Social and digital marketing is a great way to stay in touch, and front of mind, with potential clients. If you want to increase your listings, then actively promoting yourself across social media channels is the way forward. But finding the time, creativity and inclination to produce content, and post continuously is challenging, right?
Even with good intentions, when we are busy with client work, our marketing efforts often fall by the wayside. And, once you’ve lost the momentum it can be hard to muster up the efforts to reignite your social or digital marketing efforts again.
If nothing else, the numerous lockdowns have shown us that social media and tools like Zoom or Teams are an excellent way to stay connected. With social media uptake continuing to grow at a rate of 5.8% a year – even the 2019 naysayers created social media accounts during the pandemic!
People to people marketing
If there’s one thing I know for sure about real estate, it’s a ‘people business’ as much as a ‘property business’. Selling, leasing or managing a building is the easy part, correct? The real challenge is attracting new clients and convincing them that you’re the expert for the job! Focusing on building and maintaining relationships is where the high performing agents spend most of their time and energy.
So, what’s the best way to stay connected with people across our communities and networks? It’s social media! And what’s the best way to be found when someone is looking for specific help? It’s Google search! Great, we’ve got that agreed then.
For many agents or support staff, managing social media can feel like a part-time job that you do on top of your full-time job. You know you need to be active online and be consistent with your messages, but your best-laid plans to ‘pre-schedule content’ fall by the wayside.
Instead, you find yourself aimlessly showing up once in a while, posting a property you just listed or an inspirational quote you stole from someone else. You know full well this approach isn’t going to cut the mustard and get you an increase in listings. But how do you resolve this?
Your digital makeover
When someone searches your name (which they will), you can’t control which websites or social channels they’ll find first, but you can control the first impression you make. Your profile should be up-to-date and consistent across six critical places, including portals, online directories and social channels.
In the same way you “dress to impress” (hair, makeup, suit and even the car you drive), your digital appearance should also be well-presented, highly professional, have you sounding knowledgeable and most importantly, empathic to your client’s needs. Think of it like online dating; is your photo a true reflection of what you look like today, or five years ago? If someone checked you out online, then met you in person, would they spot the additional ‘COVID Kilos’ you’ve also resolved to shift this year? If yes, then it’s time for a fresh photoshoot!
With the help of a good interviewer, wordsmith and photographer, you can get professional help to make your best qualities shine. It’s well worth the investment to have someone help you identify your core difference and make you more appealing than your competitors. I’ve personally interviewed hundreds of agents to help them perfect their elevator pitches and improve their online profiles. So reach out if you’d like help with your own digital makeover.
Ways to be more creative
By now, most of you should know that when it comes to establishing a personal brand and fostering a positive reputation, Content is King and Social Media is Queen. Here are some helpful tools for when you’re ready to move beyond sharing just the properties you’ve listed.
LinkedIn Creator Mode: Flip your profile to be more services-oriented than resume using Creator Mode. Switch from building connections to followers. Have your content appear at the top of your profile and tell people what you love talking about using hashtags such as #realestate #property #investmentproperty #commercialproperty and the like.
LinkedIn Live Video: If like Lisa Novak, Live Video is your reputation building weapon of choice, LinkedIn welcomes you. Once you switch to Creator mode, you can broadcast live, and your followers will see you in your profile banner.
LinkedIn Cover Story: They’re calling it the “Harry Potter” effect. Record a short video message, and it’ll show up as an interactive ‘orange ring’ around your profile photo. To create yours, open the LinkedIn mobile app, click the plus icon that’s on your profile images and voila, create away.
LinkedIn Newsletters: Embedded within the articles section of LinkedIn is a new feature that will help you disseminate your blogs to your followers as a newsletter. Style your newsletter with a logo, title and image. Add one or more articles and some intro copy, and voila, you are a fully-fledged publisher.
Meta Creator Studio: If you only post content to Meta platforms (Facebook and Instagram), you can ditch third party scheduling tools and link all your pages to easily cross-post your marketing messages within Creator Studio. You can pre-schedule posts and ads, even so-called ‘live videos’. There’s a Live Dashboard for monitoring activities and even a Sound Collection to bring images to life. Plus there’s talk they’ll be launching work accounts to save us using our personal logins.
Reels on Facebook & Instagram: Taking the lead from TikTok, you’ll be able to use music, audio, AR effects and text overlays to create inspiring short videos. A great way to make your content relatable and express in words and music how a home will make its new owner feel. Add a sparkle effect as you hang by the pool or dance around the garden to an upbeat tune. Bring your self-created visuals to life from the palm of your hand with the Reels creator tools.
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Live Audio Rooms & Podcasts: If you have the ‘gift of the gab’, you might prefer sharing property market insights via Facebook Live Audio Rooms, a competitor to Clubhouse and Twitter Spaces. Perhaps you have a penchant for podcasting, and this will be your year to start your own channel? Or, you might want to be smart and repurpose the sound from your videos into an audio-only medium for people to listen to while exercising or driving their car.
Make your marketing memorable
Most platforms have given us tools that are more effortless to use, to be creative on the go, from the palm of our hand. Whatever you choose to do to grow your visibility online this year, remember that audience attention spans have become shorter, videos have become easier to make and more popular.
Think mobile + video for quick, easy to create content. Time block and batch content (maybe on the weekend if you don’t engage professional help) and make the most of stories and highlights as you can more easily see who’s watching you!
Here’s to a more fluid and fun-filled year ahead for us all. My team and I are here for you if you need help or further advice on digital marketing.