Why Realtors Should Have a Blog on Their Website
If you have ever dreamed of having a salesperson selling for you 24/7, look no further than a blog.
Why? The short answer is because a good blog helps you:
- Become well known
- Build trust
- Become an authority
- Protect your reputation, and
- Deal with buyer’s remorse
Pretty much, several of the functions you need to spend much of your time doing as a real estate agent. Do you find it hard to believe? Let me tell you how this works and why you want to build yourself a great blog.
I was looking for a real estate sales funnel to explain the role a blog can play in your career. I didn’t find one that would include the role of client satisfaction and the additional funnels that should result from every satisfied client, so I created it:
The way I see it, in real estate, the funnel is not a nice slippery inverted triangle. Many people are aware of you but won’t progress to the evaluation stage simply because they are not a good fit for your brand. The same thing happens again with some of those considering hiring you; some people are looking for a different type of agent and would probably end up giving you grief—or worse, a bad Google review.If your blog has been well crafted and oozes your brand values, it acts as a prospect qualifier. With a good blog, the people who approach you are those who already like your style. Click To Tweet
Two main stages were missing in the sales funnels I found: customer satisfaction and the new leads resulting from every satisfied client. Without customer satisfaction, the repeat business and referrals won’t happen, let alone the advocacy.
As for the resulting new funnels I added, this is my question:
What if you believed that each customer could bring you at least three more deals?
Think about it. My guess is that you would probably take every opportunity to convince them, knowing that not one commission but four are on the line, that there will be a definitive moment in your career where you could stop chasing leads, a moment after which you will only need to answer calls and emails, that you will be able to be selective. And this is, in my view, how agents should always approach their business.
This is what the successful, established, and experienced Realtor does.In a society where attention is a coveted asset, your website could be the first—and perhaps the only—opportunity to persuade a prospect. Its quality is a direct reflection of your professionalism. Click To Tweet
A well-crafted blog on your website gives people the chance to know your brand, and it allows you to win them over, offer social proof, and share your knowledge.
Today, however, most real estate blogs are blah blah, dreadful, uninteresting, and an endless list of listicles, tips, and regurgitated content.
Your marketing strategy should be a multi-media effort that projects a cohesive brand persona. Bringing people to your website is like inviting them to meet you in person, and having them read your blog should be like sharing a meaningful conversation while nursing a steaming cup of coffee on a cold winter day.
And while they are getting to know you and obtaining answers from your blog, the real you may be enjoying some precious me-time, closing another deal, or catching up with a loved one somewhere.
And that is the importance of a blog. Let us now have a look at the reasons I mentioned above.
Five Great Reasons to Have a Blog
Your Blog Helps You Become Well Known
Your audience is no longer passive. Gone are the days when a TV, newspaper, or radio ad was all you needed. Marketing has been “democratized” by social media (blogs included) in an irreversible way, and no longer do brands speak to a captive audience.
Blogs are a fundamental way of creating content that can serve as an anchor, a central hub, as Thill, Bové, Keller, and Moran explain in their book, Excellence in Business Communications (2019). This content can then be shared on Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest, sending people right back to your website where you can have them sign up to an email list, one of the most effective marketing methods.
Today, customers participate in a brand’s marketing, whether you engage in social media or not. They continuously share their experiences online, and you want to be there to manage, engage, and do damage control, if necessary.
On a blog, you can explain what industry and market news mean for customers, offer tips, discuss trends, answer questions, be present for them. Have a look at this graphic I created for you.
It shows how your blog can function as anchor and a source of content that will increase your sphere of influence.
When you offer useful, authentic content, answer questions, and respond to comments, a community will begin to form around you. Suppose, additionally, you support your geographical area’s business community by mentioning the products or experiences you had (grabbed a coffee at…, for example). In that case, you can expand your audience with theirs while doing something good for others.
Letting them know of your nod in their direction could help you get some free advertisement from them in return.
Your Blog Helps You Build Trust
I was a Realtor, a property manager, a strata manager, and a business development manager for ten years, and I became convinced that every exchange with a prospect must have one main goal: to build trust.
We have all heard it. Real estate is probably the biggest investment most people will ever make. So, when they buy, sell, or lease that big investment, they are often afraid (call it nervous, apprehensive, anxious, or whatever). Some people will get aggressive, others will question everything, and others still will unreasonably dig their heels at the opposing party’s slightest demand. But the more they trust you and your abilities, the likelier they are to relax and entrust you with the negotiations’ outcome.
According to the Social Penetration Theory developed by Irwin Altman and Dalmas Taylor, our personality structure resembles an onion. Only mutual disclosure represented as the gradual peeling off of onion layers leads to trust. Since you want to initiate an exchange, your blog can be that place where you start the process, hoping they begin to trust you.
But you don’t have to tell deeply personal stories to initiate this social penetration. That is not advisable—ever, actually. It is about marketing through your brand values and answering their questions based on understanding their needs and goals. I will talk more about that in one of my upcoming articles.
In his highly-recommended book, Building a Story Brand (2017), Donald Miller explains that people meet a brand like meeting a person: they want to know what values motivate the brand, whether it can help them, and whether they want to be associated with it. A blog can build trust on your behalf—tirelessly.
