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Engaging With Your Community: Become the Local Expert

Laura Rubinchuk

Laura Rubinchuk

By Laura Rubinchuk

Blog for business. SEO on steroids. Tags, Meta Tags, video blogging, photo blogging, keywords and content…I could go on and on about all of the things we’re taught when we explore the online world as a lead generation method. Do you need to consider all of these things if you’re spending time on them as viable methods? Of course. Should this be the only thing you keep in mind? That depends.

Lately, I find myself more and more engaged with other local bloggers who have absolutely nothing to do with real estate. They’re not potential buyers or sellers (at the current moment, anyway), they’re not competitors; they’re just regular people trying to bring information to the community.

I live in Arlington, Va., and I write a blog called Arlington Real Estate News. So it’s no surprise that I’ve struck up a friendship with a fellow Geek (aka blogger) who writes Arlington Now. I hang my license in McLean, Va., so it should also be no surprise that I’m now contributing real estate news and gossip to The McLean Ear, written by a journalist and resident in McLean who just wants people to know what’s going on. They call and e-mail me when they have questions…a recent D.C. Housewife put her house on the market, while I’m (sadly) not the listing agent, they called me for information on price, pictures, etc. etc. When a bunch of trucks were parked on a street outside of a condo building for a few days, I got an e-mail to find out what was going on.

It’s about becoming the source of information. Build trust and you’ll build your brand. The business will come, trust me. They will give attribution and credit to you for the information and all you have to do is stay friendly! Be accessible, be creditable, and don’t make up information if you don’t actually have a source to credit. Use your blog and social media for business, but also use it to form friendships that may directly or indirectly bring you business later on. Find your fellow geeks and play nice in the virtual sandbox!

Another great example of another agent doing this: Brian Copeland who used his blog for emergency information when the storm hit in Nashville.

Laura Rubinchuk, GRI, is a real estate practitioner with Keller Williams Realty in McLean, Va. Visit her blog at www.ArlingtonRealEstateNews.com or her Web site at www.TheLJRGroup.com.

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