Digital marketing is a game of thrones – borrowing audiences and networking – the entire marketing family is made up of several royal (and equally important) family members including content marketing, search engine marketing and social media marketing.
You’ve no doubt heard the phrase “Content is King” but do you know where this famous saying originated? It’s was the title of an article published by Bill Gates in 1996.
Fast forward 20 years and content still reigns supreme in the world of marketing communications.
So, how well did Bill Gate predict the future of the interweb? Have a read of Bill’s ‘Content is King’ article yourself, it paints an uncanny picture of the world we live in today. He even mentions video!
Bills shares that “If people are to be expected to put up with turning on a computer to read a screen, they must be rewarded with deep and extremely up-to-date information that they can explore at will. They need to have audio, and possibly video. They need an opportunity for personal involvement.”
Bills’ predictions came true but why does content rule so well?
All hail the King – why content trumps traditional advertising
Here are some great reasons why content marketing rules the digital roost:
1. Digital content is cheaper to produce than traditional advertising.
2. Content marketing can be used to great effect by small businesses. We can’t all afford TV ads or large billboard signs, but we can think niche and write compelling and frequent content allowing us to compete on more of a level playing field with the big brands.
“Content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the Internet…” Bill Gates
3. Content in the form of free advice positions your real estate brand as a thought leader. Whatever your specialism; sales, property management, project marketing or commercial property, make sure you share tips with potential clients.
4. Curate localised content and feature the collective knowledge of real estate industry veterans from across your patch. Such as local conveyancers, home stylists, landscape gardeners, specialist tradespeople and so forth. Let these people contribute to your content, and they’ll help you to cover more topics and be more relevant and helpful to residents in your neighbourhood.
5. Content marketing, when looked at in its simplest form, is providing answers to questions that potential home sellers seek. Every day your next client asks Google (using those all important keywords and phrases) for help. Make sure you supply content to Google to help answer them. This search engine marketing (SEM) strategy will have leads knocking at your door.
6. Content helps fuel digital word-of-mouth. People will point (URL links) to your information from their website, blog or via their social media shares. These inbound links tell Google that your content is popular and well worth the read.
“The broad opportunities for most companies involve supplying information or entertainment.” Bill Gates
7. Google and Facebook now rank content by giving it a relevancy score. They no longer rely on the search words and phrases alone. This improvement is a big win for real people like us with real stories to share.
8. Great content builds your authority not just within Google’s search rankings but in the minds of prospective clients. Great content marketing grows your reputation, notoriety and helps people come to trust you. Let’s face it; homeowners are more likely to sell their property through someone who shares their knowledge and sounds like they know what they are talking about!
9. Your content marketing strategy must be treated as an additional, less-obvious, product. One that you give away for free in exchange for more visibility, interest and enquiry.
10. The whole point of content marketing is to create as many points of entry to your website, and therefore your business, as possible.
The biggest misconception about sharing your knowledge and know-how for free is that a competitor is going to steal your ideas. This way of thinking only limits your potential. Your ideas need a stage on which to perform and an audience. If you want to grow your real estate business, you can no longer keep your information inside the four walls of your real estate office.
So, put a content marketing plan in place, targeted at local home owners, and you will see increased traffic to your website. Which in turn means increased exposure of your brand, and increased enquiries.
Bow to the Queen – Why social media makes a great support act
Have you noticed that the most popular online businesses in the world are the ones which help us populate the Internet with more content; i.e. social networks, blogging platforms, and video sharing portals.
Content may be King, but without a royal bride by his side, Social Media, the masses just might not hear what he has to say.
Here are the reasons why content marketing and social media marketing work hand in hand;
1. Social media increases your brand’s awareness, recognition and recall. Remember, being visible is valuable! It keeps your name and brand front of mind. Pop up in more places, across more social networks, and you become familiar and recognisable.
2. Social media marketing helps validate your brand. Having a social media presence creates Social Proof, and as an agent or real estate agency you are brandishing a banner that says we’re open for business, we’re an active part of the community, and we thrive by communicating with and matching local home sellers and buyers.
“No company is too small to participate.” Bill Gates
3. Maintained a significant social media presence and you’ll achieve a higher conversion rate with your listing presentations. People like doing business with people and social media humanises your interactions and online conversations.
4. The growing popularity of social media has formed the perfect marriage for content because it allows people to more easily share what they read. Consumers will like, comment and share your content if it’s informative or entertaining, which expands your reach. People who have never heard of you suddenly become aware of your existence.
5. Talk with existing or potential customers openly on social media and these public demonstrations of customer interactions will give readers an insight into what you are like as a person, a real down to earth real estate agent, so to speak.
6. Social media helps to increase customer loyalty and word of mouth referrals.
7. Interact with local influencers via social media and your reputation will sky rocket. Influencers can be a fantastic source for recommendations for you.
“I expect societies will see… on-line communities devoted to major interests.” Bill Gates
8. Links to your content shared via social media increases your website visitors. The more quality content you syndicate on social media, the more inbound traffic you’ll generate, and more traffic means more leads and more conversions.
9. You’ll gain better search engine rankings. Google rewards regular content contributors with its author rank. Plus being active on social media could act as a “ranking signal” to search engines that your brand is legitimate, credible, and trustworthy.
10. Use social media listening to learn about your customer’s pain points.
11. Social media advertising allows you to target your ideal customer and remarket your real estate services visitors to your website. And the best part, the more you advertising you run, the cheaper your ads will become.
“Those who succeed will propel the Internet forward as a marketplace of ideas, experiences, and products – a marketplace of content.” Bill Gates
Your competition is marching toward the latest battlefield. They are mastering content marketing, search engine marketing and social media marketing. Make sure they don’t claim your throne!