Corporate Blogger John Mudd
John Mudd is a real estate agent in Florida with a very active interest in corporate blogging. His company weblog at HomeInTampaBay.com provides him with a way to network with current, past and even future clients.
"I'm sharing my thoughts with them openly and honestly, and considering how rare that is in the modern world, it's no wonder that I'm able to translate blogging into business", he says.
"Mr. Real Estate" will also participate in the Global PR Blog Week 1.0 coming up in July. John has kindly answered my questions on corporate blogging and he talks about branding, driving traffic and generating media interest. Both Ray Cox (previous posting) and John Mudd are examples of successful small business bloggers. I think that's a lot more interesting than if Bill Gates should decide to blog...
What do you expect/hope that the blog will deliver in terms of marketing and branding? Something different compared to other ways of communication?
John Mudd: The blog allows me to share my personal real estate expertise with current clients, as well as with prospective buyers and sellers, simply because it is a regularly updated report on what's going on in the Tampa Bay real estate market, and I talk about other things, such as national real estate buying and selling trends and interest rate trends, all which directly effect the real estate market. In short, it brands me as a real estate expert, but it goes beyond the Realtor brand that brands all Realtors - it proves it because the information is there for people to see. "Mr. Real Estate" is a brand that I created for blog entries on my blog and other blogs, and it's followed me around in reviews of my blog.
Also, my blog is my favorite traffic-driving tool for my website. Blogs, because they're updated regularly and because every word in your blog becomes a keyword to a search engine, bring plenty of traffic to your website, or blog. As I told Inman News, all of my business comes from my blog and my website, although I'm never sure which one business comes from. I do mail to a regular geographic region regularly, but they're always directed to my website. I have mostly high-end buyers, typically penthouse and beach condo buyers, which is what I target. I recently made a deal with a Realtor in Venezuela that he give me 2.5% commission (the standard buyer fee, since his standard commission is 5%) when the buyer I sent him buys a home or condo there. The buyer found me on the Web.
My blog is also scanned by news media members, from local weeklies to the St. Petersburg Times (who did a huge story feature series on Tampa Bay home prices after scanning my blog) to CNN. The Tampa Bay Business Journal gave Tampa Bay one side of the news on a record-making purchase of an office building on Eisenhower Blvd. I gave my readers every angel.
Has clients or prospects reacted in any way? What do they think?
John Mudd: It depends on the person. One guy called me to make sure I sold real estate once. He thought the blog was part of a newspaper or magazine. Others have called me based on items I've blogged about, such as new construction. Current and past customers read it and send e-mail comments on what I write. They enjoy reading it, they tell me. It's a great way to network with current, past and even future clients. I haven't had any negative responses. I think people like it because I'm not trying to market myself to them. I'm sharing my thoughts with them openly and honestly, and considering how rare that is in the modern world, it's no wonder that I'm able to translate blogging into business.
This post is also used to update the Corporate Bloggers-section of CorporateBlogging.Info.