We all know by now that using social media marketing for real estate is a must in today’s online world for agents and brokers. A good reminder as to why are these statistics from the National Association of Realtors:
- In 2016, nearly 50% of home buyers started their search for properties online
- 51% of those homebuyers ultimately bought a home they found online
- Nearly 90% of home buyers found online photos to be important in their decision-making
- 85% found important information about properties online
Stats aside, the advent of social media marketing for real estate has simply widened the pool of possibilities for new and established agents to reach a wider base of clients.
Using social media, real estate agents can now easily engage with potential customers in their local target market, or across the world, without leaving their office. It is one of the best ways to promote your real estate business in a cost-efficient manner and to establish yourself as a leader in your field.
However, you must inform and equip yourself to utilize social media marketing for real estate in the best manner possible. Here are some important considerations:
Best Practices: Social Media Marketing for Real Estate
Generate Brand Visibility
One of the first goals in using social media marketing for real estate or any business is to raise brand awareness. If you are a new agent in your area, social media is a great way to start introducing yourself to local residents, as well as to establish your presence online for prospective buyers and sellers.
To start off right, take these steps:
- Optimize your profiles: use keywords in your username, your profile descriptions, and in your URL address.
- Fill out your contact details, including your phone number and website.
- Take advantage of platforms where there’s ample space. On Facebook, you have space to write a short bio, and a larger slot to fully detail all your service offerings. Google Plus also offers ample space to fully describe yourself and services, as well as highlight success stories.
- Add your social media links wherever you can. Google Plus has an area where you can add your website and blog links, and also links to all your other real estate social media profiles. The same goes for YouTube.
- Use attention-grabbing cover photos that immediately let visitors know what your business is about. If you specialize in luxury real estate listings, upload a cover photo of a beautiful luxury home. Or you can use a photo that represents the area you serve. Add your website or phone number to the photo, as well as your logo.
Target Your Audience
You can easily target a specific audience by using various tools available on most social media platforms. Facebook, specifically, offers hyper-targeting for both organic posts and ads. You can define demographics such as age, profession, income, area and interests to reach your target market.
In addition to geography and interests, Twitter offers targeting based on gender, language, your followers, device use and behavior. Pinterest, Instagram, and other social media networks offer various targeting options as well.
To get started right, follow these steps:
- Know who your target market is and where they socialize. What are their interests, professions, lifestyle choices, etc? This will help you set up options within all your social media platforms for both organic posts and paid ads. Read this post 5 Ways to Find Out Where Your Target Market Socializes for ideas.
- To make sure you are using the targeting options to your advantage, find out what keywords and key phrases your target market uses when searching for a home or a real estate agent. Use a tool like Google Trends or Buzz Sumo to find popular search terms.
- Use your keywords, and your target audience information when crafting your posts, and setting up your ads. Hashtags your keywords in Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest, and Instagram.
Engage Your Audience
While social media is a public space where many go to interact with friends and be entertained, it has increasingly become an area where people receive much of their daily information, from news to how-to articles.
Therefore, it is important to be social and also to regularly post informative, useful, and entertaining content.It is important to be social and also to regularly post informative, useful, and entertaining content. Click To Tweet
Rules and ideas to follow:
- Regularly publish content that is informative and helpful to your target audience. Articles from NAR or your local real estate association, and from your local mortgage lender are great places to curate and share free, useful content.
- Entertaining and inspiring images are a fantastic way to engage your fans. But make sure it’s part of your overall branding strategy. Holidays are a great time to share an inspiring image. Striking nature photos or images of your local community will capture your fans’ attention. Read this post 9 Image Apps That Will Help You Create Amazing Graphics.
- Publish on a 4:1 ratio. Don’t turn off your fans with a stream of direct sales pitches. For every one post that is a direct promotion, publish four that are purely for your fans’ benefit.
- Talk to your fans. Ask them questions in your posts, reply to comments and criticisms, and thank them when they like or share a post.
- By all means, post gorgeous photos of your listings. On Facebook, use the Albums feature to showcase homes with captions. Don’t forget to put a link to your Website listing, and contact information. On Twitter, you can publish up to four photos with descriptions, or a video. On Google Plus you can publish photos and video in one post, and Instagram now allows publishing up to 10 videos and photos in one post.
Social media marketing for real estate is a fantastic way to create brand awareness, engage with current and new customers and establish yourself as a leader in the real estate industry. If you start out right and follow these social media best practices, you are sure to quickly gain a following, and establish a loyal fan base.