06 Aug Commercial Real Estate Content Marketing – Does it Matter?
This post originally appeared on tBL member Allen C. Buchanan’s blog Location Advice and is republished with permission. Find out how to syndicate your content with theBrokerList.
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One of the ways I survived the economic downturn of 2008 was to “work out loud” – a phrase coined by my bride of forty years. Simply, it is the practice of taking my daily tasks as a commercial real estate professional – finding, winning, and fulfilling business – and writing about them. Who knew the weekly missives would someday appear in your subscription of the Orange County Register Sunday Real Estate Section. Moreover – an internet catalog of commercial real estate topics now exists for inquiring minds. A digital footprint is created which is akin to a marketing sign on a vacant building – a touchpoint is formed.
My fear – when I started blogging in 2010 – was only two people would read my ramblings – my wife and me! Turned out – I was ahead of the content marketing curve – before content marketing was a thing. Now, I’m known nationally – in my industry – as one of the early adopters of social media to distribute the content I create. Doubt what I say? Perform a Google search for Allen C. Buchanan and see for yourself. What few of us anticipated? Many owners and occupants of commercial real estate would seek on-line counsel for their commercial real estate issues. If properly crafted – blogs, videos, white papers – can address questions that arise through owning and occupying commercial space.
Recently, I opined: “We must – as commercial real estate professionals – appeal to the on-line searcher. A common mis-conception is we simply use the modern media sources – FaceBook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram – as a way to advertise available properties. Unfortunately – these ads get deleted like that cable subscription. What pulls a building shopper to us these days is content. Content that portrays us as experts in our field – not simply a name on a sign. Content that inspires to action, entertains, or educates as a means of demonstrating our knowledge. Good content – videos, “how-to” articles, thought pieces – serve as a large net for existing and future buyers. Advertising buildings for sale only appeals to folks in the market today – a very small slice of the population.”
Chances are – if you’re an avid reader of this column – you’ve some stake in commercial real estate. You own it or occupy it. Therefore – when a need arises – a vacancy to fill, more space for your operation, it’s time to buy or sell – what will you do?
I’m guessing one of several things.
You’ll contact the agent you’ve known for years. Ok. No web search needed. However, if your go-to agent has not embraced content as a means of finding you a tenant or buyer or sourcing additional space – are you being short changed?
You’ll ask a friend for a referral. Absent a relationship with someone in our business – you’ll probably see if that referral has a web presence or check out LinkedIn for some color. By the time you meet – you’ll have a pretty good understanding of his background, expertise, focus, and clientele.
You’ll scoop out those mailings you’ve received from active neighborhood pros and call one. By the way – if you’ve not investigated the service provider – you should – before you call! Client testimonials, case studies, years in the trade, experience with your particular requirement – all should be vetted. Yep. On-line.
You’ll perform an on-line search for the need you have. Bingo! In your browser – you might type “How do I choose a commercial real estate agent?” “What should I avoid when marketing my building?” “Considerations when leasing a commercial space.” Those search results pull you toward an expert who produced the thought piece. You get a sense of her knowledge without ever meeting her. Determined? Whether you want more and if you will engage her.
Does commercial real estate content matter? Absolutely! Just ask Siri.
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