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How many times has this happened to you? You come across the headline of a real estate blog post that addresses something you’ve been thinking about. The headline offers a promise to answer your questions.
So, you read it, only to find out that the promise was a lie—and the information offers no answers, no solutions.
If that doesn’t tick you off, you’re a much gentler soul than I am. I get really pissed when a blog author rips off my time.
So, today, it’s “Real Estate Blogging 101,” or, how to ensure you don’t tick people off.
This gets into the meat of the real estate blog post. If you overhype in the headline and use thin, invaluable weak solutions, you’ll tick people off.
It’s easy to do, especially for novice writers. When you get caught up in a thought, or a stream of thoughts, it’s easy to become cat-like, chasing the next shiny idea. Before you know it, you’ve completely veered away from the headline’s promise.
The solution to this is to write the headline last
Sure, it sounds backward, and many writers will disagree with me, but it works, especially if you typically lack focus when writing. “Before you write your headline, you need to know you’ll back up the promise it’s making,” suggests James Chartrand at copyblogger.com.
So, let the stream of conscious flow – get it all out. Then, go back and read and edit. You’ll find your theme as you do this and then you can craft a title that you know will deliver on its promise.
Who will be reading your real estate blog post? For real estate agents, this is a no-brainer: real estate consumers will be your primary audience.
Depending on the topic of the post, the reader can be further defined as a buyer or seller. Niche it down even more to a first-time buyer, move-up or-down buyer, condo buyer, land buyer and, well, you get the picture.
Once you’ve narrowed down your audience for a particular post, determine what you want them to do and how you can get them to do it.
For instance, in a post about the workings of the typical HOA, you may want your condo-buyer reader to derive knowledge from the post, consider it share-worthy and post it on social media. Ultimately, you want your post to convince these readers that you’re an expert on condos and they shouldn’t for one minute consider hiring any other agent.
But do so elegantly.
Unexpected blatant self-promotion ticks readers off
Yes, you want to get across to your readers that you’re the pro they should hire. This doesn’t mean, however, that you should fill your blog posts with blatant self-promotion to prove you’re an expert. That stuff only serves to alienate readers who are weary of being sold to all day, every day.
In fact, as Joseph Conrad, one of my favorite writers, admonished more than 100 years ago, to “show, don’t tell.”
“Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass,”
suggests Anton Chekhov in a letter to his brother.
Even contemporary writers urge us to be subtle. Ernest Hemmingway claimed that “If a writer of prose knows enough of what he is writing about, he may omit things that he knows and the reader . . . will have a feeling of those things as strongly as though the writer had stated them.” (emphasis is mine).
About a decade ago, Active Rain founder Jonathan Washburn admonished his readers to “not post a bunch of self-serving marketing material on the bottom of your post: If a home buyer or seller finds your information interesting they will figure out how to contact you.”
While most of the real estate industry has caught on that those huge pats on their own backs have no place in social media and their real estate blog post, many haven’t. And, sadly, it ticks people off.
Yes, to remain in business, you need to promote yourself but, as Mama used to say, “There’s a time and place for everything.”
Your real estate blog post is not the place
The solution? When you proof your real estate blog post, keep your audience in mind and cut out anything that doesn’t provide value to this reader. Reminding them throughout that you’re “the bomb” isn’t valuable.
Your blog serves several purposes. First, it offers up valuable information for real estate consumers. Next, it highlights your expertise. Finally, it should help build trust and establish credibility.
The last thing you want when trying to fulfill all of these purposes is to leave your visitors feeling cheated or deceived.
Looking for automatically generated, editable, twice-weekly blog content for your real estate website? Check out LeadSites.
Learn how to appeal to your audience, using these great websites as examples.
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