, as well as the one spinning the wheels at Now Pondering. Follow him on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. He holds an active Arizona broker’s license with eXp Realty. “Retired but not dead,” Jay speaks around the world on many things real estate.