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By Barry Hurd, Part 7 of 10

RISMEDIA, August 1, 2007— Original content is essential for establishing online placement for your business. Having duplicate content found on a dozen other sites can work against you. A few years ago the phrase “content is king” found itself spread across the Internet. That phrase is now being restated as “original content is king.”

Imagine for a moment you are looking to stand apart in a crowd. Everyone is saying the same things, wearing the same clothing, and even wandering around with the same blank expression. In Marketing 101, most of us learned that we had to stand out from our peers. This included using different colors on our physical office space, creating memorable business cards, and establishing a brand that identified our business as special.

This is an identical scenario for how the online world looks in the eyes of the search engines. They are constantly scouring the Web looking for something worthwhile, something different.

Unfortunately in many cases online professionals fall prey to pack mentality and common rules. They fall under the category of repetitive or ordinary. Yet with a few ordinary ideas, a local professional can take some repetitive statements found on a hundred other sites and make it something special…something original.

Original content is very easy to create. It can be found with simple commentary and opinion on local news or industry trends, it can be found by writing personal recommendations about neighborhood favorites, or it can even be found by simply asking a question to wandering visitors through your Web site.

This original content and material feeds the search engines with exactly what they are looking for: fresh and local content. This unique content is what newspapers grew a huge publishing empire around for the past century and it is the same material search engines need in order to attract the eyes of inquiring visitors. If you can provide a personal viewpoint or local perspective on events and information, then you suddenly have a stream of original content no one else has. You suddenly have worthwhile reason to give your site some special attention from the search engines the online audiences they represent.

Many real estate professionals commonly say “I don’t have time for that.”
You don’t have time to start a conversation? Find something attractive about a neighborhood? Inquire with prospects about what they are looking for?

Everything a real estate professional does has an online home when it comes to providing original content that can help drive search engine results. Take a look at your daily workload and think about all the valuable information you use on a daily basis; then take a moment and realize that every time you write an e-mail or converse with a client you may have just wasted a very valuable marketing commodity that could have attracted even more business to you. Every piece of unique information you waste is literally marketing dollars that could have been leveraged in building a stronger real estate business.

About the author:
Barry Hurd is president of Social Media Systems, an online marketing and advertising consultant group working with search engine marketing and leveraging social media communities. He has over 15 years of entrepreneurial Internet and online marketing experience. As an author and prolific blogger, he has reached online audiences around the world. Since the mid nineties, Hurd has been involved in numerous efforts to bring forth technical innovation through online business models. Past projects have included NIKE, REI, TMP Worldwide,, Verizon Superpages, Intuit, and RISMedia.

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