Social media marketing is an essential process for realtors to reach out to their target audience. In this article, we discuss what real estate social media marketing is, advantages of using social media, and six social media best practices for realtors to follow to promote their brand and products.
What Is Social Media Marketing (SMM)?
Social media marketing (SMM) refers to leveraging social media channels and platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter to promote self, brand, or business. An essential part of marketing strategy for organizations, social media marketing helps to connect with the target customers. Social media has become an important tool for realtors and real estate professionals to market and promote their brand. In fact, a reportOpens a new window by the National Association of Realtors suggests that 77% of realtors use social media in some form.
The use of social networks has increased exponentially over the last few years. Social networks have attracted users from all age groups, geographies, genders, educational, and professional backgrounds. Hence, it should be just natural for real estate companies and brands to leverage social media to establish and market their brand. What makes social media attractive for real estate professionals is the ability to connect, engage, advertise, and promote their brand based on parameters like location, interests, and behavior of their target customers.
There are many social channels available today, which include Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and Snapchat. These platforms allow realtors to post and share various types of content such as blogs, images, and videos. They also allow them to reply to comments, send messages, and advertise to their preferred audience segment.
Benefits of Using Social Media for Real Estate Marketing
There is much research and evidence available to show the benefits of using social media for businesses. A few benefits for the real estate sector are listed below:
- Increased outreach
Real estate is a competitive industry. Putting out the word about their business and properties are necessary for the survival of realtors. Further, they need a platform to reach out to their target customers. As most people spend a significant amount of time on social media platforms, it becomes a great tool for achieving maximum outreach for realtors. It is also quite cost-effective compared to most traditional forms of marketing and advertising.
- Opportunity for brand building
Brand building is another important exercise for real estate professionals as it helps them to build a positive reputation for their company and property offerings. Social networks allow them to share valuable information about their properties and company directly with their customers thus helping them build a positive image for their brand.
- Enhanced networking
Networking is one of the fundamental aspects of success in the real estate business. Realtors need a strong network of industry peers, customers, and prospects to increase their sales. Social media offers incredible opportunities for real estate professionals to build a vast network of industry peers, prospects, and customers. Features such as messaging, commenting, and sharing content help them build connections on a more personal level.
- Lead generation
While social media is generally considered a tool for mass engagement, it is also a great way to build one-on-one connections and generate direct leads. According to the report Opens a new window by the National Association of Realtors, 47% of real estate businesses say that social media offers the highest quality leads as opposed to other sources. This is one of the major advantages of using social media for real estate professionals.
6 Social Media Marketing Best Practices That Realtors Must Use
While social media is a powerful marketing tool for real estate professionals, following a few best practices can help you get the best out of it. Try these six real estate social media marketing best practices mentioned below to gain a competitive advantage in 2020.
1. Select a few platforms and stay consistent
There are many social media networks available today which you can use as a business owner. However, you need to identify the ones that are right for you based on the user persona and demographics you are targeting. User demographics include the age group, profession, education, and location of the users, among others. While some social networks cover a wide range of customer demographics, some of them may target only a finite set.
Social Media Network Examples for Realtors
Source: Business Clan
For example, LinkedIn is a networking platform for professionals. However, it has millions of users spanning across a wide range of professional and educational background, age groups and interests. Facebook is another great example of a social network, which is casual and covers a wide range of user demographics. Hence, you can leverage such platforms to connect with your target market. Another example of a popular social media platform is YouTube where you can create and share your videos.
It is a good practice to explore less conventional social networks for your business as well. For example, Pinterest is a social network that you can explore. You can share beautiful photos of your properties, decor, and interiors with your audience. Make sure that you share your contact details on these channels so that your audience can connect with you directly.
Once you have chosen a few social media platforms, it is necessary to stay active and post on a regular basis. Whether it is Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, or Snapchat, actively posting on these channels is key to win followers and potential customers. Every channel has an ideal number of contents you can post per day. For example, Facebook experts suggest posting at least twice a day to increase your reach. On Instagram, you can post 1-3 times a day.
Hence, staying consistent in publishing content every day will help you build a strong presence on social media and stay ahead of competition. To make sure that you are posting regularly on social media, plan and schedule your content ahead of time with a content calendar. You can use tools like Buffer and Hootsuite to schedule your content well in advance.
