Fort Worth Real Estate Online

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Outside Blogs ! Why Do Some of Them Work, and Others Fail ?

I have recently written two posts about my finally re-starting my efforts to design and launch my "outside blog."  Last week I had the first design meeting... the first of many before the details of the general blog appearance are arrived at.

In doing some of the research to help me decide what I wanted my "front page" to look like... I looked at many, many "outside, free-standing" blogs... whatever ones I could find... to see what I liked, and also to see what I didn't like.

In the process, I came across something that really surprised me. 

I found quite a few instances where there were "newer" blog sites... and some "not so new" sites... that were just "sitting there."  I found some great-looking designs... owned by people who had bought and paid a lot of money to get a "name" blog like RSS Pieces, or Real Estate Tomato blog, or any number of "other-branded" new blog sites... or even TypePad or some of the others, and then made just a few posts, and then pretty much abandoned them.

They bought them, they paid for them... and then they just let them sit there.

After seeing that... I am afraid that last November and December... I just concentrated on that... and allowed it to induce self-doubt, rather than focus on all the progress and great results already gained by those who started their outside blogs, and then reaped such great rewards. 

So I thought... what an incredible waste !  Why would anyone do that ?  Or... what happened to them that caused them to quit... after they sweated blood and tears to put it together in the first place ?

So... here is my question.  Why does that happen ?  What makes someone go through all that effort... which could either be a fun, creative thing, or a lot o pain and agony... and then just let it sit ?  Do you know someone who this happend to ?  No names please, unless it is your own... :)  Or... if this happened to you... please let me know why ?

Please share your thoughts with me... let's try and figure out together just what makes this happen ?

Comment balloon 19 commentsKaren Anne Stone • April 26 2008 01:57AM

Comments

A lot of what makes a blog a success is what the individual brings to it. Interesting information and things people want to read. All the best as you jump in.
Posted by Bob & Carolin Benjamin, East Phoenix Arizona Homes (Benjamin Realty LLC) over 9 years ago

Karen Anne - I don't know about blogs specifically but I can probably guess.......there are areas in my life where I've been notorious for starting and never finishing.....

- you lose your momentum

- you get discouraged

- you don't think you're good enough - others are so much better at it

- 'the rest of life' encroaches on w-hat you think you might become passionate about - and all of a sudden you feel robbed.....its like the idea/concept evaporates....

 - the price you pay (work) exceeds the perceived value you get in return

 Do I think those thoughts are always true?  no.......but its one of the stories I like to tell myself sometimes........that way I don't have to be 'responsible' for the outcome!

Is this way more information then you wanted ?  lol......sorry....I must be in a 'mood' tonight....

 

we of 

Dovalue scea

Posted by Liz Moras, Chilliwack Realtor, Garrison Crossing,Chilliwack, Abbotsford (Harrison Hot Springs, Cultus Lake) over 9 years ago

Hi Karen Anne-

Two observations.....

First: There are a lot of blogs on AR that are abandoned.  It's not just the "tomato" blogs etc.  People realize once they start that actually doing a blog is A LOT of work.   I mean posting random or formulaic posts for mere points is easy. But does it deliver business?  I rather doubt it.  I mean when you put in exactly two seconds of thought into a blog - what can you expect in return?  Most AR blogs don't get off the ground.  Many get off to a good start - but then the blogger stops posting altogether.

Let's use White Plains as an example:  I have a little over 66k points. The person in the second featured spot has 14.5k points and has not posted anything since March 20th.  Many of his posts are reprints etc.  The person behind him has 5300 points and right now is making a post a day.  I don't know if that will continue.  I know him - he's a terrific person and would add to the community - but I digress. 

All in all there are 60 agents from my city registered - and only 4 have more than 4000 points and only 5 have more than 3000 points.   I think this is fairly typical. Now - this sight is FREE...so there is no financial strain in starting and stopping.

