Real estate doesn’t just require knowledge of the market’s trends and best practices. It also requires you to develop relationships with clients and other realtors! A realtor’s success comes from their ability to network and find the best home solutions for their clients, so reaching out to new people and maintaining consistent contact is essential.
In today’s tech-heavy climate, social media is the most effective way to keep up with your contacts and strengthen personal and professional relationships for long-term success. If you’re trying to grow your real estate business, expanding your online presence will help you promote your listings, generate more leads, stay in touch with clients, and keep learning new information about your industry and its developing trends.
If you need a few tips to start your social media marketing journey, keep reading for a breakdown of the top reasons why social media is essential for realtors, the most popular platforms for reaching your target audience, and tips for maximizing the benefits of your marketing efforts.
What Are the Benefits of Using Social Media for Realtors?
If you’re just starting out in real estate or you’ve been relying mainly on traditional marketing methods, you may need an outline of what a strong social media presence can do for you and your business. With a little time and effort, you can build social media profiles that inform new people about your business, create a community for your clients to interact with, and even secure more leads with little active effort.
Build Your Brand
Whether you choose to create a professional profile or simply promote your business on your personal page, social media provides a platform for you to post informative content that shows prospective clients what you and your business are about. While traditional marketing methods may spread your business’s name and contact information around your area and attract local clients, internet resources can promote your business on a broader (more specifically, global) scale. Working with a consistent client base in your area can lead to a fruitful business, but greater exposure can help you establish a solid brand that pushes your business over the top.
Even if you hope to serve a specific community long term, marketing to a broader client pool can help out-of-state home buyers identify you as a local authority. In addition to gaining followers on your social media pages and gaining leads, you can even post content that utilizes SEO (or search engine optimization) to ensure that you and your business show up in searches for realtors in your area.
Further, social media offers the opportunity to express your unique business goals and attract clients who share your vision. For instance, you can include your personal philosophy on real estate in your biographies and outline your values in subsequent posts. While other advertisements and endorsements can help you share a tagline along with your contact info, posting on social media allows you to dig deeper into your outlook on real estate, share achievements, and curate your content to show potential clients what you do best. Whether you seek to help families buy homes in safe neighborhoods with great school systems or help your clients score luxury spaces, social media is the best and most efficient way to communicate your mission.
Connect with Your Clients
After creating your accounts and posting content that represents your professional goals and values, you can take full advantage of the communities that develop around your pages. Each social media platform enables users to interact in different ways, but they all provide fun and simple means for realtors to communicate with clients during all stages of the home buying process and keep in touch with other contacts.
Most likely, your social media pages will be populated by existing contacts in the industry, past and current clients, people from your community, and other users who found your page during preliminary realtor searches. No matter what relationships you have with your followers, social media platforms encourage users to engage in conversations about recent posts and share their opinions on a public forum. For people-oriented professionals like realtors, social media is a great way to crowdsource information about current real estate trends and buyer habits to feel out the market.
In addition to hosting content-driven discussions and measuring approval with likes, social media also offers endless opportunities for new leads and existing clients to get in touch with you. A realtor with an active social media presence may receive messages expressing interest in their listings, inquiring about their services, or continuing client conversations from other avenues. In a business that relies on popular interest to generate leads and increase sales, high engagement like this is a dream!
Land More Leads
A recent study conducted by The Close reported that 44% of the surveyed realtors gained new clients from posting on social media. With numbers that high, it’s evident that social media helps more people find your business and reach out for more information. Why? Most likely, the ease of contacting a realtor directly from a social media platform encourages more potential clients to express their interest and reply to posts about listings that appeal to them.
While most social media platforms aren’t designed for sales, posts that showcase or promote current listings will draw attention from followers and friends who are beginning their new home search. Realtors who utilize social media are more likely to find leads from post comments, direct messages, and calls and emails expedited by convenient Call-to-Action features and visible contact information.
Whether you choose to follow up with interested commenters or respond to direct messages, this increase in communication leads to more business for you and even more promotional potential. If your followers see other people making moves on open listings and make a note of your timely responses, they will be far more likely to reach out themselves when they’re ready to take the first step toward purchasing a new home!
Which Platforms Are the Most Popular?
If you’re ready to start taking advantage of all of the benefits that social media provides, you may want to know which platforms are the most effective for promoting real estate. In general, it’s best to follow the masses and develop a presence on the most popular platforms. This way, you can ensure the broadest possible reach and increase your chances of gaining positive engagement, lead generation, and sales.
