How Agents Use Social Media in Real Estate Marketing
December 21, 2017 |
Location, Location, Location. It’s a mantra you hear often in the world of real estate, and it’s true that the location of a property means everything when it comes to marketing, pricing, and value. However, it also applies to social media marketing. The more locations you’re seen in, the faster your business grows.
But can you have too much of a good thing? While exposure is great, you do need to stay on top of your accounts for each site. This can be pretty time-intensive. If you’re just starting out in the business, you may have plenty of time to update each one, but as your business grows, it will be more important to focus on a few sites and maybe also take advantage of whatever programs your broker already has in place.
So, the question is, what’s the best place for you to spend your time and money when it comes to your social media presence? To make that decision, first let’s take a look at some facts and figures about the various social media options.
Social Media by the Numbers
According to Statista, the following are the average number of monthly users worldwide for each of the most popular social media platforms as of the third quarter of 2017.
- Facebook – 2.01 billion
- YouTube – 1.5 billion
- Instagram – 800 million
- Snapchat – 178 million
- Pinterest – 200 million
- Twitter – 300 million
More Than Just the Sum of Its Parts
While it’s nice to know how many users are on a particular site, there’s more you need to know if you’re going to be successful. For example, Snapchat demographics show that 45 percent of users are between the ages of 18-24, 71 percent are under 34, and 70 percent are women. Facebook stats look more like this: 47 percent are under 34, and 53 percent are women.
What these numbers tell you is that different sites are better for different groups of people, and you need to know your target audience. If you live in an area where there are more millennials in the market for a property, Snapchat or Instagram is your best bet. If your target demographic is a little older, Facebook is probably the way to go.
Other Important Factors
Mobile Usage: On average, 1.57 billion people use Facebook on a mobile device every day. If your content isn’t optimized for mobile use, you’re missing out.
Customer Service: Consumers now prefer to use social media as a way to contact and obtain customer service, citing that this method is more responsive. If your clients know they can reach you online, they will.
Video: YouTube reaches more adults under the age of 49 than all cable TV providers combined. If you aren’t doing video tours of your properties, why not?
You Have Social Media Accounts — Now What
Now that you know where you want to be in the social media realm, you have to know what to do with it. While it’s safe to say you’ll want to have a post for most of your listings, your social media presence shouldn’t stop there.
Good social media posts: the kind that get noticed, shared, and eventually go viral; typically have nothing to do with a business or branding or any specific product. Think Chewbacca Lady on Facebook, or the most popular YouTube video, Charlie Bit My Finger. These are popular because they’re funny in a clean and wholesome way. The lesson? You need to have content that speaks to people in a way that makes them feel good. You can’t do that with property listings.
You should consider a mix of free accounts and paid accounts, as these give you more flexibility on how much personal promotion you can do.
Make Your Content Count
Video Is King
YouTube is your best bet for longer video content, like home tours. However, these need to be high-quality videos. Keep in mind, when it comes to video content, if your presentation doesn’t grab and hold onto viewers in the first 10 seconds, chances are they aren’t going to watch it. Once you have a video on YouTube, you can share it on your other social media sites.
Visuals Come in a Close Second
The human brain processes images in as little as 13 milliseconds. This means visual images will get more across to your viewer than text. But you can’t use just any image — it has to be a valuable image. Studies show that the human brain will skip right over images that don’t add value to the website or post, so make sure every image you publish, no matter where it is, adds vital information to your page.
The bottom line for real estate agents is that social media is here to stay, and it can dramatically increase your business if it’s used properly. The key is to stay active on all your sites. You can start off doing this yourself. As the need arises, consider having an assistant handle them or even a social media management company that can make sure your name is front and center with the right frequency of posts.
To make the most of your posts, be sure they’re valuable to the reader, make them feel good, and are a mix of business and personal interest stories. The general rule, known as the 80/20 Rule, for posting is: content should consist of 80% social interaction. This includes personal interest stories, directly interacting with your followers, and sending them helpful content. The other 20% includes your actual promotions. If you over-promote you or your practice, it may disinterest your followers. Understanding what consumers are looking for in each social media platform will get your posts shared and, in turn, get you noticed.