Real estate is a highly social profession, but often agents don’t realize that social media should be an extension of their charismatic IRL selves. A skillful and expertly curated social media presence is just as important to your brand as a great website. According to Hubspot’s Social Benchmarks Report, real estate agents post on social media at the highest volume of any industry, but are the least effective in terms of engagement. The gist? You may be posting too much, and not very well.
Luckily for you, we’re here to help. We’ve listed 5 pro-tips on how to be the social media butterfly you’ve always wanted to be and ensure you are getting more out of your social media time than just finger cramps. This might seem like a lot, so don’t forget you can always just hire us to manage your social media.
1) Get Visual
Let’s be honest, real estate is mostly about looks. Luckily for us, so is social media. To be at the top of your social media game, you need to know how to locate and leverage some good visuals. In fact,
Ideally, your visual content will prompt viewers not just to interact with your post, but also to click through to your landing page. Our advice?
Twitter: The importance of posting images on Twitter is often overlooked. When you’re scrolling down an endless Home Page of tweets, do the little snippets of text catch your eye? Or is it the much larger, high quality photo-based posts? I think we both know the answer. Twitter also lets you tag up to 10 people in a photo, which will significantly increase your post’s reach. @Contactually does a good job of this.
Post high-quality photos of your neighbourhood – events, architectural details, members of the community – to show your involvement and interest. Try and post within a limited colour palette (like @Nguan does, below) – for the aesthetic value as well as to emphasize your visual brand.
Facebook: Post multiple images at a time (this is a Goldilocks situation of not too many but not too few) to get the best click rates. Facebook has multiple options for image posts – single image, slideshow, carousel – which means you can get creative with how you share pictures. Create a Facebook Canvas to showcase your brand. Change up your Facebook Cover Photo to draw attention to different aspects of your brand. And remember to do this all from your Facebook Business page which should be separate from your personal FB page!
2) Get Video
Video may have killed the radio star, but over three decades later it has yet to be trumped by another medium. Sure, the 21st Century is more gifs than celluloid, but the principle is there. There’s nothing quite like a moving image to get – and keep – people’s attention.
(Image via Visitmetrics)
Use Instagram Stories to give a personal touch to an otherwise highly curated medium. The fact that the video gets deleted after 24hrs makes whatever you post more casual.
With Facebook 360, you can post an immersive video experience that viewers can interactive with from home. Websites like the New York Times are using 360-video to create a Virtual Reality experience of their stories. The future is here – and it’s immersive video. Similarly, Facebook Canvas lets you create full-screen, immersive videos. Facebook Live (livestreaming video) is another great tool for connecting candidly with clients. Take a cue from other agents and have a Facebook Live open house. It works best if you do some preparation beforehand – there’s such a thing as too live. It’s also a good idea to include a caption or subtitles on your videos to maintain the interest of viewers that don’t have their sound switched on.
3) Tailor, Target and Time
According to Inman,
(followed by Youtube, LinkedIn and Instagram). So use it to your best advantage. Boosting a post on Facebook is a cost effective way to reach more people. In doing so, you can specifically target (and actually reach) different audiences based on the criteria of your choosing, even targeting audiences who have previously visited your website or subscribe to your newsletter. In fact, Facebook algorithms are increasingly making it so that even if someone likes your page, they may not see your posts unless you boost them. You can also create dark posts on Facebook in order to reach a specific audience without sharing a post with all of your Facebook followers.
(Image via Sprout Social)
Trying out a different posting schedule (such as one modeled on different time zones) is a surefire way to reach not only a wider audience, but also a targeted one. According to Quick Sprout, Microsoft, and Hubspot, the best time to post on Facebook is Thursdays and Fridays from 1pm to 3pm. On the Twitter and Instagram end, the information on best times to post is a little more conflicting. The best way to figure out effective posting times is to monitor your analytics – check up on when people within your target audience viewed or interacted with your posts, and use that to your advantage. Posting something more than once also ensures that what you shared gets seen.
4) Keep Tabs
The superstitious say that when someone is talking about you, your ears burn. If you’re doing marketing well, your virtual ears should always be burning. Do you know when someone has mentioned your brand, or real estate in your area? You should, and you can. Make use of tools like Twitter Advanced Search and services like Mention that use natural language processing to help you identify keywords that are important to you. Websites like BuzzSumo help you find out about trending stories and track your competitors. These tools mean you can dive into conversations where you have something valuable to add, and connect with the right people – even leads.
(Image via Buzzsumo)
There are a lot of different ways to check on how your brand is doing out there in cyberspace. Analytics, of course, are crucial – but we’ve told you this already. A/B testing your social media posts and their titles is an easy way to figure out what works and what doesn’t. You should be tracking engagement, but also keeping tabs on how successful you are at generating leads from your posts. Here’s another idea: listen to the people. Interact with the people who interact with your brand in the comment sections of your posts. The gist? Keep your ears burning.
There’s no need for social media to make you feel like an octopus with a million arms swinging in different directions. Use apps like Buffer or Hootsuite to keep all of your posts managed, scheduled, and organized within a dashboard. From there you can prepare and schedule posts in advance, so that your social media presence isn’t made up of sporadic, low-quality bursts.
(Image via Buffer)
Another important way to get the most bang for your buck, so to speak, is to streamline your web presence. Are there some relics of an old brand floating in cyberspace? A couple long unused Pinterest boards, a half-done LinkedIn? Get rid of them. Focus on curating a select few social media channels, and making them the absolute best they can be.
Creating vanity URLs for your website pages through services like Bitly or Tr.im is another way to consolidate strategically. Having a shorter, snappier URL increases your SEO and lets you list and promote your website more effectively on both on and offline platforms.
Phew. Is your head spinning yet? Ours would be, but we’ve been doing this for a while. If you want help, drop us a line. Otherwise, see you on social.