Second: AR is VERY interactive.  So people don't end up posting into a cyberspace abyss for months on end.  It is extremely hard to post into what seems like an abyss for month after month before you see results.  Customers and clients of mine never post comments so writing on my other blog which I have grossly neglected - I feel like a crazy cat lady (in my case dog lady) talking to herself!  I think that's the problem.

Perhaps some of us from different areas should make a pact to post at least twice a week and then we notify each other and post on each other's blogs and make our own "informal" chat group.  It will seem less lonely that way and help hold us accountable for sticking with it!

 

 

 

 

Posted by Ruthmarie Hicks (Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605) over 9 years ago
AA thought that just jumped into my mind is that a parallel might be the "squirrel" buyer who enjoys the chase for a house so much.......but never buys anything.
The listing Realtor who never returns a phone call.......what is HE thinking?
To your point there are thousands of websites which are abandoned almost from the day they go up.  Seemed like a good idea at the time....
JimG
Posted by Cape Coral Florida Golf Course and Waterfront Homes (Gulf Coast Realty Network, Inc.) over 9 years ago
Bob and Carolin:  I didn't do that last December when I first thought about an ouside blog, so that is exactly what I have decided to do this time around.  Thanks for commenting... take care...
Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) over 9 years ago

Liz:  I don't think I could ever read your comments and feel it was too much information.  I enjoy you, and I enjoy reading both your comments and your posts.  Please come back often, and just pour your thoughts out for me and the rest of us to see. 

You have shared some great insights into what makes a person just stop.  Lots of things to think about... regarding blogs, and a lot of other things, too.  Take care...

Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) over 9 years ago

Ruthmarie:  Actually, the very first part of your comments makes a lot of sense.  I had thought about that many times, but did not connect that to my comment about outside blogs.  Sometimes I miss the obvious.

Actually, on Active Rain, I think many people just join because someone else "pushed" them into it, or joined just to "shut up the person pestering them to join."

Your second point in right on, too.  WHen I am posting on Active Rain, I usually get lots of comments.  Probably because I like to "stir up the pot" so much.  So, it makes sense... how enjoyable would it be, and how much would you feel like continuing to post on an outside blog when nobody ever comment ?  I am wondering if that same thing will happen to me... no comments being made ??  Very good point, Miss Ruthmarie.

And... your third point... what a great idea.  You are just cookin' tonight !  What a smarty-pants !  I think that is such a good idea.  Several persons having blogs in different parts of the country... sharing blog posts with each other... sort of a "contributory" blog.  Of course, I am guessing we each would become "guest contributors" when we post these articles ?

Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) over 9 years ago
Jim:  Your analogy about the buyer who looks at a gazillion homes, but never buys anything is a good one.  Or in a dating analogy... the guy who enjoys pursuing the current "girl of his dreams," yet when he finally "catches" her... he is bored because the excitement of the chase is over, quits on her, and goes on to the next "adventure."  Jim, thanks so much for your comment... take care...
Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) over 9 years ago

Karen Ann - Perhaps this is one reason:  For a number of months, your blog will probably be in what's known as the google sandbox, while Google determines if your new site is here today/gone tomorrow.  It can be very discouraging to post regularly and receive no comments and no google visibility.  I suspect some rookie bloggers bail out during this period instead of working to make their posts as keyword and backlink friendly as possible.

However, if you post regularly and follow the guidance you receive in Tomato training, one day your blog will magically jump from total oblivion to page one of google results.  Once you're out of that holding pattern, the fruits of your faith and efforts will be realized.  Now I typically post three times/week plus something "lighter" on weekends, if I have time, because I want people to have a chance to catch what I write before it rolls down on the page.  The only evidence I have that anyone reads my FocusOnCrofton blog is the occasional client contact and random comments I hear from people I run into at the mall or Church - they just don't comment. 

God bless the ActiveRain agents who subscribe and occasionally comment!

