As a real estate agent, over the course of your career you might find yourself thinking of ways in which you can better approach your target audience. Whether it’s buyers, sellers or just people who are interested in the real estate market, your portfolio of clients used to be limited to your direct contact lists. People that you know of, are close to or that come to you directly with a property to sell or in search of a property to buy. We now live in the age of information, however, and the internet has opened up a whole new frontier that can be accessed with just one click. The internet makes it possible to reach tens, hundreds or thousands of people every day and the days when you would just sit at your desk and have people walking in your office interested in purchasing real estate are long gone.
- What is a blog?
- How to Start Blogging for Real Estate Agents
- Understanding the “WHY”
- Find a niche and the concept
- Start Real Estate Blogging
- Get social
- Have fun
Everyone is accustomed to interactions online. Whether we’re talking about social media sites that allow you to talk to people via messaging apps or commercials we see on any website or platform, online contact is much more approachable. Even commercials on Facebook and Instagram get more traction nowadays than face-to-face appointments. We live in an online world, and we need to become more active and approachable online. Real estate blogging can provide us with that approachable online presence and the advertising that comes with it.
What is a blog?
A blog can be used for many things, but to put it simply, a blog is a platform that can be used in order to promote. The next question is, promote what? Well … if we say anything it might sound far-fetched, but yes … anything is the correct answer. From vacation spots to cooking, from business models to DIYs, or simply your daily experience. If you embark on a search for peculiar real estate blogging subjects you’ll fall down the rabbit hole and be stuck there for a while. The most important thing about blogging for real estate agents is to use it correctly.
Consider it a tool to promote your brand, market, project, business, etc. It is why it is used and has been used for so many years now.Does a blog guarantee success, you might ask? Well … unfortunately, no. A good blog however can grow your real estate business or grow into a successful business on its own if done correctly. I want to emphasize the “grow” in that sentence as a blog needs to grow before it is in itself successful but it can help grow a business, grow a follower base, grow revenues from your core business or from the blog itself in due time. And that is how a blog should be started in 2020, and like that we’re getting to the core of this article …
Is Real Estate Blogging Relevant in 2022?
It is possible nowadays to purchase mostly anything online, to get access to any kinds of information and direct counseling via a video call so why would real estate be limited to face-to-face interactions? When everything is just one click away, why should real estate be any different? The answer is, it shouldn’t.
We are all used to being bombarded with all sorts of information from media outlets, but more directly, we get information through our social media. How often has it happened that while you’re scrolling through Facebook you see an ad about a travel blog, or career counseling, or those great food blogs where you find the best kind of recipes? More often than you can count, I know. But that is no longer seen as a problem over social media, but a gateway for something so much bigger. An ad is after all, just an ad. What’s important is what’s behind it and in this case, it’s a blog.
Now, why are we talking about blogs and why did we just mention social media for real estate agents? … it’s all connected, believe me. After all, the whole internet is connected in one way or another but we won’t get into that.
What we will get into, however, is blogging for real estate agents. How to do it? How to get started? What does it involve? We’re aiming to answer all those questions and many others in the following sections. It all depends on how much time you can dedicate to it outside of your working schedule as a real estate agent. After all, it’s not like you can create content while you’re meeting clients or showcasing a home. You can use those experiences for content, but creating content requires additional time on your part.In 2022 we all know that time means money. However, it can be your time that you invest and get money out of it, or you can invest money into creating content and get more money out of it. In other words, you can be your own content creator, or you can pay someone to create content for you. The third option is to create your own content and not have to worry about managing platforms as there are already platforms that provide the space for guest content creators.
How to start blogging for Real Estate Agents?
Starting a blog is relatively simple and there’s a high chance that you met plenty of people in your life that dabbled in blogging at one point in their lives. The truth, however, is that real estate blogging is not something that everyone is capable of doing.
There are some things that you have to keep in mind once you start thinking of starting a blog if you want it to be a successful blog. For that particular idea, here are a few tips on how to start blogging for real estate agents. Unless you want to paddle around the blogosphere without aim, without a boat, and without a paddle, you should take note of the short guide we organized below. Why struggle to discover the wheel when you can follow a tried and tested method?