2. Promote more than your properties
Posting pictures of their properties is an obvious practice for realtors. However, you need to be creative and go beyond only posting your property pictures. For example, sharing the testimonials and success stories of your customers can help you connect with your audience on an emotional level.
Example of a testimonial
Another good example of creative content for realtors is to not just share pictures of the property but also some content around the neighborhood and locality surrounding it. A lot of property buyers like to know about the city â€“ the best and the worst about it. You can use your social media handles to provide rich information about the city and the neighborhood.
Example of a Descriptive Post
Some other creative content ideas include posting current industry trends, company accomplishments, awards and recognition, event highlights, and home decor ideas.
IGTV is the video application on Instagram that allows you to share longer videos as compared to regular posts on Instagram. You can use tools like Story Slicer to create engaging videos of your client interviews, sneak peek into properties, neighborhood walkthroughs, and event coverages.
Content from other social media influencers can also be shared with due credit given to the owner.
3. Educate your audience
People are frustrated with tons of advertisements clogging up their web browser and social media. Hence, rather than bombarding them with advertisements of your properties, get educational. Buyers have a lot of questions they want answers for. You can use your social media pages and handles in a smart way to answer their queries and questions. As a realtor, you would have gained much knowledge about the industry. You can share that knowledge with your audience. You would also have faced several challenges yourself as a buyer. You can share your lessons from your pitfalls with your audience.
If you have a blog, you can write articles that help your audience and share them on social media. You can create surveys and polls. The bottom-line is, offering value to your audience through content will get them talking about your brand and help you gain more visibility.
4. Constantly engage with your audience
Social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram are a great way to build and grow a user community around your brand. However, you also need to focus on engaging with your connections and followers on a regular basis.
Make sure that you reply to the comments you receive on your social pages. Also, ensure that you respond to the page mentions you receive. Consistently engaging with the user community on social platforms helps you gain their trust and build a much-needed exposure for your brand.
5. Use video marketing
Today, videos have become a powerful way of marketing a companyâ€™s products and services. A video is more attractive than plain text content. According to Hubspot, 45%Opens a new window of people watch more than an hour of video on platforms such as YouTube and Facebook. Further, according to Wyzowl video marketingOpens a new window statistics, about 83% of video marketers said that video helped them generate leads. Besides being engaging, videos help you get more creative. Another advantage of video marketing is that it can help you boost your website rankings on search engines such as Google.
You can either create a video of yourself or create a 360 view of your property and neighborhood and share it on social networks. You can also create Q&A sessions and panel discussions to position yourself as an authority on the subject matter. They can also help you garner maximum engagement in real-time.
You can further create live videos using platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube to gain more exposure and drive higher engagement. The secret is to think like a prospective buyer and create video content that adds value to them.
6. Monitor the results
Continuously monitoring data and analyzing results is a key priority for real estate professionals. Social media analytics helps you keep track of your contentâ€™s performance. Measuring this performance helps you analyze which content type performs better, what is the best time to post, when you will receive maximum audience engagement, and which channel adds the most value to your business.
Using social media analytics, real estate marketers should look for answers to the following: what is the public sentiment about the brand; which platforms and advertising efforts are delivering better ROI; and how organic and paid social strategies can be improved as well as future content can be optimized to maximize its effectiveness.
Bonus Tip: Social Automation
Another useful practice is to automate your social media efforts. This includes scheduling your posts in bulk, custom report creations, and finding relevant content and brand mentions using social listening tools like SproutSocial.
There are also many automation tools available such as Hootsuite and AgoraPulse that can help you automate most of your social media tasks. Make the ultimate use of these tools to increase the RoI on your social efforts.
Summing It Up
As a real estate professional, your goal is to attract high-quality leads through your marketing strategies. Social media is a tool that can help you generate these leads. With social media, you can build a community where you can connect with your prospective customers and engage with them. Follow the above-mentioned social media marketing best practices to boost your business in 2020.
Do you have some creative ideas for using social media marketing for your real estate business in 2020? We are all ears. Let us know on LinkedInOpens a new window , TwitterOpens a new window , or FacebookOpens a new window .
Updated: Aug 31, 2020