Starting a real estate blog takes time, energy, and yes, money. Half the battle is setting things up from design, navigation & layout, to a solid foundation of content. The other half of the battle is keeping things up-to-date.
If you don’t do the upkeep, you’re going to lose site visitors (and money) to your competitors. Period.
Here’s some of what you can expect…
It’s Gonna Take Time & Energy
- Consistency matters. This means showing up day after day, week after week, and writing for your intended audience. What you’ll come to find is that you’re going to attract the type of client that you’re writing for. So if you want to work with buyers, write content for buyers.
- Writing takes time. Sometimes a post might take 30 minutes, other times it might take a few hours. Your best bet, is to schedule time to write and get in the habit of writing just a little bit each and every day.
- Building an audience doesn’t just happen over-night. Dale Chumbley wrote one blog post every day for 365 Days. In that time he grew a community to over 16,000 Facebook fans and tons of blog readers. He established himself as the local community expert. But again, he showed up day-in and day-out for 365 days without ever missing a beat.
- Jay Thompson is the biggest tinkerer I know (in a good way). He’s constantly testing new things, changing things to find what works and what doesn’t. Ask him how many hours he’s spent on his website to date? (Too many to count I’m sure). Now he’s sporting a fresh new design and I’m sure he still feels like there’s work to do. My point here, is that you’re website will always feel like it’s a “work in-progress” and that’s ok.
- Sometimes, you’re going to hit a creative wall. You might call it a funk. “What do I write about next?” Or “I don’t know what to say.” These are all phases that you’ll experience along the way. (Hint: Real Estate Blog Topics is designed to help you burst through those phases).
- It might be months before you generate your first lead from your Real Estate blog. Ines Hegedus-Garcias says it took her 6 months before generating a lead from her blog: Miamism.com.
- People won’t always comment on your posts. After all, what can you say about a Real Estate Market Report or a Mortgage Update? Not a whole lot. Sometimes, people don’t want to comment publicly (or even at all). That does not however mean that they’re not reading. Look at your analytics, what posts do people seem to be enjoying the most? Focus on delivering more of that.
It’s Gonna Cost Money
Among some of the services you can expect to pay for include…
- Web hosting with someone like Bluehost. Cost = Less than $100 for the year. For managed hosting, nightly backups, site security and more, check out Web Synthesis (by Copyblogger Media).
- A premium WordPress Theme like AgentPress. Cost = $99.95 one-time fee.
- An IDX product like dsSearchAgent or dsIDXpress (Disclaimer: I work for Diverse Solutions).
- For website security and malware cleanup, I recommend Sucuri Security. Cost = $89.99/year.
- Email marketing from someone like Aweber or Mailchimp. Cost = Between $10 – $20 per month. MailChimp does have a free version of their product, but it includes an ad at the bottom of the emails and you can’t schedule drip emails so I recommend upgrading to the paid version.
Of course, you don’t need to pay for all of those things but if you’re serious about treating your blog as a lead generation tool, those are the ones that I recommend (at a minimum).
Over to you…
How long have you had your Real Estate Blog? What services do you pay for to run your blog every month? If you knew then, what you know now, what would you do differently in starting your Real Estate Blog?