1. Understanding the “WHY”
There have been many blogs out there that came into existence on a whim. Some of them are still out there while others fizzled out over the first few weeks. The reason why you start a blog is very important and it is directly connected to the next tip. But first, the reason why you start real estate blogging can not be to make money. Monetizing a blog can happen but it won’t happen during the first week, the first month, and may not even happen during the first year. This is the first thing that one has to understand. There are many videos, blog posts, and even bloggers out there who talk about how to start a blog and directly talk about making revenue out of a blog. Explaining how to start real estate blogging while listing monetization as one of the steps is unfair because it creates false expectations. This might lead to understanding that blogging can make you rich in a short period of time and this is untrue.
The reason why someone decides to start blogging is more personal than people think. For some, it is the simple need for a creative outlet, while for others it is a way to showcase their hobby. Blogging is often used as a way to promote a business in a more informal and relatable way. Once you have the “why” you can go to the next step. So that is the first thing you have to do. Understand your “why”. If you’re thinking about writing for real estate, what is the motivation? Do you mean to use blogging as a way to promote your business? Well, that is a great way to use a creative outlet in a proactive way.
If you are a creative real estate agent and writing is your outlet you should start a real estate blog. However, you can also become a collaborator for another real estate platform in order to promote your business as those platforms have everything up and ready to go. On the other hand, if writing isn’t your creative outlet, you can contract someone to do it for you. There are countless freelance writers that do just that and finding them online won’t be difficult. As we mentioned above, you either invest time, or you invest money, or you invest both and reap the most benefits, hopefully.
2. Find a niche and the concept
When you know why you want to start blogging you should also know what you want to blog about. That is why I mentioned that they often go hand-in-hand. Let’s put it simply. You decide to start a blog because you want to share your poetry as you are passionate about poetry and you want people to be able to access it. In this case, a real estate blog might not be the direction in which you take it. However, if you want to promote your hometown, where you also work as a real estate agent, there you go. That’s a great niche to get in on. It’s that simple. But to not demoralize you completely, if you want to write real estate poetry, go ahead and do just that. We can’t guarantee that your business will grow through such a blog, but you can still do it. That’s the beauty of it.
Finding a niche is directly related to the concept of your blog. What do you want to post on your blog? What are you passionate about? What is something that you can do for fun for years without getting anything back from it? That is the tough question. Do you have something that you are so passionate about that you would like to blog about it for months or years without getting anything in return? Blogging is supposed to be about something that you are passionate about.
While a blog can become successful and bring in a lot of revenue on its own, this takes time and a lot of it. Starting a blog is about investing a lot of time and money in something that might take a while to bring back revenue, so if your interest falters, if you lose motivation, if you aren’t consistent with it, that’s a sure way to ensure that you never get the revenue out of it. Write what you are passionate about. If you’re passionate about real estate then write for real estate. Find your passion and transform it into your niche.
- I like cooking, I’ll start a cooking blog;
- I like photography, I’ll start a blog where I share my photography;
- I like real estate, I’ll start a blog where I write about real estate.
This is where you dig deep within yourself and explore your niche. Once you find something that motivates you enough to come up with 50 blog topics then you know you found your concept.
As a real estate agent with some years of experience, you could start real estate blogging and share your experience as an agent. There are many people out there who look for information related to the real estate market and you could let them in on a few secrets from the life of a real estate agent. This might be information about a city that is otherwise unavailable to them. Things to do in a city, the overall feel of a neighborhood, or economical insight of what living in a city might mean for the family’s expenses. There is a lot of information to share and by sharing this information you can connect to a market while also building a follower base. You should also find a way to stand out in your particular niche, shine brighter than others, and offer a different perspective. Be a friendly neighborhood realtor that helps out through information shared in blog articles. You don’t have to become everyone’s realtor for free and help everyone out when they need it, but you can make a blog that deals with the most common situations homeowners, renters, landlords, or property managers deal with. Create a blog that gives people what they need and you’ll be tapping into the most profitable niche.
3. Start Real Estate Blogging
Once you have overcome the first two tips the actual work begins. You need to create your blog. For this, some turn to buying a domain name and creating a blog or buying a template for their new blog. Both are viable options but they will cost money from day one. There are, however, many platforms that can do most of the work for your blog for free or for some affordable costs.
