We all know that when it comes to grabbing attention, the right content is key – and blogs are a central pillar of your content strategy. The problem is there are a lot of blogs out there all vying for your audience’s precious time. So how do you make yours shine?
Not everyone can sit down at a blank screen and have sparkling content spill from their fingertip – you need to work at it. But having helped lots of estate agents develop successful blogs, we have a few tips to make it easier.
Write what you know
You’re an estate agent, passionate about selling and letting houses. So, harness that passion in your blog and speak from the heart. Use your local knowledge too – don’t be afraid to give your unique take on the housing market in your area, based on valuable local experience.
Know your audience
Don’t just ramble on – you need to keep you posts focussed and very relevant. Choose your subject matter wisely. Think about the audience you’re targeting, whether vendors or landlords. If you don’t know what’s keeping them awake at night, Google can help. There are tools to help you find out what they are asking when they search – so you can shape your blogs around it.
Is it trending?
Supplement these ‘evergreen’ property posts with reactive ones that respond to current events, trends and talking points. Right now, you should be addressing issues like the eviction ban and the impact on landlords. Or the implications of the end of the stamp duty holiday on buyers and vendors.
If you’re really not a natural born writer, don’t worry, there are plenty of them out there.
Vary your format
Once you have a subject, think about how you’ll approach it. It’s fine to write a straightforward narrative piece, but try and vary your blogs over time and to fit the subject matter.
- ‘Listicles’ are always popular – seven best ways to spruce up your home to sell, 21 things every landlord should know.
- Step-by-step guides are useful too, helping people nail a difficult process – how to buy and sell at the same time, the ultimate accidental landlord’s checklist.
- Research makes a good basis for a blog – your own, if you have the data, or your interpretation of a nationally-published study.
- We think of blogs as written content; they don’t need to be. You could use video instead or embed it within your copy or let images do the talking through a photo gallery with minimal copy – five Art Deco-inspired properties.
It’s often said that there are no new stories, just retelling of age-old topes – the same is true of blogs. In the property industry there are certain topics, which will always be relevant, so don’t worry too much about complete originality. Look at other people’s blogs for inspiration but write in a way that’s personal to your business using your own unique examples.
Have a plan
Unless you’re a very experienced writer, it’s unlikely a great blog will just come together by magic. You need to do some prep. Think about how you will structure your argument in a clear, logical sequence to aid clarity. Without this advance planning, you’re in danger of flitting from one idea to the other – hard to follow and off-putting!
Grab them from the outset
We can’t overstate the importance of your opening paragraph, so really give this some thought. Find a hook to lure your readers in – as we said earlier, this could be something very topical, a killer statistic or a great quote from a well-known influencer. Include hints of where you’re going with the blog, to entice them to read more.
Hone your tone of voice
Your aim is to keep your copy sounding fresh and natural; eventually developing your own unique voice. Getting it right can be tricky at first, but the best advice is not to overthink it. Avoid the dry and impersonal – it’s not a report to the board. Instead achieve a conversational tone by imagining you’re talking out loud to a customer or friend.
Leave them thinking
Don’t just come to a sudden stop – think about an ending that will leave people wondering. A summary of your points or a take-away checklist works, as does a question. Obviously though, you’ll want to slip your call to action in here.
Call in the experts
If you’re really not a natural born writer, don’t worry, there are plenty of them out there. Think about whether blogging is the best use of your time and, if it’s not, consider using a freelance writer to make sure you publish on schedule and to keep your content flowing.
Got a question? Reach out to Nelly and her team at www.artdivision.co.uk