16 Tools For Finding Great Real Estate Blog Content
By Matthew Bushery
About Inbound Marketing
It can be difficult to develop original, thought-provoking real estate content marketing collateral. Enter content curation, the process of sharing others’ articles and infographics while providing your own unique spin on them to make them your own.
Curating content used to be a laborious task which demanded time and energy to find content to share, but several content marketing tools have arisen that do this work for you. Here are the cream-of-the-crop curation tools that can help you find the best content to repurpose for your real estate content marketing.
Though primarily a means to share your own real estate blog content, pinning others’ articles, graphics, and videos is a big part of practically every user’s Pinterest account. This social network can reveal news that is relevant and interesting to your audience, meaning it’s useful to share this content elsewhere online.
Use your account to find content that can be repurposed on your real estate blog and, subsequently, through your other social media profiles. Technically, you could use Facebook, Twitter, and even LinkedIn for similar content curation purposes, but where Pinterest has the advantage over those social outlets in this regard is that it’s a primarily visual medium: You can see countless pins on a single page, making the network more easily scannable than other social media sites and allowing you to more quickly pinpoint content you want to share.
Though traditional newspapers have made their way online and have impressive digital setups, arguably the best means to discover the same news is through Google News. The news platform offered by the search giant makes it simple to read up on the latest and most important news stories as they happen and from multiple sources. The search function with News also affords users the chance to pinpoint specific topics they want to know more about or keep up-to-date with — in your case, perhaps searching for real estate content marketing related to your local market will prove most useful for your audience.
If you don’t want to manually search for the most recent news articles and feature stories pertaining to your market, you can set up individual Google Alerts for specific topics and have any new content that’s published on the subjects delivered straight to your inbox, thus saving you loads of time.
The intuitive blogging platform developed by Twitter Cofounders Evan Williams and Biz Stone back in 2012 is a phenomenal place for anyone to share insights on topics they’re passionate about — for instance, the housing and mortgage markets or the state of home buying and selling.
Though you would be wise to set up an account on Medium to share your own thoughts, ideas, and opinions on subjects near and dear to your heart, you can also greatly benefit from the site through its bookmark and email features. Once you find topics and articles your local real estate audience would find educational or absorbing, bookmark them and include links to specific content or the pages of the authors behind those posts through social media. Similarly, sign up to receive routine email digests that are customized based on your reading habits on the site. From there, you can quickly scan the content shared with you and reshare it with your followers as preferred.
Services like List.ly allow you to create lists (similar to how you can create boards on Pinterest) of the content you want to share with your audience in a visually appealing format. Creating a list is a cinch: Just decide on a theme for your list (e.g. “Home Buying Resources”), write a description about what your list entails, then fill that list with pertinent content.
The main jist of List.ly is to use your lists as alternate blogs you can personally share on social media and your website, and inspire others to share online as well. Though you may end up getting shares from people who happen to stumble upon your list due to similar interest in that content (in other words, not your core audience), getting others to spread your lists can still prove helpful in getting your name out there. Embedding your lists on your site is possible via a WordPress plugin as well, so consider downloading it if your site is hosted on the platform.
Avid news junkies and general reading enthusiasts will most definitely get a kick out of Feedly. Brands and professionals can create their own sleek-looking feed using the platform by locating news outlets and stories their audiences enjoy reading and incorporate content from those sources and topics automatically into their feeds.
The draw to Feedly is its minimalist style. Oftentimes, sites where people gather news can be difficult to navigate — whether it’s a company’s official website or a news outlet that shows dozens of stories on each page. Using Feedly to quickly find the content shared by these organizations means there’s no need to worry about missing out on a blog post or news article. Everything a brand with a Feedly account shares online can be found in their feed.
Though geared at marketing agencies who supply content for clients in all kinds of industries, Shareist should definitely be considered a potential addition to your set of expert real estate marketing tools as well. A built-in RSS feed allows users to keep tabs on content they care about, while the editorial calendar feature helps users schedule ideas for content and repurposed content for publication on their websites and social media channels, or via email. Integrations with the most popular content management systems (CMSs), including WordPress and Blogger, and email marketing automation platforms, like MailChimp, means it’s simple for users to embed their pages of curated content onto their blogs or main sites and in their email campaigns. Moreover, Shareist works seamlessly with Google Analytics and automatically creates UTM parameters for your links, so you can measure the impact of your curated posts, emails, and social media messages.
Running your own news service may sound like a daunting task, but Paper.li makes doing so effortless. The content curation tool pulls in articles, images, videos, and other pieces of content from nearly 150 million sites daily, meaning you have a seemingly endless amount of resources at your disposal from whom you can find the right content to share. Narrow down the sources to those where you primarily find engaging content and search key terms and phrases associated with the content you typically like to share. Paper.li will then find the best content matches for you. To make your “paper” stand out, you can customize the aesthetic of your news roundup with various fonts, colors, and sizes. The second your paper for the day is ready, social sharing buttons make it easy to dispense your curated list to leads and clients, while email subscription buttons with each edition you share allow readers to get your papers regularly in their inboxes.
