Like most estate agents, you might not yet run a blog. Or you might have one, but never update it. That could be down to not knowing where to start, or not knowing what a blog is really for.
A blog allows you to show off your expertise in your profession and in your local marketplace. A blog gives you a voice long before anyone actually contacts you. A blog increases the visibility of your website in the rankings of search engines like Google and Bing. And a blog can give you that vital extra chance of being called into someone’s home. In short, a blog gets your estate agent noticed.
But what on earth do you have to talk about?
The best way to begin is to ask yourself: “Which people do I want to reach and what would be useful to them?”
One thing that wouldn’t be useful is bragging about how amazing you are, or how terrible you think your competition is. Any sort of moaning or negativity, no matter how tempting – (Why do other agents over value? Why are buyers so stupid? Why do vendors never listen?) – will also be unlikely to win you fans.
Although your blog will (probably) have the ultimate aim of winning more instructions, the best results will come from a generous and knowledgeable outpouring of useful advice, information and storytelling around the property market in your area.
Here are 5 suggestions.
Have you noticed buyers asking for similar things or expecting certain features? For instance, let’s say you work in an area where houses are usually decorated with magnolia walls and blue carpets, with a small lawned rear garden. But, one vendor who had white walls, stripped floorboards and a brick paved garden got a far greater level of interest and sold for a much higher price.
That’s a really useful piece of information for a would-be seller. Helping people maximise their property’s value is exactly what homeowners are looking for.
Have there been any feel-good moments on any of the sales you’ve worked on? Has a particular buyer been incredibly unlucky with property but finally managed to exchange contracts on a purchase? Has a vendor been particularly unfortunate, or particularly wonderful, or particularly anything that is worth writing about?
Have you had a problematic sale? Could the same issues affect future sellers? Are there lessons to be learnt? Is there a way of staving off potential problems?
4) Local information.
Is there something happening on your patch that will affect the property market? Is a new development going to fill in an empty space and improve a particular neighbourhood? Are there new shops coming? Or a famous retailer or restaurant? A new station? A cinema? A market? All these things affect the lifestyle offering in a neighbourhood and can affect property prices. Should sellers hold off selling until something has happened to get the best price for their property? Or should they sell now before 5 years of disruption begins?
5) Market comment.
“What’s the market like right now” is one of the most common questions on valuations, so you can bet people are following market news online as well. This is where you can show off your performance but by presenting useful information. Things like: “We sold an apartment in Wuthering Heights this week and got 10% more than the one we sold last month.” Or: “Two houses sold in Quality Street this month, bidding wars on both and a few disappointed buyers. The street is really popular right now so a good time to sell.”
Keep it conversational, useful, generous and professional. Think about imparting your knowledge, rather than massaging your ego. People will love it.
If you’d like to start a blog but either don’t have the time or simply can’t write, perhaps we need to talk. Just say: firstname.lastname@example.org