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Stop Whining, Start Blogging

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Don’t want to blog? We don’t CARE! (Ok, we do care, but hear us out). It doesn’t matter if you don’t like blogging. You HAVE to do it anyways! Blogging is one of the MOST effective things you can do to promote your business online.

– Websites with blogs have 434% more indexed pages in Google than those that do not.
– Marketers who use blogs get 67% more leads that those that don’t.
– 47% of buyers view 3-5 pieces of content before purchasing or contacting a company.

And in order to help you, we’ve officially launched our newest class, “Stop Whining, Start Blogging”. We’re sharing some of our biggest blogging secrets and walking you step-by-step through our best practices to guarantee you’ll be successful!  Click here to learn more about this class.

 

Do You Blog?

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Inspire and engage your audience by creating consistent content. Is blogging a word that glazes your eyes over, maybe brings out a bit of a cold sweat and even creates some anxiety? We promise it doesn’t have to be that stressful.

Who are you? What do you do? Why do you do it?

Understanding who you are, what you do and why you do it is the key to what will make YOUR blogs interesting. Do you feel like you don’t have anything to share that people will want to read? We bet you’re wrong! Have you ever heard the snowflake analogy? It is so very important(we really can’t stress this enough) to clearly identify, then always be mindful of, your differentiator(s) and unique value proposition(s), and not just when we’re talking about blogging…but as the base of everything you do in your business!

Know your audience?

We’re not just talking about your potential clients here (though of course that is a major part of the audience you want to be in front of) but we also recommend you stretch a bit and think about who might refer clients or business to you. Do you have strategic partnerships or collaborative and complimentary business relationships that might be prone to sending business your way? Don’t forget about friends and family too. Having a clear understanding of ‘who’ needs to know exactly what you do and why you’re special is crucial.

Help them help you!

We are always using this simple phrase ‘help them help you’. Think about it, how many times have you read an email, a blog or an article that you’ve wanted to share with a friend, family member, colleague or your network(s)? Do you share? Have you shared? If you did or do share content, think about how easy or difficult it was. If you wanted to share with your network(s), was the email, blog or article enabled with easily sharable links – like Twitter, Facebook (to personal or a page you manage), Google+, LinkedIn, etc…? If you wanted to share with an individual, how did you do it? Did you forward if it was an email? Did you just copy and paste the URL if it was a blog or article? Make your content easily sharable! Remember that old Vidal Sassoon commercial “and she told two friends, then she told two friends…” help them help you!

How often? How much?

We usually recommend you write at least 2 blogs per month. We also usually recommend you utilize these blogs in your email campaigns, post to social media and so on. As for length…that depends on what we’re talking about, but for blogs the basic rule of thumb is 500-600 words – although you can do as little as a few sentences or much longer. When you use your blogs in your email campaigns we often recommend you share the first two paragraphs then have a link back to the website so they can read more, which increases traffic to your website!

What should you write?

You’ve identified what you do and why you do it. We’re guessing there are all kinds of things you can write about that your audience will find interesting. Can you put together a list of FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)? Maybe keep a note pad near by and jot down ideas as they come to you. We promise that it’s a lot like exercise… hard at first, then it starts to feel good and gets easier the more you do it. Check out some tips for dreaming up content here. We guarantee that the more prepared and committed you are, the more successful it will be. Consistency pays off BIG time!

Happy Blogging.

Are You Where Your Audience Is?

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Seriously, understanding human behavior, or more specifically your audience’s content consumption habits, is key to creating consistent quality content that will keep your current clients, prospects and brand ambassadors engaged.  We know you’ve already clearly identified your audience and we know you’re totally committed to producing really great organic content for your social posts, blogs, email campaigns, newsletters, videos, white papers, articles or other information but really identifying how your audience is consuming that information is key to your integrated marketing campaigns and efforts being effective.  We don’t want you to just feel like a hamster spinning on a wheel after all!   We often refer to ourselves as ‘Professional Spaghetti Throwers’ because we are constantly throwing spaghetti against the wall and quantifying what is sticking, what isn’t, what we should shelf, trash or invest more time, money and energy into.  We do this within our own business and for all of our clients every day, every week, every month…it is SO important to really understand which efforts are creating a positive ROI – makes sense, right?

We often get that glazed over eye, deer in the headlights, reaction when first discussing social media campaigns with prospective clients or when giving a presentation or workshop because so many of you feel overwhelmed enough already with the amount of work it takes to run your business and the thought of adding social media with all those different platforms can make your head spin.  But, it is often not as complex as most think.  No, really.  Oftentimes, it’s really a matter of identifying which platforms make the most sense for your business to reach your audience.

As an example…

Let’s say you’re a realtor. You’re going to want to have a professional logo and a solid web presence that clearly represents your differentiator and unique value proposition, a Facebook page, a comprehensive personal LinkedIn profile and a company profile.  All of these will of course be streamlined with a clean consistent style and with tons of relevant engaging content.  Are you still with us?  Once you’ve mastered these basics, which we’ll refer to here as the super important foundation, (which is often the hardest part to build) the rest is fun! …Well, for us it’s fun, let’s just hope it’s not painful for you! Now you’re ready to add some more floors to that solid foundation.

Instagram: What about Instagram?  We’re guessing you’ve got some pretty nice listings and/or you’ve sold some pretty nice properties to some happy clients?  Take pictures when you’re working and post away!  You’ll need to continue to follow a fairly consistent style or theme.  Here are some great tips!

Snapchat: Okay, we know your 13 year old uses Snapchat – you must be thinking we’re crazy.  Why on earth would we be suggesting you should use it for your business?  Here’s an eye-opening article by Gary Vaynerchuk that’ll back up our suggestion and prove that we’re not going cuckoo!  It all goes back to understanding your audience, so this platform may or may not be a good idea.  If you’re selling some stylish condos in an highly sought after area that is super popular to 20 and 30 somethings, Snapchat is a great idea, but if you’re selling retirement properties…probably not so much!

Pinterest: Women are BIG decision makers and major players in the consumer real estate market so chances are Pinterest is a no brainer for the realtors out there.  Here is a great article that talks specifically to that.

We didn’t touch on video in this blog but let’s just say if content is king then video content is the king’s KING!  Video is consumed more and more and if done right, you can’t go wrong with video content.

We’ll be following up next week with a very beefy blog all about video content and best practices for using it in your integrated marketing strategy.  Until then, happy content creating!

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