Posted by Margaret Woda, Maryland Real Estate & Military Relocation (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.) over 9 years ago
Karen Anne, I have seen this with products like Top Producer. People have great intentions but they don't follow through and use the product or idea for their goal. Maybe with regard to blogs someone told them they needed one to increase their Internet presence to drive up business. But then they weren't a writer or didn't understand the care and feeding of a blog. It does seem like a complete waste of energy and time you are right.
Posted by Gary Woltal, Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth (Keller Williams Realty) over 9 years ago
Margaret, can I ask you how long google "sandboxes" a blog or website....? It seems to take a ridiculous amount of time. 
Posted by Ruthmarie Hicks (Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605) over 9 years ago

Yes, Karen - that's the general idea.  It's HARD to start an outside blog. I using some of the posts from AR and retouching them  slightly but its  A LOT OF WORK!!! I'm rather heavy on the photos and loading all of that takes time.  I tried Nvu - but couldn't get it to work for photos or HTML - which was what was making the transfer hard to begin with! I had thoguht it was going to be fairly simple - so I got really frustrated.  I also would love to have the Tomato people work with me, but its probably way too expensive, so I'm trying to figure out how to do a lot of the neat stuff I want myself and it really SLOWS THINGS DOWN! Reading and trying to figure everything out is just PAINFUL.

So you see - I'm FULL of excuses.... 

Posted by Ruthmarie Hicks (Keller Williams NY Realty - 120 Bloomingdale Road #101, White Plains NY 10605) over 9 years ago
KAREN ANNE, I think people expect immediate results as that is the age we live in.  When it doesn't happen they lose interest.  It is one of those things where you just have to keep working at it but we live in an age where many people aren't in it for the long haul.  That's my two cents.
Posted by Marchel Peterson, Spring TX Real Estate E-Pro (Results Realty) over 9 years ago

I would say that realtors in general are basicly hyperactive chipmonks when it comes to technology... want immediatr results and no effort...  They find that the results do not come overnight and that it IS a LOT of work to keep at this blogging thing... 

If you can make the commitment and have a good lead capture blog you WILL be succesful...

Hope that helps...

Mark Ryan

Posted by Mark Ryan, Broker, CRS, ABR, CDPE (Mark Ryan Group / Re/Max Victory) over 9 years ago
Blogging is a long haul process.  My guess is, many agents just run out of steam if they don't see results in the short term.
Posted by Eric Kodner, Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island (Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes) over 9 years ago
Life is filled with examples of spending money and not following through - gym memberships, software programs, even books. When the passion of newness is gone, often "life" intervenes.
Posted by Sharon Simms, St. Petersburg FL - CRS CIPS CLHMS RSPS (Coastal Properties Group International - Christie's International) over 9 years ago
Ruthmarie - For me, it was about 4 months, if I remember correctly.  'Not sure if it is a "time" thing, or if there is another trigger.  It was about the same time my blog appeared on Poshd.com, so it could have been the many hits my site got during that month.  'Guess I'll never know.
Posted by Margaret Woda, Maryland Real Estate & Military Relocation (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.) over 9 years ago
Because a lot of people believe that if you try something for a set amount of time and it doesn't seem to work that you should switch gears. For example. .....I gave myself 5 years to get going good in real estate. I have hit year 3. IF I am not meeting my very reasonable goal by year 5 then I would get out and realize real estate isn't my thing. So far so good and I have done better every year. It all depends on how you look at things. Some people don't set realistic goals or have realistic expectations.
Posted by Cheri Smith, Realtor Prudential Gary Greene (Prudential Gary Greene, Cypress TX) over 9 years ago

Karen Anne:

Why do they abandon them?

Because business people don't want to become bloggers; they want to benefit from the blogosphere. With that in mind, all businesses that blog (or want to blog) should recognize this distinction and carefully chose blogging platforms that are designed for businesses, not bloggers.

bf

Posted by Bill French (MyST Technology Partners) over 9 years ago

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