The most known are: WordPress, Blogger, and Wix, which are free (WordPress and Wix give free templates for blogs, but if you want something more unique you can have it for a certain fee) or Squarespace and even Tumblr. The last two give more freedom with the template in some ways and less in others. However, these might be difficult to manage, design, or use for those with limited knowledge of design and coding. At the same time, they offer less traffic from the demographic most likely to look into purchasing a home. Not many people go to Tumblr in search of property to buy.
Choose a name and a host
You now get to pick a design for your blog, a name (you can use name generator sites – quite fun too), and a domain host. The first thing you want to do is figure out a name and get your domain registered. The name is the first impression people get from your blog, which is why it’s never a good idea to just wing it when it comes to the name. We already mentioned that there are sites that can help with that if you don’t know which way to go. Wordoid is a great naming tool that will provide multiple options to choose from.
Do keep in mind that the name you choose must reflect and respect your business brand. The most logical choice would be your brand name. For instance “Diana Realty” could be my go-to choice. Other choices could be: “Diana Property”, “Diana Frisco, Texas Property”, “Diana Brand Name”, etc. The online address will appear as follows: dianarealty[dot]com and so on. Still, if you use Wordoid to create a name for your domain, make sure you don’t buy the domain from them as Bluehost provides a free domain.
As soon as you decided on a name, you should look into the options available for free hosting or even those that provide hosting for a fee. Many don’t require large amounts of money, but it’s good to know that you have multiple options. There are platforms that offer blog templates for free like the ones we mentioned above, but you need to host your blog somewhere. While the blog will be online, it needs a physical server to make sure it remains live once you make it live. That is what hosting services like Bluehost do. However, hosting platforms that require a fee to provide hosting can cost around $20 a year so the fee really isn’t much.
Choose a Platform
While there are several options you could turn to, the platform you choose is supposed to be user-friendly and easy to use. Especially if your coding and design abilities are limited, choosing a platform that can take care of all of that for you will be a saving grace. There are many tutorials online for the various features provided by each platform, but WiX and WordPress are at the top. They aren’t expensive to administer, even free in some cases, depending on the template you choose, and, most importantly, easy to use. These platforms are ideal for those that consider this as coding.
WordPress needs to be installed on your computer or laptop, but don’t let that word intimidate you. The installation process is incredibly easy. You just go to Log In, then click Skip this step and go on to pick your template. You’ll then start to work on your blog’s design by going to Start Building. Here you’ll get access to all the features provided by the platform for free. WordPress will start installing on your laptop once you select your template
Select a Theme
With a theme, you can choose the best design for your blog without having to worry about coding or design knowledge. Of course, any coding or design knowledge will be a bonus for your real estate blogging journey, but templates can give you the next best thing free of charge if you lack that know-how. After all, it’s not easy to keep up with the incredible speed at which technological advancements happen. Some of these templates allow you to juggle color schemes and images even if you have no coding experience.
You will find different designs from different designers under different names. All you have to do is pick the one that fits your real estate blogging idea the most. While the free templates may seem minimal and finding one that fits with your vision might not be as easy, you can buy one that gives you a bit more leeway.
The third option is doing the template yourself from the ground up. Here, however, we’ll be getting into coding and design choices. A website that you create from scratch will require a lot of coding knowledge – I, for one, don’t have the knowledge to do that -, it requires a lot more time spent, not only creating it but managing it once it’s created. Still, it will give you full freedom of design and what your website does, shows, and allows users to do. It can be done and it is the best option from a professional point of view, but it’s not necessary for a small real estate business.
Apply blogging plugins
Once you have a blog name, host, and template, you need to know how to best use it. Having a blog isn’t only about creating content, but about monitoring that content as well. There are third-party features that will make it possible for you to see your blog’s traffic, track your readers, and reach more of them with ease. However, do not go overboard with these plugins. While they can offer multiple features, having too many can slow down your site. They can also create problems as not all plugins come from reliable sources.
