Real Estate Pros: Is Your Content Marketing Efficient?

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SEPTEMBER 2017

The State of Content Marketing in the Real Estate Industry

Home buyers are Internet-savvy these days. In 2015, a third of them found a new home through a real estate agent, but 44 percent did so through the Internet, based on data from the National Association of Realtors, and 47 percent read at least 3-5 pieces of content before reaching out to sales people, according to HubSpot. In 2017, people haven’t gotten any shyer of the Web.

Here is a look at content marketing by professional in this industry:

Real Estate in General: Real estate professionals are increasing the percentage of spending for online marketing. According to Onboard Informatics, 56 percent of respondents said they most on buying leads. Social media was a distant second at 17 percent, while 5 percent of real estate marketing professionals in the study said they spend the most on their websites.

Real Estate Agents: For 35 percent of real estate agents in the study, the largest portion of their marketing budget is typically social media. A full 20 percent said they spend more on purchasing leads. Another eight percent they spend more on their website than other marketing strategies, but just as many said they spend the most on branding.

Brokers/Owners: More real estate brokers and owners spent more for purchasing leads than anything else (58 percent), while 14 percent were most invested in social media. For any of these groups, flyers, mailers, pay-per-click, and other types of marketing were not prioritized except for by a very small percentage of professionals.

Marketers: For 80 percent of marketers, buying leads was the top priority. Social media was also a second-place finisher for them, with 7 percent spending more there than other types of marketing.

Content Marketing Essentials in Real Estate

Real estate buyers and sellers seem to be attracted to certain types of content. A strategy focusing on what they are looking for should your priority. If you can provide value to an audience, then it’s more likely to attract prospects, nurture leads, and gain customers and business. A blog (and your content in general) should be:

  • Experiential: Don’t just go on about the features of a new house. When people are looking to purchase, they want to know how it will meet their expectations and what it will mean to them and their family. Home buyers are spending a lot of money. Focus on topics such as living on a budget, or what there is to do in the local area or city near a home.
  • Resourceful: Write about topics other real estate agents aren’t. This means focusing on relevant issues such as helping children adapt to a new school, how adults can meet new friends after moving, or organizing storage space. Post more than 16 blog articles per month online, and you can get 3.5X more traffic than websites with just 0-4 new posts. In real estate, long, high-quality posts generally attract more loyal followers.
  • Diverse: Blog posts are cool to have, but they are not enough. Content marketing in real estate requires making a vast amount of information easily accessible. Property search tools help prospective buyers quickly find listings in their price range, while e-books, checklists, and free email courses are enticing. And don’t forget the seemingly ever-popular videos and slide websites for communicating your message.

Any of these can increase ROI. Despite all the options available, word-of-mouth still works; reach out people in your own network, including business partners, colleagues, and family members, even when it’s a new blog post you have. Contact current and former clients too in any way you can. Email and LinkedIn messages can help nurture your network. In fact, collecting emails is an effective way to keep people informed in the real estate industry. Those who opt-in to receive updates tend to be good leads.

The challenges in content marketing in this sector include offering the reader what they need. Long form blogs of 2,500+ words do better, because they can support well-researched facts and statistics. Promoting content can be daunting, but tools such as Facebook ads help, while others aid in the content creation process. Ideation tools such as Buzzsomo help, and CoSchedule can serve a vital purpose in organizing your content editorial calendar. Add great writers to your team and the quality of the work alone will attract readers and leads.

Examples of Successful Content Marketing

Realtor.com publishes content many times per day, covering industry news, buying advice, and housing trends. It provides advice to sellers and for people who are moving. This large and diverse site even provides resources for real estate professionals, demonstrating that content diversity and including everyone in the process are the keys to success.

Julian Pilarski is a successful real estate marketer. His website does more than provide information on listings, news, and appraisals. It is a launching point to take advantage of services such as logo creation. He’s created numerous real estate videos with sharp branding and has integrated interactive content such as a versatile mortgage payment calculator, on his site.

Judith Weiniger has established a web-presence loaded with content, from a large blog (with feature stories highlighted on the homepage, to a plethora of local resources covering food, schools, tips, and retirement.

Attracting Business with Content

Content marketing in real estate takes patience. The more content you have, the more valuable a resource your website and business can be. Blog posts, infographics, e-books, and videos are great to have. Nothing guarantees success, but you can boost potential by instantly grabbing the reader’s attention with an inviting message.

Attention spans seem to be getting shorter. Content should take little time to digest. Even longer pieces can be broken up into shorter segments. It should be easy for a reader to scan and understand.

Anything you produce must serve a purpose. Help your readers solve a problem, learn something new, or even take a minute out of their day to laugh. They must see value in what you say. Then they are more likely to read more and possibly interact with your business, thereby becoming valuable leads, even if they choose to start with liking, sharing, and commenting on your posts.

Remember, a real estate audience is looking for anything that has personal value. Focus on this and content marketing in real estate can take your business to new levels.

 

Are you working in real estate? Did you like what you read? You can find out a lot more, plus a few essential tips on how you can increase your business’ visibility with content from the Iris Content report.

Over the next few days, Iris Content will offer each industry its own specific report in a short blog and for readers who are also interested in growing up with us, a series of larger state of the industry reports will be available for all relevant industries that have an online presence. If you are interested in trends in content marketing and what your specific industry should publish to stay relevant and improve ROI, come back for more professional reports from our team of expert writers. Contact our Chief Content Officer for the full report and a complimentary blog or web page written by our content professionals.

Annie Ianko

Chief Content Officer

Annie has 20 years of experience as an editor and content creator and manager. With work in television and written media, she has dedicated her past 10 years to learning the ropes of online content creation, from writing to editing, from SEO to content management.

Contact Annie for more news about the content marketing world.

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