Your Blog Helps You Become an Authority
A blog gives you a platform, a stage, on which to stand to share your knowledge and accomplishments, for example:
- Articles answering the most common questions you encounter on the field, intermingled with your own experiences so that your values and voice are clear.
- Customer stories where you engage your audience with cautionary tales with happy endings in which you were able to avoid disaster for your clients successfully. Or stories about how following your advice ensured a smooth process for other clients.
- Allowing comments on your blog—approved by you before showing—will entice readers to engage with your brand. And if you answer those comments, a tight little community may sprout. You will begin a relationship with them.
- Showcase your testimonials! If you haven’t yet, you need to start asking for testimonials and putting them on your website. Social proof is the way we make purchases today. Think about it. When you are looking to buy a product, will you choose the one with four-star reviews or the one without any reviews?
- Display your association and memberships. Professional organizations’ recognition shows that those organizations think you worthy of belonging to their group. The logos of these organizations on your website will impress your visitors and build trust.
Your Blog Helps You Protect Your Reputation
Clients who feel wrongly treated now have the opportunity to spread complaints and—sometimes unfair—criticism around the world at blinding speed. Swiftly countering rumours and negative information is imperative to protecting your reputation.
Communicating with an authentic voice and personal style will ensure that the public feels they are talking to a real person and will lead to the development of emotional ties between you and your audience that can cushion the rough patch between pre and postcrises and ensure that your reputation emerges intact.
A blog can be an invaluable crisis management tool during a crises’ three stages: precrisis, paracrisis, and postcrisis.
Thinking about what possible crises might arise is a healthy precrisis management exercise. A blog allows you to build up your credibility and nurture relationships, thus earning the public’s favour long before something bad happens—and it will, unfortunately, beca
use all businesses face crises at one point or another.
Have you noticed how we tend to excuse and justify omissions and slipups from someone we like? And how the same make us bristle up when it’s annoying so-and-so who did them?
Though you can monitor your blog’s comments, you won’t have that luxury on social media. It is important to have a social media presence to react and respond before things get out of hand. How to respond to criticism is a topic for another article.
Don’t ever attempt to ignore mounting criticism. If something terrible happens, consider the issue, who is emitting the complaint, and the most constructive way of responding. A blog is an excellent platform for publishing a general announcement or writing an article educating your audience about preventing a negative outcome from occurring or the lessons to be learned if one did come to pass.
If you have been building these relationships for some time, chances are that you have some advocates too. They are also known as brand ambassadors or evangelists. Remember the sales funnel above? It would help if you worked towards making advocates of every client because advocates work for free and become your best salespeople.
And, it’s not unusual for some advocates to take up arms and go to virtual war to defend their favourite brands from what they perceive to be malicious comments.
The broader your audience, the more people who will feel they know you, who will have a hard time believing a lousy review.At the time of a crisis, your blog, despite the time and the money you spent in building it, will seem like one of the best investments you ever made—because it is. Click To Tweet
Your Blog Helps You Deal with Buyer’s Remorse
Another name for buyer’s remorse is Postdecision Dissonance, as per Cognitive Dissonance Theory developed by Leon Festinger, a former Stanford University’s social psychologist.
Buying property is a weighty decision in most people’s lives. Yes, it happens that someone walks into a place, and they love it. There are no doubts on their minds. They are thrilled. But for many people, that is not the case. They view similar options, consider the advantages and the disadvantages, make compromises, worry about the price tag, and finally choose one.
In these cases, there is a high chance that they will feel buyer’s remorse, according to Cognitive Dissonance Theory. Strong doubts after the offer has been accepted could assault them, as they are acutely aware of the difficulty of reversing the decision.
This is when buyers search for reassurance, reaching out to friends, family, and you.
What buyers need is encouragement and social acceptance of their decision. They need to ascertain that the price isn’t unreasonable, that they made the best choice, that the property has the potential of appreciation, that the market won’t crash. Some of them will even want to look at another property just to be sure if the offer doesn’t go through.
And your blog can answer some of these questions and quiet the nagging doubts that have disturbed their sleep.
By thinking ahead about what issues you can address in your blog and what recurring questions you can answer, you will be offering significant value to your audience and doing a service to yourself.
Even though these are not all the benefits a blog can provide to your real estate career, I hope you have a better idea of why you would profit from having one.
A real estate blog can be:
- a channel to connect with prospects
- an anchor to your social media presence
- an opportunity to overcome objections, respond to complaints, and avoid crises
- a filter that ensures your clients are people who like you already
- an educational tool that positions you as their trusted advisor
- a fun place where they can learn from the experience of others
- a place to foster a community around real estate, and you
Whether you decide to give it a try by yourself or hire a professional like me, regular posting is critical. If you post weekly, then it must be weekly.
It seems that many companies have real estate blogs today just to have one. You can take advantage of that and publish a blog that will build your brand and your business organically and reliably.
It is not a quick scheme. A blog post takes some time to rank well on Google, but you can help the process by posting it on your social media. It takes work, and you are probably busy selling properties to look after that. But in the same way that you don’t search for a buried oil tank yourself, you may consider hiring the services of a professional like me.