Photo Credit: Geoffreymultimedia.com
As we’ve discussed in a recent post, premium content is an important feature of a real estate website. But how do you define genuine quality, and how do you develop a consistent content creation strategy once you’ve decided what kinds of updates you want to publish on your website? In this post, we’ll take you through some straightforward strategies for generating and promoting premium real estate content, so that you can promote your business and improve SEO.
Terms and Definitions
So what is content? Fundamentally, content is information – examples include guidebooks and tutorials, slideshows, video tours, interviews, blog posts, comments threads, and brochures. A common real estate example would be a listings page or virtual tour, but it can also include blog entries on architectural or historical topics, or a live feed from a neighborhood event. Premium content is information your audience can use. In order for that to be the case, it needs to be relevant, accessible, and engaging.
Target Your Niche
To develop a sense of the type of content you want to focus on, you need to decide what kind of information your clients want to see, which means that you’ll need to define your target audience and their specific needs and limitations. If you’re a residential real estate agent trying to reach new leads, your audience may be extremely interested in information about financial concerns – property values, refinancing options, “green” remodeling costs – but they’ll need a much less jargon-heavy format than a group of fellow realtors. Millennial clients looking to purchase their first home may be more social media savvy than retirees looking to sell, but they may also have much less experience with equity and other facets of traditional lending.
Medium and Merit
Another important component of content is format – remember the famous Marshall McLuhan line, “The medium is the message?” He was thinking about the ways that television would revolutionize the transmission of information, but his argument applies as well to the diverse and evolving forms of digital media we have access to today. A successful digital media strategy involves a mix of formats.
Pictures Make the Frame
Keep in mind that graphic and video content has special marketing value. For example, adding a photo to your Facebook ads makes it much more likely that ad content will grab attention, whereas including a video in a blog update means that visitors will spend several extra minutes engaging with your website. Visual content is also extremely shareable content, which makes it vital to any effective marketing strategy. Your real estate focus means that your content is likely already focused on visuals, so look for ways to match text and visual content to maximize the impact of both. For example, if you post video tours, make sure that accompanying text supports your hard work: use consistent formatting, detailed information about the property, social sharing links, contact info, and a lead-capture link.
Your advice to your clients probably includes some staging recommendations, right? You know that some basic cleaning and redecorating can increase the asking price of a home by thousands of dollars. Premium content requires this same attention to detail. A brilliant article won’t impress anyone if it’s filled with typos. Depending on the marketing strategy – email marketing content, for example – grammar and spelling errors could damage trust as well as limiting perceptions of competency, since they’re often associated with spam and scam content. Formatting applies here, too – do you want your clients to see a wall o’ text or consistent paragraph breaks and captioned photographs?
The article Tips for Selling a Luxury Home is a great example of content that offers attention to detail and specific information targeted to the audience.
If you’re going to invest time and effort in content creation, you want to make sure your content reaches as many people as possible. To ensure that content is accessible, make sure it’s archived on your site. If you have a blog, use keyword tags as well as archives that organize by date and topic. Wherever possible, organize posts into series – for example, “Calculating the Cost of a Remodel, Part 3 of 6” – to encourage readers to read them all, and include links at the beginning and end of each post. You can also chop longer posts up to create serial posts – a blog post doesn’t need to be more then 500-750 words long, and can be “bulked up” with visual content.
Harness the Network
Social media sharing is another crucial accessibility issue – whenever you update your site, share and tweet the post so that your followers know to check out your new content, and so that your content helps you build a consistent brand. You can also promote content in replies – retweets and blog comments, for example – to grab traffic from industry leaders with large numbers of followers. Internal links in each post will boost SEO and ensure that customers read multiple posts – check out the examples scattered through this post!
Photo Credit: Innovatewriting.com
Quality and Quantity
You’ll also need to commit to a consistent schedule of frequent and substantial content updates. Visitors to your site will be reassured by signs of an active presence – particularly if they’re contacting you from a long distance. Recent blog and site updates are your chance to impress them with your professional expertise. You can also use your site to give prospective clients a link to current activities and developments in your target neighborhoods and cities, so they begin to feel a sense of investment in a new “hometown.” Frequent updates are also extremely important to search engine rankings, since search algorithms tend to treat new content as more relevant than old content.
Delegate Like a Boss
With all these considerations in mind, it may be worthwhile to consider looking for professional content services. You’ll gain professional writing and editing services as well as SEO and other digital-marketing techniques. Professional content service providers can also assist you in developing a plan that will fit your budget, time constraints, target market, and schedule. If you’re worried about the expense, remember that most content service providers offer highly modular service menus, so that you can decide exactly which services you need. You’ll save time, and you’ll also have the benefit of professional work product – the best way to ensure consistent quality.
Are you interested in learning more about content creation and other elements of real estate site design? At Square 1 Group, we make it our business to create multilayered technology and marketing solutions for our clients, tailoring our approach to your resources and needs. Contact us for a consultation today!