The era of social media has bought on new challenges, particularly for real estate professionals. But a long with these challenges this new media has also provided sellers with amazing opportunities to showcase what they have for sale. It also allows buyers more avenues for viewing properties – all in the palm of their hand and comfort of their own home. Real estate agents who are serious about getting their listings out to as many people as possible should really be investing the time in the major social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram and possibly even Twitter, Linkedin and Pinterest.
Whichever social media platforms you decide to use, ensure your profile is complete and accurate. As more and more people become accustomed to social media it really can be a great way for potential clients to reach out and communicate with you. You also need to make sure you engage with people who use social media to interact with you. Hopefully most of the time it will be enquiries or praise. There are different schools of thought on how to respond to complaints on social media – you can remove offending messages on Facebook and or Instagram or you can choose to respond to them directly. Twitter does not allow you to delete posts that other people make about you (or your business) but you can choose to ignore or make a formal complaint if the tweet is offensive or threatening in nature.
Building up a following can take time. Don’t get discouraged. Just keep posting your social media heart out like you have a million followers. Have fun and enjoy! Social media is about building a relationship, not just a place to post pretty pictures. That is why engagement is so important. There’s a school of thought that says you don’t actually sell on social media but you build relationships. This means that when it comes time to stick their toe into the market people are going to remember you because you built up a relationship with them on social media.
All the following social media platforms can be used to drive traffic to your website. Take advantage of this.
Pro tip: You should never outsource your social media to someone who doesn’t know your business or your industry and if you want to take social media seriously, you could easily employ someone on a full-time basis to manage, promote and build your business.
All real estate agencies in this day and age should have an Instagram account. It’s easy to use and can be a lot of fun. If your 10-year-old child can master it, then so can you.
Instagram (or ‘IG’) is the ideal platform for selling properties. It’s basically free and if you can build up a decent following (gathering LIKES on the way) you have an instant viewing audience. Of course, not all the people on IG are in the market for a house, but building up followers can give you some prestige.
The most important thing to remember when posting on IG is hashtags (#). I can’t emphasise that enough. Hashtags, hashtags, hashtags! Try and use hashtags that are popular (but still relevant) to get your viewership up and more likes e.g. #realestate #property as well as things like the location #goldcoast #sunshinecoast etc. Don’t be shy about the number of hashtags you use.
You may also want to consider Instagram advertising.
The mother of all social medias!! If a real estate agency doesn’t have a Facebook account, they are doing themselves a great disservice. Like Instagram, it is easy to set-up and can be managed from your smart phone. When setting up a Facebook account for a real estate agency ensure you set it up as a business and not an individual person because the functionality will be different. Setting up a business page will also allow you to schedule future posts – a very useful feature when you are short of time.
As well as posting real estate listings you could also be posting links to relevant articles, pictures of staff and things that happen in the day-to-day running of the business. People love this kind of stuff. Most people have a Facebook account. Most people look at it daily. As well as keeping in touch with family, people use Facebook to read news and interesting articles as well as to shop.
Hashtags are an option for you when you post on Facebook but whether they are as effective as they are on IG is another question. But advertising on Facebook is a definite (and relatively cheap) possibility. Even if you are just advertising your business or a particular listing that you want to get out to more people, it’s up to you.
Pro tip: When you post a link to an article on Facebook, once Facebook has converted it to a shared link, you can delete the actual link from your status before posting.
Information on Facebook advertising.
Twitter differs from Facebook in that you are limited to 280 characters (not including pics or links). You are also limited to 4 pics per tweet.
Twitter moves at a fast pace. Which means (depending on how many other people your followers are following) your tweet can get pushed out of view very quickly. Hashtags are incredibly important on Twitter, and as with IG, you would use popular but relevant hashtags. And always make sure you include the # symbol before the hashtag text otherwise it won’t work as a hashtag. Hashtags work as links to other tweets/posts that contain the same hashtag. If you manage to get a hashtag trending, you are doing Twitter right!
People use Twitter for a variety of reasons. It can be a hostile place if you choose to step into that part of Twitter. But by keeping it within the confides of your business, you don’t need to even see that dark underbelly.
As well as posting links to your listings, you could also be posting links to relevant articles and other items that you think your followers would enjoy. You do have the ability to advertise on Twitter. Your ads appear as sponsored tweets and I’m not sure they would have the same impact as an IG or Facebook ad.
Use websites such as twittimer.com to schedule your future tweets so you aren’t spending all your time tweeting.
Pinterest seems like the place to go to look at pretty pictures. Maybe you wouldn’t post your listings here but beautiful interior design images for example. Or pics of the latest trends in wallpapers, landscape design, fabrics etc etc. As with the other social media platforms, your goal is to build brand awareness and prestige.
There is a plethora of blogs to give you advice on how real estate agents can use Pinterest to their advantage. Just Google ‘real estate on pinterest’ and see what you can discover.
Linkedin is not just a personal resume site where people make business connections. You are also able to create a business page where you can post status updates and article links. If your social media time is limited (and let’s face it – who has time to do it all) you may decide not to create a Linkedin profile for your business. But I have seen real estate agents as individuals use their Linkedin profile to build a following and facilitate engagement.
Google+ is a Facebook like platform that never picked up the following that Facebook has.
YouTube – the ideal place to be posting your listing videos. AND you could share the YouTube links on all your other social media platforms.
There are other social media platforms but I you don’t want to spread yourself too thinly. However, the more you post on various social media platforms, the increase the chance of improving your Google search ranking.
Just remember... have fun with it all and see where it takes you.
This article is for information purposes only and is not legal advice. Always consult a professional before making any decisions. Monkey Conveyancing makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on our blog or found by following any link(s) included therein.