CCIM Q&A

Blogger's World

One commercial real estate pro shares his blogging experience.

When Eric Fuhrman, co-developer of eMetro Investments and an affiliate broker with Crye-Leike Commercial in Memphis, Tenn., and Dan Whipple, CCIM, co-developer of eMetro Investments and president of Crye-Leike Commercial, read an article proclaiming the potential benefits to blogging, they weren’t about to miss out. “Their research confirmed our hunch pertaining to potential application of blogs in commercial real estate. Ten days later we launched our first blog followed by our second a few months after that,” he says.

Blogging, or web logging, is catching on in the commercial real estate industry. Industry professionals are launching blogs on topics ranging from financing to technology to marketing strategies. In order to get an inside look, Commercial Investment Real Estate asked Fuhrman about his blogs.

CIRE: Why write two blogs?

Fuhrman: The blog on our company’s Web site, www.emetroinvestments.com, is a bit more refined than the one at www.emetrocommercial.blogspot.com, which is more casual and low-key and has more diverse subject matter. The ideas published on our Web site follow the needs of investors who buy primarily net-leased properties. These investors are interested in taxes, capitalization rates, and issues pertaining to 1031 exchanges. Our more casual blog aims to capture the trendy, quirky happenings in the commercial investment marketplace. And it publishes to a more diverse audience.

CIRE: What host service did you use?

Fuhrman: Initially we went with www.blogger.com, which we found to be a very fine entry-level site. With the launch of our second blog, we used the Moveable Type publishing platform.

CIRE: Was there a learning curve involved in either service?

Fuhrman: Blogger.com is excellent to grasp the concepts and learn the basics of manipulating the HTML code. Blogger.com makes it very easy … even if you aren’t a Web scientist. Moveable Type is definitely the way to go for people who are serious about blogging long term and especially if they intend on linking their blog to a Web site.

CIRE: What kind of cost was involved?

Fuhrman: Blogger.com is free. Moveable type costs $199.95 for the commercial version.

CIRE: How has blogging helped your business?

Fuhrman: Blogging is a relatively new concept to be utilized by us main stream users. This new approach to keeping up with our clients and associates has given us a chance to introduce ourselves and even explain the blogging concept at multiple public speaking engagements throughout the region. Additionally, we believe this medium demonstrates our finger-on-the-pulse knowledge of our market thus lending credibility to our respective commercial real estate practices.

CIRE: How often do you add new posts to your blog?

Fuhrman: We try to post at least once per week. Our ideal scenario would be to post every other day, but that is a difficult pace to maintain. We strive to keep posts pithy. Our posting mantra can be summed up as posting short, sweet, and often. Topics are based on what we believe to be relevant, insightful information for our target clients.

CIRE: What kind of feedback have you gotten from your blog?

Fuhrman: We are viewed as e-pioneers in our area and this has been a great source of exposure for our business.

Carolyn Bilsky

Area report is written by Carolyn Bilsky, associate editor of Commercial Investment Real Estate. Contact her at (312) 321-4507 or cbilsky@cciminstitute.com.

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