Yes. It is. I’m writing this blog post about CRE and blogging right now, so this is a pretty clear indicator that I believe in the value of blogging. But, let me tell you why blogging is worth the time to do. Blogging for CRE is so helpful because it helps establish your brand, it gives you local and national exposure, it increases your credibility and it’s a hook to attract new prospective clients. Those are all very good reasons for why you should probably blog.
Each time you publish a blog post, you are getting your name out there. Your name is your brand, as a commercial real estate broker or service provider. Let’s say you specialize in office space, and you continually write about that property type. By writing on that topic over and over again, people begin to associate your name with that type of real estate. That’s a smart move for you, because when someone decides to find new office space, you have already branded yourself for the job. This is also applicable for branding your firm. If everyone in your company contributes to your blog, then your company is getting exposure, which is good for your overall brand. Let’s play a quick recognition game. This may help demonstrate my point. Can you guess what all of the following CRE people/companies do on a regular basis? I’m not telling you the answer. You have to figure this one out on your own. I believe in you! =)
- SVN | SouthLand Commerical (of course)
- Bo Barron, CCIM
- Allen C. Buchanan
- CRE Radio
- Sperry Van Ness LLC
- Duke Long
- Coy Davidson
This goes hand in hand with the last point, about establishing your brand. When you write a blog post, you want people to recognize you. When you write a blog post and start sharing it with the world, that branded recognition can be seen in both the local market and the national market. Share your blog posts with your local industry contacts. If you write a story about development taking place in your downtown area, then share your article with the developers and investors. They will get a kick out of the free publicity and being talked about. They will tell their friends about it. That’s good for you. Share any news relevant stories with the local press. That’s good too. Use theBrokerList to share your articles to the national audience. theBrokerList is very good about helping bloggers get publicity. As long as your blog quality meets their standards, and as long as your content is commercial real estate specific, they will probably be happy to work with you. Contact Linda Harrison if you want look into working with the theBrokerList. She’s great, and by the way…. SHE BLOGS TOO! Huh, imagine that. Who else can promote your content and get it out there? Local developers, the local news and theBrokerList aren’t the only ones who will share your content.Give people a reason to notice you. Start blogging! Click To Tweet
This is really simple. If a client has a choice between two different brokers or CRE service providers, and they both look about the same. However, one of them is an active blogger and has plenty to say about making commercial real estate deals, and the other option doesn’t, then the credibility of the blog writer will break the tie. Who wouldn’t want an edge over his or her competition? All it takes is an hour or two of writing what you know about, from time to time. Role up those sleeves and share some of your expertise.
So, you’re at a business after-hours, or something like that, and you come across Joe Blow. Joe mentions that his retail business is doing super well and he wants to expand to another location. Joe doesn’t know you, he doesn’t feel any obligation to do anything for you and there is no reason he should work with you. You, however, happen to specialize in retail real estate. You talk to him a little about his situation and then you tell him you’ve actually written a number of articles about how to get the most how of your retail space. You tell him he might get some helpful pointers that will boost his income. Now, Joe suddenly has a reason to go to your blog. This type of information will directly impact Joe. So, you give him your card, with a link to your website, and tell him to read the articles. What happens when Joe finishes reading the articles and is ready to learn more? Well, you hooked him. Sure, he may get off the hook, but how many people won’t get off the hook? This senario won’t happen if you aren’t writing blog posts. So, start writing!
Don’t expect immediate results. Blogging for CRE, or for any industry, takes time. You probably won’t write your first article and become famous. You might never become famous. But, invest a few hours here and there, and after awhile, you will pick up traction. Not only does it take time to get noticed, but when you write your articles, there are certain things you need to do, or not do. The following tips will help you make your blog post successful:
- Don’t write one paragraph and then publish it. Put down at least 500 words. The marketing experts give all sorts of advice on how long your post should or should not be. However, most experts agree that if you write at least 500 words, you should be good. 100 words doesn’t cut it.
- DO NOT PLAGIARIZE! Google is watching and they take plagiarism into consideration when determining how to rank your website and blog posts. Even if you copy content from one source, put it in your article, and reference that original source, Google still doesn’t like it. It may be legal, but Google doesn’t care. So, if you want to do that, then screenshot the original source and include it as an image in your article. But still make sure to reference the original source. The best thing to do is just write all original content.
- Share your article. You go through the work of writing something and then you don’t share it? Why not? Get on Twitter and share it. Not on Twitter? Well, that’s something for another post… but maybe you should get on there. It’s great for networking! Send your article to people whom you think will be interested in the content. Post it to LinkedIn. Ask industry thought leaders to subscribe to your blog. Get it out there!
- Write about something you actually care about. The reader can see if it’s a topic close to your heart, or if you are just writing because you have to. You want to convey to your audience that you are passionate about your topic. So, if you aren’t feeling any motivation about a certain topic, then change your topic to something you do care about. Can you see that blogging is something I care about? Yeah, it shows.
This article is getting longish. Bonus tip… don’t write too much or people won’t read everything you have to say. 1,000-1,500 is a good stopping point. If you have more to say, split your post into multiple articles and keep them coming back for more. By the way, if you include my bio, This article is exactly 1,500 words!
There’s plenty more I could write about. There are other tips and benefits of blogging for CRE that I didn’t even mention. They are floating around in my head right now, but maybe I’ll share them at a later time. The point is, blogging is important to you, if you want people to know about you, and to use you for their commercial real estate needs. If you want publicity, start writing. If you are an investor looking for a good CRE company to work with, find the company that is putting out blog content. They’re the ones who obviously know whats going on in the market. Don’t invest time and money with a company that can’t take the time to share their knowledge and expertise through their blog… at least, not if you have the option.
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About Josh Lyons – Josh is the marketing director for SVN | SouthLand Commercial. After earning his degree in Public Relations, in 2009, he ventured into the marketing world and has made a significant impact with each company he has worked for. His greatest experience and skills are centered around the strategy and execusion of email, SEO, blog, and social media marketing. He also puts a strong focus in tracking his ROI.