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Content: Can you write you way to a better business?

Good writing used to mean just effective property details, but the internet has made 'content king'. So how do you do it effectively?

Kate Faulkner, Designs On Property

There are lots of different ways to provide content when communicating with consumers. One of the tricks of successful communicators is to talk to people before, during and after they work with you. Unfortunately, since our industry isn’t often trusted, and also since consumers tend to be in a stressed state when they move, it’s means you really need to capture their attention ahead of when they’ll be working with you.

Cons of generating content for consumers
A substantial investment, both financial and time-wise, is required to secure a good return from content

Updating content during busy periods is difficult, so things can go out of date quickly

It isn’t always easy to measure the returns from time spent on creating articles, guides, videos and seminars

Much of the information you need to provide may conflict with what your consumers want to hear,
e.g. prices or rents falling

For success you have to invest time and money marketing your content to the right audience

Pros of investing in content
Consumers want to hear your advice, and to know what’s REALLY happening in their local market

Talking to people before they become customers gives you time to build trust with them

Few companies offer decent, helpful advice, so if you do it’s much appreciated

On-line and off-line content can be shared with other people, so helps to ‘spread the word’ about your business

Spending time educating your current and future customers can help take the stress out of their move – and off your employees – because they’ll know what to expect and trust you to handle any problems

Have a plan!
If you are going to invest in content, my most important recommendation is to have a plan. It’s no use saying you are going to write an article a week, and then just sitting with a blank piece of paper hoping inspiration will kick in!

The shape of your plan will depend on what you want to achieve with your consumer base. Do you just want to keep in touch with past clients? Or communicate regularly with long-term landlords? Or secure new consumers who are about to buy, sell or rent? Be clear in your mind at the offset about whom you want to communicate with.

Alternatively you might just want to start talking to everyone on your database first, and you can do this by linking in with cyclical events that take place through the year. For example, you could offer general information with a slant on property:-

December: how to look after your property if you are going away; how to decorate your home for Xmas
January: tips for people thinking about moving to a new home, or what to do if you are getting divorced
February: checklist to help on moving in with your loved one post-Valentine’s Day, or getting married
March: advice on checking your home is in good condition after the winter cold and wet

Alternatively you could concentrate on content for a specific audience, for example, landlords:-

How gearing makes property investment successful
Choosing whether you want capital growth or income from your property investment
Where to invest to secure the best yield
The top 10 mistakes typically made by landlords
For more help on ideas for content, please email: [email protected] or call 01652 641 722

September 1, 2014

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