The other day I was having lunch with a friend. My friend has a business. He is a realtor. This business, like most, would benefit greatly from the use of a blog and social tools to both communicate to current clients and capture new ones. The problem: He thinks he doesn’t have anything to write about. He says he gets there, logs in, but does not know what to say. He sweats over the details. The words. The subject. Everything. He tells me this, seeking my help. So, here is what I told him and the secret I’m going to give you: Every conversation you have contains something to write about. If it’s interesting enough to have a conversation about, it’s interesting enough to write about and, if it’s not, you should not waste your time talking or writing. I’m not talking about idle chit-chat here (though that could be great too). I’m talking about conversations where real value and information is exchanged. Casual or not. The post is right there, waiting for you to capture it, share it. For instance, here are the things I learned in the five minute conversation we had when I asked him, “How’s business going?”:
- In this market, you can get a 2,500-3,000 square foot house with three bedrooms and two baths for under $200,000. Compared to even a couple of years ago, it’s a bargain.
- There are plenty of great house deals like this and plenty of people to buy. The problem is the bank’s willingness to loan. The problem in getting a loan is easily solved with the right Mortgage Broker. He has a guy that has relationships with 30+ banks and can get a loan for just about anyone.
- Part of his job is, up front, assessing if he and the client are the right fit. He wants to be your guy. Therefore, he asks a few up front questions of perspective clients. Like, what’s their name. Many people don’t even want to give that. They are afraid that will somehow make a commitment. That he will be looking them up and cold calling them every five minutes. In fact, that is the last thing he will do. Why would any reputable business person want to start a relationship with someone who does not want to. How can he even know if he can get you the right house if you won’t even give him your name?
Guess what I told him? In five minutes he came up with his first three blog posts. Information that would be valuable to any current or perspective client. Ideas that can then be promoted with a single tweet or status update. Also, if we could come up with that in five minutes just think of what we could come up in an hour long lunch. A meeting. A phone call. Especially with a colleague or client. Do you also see something else? It’s hiding right in front of your eyes… This post. This post is from that same conversation. I start with “nothing to write about” and in five minutes of casual conversation I have something to share. It’s like magic. But it’s not. It’s called writing.