Today’s interview is with Roberta Murphy of both SanDiegoPreviews.com and LuxuryHomeDigest.com.
Roberta was one of our very first clients and an early graduate of our intense blog training course. Way back in the Fall of 2006, Roberta contacted us after reading our writings on ActiveRain. She contracted us to build LuxuryHomeDigest, a blog focusing on a blend of Luxury Living and the world of Luxury Real Estate.
Shortly there after, she hired us to convert her main website, SanDiegoPreviews.com into a full featured blogsite and intense community resource.
So, you know the theme, how should we jump into this? Should we cut to the chase?
Might as well. Shoot.
All right then, what’s the biggest, noticeable difference in your real estate career since your blogging has become the center of your marketing efforts?
Making the move from Website to Blogsite has helped me achieve results in the search engines that I never imagined possible. I am ecstatic with the dominance I have in Google.
Let me start from the beginning. I had been online for years with SanDiegoPreviews.com as a static real estate website. I hate to admit it, but it is the truth, at one point we were spending $5000 a month on Pay-Per-Click advertising. It was working, which is why we paid, but it was getting so expensive, and it was always rising, with no end in sight.
Basically, I saw the writing on the wall in about October of 2006, and new I had to go for organic results in the Search Engines, and fast. That’s when I called you.
After several months of regular blogging, what’s proving to be amazing is that we are coming up all over the tops of the search results pages that are hugely competitive. Terms we used to pay several dollars a click for are now ours, organically. Back in August I sent you a list of over 50 competitive terms that we are top 10 for, and in most cases top 3. And that was just for SanDiegoPreviews. There were another few dozen for LuxuryHomeDigest. That list has grown tremendously from there.
Well, besides shedding your Pay-Per-Click expense, what else have you found leaving behind once the blog proved to be such an effective lead generator?
No more newspaper ads, no more magazine ads, most of my mailings… but my favorite is when I get calls from vendors looking to sell me advertising, like shopping cart ads and things, and I just tell them that I blog. Usually there is silence on the other end of the line. Then I thank them for calling and hang up.
On physical advertising that I continue, like my signs, everything says “As Featured On LuxuryHomeDigest.com”
So, do you have any particularly interesting stories of success that you would like to share?
Oh do I. This one is great.
So I did an article, as I usually do, on this listing I had that was referred to me by Brian Brady. I met Brian on ActiveRain, so it was a blogger to blogger referral.
Anyhow, the listing is priced at 1.5 Million Euros. (approx $2.2 Million), and belongs to this couple, and opera singer and an artist, that are looking to move to Europe, preferably Crete.
So get this email from an expatriate, currently living in Ireland, that wants to move back to the US, preferably California. He is enamored by the home, and wants to see it immediately.
So he flies here to San Diego, and decides it is perfect.
But here’s the big twist.
He is now selling his 12 acre, 16th Century country home in Ireland. You remember how the California sellers are looking to move to Europe. You got it. They are now flying to Ireland to go see his old home. The buyer and the sellers are swapping homes. It is unbelievable. All because of that blog article.
That is amazing. Crazy, and amazing.
Well, I like to ask the same closing question in my interviews. I know we didn’t cover a ton of topics, so was there something I should have asked you that I neglected to?
You could have asked me what advice I would give to new bloggers out there trying to forge a name for themselves online.
Go for it.
Take your personal interests and turn them into a second blog. I know, it sounds like more work, but it actually makes the commitment to writing that much more enjoyable, and then you start to develop an audience that shares similar interests to you… and that’s when the fun starts!
Thanks so much for sharing with us Roberta, it has always been such a pleasure having you on the vine.
We look forward to hearing more stories from you again soon.
My pleasure Jim.
We’d love to hear from you about how blogging has changed your real estate career.
Feel free to post below, or email me to interview you directly for a future post. I’ve heard some great stories, so stay tuned!