You’ve heard for years about how blogging and content marketing can help drive your online success. That is no longer true: it’s now more than help, it’s essential to create authentic and engaging content for communicating with your audience.
In fact, companies that blog actively generate 67% more leads per month than those that do not blog. And according to HubSpot, organizations that spend more than 50% of their lead generation budget on inbound marketing report significantly lower cost-per-lead than those who spend 50% or more on outbound lead generation. That’s not all: search (SEO) leads have a 14.6% close rate, while outbound sourced leads have a 1.7% close rate.
So the question becomes, how do you turn your website into a community building, thought leadership, lead generation machine?
It’s not really magic. Research, planning, organization and consistency are the keys to crushing it with content marketing. Creating the content is not the first thing to focus on. It’s figuring out what to write, who to target, what questions to answer, which keywords to focus on and the right calls-to-action to include. The biggest mistake that most real estate professionals make is pawning the planning job off to someone else or worse, just hiring some company to fill your website with content. That is a complete waste of time and money. You know more about your business, community, and customers than most anyone else, and that’s the insight that your customers love you for. Make sure you control the brainstorming and planning portion of the process so your greatest assets can build relationships online and off.
This is where our new content marketing editorial calendar template becomes super valuable! This free template is designed to keep you on track as you create content for your real estate blogging needs that your fans, prospects, and customers will find useful and fall in love with.
With the help of our friend Katie Lance, CEO and Owner of Katie Lance Consulting and Chief Strategist for Inman News, we’ve broken it down into four areas:
This is the master brainstorm for all your content creation. The dates on you place here are more general but do include content topics, content types, customer personas, keywords, content creators, and distribution channels.
Monthly Editorial Calendar
This is what you follow daily to get stuff done. Copy items from the Brainstorm to this calendar as you decide to take your ideas and turn them into content to be published. We suggest making a copy of this sheet for every month that you are working on so your planning doesn’t get overwhelming.
Demand Generation Planner
Good content should inspire action by your audience and you should be able to create multiple pieces of content from one topic. Use the demand generation planner to work out how your content ties together, which pieces you will require contact info to download, and how you will recycle content for maximum exposure.
We are just touching on keyword research here, but it’s important to spend the time to research the keywords you are targeting for your website and your content. That way, each piece of content can help support your efforts to improve search ranking.
Let us know if you have any best practices you would like to share.