Understanding the differences between popular platforms can help you determine which ones best suit your business’s specific needs. Building an expansive online presence may require you to juggle accounts on multiple platforms, but don’t forget that social media is designed to be fun and adaptable as well.
To give you an idea of what you will gain from each platform, the following overview of popular social platforms will help you personalize your social media marketing plan and decide which sites and apps you want to focus on first.
In nearly every study, Facebook is consistently ranked as the most effective social media platform for realtors. In addition to being the most widely used platform with 2.89 billion active users, Facebook offers realtors plenty of beneficial features that help them find new leads, interact with clients, and promote their listings.
For instance, Facebook allows users to promote their posts and events to boost engagement. If you post a discussion topic or announce an open house, you can repromote those posts after some time has passed to reinvigorate conversations or remind your followers about the approaching date. Facebook also offers paid advertisements that can help you attract new followers and gain more exposure for your business.
If you take advantage of any of these features, you can use Facebook Insights to review your page metrics and determine how your posts are performing. You can also track your page’s growth by viewing stats about your follower count, views, and reach.
While the platform itself offers many ways to control your page’s performance, Facebook’s best asset is its large and lively user base. To enjoy the platform’s benefits, you don’t necessarily need to start out with many followers. You can take part in Facebook groups for realtors or local business owners to network with other professionals or more general groups that can help you find new leads and branch out into new communities. As you explore the existing groups and niches on the platform, you can accrue more followers and gather the information that will help you improve your own business.
Finally, Facebook Marketplace is an invaluable resource for realtors. Some social media users complain about professionals promoting their listings or products too often, but Facebook allows users to post anything–including homes for sale or rent–on their Marketplace to gain views and gauge interest without clogging up your followers’ feeds.
The second most popular platform for realtors is LinkedIn, which is a bit different from other social media platforms. While the others were designed primarily for communicating with friends and family, LinkedIn was created as a networking platform for professionals. Realtors can use the site to stay in contact with former colleagues, other realtors, and clients, but the focus is shifted from marketing your listings to marketing yourself and your business.
On LinkedIn, your network is composed of “connections” rather than friends or followers and is divided by degrees. When you create your profile, you can add existing contacts from your phone or email account as 1st-degree connections, friends of friends are considered 2nd-degree connections, and so forth. The interaction options vary for each level, and you have to subscribe to LinkedIn’s premium messaging feature to contact your most distant connections.
While this feature may seem like a limitation, it’s important to remember that each social media platform has a different strength. A site like Facebook may make it easier to gain new followers and reach new people, but LinkedIn can help you maintain existing relationships and generate leads from a reliable pool of professional contacts. It also allows you to share career achievements and accumulate endorsements from connections that show potential clients that your skills and services are legitimate.
If millennial homebuyers are your target audience, Twitter may be the perfect platform for you. With a vast and dedicated user base, you can be sure that your Twitter posts will garner attention and generate leads. For realtors who are looking for a fast-paced platform that encourages short-form posts and brief interactions, Twitter is a great place to start.
In addition to the posts being short and manageable for new social media users, the platform’s format allows for convenient searching for both you and your clients. When you make a post, you can incorporate relevant hashtags that pertain to your business or refer to a trending topic to attract users’ attention and participate in popular conversations. If users are searching for home buying content or realtors in your area, using the right hashtags will ensure that your posts and profile come up. If you contribute to platform-wide discussions by using trending tags, clever and funny responses can give your followers a glimpse of your personality and draw in new followers.
After having fun posting on the platform, you can also take advantage of Twitter’s excellent analytics features. Review your performance to see what is working and what isn’t. On a fast-moving, user-friendly platform like Twitter, it’s easy to switch up your content and posting habits for better results.
If you’re looking for a platform that prioritizes education, YouTube is ideal. Realtors can create informative videos about their work and post them not just to generate leads or promote their businesses but to establish themselves as an authority in their industry. Most people do online research before making any kind of purchase, and many of them go to YouTube as a reliable source of information. If you grow a following there, you can generate dedicated, informed leads, share useful knowledge with the public and other realtors, and develop a reputation as a resource on real estate knowledge.
While many platforms allow you to post video content, YouTube is the standard for visual media, and your content will be seen by more than just your followers. Whether you choose to offer home buying advice, talk about market trends, give ideas for home improvement projects, or post video tours of open listings, your videos will show up in search results for anyone browsing the internet for related content.
Further, YouTube offers content creators opportunities to earn money from ad revenue on their videos. If you post consistently and get a certain amount of views, you can start making money for your own promotional content. Other platforms may offer more traditional marketing and advertising opportunities, but the best features are often included in premium packages. On YouTube, you can promote your business while earning extra cash.
