The good news is that there have never been so many real estate companies creating content.
The bad news is that there have never been so many real estate companies creating bad content.
Not trying to be a downer...but after spending almost 30 years creating content for real estate companies, I realize it’s just the standard evolutionary process for this sector. While content marketing is not a new phenomenon in the overall business sector at large, it’s a totally new trend in the real estate world. So, it’s expected that, 1) it took forever for real estate companies to recognize the importance of content marketing, and 2) there will be a great learning curve to master good content.
I am a passionate believer that content marketing will one day, hopefully soon, revolutionize the way real estate companies tell their stories, build their brands and drive business. I have written about it extensively in this blog and I have spent the past few years building my own content platform to host all of this content. Prior to that, I spent 25 years building my PR firm, Beckerman PR, into one of the leading agencies representing real estate companies.
So for those that are thinking about creating content and building a content marketing program, here are the top five biggest mistakes I see companies making:
1) Self-serving content
Unfortunately I read a lot of content that is so self-serving that I doubt anyone will read it (or if they do they will not return for more). Writing a blog about how wonderful your product, property or company is isn’t the best way to engage prospects in your brand narrative. Be more subtle. Provide content that actually has a benefit to the reader. Educate them. Inspire them. Provide insights that they can use to enhance their business. That’s how you build your engagement, and in doing so, promote yourself and your company as a thought leader in your particular niche.
2) No clear strategy
So much of what I see lacks a coherent strategy. Before you launch any new piece of content or a content plan, it’s critical that you have a clear strategy. What’s the objective of the program? Who is the target audience? What are the core messages we want to communicate? What is the CTA? Creating content for the sake of creating content isn’t a strategy!
3) Not sharing
What’s the purpose of creating great content if no one sees it! Too often, companies make the mistake of thinking the world will travel to their website and consume all of their good content that resides there. NOT! That thinking is very old school to be honest. Most people aren’t visiting websites anymore. And that trend won’t reverse itself. The world of news and content is all about platforms and networks. People are getting their information from places like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, The News Funnel and more. So, if you aren’t sharing your content across multiple social channels and platforms, you aren’t getting your message out effectively.
4) No engagement with others
In the same vein, not getting other bloggers, professionals and sites involved in helping tell your story and build your narrative is nuts. Again, too often content is being created in a vacuum and the incorrect assumption is made that people will come find it. WRONG! Getting your content on other blog sites, doing Q and A’s with other thought leaders, and interacting with other bloggers is a really effective way to engage others to share your content and build your audience.
5) Not being consistent
The thing that drives me crazy the most is when I see such inconsistency in the frequency of content. If you’re going to write once a month, it’s not ideal but at least stick to it. Weekly, awesome! But when I see no activity for several months on a blog, I feel compelled to reach out and tell that company or professional that you are actually doing more harm than good. What you are saying is that you are someone that cannot follow up on something you started. I would then ask “Is that how you treat your customers?” “Is that how you run your company?” Being inconsistent is more than just not being effective at your content strategy, it’s a reflection of who you are and how you run your business. If you are going to commit to something, commit to it!
I hope this helps brands refocus their efforts and create even more great content. I am absolutely convinced that creating content and brands becoming media are the most important, impactful and effective marketing strategies I have seen in a very long time.
But rather than just doing it, do it well!