No one wants to be marketed to these days. Commercials are skipped, ad pages flipped and pop-ups closed out. Good ole relationship-building is the new way to convert leads, and content marketing — this week’s Buzzword of the Week — plays a large role.

Exactly what it sounds like, content marketing is the process of creating, posting and sharing some form of text or media as an indirect means of marketing certain products. Businesses big and small use content marketing as a way to drive traffic to their sites.

How does content marketing work?

It’s beneficial to brands for a number of reasons. Providing free, valuable information shows your customers you’re knowledgeable, credible and approachable. It gives prospects a reason to explore your site and learn about real estate through your eyes. Once they are on your site, you can promote your services and nudge them to contact you about a listing or to schedule a consultation. 

Source: https://www.adidas.com/us/blog

The Adidas blog is a good example of content marketing at work. See how they don’t try to hard-sell you on Adidas products, but position the brand as knowledgeable about working out and athletics. Here’s an example.

This blog post gives readers actionable tips on a real-world situation that they need advice on– in this case, training tips for working out with your partner. Then, once readers have finished reading the blog, they’ll find a link to Adidas training gear. 

Source: https://www.adidas.com/us/blog

It’s a very effective tactic. If the company were to use a headline to the effect of “Buy Adidas training Gear,” it may get some clicks, but it’s a boldly direct way to approach the matter. By easing into the product, via a relatable headline and article, you have a runway to convince people they want or have a need for your service or product. 

If your content marketing efforts are effective in authority and authenticity, people will visit your blog more than once for additional information. When they are ready to make a move, the trust you built will go a long way in putting you top of mind.

What are some forms of content marketing?

1. Blogs

As mentioned earlier, a blog is a typical manifestation of content marketing. Maintaining a blog takes some time, but it’s well worth the effort. Posting regular blog content has become something of a rite of passage for real estate agents these days. 

If you know your target neighborhood well, create a regular column that continually highlights a different aspect of the neighborhood. Profile your favorite success stories through Q&As with past clients or tell the story from your perspective. Help readers imagine themselves in your past clients’ shoes. Give your readers an idea of what to look for when buying a house. Offer a downloadable guide to buying and selling a house. Give away tips on how to make your home look nice for an open house.

Get creative and have fun with it (don’t forget authenticity!).

2. Google My Business Posts

With Google My Business profiles becoming must-haves for real estate agents, there’s a need to not only claim one and maintain it with regular reviews, but to appeal to those viewers with new photos and valuable, personality-filled posts.

Google business profiles help you show up when people search for you, real estate agents near them, or homes for sale in a particular area. 

Treat Google business posts like another social media channel to broadcast engaging content to the high-intent leads you’re appealing to on Google. When you post photos or listings or blogs within your profile, searchers notice. And since you’re able to link to a website of your own within your posts, listings are a great option. 

3. Email newsletters

Email newsletters are a popular form of content marketing within the real estate industry since emails are a common touchpoint between buyer and agent. You should be making the most of your contacts at all times, and sending content out to a listserv is an effective mode of attack. It can help you not only engage prospective clients but keep in touch with past customers. 

Real estate coaches often suggest agents make multiple touch points with their entire sphere of influence every month. An easy way to attain that is to set up an email newsletter in your customer relationship management (CRM) that highlights a few of your best pieces of blog content from the past month. 

You absolutely need to drop a call to action (CTA) at the end of the email, telling readers to forward it to a friend who is considering buying or selling some property. This will help make sure you’re advertising not just to potential clients but people who know prospective clients. 

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