Just because you’ve created content means very little. Anybody can create content. I type most of my blog posts in Evernote. I have a ton of content sitting in my Evernote. Do you know how much value I have in there? Just the value of my time I took to write the content. No one else has read it. Without people actually seeing your content, its useless. Just as important as writing the content is, you need a plan to get it front of people.
Imagine, as a real estate agent, taking a listing and then not doing anything. That’s basically what a lot of people do with their content. As a Real Estate Agent* you will take that listing, have a photographer come through, create a feature sheet, professional photography, videos, etc… Then you put it on the MLS. That’s just the tip of the iceberg in promoting your listing. Your listing is your content. (Pro Tip: Listings are also one of the best sources for content you have)
What are you doing to promote your content the way you promote your listings?
The first thing you need to do is to make it appealing. Use a tool like Canva and create some nice graphics for your blog. This is ideally the image you will end up sharing on social media. The great thing about the pro version of Canva is it allows you to quickly resize images for the different networks so when you share it you can share it with a properly sized image.
How do you promote your content?
To The List!
You should be building up an email list. When you have great content to share you should be able to share it with them. When utilized properly, your email list should actually be one of your best sources of business. A lot of your online efforts should go towards building up your mailing list. As long as you aren’t abusing your mailing list with terrible marketing messages (ie. Spam) then it can be a gold mine.
If you want to make sure what your sending to your list is valuable then you should be segmenting the list. Start by categorizing the list into different groups. You can start simple. Segment it into buyers and sellers. Then you can start going deeper when you’re more comfortable into first time buyers, investors, relocations, etc… Place people into multiple lists. They can be in as many lists as are relevant to their situation.
When you create good content you can share it with the lists that would actually find it valuable. For instance, in my last blog post I talked about creating content around schools in your area. Sharing that content with people without children is not very relevant to them. Now if you had a segment of your list broken out as “people with young children” then that content is perfect for them. Send it to them. Your response will be much greater than if sent it to everybody.
Social Media is an incredible tool for sharing content. When I was building my first blog Google+ and Facebook were the primary drivers of traffic. That may be one of the few times I give Google+ a positive comment so enjoy it while you can Google! Its not as easy anymore. The competition for organic views has increased dramatically. Facebook especially is making it harder and harder to get your content seen.
On your Facebook page you should be using the organic targeting tool. It allows even your organic posts to be slightly targeted so it can be sent to the right audiences. This is especially true if you’re a bigger real estate agent. I’ve seen pages with thousands of likes but most of them were out of town real estate agents just wanting to see what one of the big guys was doing. That’s not someone you necessarily want to waste organic views on. So use the organic targeting tool to send it to more relevant audiences.
It’s also important to consider the platform. If you’re on Twitter then maybe your content isn’t relevant the same way it is on Facebook. Twitter is an amazing platform for professional networking which is where I think it has the most value. That same article just isn’t as relevant as a general tweet. I’d find someone local, perhaps a local town councillor or mayor, and tweet them the link directly. They are local and local politicians love promoting good content that promotes their area. Use targeted messages to relevant audiences.
Instagram you need a really good video or photo to accompany it and organic posts don’t allow links. You can only change the link in your profile which means organically you’re only promoting external content one at a time. You can still use your content to create more interest though. By breaking down tidbits from your posts into interesting content which I’ll talk more about later in this post.
Facebook especially has changed to make it more likely that you’ll have to pay to promote your content. You don’t need to pay much. Even $5 can be a good enough budget for a single piece of content. If a piece of content starts taking off then you can expand the budget selectively.
What’s great about Facebook ads is the targeting level. If you were promoting a piece about a local school you can promote it to parents of children under the age of 10. They are the ones deciding which school they want to send their children to. You can be the one helping them make that decision. If they need to move into a new school zone who do you think they are going to get to help them?
Use the Facebook ad targeting features in either the ads manager or power editor on to make sure only interested audiences are seeing your content. Its like segmenting your list with emails. You are just using Facebook to segment the audience.
Make sure you have a Facebook pixel embedded on your site so that when they leave Facebook and go back to Facebook you target them with more ads. They’ve already shown an interest in your content so now you can start showing them even more content.
Once they’re on your post make sure you have the ability to opt-in to your mailing list as well. Especially if you’re able to track where they are opting in from you can automatically segment them. If they are reading an article about schools and opt-in to your mailing list its a pretty safe bet to add the to the parents segment of your database if you segment that in depth.
This is one avenue of content promotion that agents neglect quite a bit. The power of leveraging other people’s networks to promote your content is huge. Start small, look for local bloggers and companies who target a similar demographic. Ask to produce content for them. Can be anything, just find a topic that is somewhat real estate related while relevant to their audience. If its a written post you are doing then use it to link back to one piece of your content.
For example, I did this above in this article. I spoke about a piece of content I written and linked to it. That drives traffic to that piece of content. Now do that on one someone else site. This can work with many different mediums. Just find those targeting the same demographic and find a way to collaborate. Provide value to their audience and some of them will naturally come check out yours.
Repurposing content is a great way to create content quickly. Let’s go back to the example of an article about a school. You created an in-depth report on everything to know about the school. You can quickly re-purpose a section of it for a social media post. Do one post just talking about the sports at the particular school or the music program. It’s part of the larger piece and you are leveraging the main piece.
Think about this very blog post. I’ll be able to take different sections of it and use it to create even more blog posts. Go even more in depth on the different topics I spoke about here. Then link back to this and in the future update this article to include links to the more in depth posts. I may even do one of those in depth posts on someone else platform and link back here.
One good piece of content can be repurposed and distributed in dozens of ways. You just need to get creative about it. As long as what you create still provides value then you can
Promoting your content is the most important part of a content strategy. Without a promotion strategy then there is no point at all to even creating it. Take the time to plan out a strategy.
How do you promote your content? Let me know in the comments below!
*I'm referencing those who actually take time to market a listing properly. Not those who take a screenshot of Google street view, write a poor description, and pop it on the MLS.