If you’ve been in the business throughout the past few years you might have noticed a trend toward less emphasis placed on your in person networking skills and more so on internet home searches, email marketing and even your social channels. So here’s a quick breakdown of which social media sites are worth your time, how to set up your accounts and most importantly how to post effectively. Not to mention, when using internet marketing, high quality photos and descriptive videos, you just might notice that you end up saving some money from your marketing budget.
What social profiles do you really need to start with? Here are a few of our favorites and how to get moving.
The purpose: By utilizing Google+ effectively you can claim authorship of your website as well as other sites you contribute content to (social profiles, other blogs, etc.). Google may even put a nice little picture of you as well as an excerpt of your bio underneath your site pages when they show up in search results. Very cool!
How to effectively use Google+: Set up your account via the link above and then go to the edit screen of your profile. Here is where you can add your Real Estate business info, contact info, location, biography and sites that you contribute to. Once you save your profile you can now add clients, collegues, friends and more to your circles to view their updates as well as get started posting content of your own!
The purpose: Need we explain this one? Your past, present and future clients will expect to find you here. It’s great for posting questions, adding recent blog post excerpts, announcing new listings and closings, posting your virtual tours and MUCH more!
How to effectively use Facebook: Setting up a business page is pretty simple. Once you begin you’ll notice how easy it is to create albums for your listings and open houses, post links to your videos and share content from your website. Not to mention Facebook’s focus: connecting with others! This platform makes it extremely easy for local buyers and sellers to join in on the conversation, like things you’ve posted and give you their feedback.
The purpose: Twitter is designed to keep it short and sweet. This isn’t for lengthy thoughts or posts. Twitter is all about quick announcements, updates or even a teaser of a full story written elsewhere if you can keep it to 140 characters or less.
How to effectively use Twitter: Follow the link above to get started and create your account. Make sure to create a Twitter handle that is easy to understand and try to mention your area and Real Estate if possible. We’re looking to draw in followers who don’t necessarily know you yet but may be searching for housing updates or listings in your area. Once your account is created you can customize the look of your page and get acquainted with the basics. Now you can begin tweeting, mentioning others and engaging in direct messages.
The purpose: YouTube has created a platform that allows you to claim your own “Channel” which groups all of your videos together. Once a visitor views one of your videos, YouTube will suggest similar videos of yours after the first one ends. This is a great way to keep someone watching. YouTube also makes it extremely easy for you to share and embed your videos on your other sites.
How to effectively use YouTube: First, create your channel! Next, start recording some videos via your smart phone or camcorder. You should consider videos of virtual tours, staff interviews, information on popular topics and more! Make sure to include your contact info, tam name and a link to your website at the end of every video you create!
The purpose: Setting up a Trulia profile will allow you to have a visible bio on a site that gets a HUGE amount of hits every single day! Take it to the next step by listing a link to search for homes on your website directly on your Trulia profile. You will also want to make sure to ask for recommendations from past clients and claim your current listings!
How to effectively use Trulia: You will have access to many great features of Trulia with just the basic agent profile. Don’t feel pressured into upgrading to the Pro account right away. Look for a full series on how you can best use Trulia coming very soon to BrokerageU!
Now that you’ve gotten started with all of these profiles, how can they possibly all work together for the same goal? Here are a few of our ideas:
- You can quickly and easily embed your virtual tours from YouTube onto a page or blog post on your website.
- Notify your Facebook friends and Twitter followers of new blog posts from your website by posting a teaser of the new content.
- Post an invitation for local homeowners or home buyers to ask questions on your Facebook page and create YouTube videos to answer the questions publicly.
- Continuously post updates during your open houses to Twitter and even take it a step further by having visitors enter a raffle by checking in on Foursquare.
- Find a local Meetup group (or create one!) in your area to discuss how other successful Realtors in your area use the internet to their advantage; chances are that you’ll leave with tons of new ideas.
To make your life a little easier, the best thing you can do is set up auto posting which links all of these channels together and pushes new content to each site instantly. A great (and I should mention free) tool that we recommended in the past is “If This Then That“. IFTTT is still an exceptional choice, but since that post was written we are working on releasing a “Publicize” option directly within your Tribus website’s dashboard. Stay tuned for an announcement and how to guide very soon!
In the end, it’s not about how many social platforms that you have claimed a page on- it’s all about how you use them. Try to keep it simple and make sure you are not on so many different networking sites that you lose track. The goal is to maintain a clear and consistent message throughout. Each platform should easily identify your branding, area of influence and clientele. From there, make sure each channel receives it’s own unique content in addition to your auto posting we talked about earlier, this will make the search engines very happy and keep them coming back for more!
Happy posting! We would love to hear your feedback of what’s working for you!