Inbound Marketing Resources for Custom Home Builders
While the economy has improved and more people are building than they were a few years ago, competition amongst home builders is fierce. Do you know where your next leads are coming from?
According to a study done by Google and the National Association of Realtors (NAR), reports that "Home Builder" searches on tablets grew 362% year over year from 2011 to 2012.They also found that 90% of home buyers searched online during their buying process.
The key to getting prospects to find you when they're searching is to answer their questions. Online. The information is then available 24/7 for them to find whenever they feel like looking, from wherever they happen to be, on whatever device they happen to be using.
Having a blog on your website is a fantastic way to increase visitors to your website, and nurture your leads, until they're ready to contact you.
HOW HOME BUILDERS CAN GROW THEIR TRAFFIC & LEADS
We know that blogging (and inbound marketing)is an ideal way to attract visitors to your site, and increase lead generation. But what are some blog post ideas? And how do you convert the right (qualified) traffic into leads?
Well here are eight easy, repeatable ideas for blog posts. We've also included a contextual CTA (call-to-action) with each of them. A CTA, gives your visitor an opportunity to download an offer, which is something of value, in exchange for their information (ie name and email address).
Depending on the value of the offer, you can ask for more or less information. The more information you request (ie name, email address, budget for their new home), the more valuable the offer has to be in their mind.
In order to have a reasonable conversion rate of visitors to leads, it's important that the CTA offered have some context to the blog post. That way it'll be more likely that the person reading that blog post, will also be interested in the CTA.
Use storytelling to tell a brief story of what a previous client was looking for and how you helped solved challenges during the process to build their dream home. Give enough detail into the situation so your prospects get an understanding of how you solve problems.
CTA Idea: eBook on How to Choose the Right Builder for You
This would be a great idea for a monthly series to highlight popular trends you see happening. The range of possibilities is limitless, but some ideas include things like:
- ‘Beautiful and Water-wise Home Landscaping’
- ‘Epic Bedroom Ideas for Your Tween’
- ‘Sport Courts and Why Homeowners Love Them’
- ‘Choosing the Best Lighting for Your Dream Kitchen’
Take some cues from interior and shelter magazines. What types of articles are they featuring?
Each of your customers have different reasons for why they are building or renovating and often there are a couple of things that they just won’t get unless they do construction. These are great blog topics because chances are, there are other potential customers with a similar wish list.
CTA Idea: Checklist for Your New Mudroom: Here’s What the Best Ones Incorporate
Whether it be your HVAC guy, your interiors painter, a landscape designer you work with, or maybe even a banker who finances many of your clients' projects, most builders have people on their extended team who they think are simply the best at what they do. Featuring these people on your blog occasionally has a couple of benefits.
Firstly it introduces them to your prospects and customers, so if they work on a project with you later, the customer is already familiar with the type of work that they do. Secondly, giving them a public shout out is a pretty good form of recognition and validation that your relationship with them to a higher level, especially if none of their other builders are giving them that kind of kudos.
CTA Idea: Video interview with someone from your team answering a common question you get from prospects
Again, as an expert in houses, you could blog monthly or quarterly about your recommendations for keeping ones’ home in tip-top shape. Potential titles could be ‘Why You Need to Change to LED Bulbs Today’, ‘How Often Do You Need to Have Your Windows Washed Really’ or 'Keeping Your Deck Entertainment Ready'.
CTA Idea: Your Winter Prep Checklist
5. To Build or Not To Build
This is a question that one would expect any one who has built a home to have asked themselves (many times over). By acknowledging the fact that it’s normal to feel that self-doubt, you have an opportunity to build trust with your prospects. They already know the entire process is not going to be all unicorns and rainbows.
And it’s an opportunity to highlight aspects of a home which you can most likely only achieve through building. For example, if someone is looking for multi-generational living, chances are they’re looking for at least one bedroom on the main level, which could often require contstruction.
CTA Idea: PDF with The Best Staircase Designs for a Modern Home
6. How Much Does it Cost to Build a New Home?
Can you imagine buying something as expensive as a new home without researching the cost first? How many builder websites have you seen which answer this question? None, right?
Helping your prospective buyers educate themselves during the buying process, is an opportunity to build trust with them. So although it’s impossible to give an exact price on something like a new house, it’s certainly possible to give a range of the cost/square foot, with examples of the level of finishes.
The best reason for giving prospects better insight into the costs however, is to identifythe prospectswho are NOT a good fit so they can opt-out themselves before you’ve spent a lot of time with them. You can use your website bothto repel the wrong customers as well asattract the right ones.
CTA Idea: eBook: Avoid Scope Creep and Keep Your Home Building Project on Budget
7.Review of a Neighborhood
If most of your work is predominately in the same area, a post reviewing that area could help educate prospects as to why they might want to live there.
CTA Idea: The Essential Address Book for Zip Code XXXXX with contact details for area schools, restaurants, shops, etc.
8.Comparisons of Different Choices
As people are envisioning their dream house and comparing all of their options, this type of blog post serves to help provide them some clarity of the pros and cons of the their options.
Some examples include “Stucco vs. Hardy; Choosing the Right Exterior for your New Home” or “Kitchen Countertops; Deciding between Quartz, Marble and Granite”
These questions are most likely swirling around in your prospect’s head already, so addressing them and helping to educate them further is what we call servant selling. And who doesn’t like that?
The beauty of these topics is that hopefully you’re answering many questions that your prospects or customers already have. So by documenting the answers in a thoughtful way with nice imagery, you’re not only attracting traffic to your site who is looking to educate themselves, you’re also creating digital collateral that you can use with prospects and customers.
For example, one way to really delight your customers when you finish a project is to give them a list of things they’ll need to do themselves on an on-going basis.So ‘Your Winter Prep Checklist’ could initially be created for existing customers, but then you can use it again as a downloadable CTA as well. Reusing and repurposing is the name of the game with content marketing.
If you want to create your own blog, or need advice on making your existing blog more effective, download our Inbound Marketing Resource Pack.