Need a reason to start a real estate agent blog? How about ten reasons? Consider the blogging benefits listed below.
Whenever I pitch the idea of blogging to my real estate clients, they usually ask the same question: What are the benefits of using a blog in my business? This article is meant to answer this question once and for all.
This list is by no means exhaustive. As you start to use an agent blog for your own business, you will no doubt discover some benefits of your own. And you can add them in the comments section at the end of this article!
1. Installation and Maintenance Benefits
I use the WordPress blogging program when I set up blogs for real estate agents. One of the great things about this program is the ease of installation. As long as the client’s web-hosting platform meets the minimum requirements for WordPress, I can have their blog up and running in less than ten minutes. Try getting a regular website up and running in so short a time. It can’t be done.
The WordPress program is like a publishing platform in a box. You install it onto your hosting account, and it’s ready to go. This is one of the biggest benefits of using a blog for real estate marketing purposes – it’s easy to get started.
Maintenance tasks are also made easier with a blogging program. No matter how large your real estate blog becomes, the design and structure can still be controlled through a handful of files. So you can make adjustments to the blog quickly and easily. Let’s say you want a certain image or graphic to appear in the sidebar of every blog post on the site. To do this, you would simply open the file that controls the sidebar area and insert some HTML code for the graphic you want. Done.
The maintenance benefits of blogging give you the gift of time. By spending less time working on the structure of the site, you will have more time for what’s really important – writing great content.
2. Ease of Publishing
The biggest benefit of using a real estate agent blog is that it simplifies the publishing process. You no longer need a web developer to help you put new articles online. You can type up a post as easily as you would write an e-mail. Then you click the “publish” button and let the blogging program do the rest.
When you add a new entry to your real estate blog, the blogging program will handle the chronology and organization for you. It will add the new post to your “stream” so it appears in chronological order. It will also categorize the new post however you deem appropriate. And if you have a list of recent posts in the sidebar section of your blog, the blogging program will update that list as well.
Again, the benefit of all this can be summed up in a single word. Time. Real estate blogging gives you the gift of time by simplifying the technical side of the publishing process. In fact, the technical part of the process has been reduced to a single action. You simply click the publish button.
3. Design Simplicity
Web design can be pretty expensive, especially if you’re having a custom real estate website built from scratch. But it’s much easier and more cost-effective to change the design of your blog. This is another benefit of an agent blog compared to a static website.
If you’re using the WordPress blogging program, which is what I recommend, you’ll have access to thousands of “themes.” A theme is a collection of graphics and files used to control the design of your blog. Want to update the look and feel of your design? Just install a new theme. You can activate the new theme with the click of a button, and the design changes will be made instantly.
You can even customize the theme to give your real estate agent blog a unique appearance (which is important for branding and recognition). We offer some WordPress customization services to help you with this very thing.
4. Plugins and Extra Features
One of the benefits of using the WordPress blog program in particular are the plugins. A plugin is a tool or feature that can be easily installed onto your blog. There are literally thousands of plugins to choose from, but you certainly won’t need them all.
A photo gallery is a good example of a WordPress plugin. To get the gallery up and running, you would simply install the plugin files into your WordPress program. Then you activate the plugin, and it’s ready to go.
An entire book could be written on the different types of plugins for WordPress. For the purposes of this article, I just want you to realize how these blog features benefit you, as a real estate agent. Again, it’s all about saving time and working smarter.
5. The Endless Versatility Of Real Estate Blogs
Versatility is another major benefit of using a blog for your real estate business. WordPress is more than just a blogging program. It can be used as a complete content-management system (CMS) to run an entire website. If you have an existing website for your business, you could publish the blog as an extension of the site. Or you could run an entire website with WordPress, with both pages and blog posts included on the site.
The point is that you can implement a blogging strategy in a number of different ways. The software makes it easy for you. This is another key benefit of starting a business blog. It’s a versatile publishing tool with endless possibilities.
6. Delivering the Agent’s Voice & Persona
Up until now, we’ve been talking about the technical benefits of publishing a real estate agent blog. Now time to discuss the marketing and communications benefits.
A blog allows you to accomplish certain things you couldn’t do with a regular business website. This is another one of the key benefits of blogging. For instance, you can use it to give your company a new voice. A lot of CEOs are blogging these days, and for this very reason. It allows them to share their ideas and insights with interested readers.
Essentially, a real estate blog can be used like a web-based public relations (PR) tool. But the benefits of blogging go deeper than this. It allows you to give a distinct voice and persona to certain individuals within your company. The benefits of this are far-reaching. It encourages trust among your current and prospective clients. It gives people a new reason to talk about your company. It helps you capture the attention of journalists and other bloggers who cover your industry. All of these things translate into business growth.
7. Interaction with Readers
By publishing a real estate agent blog, you’ll also benefit from having a new level of interaction with your readers. People can interact with you in a number of ways. The easiest way is by leaving comments on a particular post.
You can also incorporate Twitter, Facebook and other social media tools within your blog. Remember the WordPress plugins we talked about earlier? There’s a plugin to help you add social media buttons onto your blog.
People can also interact by sharing your content with others, through social media sites or through their own blogs and websites.
8. Agent Blogs And Search Engine Optimization
Agent blogs and search engine optimization go together like peanut butter and jelly. This is another major benefit of blogging for marketing purposes. Search engine optimization (SEO) basically boils down to two things. You want to publish a lot of original and useful content. And you want to acquire a lot of links from other websites.
You can probably already see how a real estate agent blog helps you achieve these two goals. We talked about how it simplifies the publishing process for you. Blogging programs make it incredibly easy to put new content online. As a result, you will be more likely to publish new information on a regular basis. This supports your search engine optimization goals, as well as your other real estate marketing and PR goals.
A blog can also help with the link-building aspect of SEO as well. If you publish useful and engaging content, people will start to take notice. Some of this recognition will come in the form of links from other websites. For example, if a journalist is working on a story about your local housing market and stumbles across a relevant post on your blog, she will likely link to it. The same goes for other bloggers and publishers. The more links you acquire, the more you will improve your search engine visibility. A real estate agent blog makes all of these things easier.
9. Buzz Benefits
Every business can benefit from a little extra buzz. This is especially true when the buzz is favorable. Blogging can help you generate more buzz for your company and your services.
The real estate industry has become an information arms race. If you want to outperform your competitors online, you need to publish better information than they do, and you need to do it more often. This helps you generate a higher level of buzz for your company, your people, and your real estate services.
10. The Authority Factor
Lastly, I would like to talk about the authority that comes with publishing a real estate blog. This is another key benefit of blogging that should not be ignored. It stands to reason that if you can establish yourself as an authority in your field, you will have an easier time acquiring clients. An agent blog can help you accomplish this goal.
When used properly, it will help you position yourself as a housing expert in your local market. This will improve every aspect of your marketing program. It will help you generate more buzz. It will help you earn the trust of current and prospective clients. And it will help you differentiate yourself from your competitors. All of these benefits can be tied back to your blog.
As I mentioned at the start of this article, this list only scratches the surface. You will certainly find some additional benefits of using a real estate blog once you get into it. My goal with this article is simply to open your eyes to the possibilities.
If you need help with any aspect of your blogging program, I encourage you to schedule a consultation call. I can give you one-on-one advice and guidance to help you enjoy all of these benefits.