Compared to any other platform, Instagram is consistently reported to have the highest engagement. If you’re hoping to interact more with your followers and generate active discussions around your posts, Instagram is a great platform to try.
Other platforms allow you to post long-form written content, but Instagram relies on eye-catching photos to tell stories and spark conversations. For realtors, a platform that emphasizes aesthetics is perfect for marketing homes and building a brand based on a specific image.
Many Instagram users choose to edit and organize their posts to fit an attractive theme, which can attract new followers, establish your brand, and make your page look polished and professional. In real estate, appearances are everything–so you know that when a potential client is sold on the way you represent yourself, they very well may be sold on you!
Beyond the stylistic focus of the platform, there are different posting formats that realtors can take advantage of for different purposes. For instance, you can post photos of home exteriors to promote new listings and follow up with a video post that gives a brief tour of the interior. This way, you can make multiple posts showcasing the same property. On a photo-forward platform like Instagram, these promotional images aren’t just welcome; your followers will want to see the homes from every angle.
How Can You Make Your Social Media Marketing Plan More Effective?
Now that you have more information about social media marketing and the platforms that realtors use most, you can start thinking of ways to streamline your strategy and enjoy all of the benefits of your chosen online communities. With so many different platforms and features available, it may seem difficult to manage them yourself and make the wisest choices.
If you’re just starting to build up your online presence, or you aren’t satisfied with your current results, check out the following tips. No matter which platform you’re using, you can count on these good social media practices to have a positive impact on your page’s performance and, by extension, your business.
If you’re new to social media, it can be difficult to know when and what to post. To create and maintain a buzz around your profiles, you will want to post a couple of times per day and check back regularly for follower questions, comments, and other activity on your posts.
On platforms that allow different types of media posts, you should also strive to vary your content and post videos, links, photos, and text graphics to keep your feed interesting for your longtime followers. If possible, you may even want to start posting live videos and come up with a schedule for regular streams. This is a great way to convene with your audience at regular intervals, answer questions, follow up on previous conversations, and provide updates on your ongoing projects.
If you develop a varied and frequent posting schedule, it’s important that you stick to it. Periods of high activity may draw in a lot of followers, but taking too long of a break between posts can make your page appear out of date and make your followers feel like their comments and messages won’t be returned in a timely manner. While it can be taxing to keep up an ambitious posting schedule, it’s important to keep up your online image and show potential clients that you’re ready to get to work.
Engage with Your Audience
Next, you should always take the time to engage with your audience. When you make a new post, stick around to see the comments and respond to as many as possible. As you start out, you may be able to chat with every commenter, but as your page grows, it will be harder to see and reply to every comment. Take every opportunity to show your followers that you’re interested in their input and willing to answer their questions. If you make a good impression, you could earn yourself a new client when the time is right for them to buy a new home.
If you find it difficult to respond to comments on your posts, live chats in video streams are a great way to communicate with your followers in real-time. This type of chat feels more like a true conversation, which can help your followers feel more comfortable reaching out one-on-one when they’re ready to seek out your services.
To truly create a community with your followers, you can even create your own groups to discuss real estate, local events, and other topics that your audience enjoys. Over time, you can build strong relationships with past and current clients and become a fixture in your online community.
Review Analytics Reports
As mentioned previously, it’s important to check out each platform’s respective analytics reports. On most sites, you can view page metrics from your settings and get insight into the effects of your choices. When you do start checking your analytics, make sure to do so regularly and at the right times. For instance, it’s wise to check your stats a few days before a planned event–like a live stream, an open house, or a big announcement–and a few days after to get a good idea of how your move affected your page’s performance.
Keep Up with Current Trends
Finally, don’t forget to have fun. Some realtors choose to use their professional profiles strictly for business updates and marketing materials, but others choose to include posts about personal milestones, timely discussion topics that don’t pertain to real estate or entertaining content that makes their followers smile. At the end of the day, social media is designed to help people connect and enjoy each other’s company and conversation. If you only ever make promotional posts, your profile could seem dry or come off like a drawn-out sales pitch.
If you share a bit more of yourself in your posts, you can make connections with your clients a bit faster and make yourself appear much more approachable!
If you were on the fence about starting social media accounts for your business or you simply didn’t know where to start, hopefully, these tips have given you some insight into the benefits of each platform and some ideas for developing your marketing plan. With so many ways to network with new people, communicate with clients, and promote your business, you won’t have any trouble finding a strategy that works for you!