Marketed as the tool professionals can use to determine their online influence via social media and their general digital presence, Klout actually offers much more than just reputation management. It also provides a way for people to share valuable content with their audiences that can in turn improve their Klout scores and transform their online presences for the better.
Klout shows an array of content that suits users’ interests via an RSS-esque feed, but where it stands apart from other online news feeds is that the service provides more detailed information on the sources sharing content, allows users to only see topics that appeal to them, shows them optimal times to share content on social media, and gives the ability to personalize messages before sharing the content. While achieving a high Klout score can certainly help you gauge your online influence and enhance your real estate agent marketing, your best means for using the platform is to find thought-provoking and entertaining content that your audience loves — and will keep them coming back to your social presence for more.
Telling a great story means providing plenty of context for readers: Knowing the who, what, when, where, and why behind the crux of the story is the only way to truly inform readers on important subjects. Enter Storify, which makes sharing everything from breaking news to hot topics a cinch.
Storify’s drag-and-drop CMS functionality allows users to grab social media posts that it collects based on users’ interests and searches and input them into their posts on the subject matters they write about. Once they want to share, users can embed their Storify articles on their sites and through social media. On Twitter in particular, those with Storify accounts can create easily readable Twitter cards that allow users to swipe right and left to see the entire story. If you run an agency, the enterprise plan offers good value, as multiple agents can use the service to tell stories via their online real estate marketing presences.
A digital magazine that selects the most appropriate content to share on your website daily based on your distinct, pre-set preferences: That sums up what Kuratur, an intriguing beta content curation tool, offers users. This WordPress plugin doesn’t come with many bells or whistles, but it’s the layout that likely appeals to those agents who either have sites hosted on the WordPress platform who simply want to play around with plugins to see what makes their site look and function best. More than one magazine via Kuratur can be published to your site, and you dictate the frequency with which new content — which can come from Twitter accounts, Facebook pages, and blogs, among other places — appears in your magazines.
Some of the most sophisticated-looking online magazines come from this expert resource, which doubles as one of the best content curation tools around. Think of practically any subject and there is more than likely at least one Flipboard dedicated to it. The digital magazines created through the platform are attractive in just about every way: from the layout that aptly uses whitespace, to the easy-to-navigate page structure, to its responsive setup (meaning it looks good regardless of the device you use).
When it comes to content curation, finding Flipboards of interest is painless. Just search for one broad topic and Flipboard will find you the top hits and all other relevant searches related to it so you can find anything and everything you want to know on a subject that’s been discussed in its many published magazines. Tap and hold any story that interests you and a bevy of sharing options will appear.
If speed and precision are your two biggest desires in a content curation tool, Scoop.it is well-suited for you. Setting up a profile and topic search for your Scoop.it page takes just a couple minutes. Once you’re up and running on the site, you’ll find content from across the web that closely relates to the subject(s) and is recommended by regular curators on the platform who have similar interests. From here, you can further dwindle the exact pieces you’d most like to share with your audience and do just that. Your page is optimized for search as well, meaning you can reap the benefits of organic search, given you produce Scoop.it pages on popularly searched topics. One of the most beloved features of the service is the white-label branding it affords users: Add your logo and color scheme with ease so you can remind viewers who’s behind your page.
This content curation tool might be considered best solely for big agencies who can afford to shell out a good chunk of change. Having said that, the vast features BuzzSumo offers may tempt smaller agencies as well. The solution relays which content is hitting the mark on social media engagement-wise, allows for filtering by content type (articles, videos, infographics, etc.), and has an influencer exploration tool that permits users to identify content from the top content producers and thought leaders online. Setting up alerts also allows for daily email digests to be sent to your inbox, ensuring you stay up to speed on the most recent content that the platform believes would pique your interest.
One of the issues with content curation is many professionals and brands share low-quality content that either doesn’t offer much (or any) value or comes from a disreputable source that employs black hat SEO practices. The good news is curation tools like CurationSuite helps users eliminate choosing content from these sources altogether with its simple green (good content) and red (bad content) icons. The nifty WordPress plugin allows users to search for videos and articles from Google, Yahoo, Bing, SlideShare, and YouTube, as well as social media posts from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google+, so you can scour the web right from your WordPress dashboard and implement the content you want to share without having to toggle back and forth between several screens.
Those who run agencies and brokerages and want to save their team members time from having to source great real estate content marketing materials can do so simply with Trap.it. Users can set up — you guessed it — traps that capture content that fits your search criteria. Once the platform has gathered the desired quality and number of posts you request, you can manually share them with your home buyer and seller leads or have the system automate that process for you. Measuring the performance of your curated social posts and blog entries is a cinch as well, as the service has proprietary analytics that monitor the engagement levels of your team’s content over time so you can improve your content searches, selections, and scheduling gradually over time.
Aside from content curation, what other real estate marketing ideas do you want to implement in your strategy? Tell us what you plan on trying with your marketing plans soon in the comments below.
Published on May 29, 2015
Written by Matthew Bushery
I'm the Sr. Content Creator for Placester, where I educate real estate professionals about modern marketing and, in turn, help agents and brokers make the most of their online presence, earn more traffic, and generate more leads and business.