Your goal is to have as many blog readers in your area as you can get and the absolute best way to do that is to provide real service which should include local information they can’t get easily elsewhere.
Of course, you want to cover local real estate news, including listings, sales, development, store opening and closings, etc. Those are the obvious kinds of things you want to cover.
While that may seem like enough, over time you can develop your blog in such a way that people will want to read it and, in fact, will help you get it written.
There was a time when almost every community had at least one truly local newspaper – that’s no longer true. You can take advantage of that gap by providing the coverage that’s missing.
Now, think about the neighborhood your servicing. What kinds of frustrations have you heard from the people who live there? Make a list. What kinds of things are they interested in? Make a list. What information seems to be hard to find out? Make a list.
Those lists will provide sparks for creating a truly helpful blog – one that truly serves your neighborhood.
For example, you might want to include:
- Local weather.
- School calendar, including timely notice of closures.
- Community calendar – gathered from around your community. As you and your blog become known for providing up-to-date community information, service groups will begin contacting you to add their notices.
- How and where to report such things as potholes and broken sidewalks.
- Library hours and notice of book sales and holiday closures.
- Soccer, Little League, Pop Warner and other athletic signup information for kids.
You know your community best. Chances are you know what information is missing or hard to find. When you provide that people will come to your blog and site because they want that information. Folks in wine country might want to feature wine tastings while those in urban areas might include announcements of hyper-local businesses.
People will also begin to perceive you as a trusted resource, which is exactly what you want.
When it comes to blogging it’s better to under promise and over deliver rather than the other way around. Start with your listings, and/or your company listings.
Decide how much more time you want to devote to your blog – once you get familiar with it you can probably create a decent blog post in an hour – certainly no more than two.
Schedule that time. Although some bloggers get away with writing posts whenever, to build an audience that trusts you it makes much more sense to be reasonably predictable. Every fourth Tuesday is probably better than willy-nilly anytime you feel like it.
As you become more confident and proficient at creating posts, you can, if you want, increase the frequency.
If you have an assistant, having them write blog posts can also work.
Adding a blog to your iHOUSE can be a great way to differentiate yourself in the neighborhood you’re servicing.
What’s your take? Do you have questions or concerns about adding a blog? Ask them in comments and I’ll probably answer them here.