For instance, Yoast SEO is a standard WordPress plugin for SEO. It will make it easy for you to determine what keywords to use, and how to better optimize your content to reach more readers based on what those readers want to read related to the topics you come up with. SEO knowledge is necessary for a successful blog as it makes you aware of the topics potential readers are interested in and it also tells you how to approach those subjects in order to reach the biggest number of readers.
Google Analytics does something else, but it’s just as important. Through MonsterInsights Google Analytics for WordPress, you can track the traffic you get on your blog with ease. However, it does more than tell you how many people found your blog. Aside from the overall traffic information you receive, you’ll also see where that traffic comes from, what each viewer looks at, and automatic tracking of outbound clicks and pageviews.
About the posts. There are some things to keep in mind. For a blog to get a follower base it needs to earn trust. Even in every day interactions there are some things that make a person more trustworthy. Truth, Consistency and Quality. These three things are as important in the blogging world as it is in the real world. Share your truth while posting (don’t be fake or polished, be yourself), be consistent about posting (if you make a post today, the next tomorrow and then you’re inactive for a couple of weeks you can lose followers) and make sure that what you post is quality content – your post won’t be perfect from the first go, but you would want to strive for the best that you can at that moment and also evolve in time.
Once you manage to provide your readers with Truth, Consistency, and Quality, SEO should be your next focus. With the plugin mentioned above, SEO can help you rank higher in Google search results. When you install plugins, make sure you install one that deals with Search Engine Optimization. SEO makes it possible for your website to reach more online users through higher visibility. While this is what differentiates a website with organic growth from one with growth based on ads, SEO is an industry on its own. For instance, you can hire someone to guarantee visibility through SEO as managing it will only take up even more time off your hands.
SEO uses keywords to promote a website and increases the website’s visibility in search engines. In other words, if you want to write about single-family homes in Miami, FL, through Yoast SEO you will see that the most searched keyword related to your topic is “homes for sale in Miami Florida”. Based on this, you can increase your article’s use of “homes for sale in Miami Florida”, the keyword. Once your article reaches a certain keyword density that balances the keyword throughout the content without oversaturating it, your article can wind up on the first page of Google results for those searching based on that keyword.
4. Get Social
While blogging itself can be used as a way to promote a brand, company or idea, it can (and should) in turn be promoted. You can either share the content of your blog on your own social media (Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, Youtube, LinkedIn) or create a social media account for your blog. The first option might cause some problems as not everyone on your social media wants to see your posts all the time in their feed, but if you create a social media account for the blog itself then you will attract a more interested audience.
Share posts, promote your blog as much as you can. That is how you can build an audience and a follower base. There are also communities that you can join to discuss blogging, learn more about your niche and get in touch with people that are active in the same platform.
5. Have Fun
Of course you should have fun. Isn’t the ideal situation to enjoy yourself while you do something that you’re passionate about? If you like the real estate market and you also enjoy writing, a blog might be the perfect combination between the two. As long as you enjoy what you are doing, as they say, the sky’s the limit and you have no idea where it might lead you. Putting passion into a project like this can be the difference between an okay blog and a great blog. A great blog, in time, can build your business, your brand and, yes, even your revenue. In time you might even find yourself thinking about monetization and adding affiliate marketing to your blog as well as selling your expertise on the subject through courses online.
Most Profitable Niches
Based on revenues that were recorded during certain months by certain blogs with years of activity the most profitable blogging niches are as follows:
- Business & Marketing – $167,000/month
- Personal Finance – $160,000/month
- Food – $75,000/month
- Travel – $26,000/month
- DIY & Home Decor – $22,000/month
- Fashion & Beauty – $18,000/month
- Health & Fitness – $9,000/month
- Lifestyle – $9,000/month
Blogging is an interesting concept that can be used greatly in order to promote your business as long as it is used correctly. There are many people out there thinking that blogging will make them rich in a few months time and that kind of belief isn’t realistic. While a blog can generate a profit those are relative exceptions not rules and anyone who decides to start a blog should understand that. From The Official Real Estate Agent Directory® we wish you the best of luck in this new enterprise and share your blog once you get it up and running. We’d love to take a look.
Let us know in the comments below if you intend to start a blog, you might get some excited followers or if you are interested in becoming a part of a blogging community. Like & Share with friends and family who are also thinking of starting a blog and don’t know where to begin.