Blogger Spotlight; Mariana Wagner

Mariana was the very first local blogger to register for Blog Fiesta, and the first to get my Interview questions back to me. Can you tell? This is one enthusiastic blogger! Mariana’s blog, ‘Springs Realty Scoop covers the Colorado Springs-Monument area, and was established in December of 2006.

What inspired you to create a real estate blog?

My original blog inspiration was Seth Godin – where I learned that I did not need to write an APA-approved 8 page dissertation to get my point across. I was not a blogger until I joined Active Rain.

I love the concept of sharing my thoughts and ideas in a format that can be read and picked apart by anyone who wants to read it. I love the AR community because of the feedback that I get as well as the motivation to post quality content. Blogging pushes me to understand my business better than ever (you MUST do this to effectively POST about it…).

Oh, and I am opinionated and really dislike most real estate agents. Blogging gives me the opportunity to show my VALUE and DIFFERENCES as a RE agent as well as find a comradery among others like me.

What do you like to blog about?

I like to blog MOSTLY about local places and attraction, but I love to blog about things that are on my mind, RE stories and blogging gives me a great platform to rant.

Where do you go, or what do you do to find topics to blog about?

I can pretty much pull an idea out of my ear. In fact, I have a whole series (on Active Rain) dedicated to blog content ideas inspired by the Godfather Movie Trilogy…
FINDING things to blog about is never my problem. I have 2 notebooks crammed full of Blog ideas that could easily last me for the next year. My problem is narrowing down my focus and “time blog-cking” to maintain my RE Business AND my RE Blogs.

How does blogging fit into your overall marketing plan, or does it?

MOST CERTAINLY! We are currently paying to get a new site built – that blends our blog with the other nec. items of a RE website. I dedicate TIME and now $$ to this venture. We have made SO much $$ from our Blog – referrals, people finding us because of our Blogs, as well as getting listings from folks who may have been on the fence with making a Listing Agent decision. We tell them to check out our blog before they decide, and we almost ALWAYS get the listing after they read our stuff. Nice.

If there was anything you could change about your blog to make it better, what would it be?

Making it a cohesive part of my RE website. (THIS is being done right now …) I am a firm believer that I do not need a separate website and a separate blog. They can live together in harmony, as one.

What are some of your favorite blogs?

REagentinCT.com, BrokerBryant.com, SethGodin.Typepad.com, RSSpieces.com, MIAMISM.com

What web sites, blogs, tools, or people do you find most helpful in building your blog?

RSSPieces.com and ActiveRain.com. Both of these sites are a WEALTH of information for all aspects of RE Blogging.

On a scale of 1-10, 10 being Bill Gates, one being my great grandmother (bless her heart), what level of computer savvy would you say you have?
I am relatively internet-savvy … Maybe a 6-7??? I am NOT computer savvy. I can barely type correctly.

Do you have any tips or advice for a fellow real estate professional that’s looking to get into blogging?

1.) Just do it. (Thanks for that one Nike…)

2.) There is no right or wrong way to go about it (so long as plagiarism is not a part of your business plan.)

3.) If you HATE it then do something else. Blogging is only effective if the Blogger LOVES blogging.

4.) Write to your audience. Who do you want to READ your blog?

5.) Read and comment on OTHER blogs.

6.) Behave in the Blogosphere. Don’t be an ass unless that is the reputation that you want.

7.) Assume that EVERY client that you have reads your blog. Behave accordingly.

8.) Write something YOU would want to read.

9.) Do not steal other people’s content or pictures.

10.) Be the authority on something. Hyper-Local content is ALWAYS a winner.

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