Establishing a good social media presence in a world so connected online is important for businesses, even small enterprises. The good news is that your audience is pretty much waiting for you to tap them. According to We Are Social’s Global Digital Report 2019, the social media population is now composed of 3.484 billion users worldwide. That is how big your potential audience is, but you can narrow it down to your target market and regularly engage them to harness the true power of social media in real estate.
The Importance of Social Media Engagement
You’d think that if you’re a small business with a mostly local following, such as a real estate agent, seller, lender or property manager, that you won’t need to focus on social media as much as the big companies. You’re wrong! Engaging your customers and prospects on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn is important due to the following reasons:
- It serves as proof of good business. If people visit your page and see that you have a large following, heavily engaged users, eager queries, and good reviews, they would have a positive perception of your real estate business. It will encourage them to try your products themselves after seeing how many happy and engaged customers you have. A real estate agent, for instance, can use social media to show off their closed property deals to reach new real estate clients. Every time someone interacts with you on social media, it will be seen by more social media users in the network of that person, increasing awareness of your business.
- It helps expand your reach. Social media platforms are available to users all around the world, which means that you can also reach customers regardless of their geographical location. This beats conventional advertising in the past which has its limitations. Even if you’re a real estate agent selling properties in Colorado, someone from London who’s interested in moving to your state can start doing business with you simply by connecting through social media. This global reach is one of the reasons why social media is one of the best real estate lead generation strategies for 2019.
- It is more cost-effective compared to conventional advertising. The cost of printing flyers and distributing them is so much more than posting or even advertising on social media, with the latter even possibly getting more views and promotional reach. A single tweet, for instance, could reach hundreds or thousands of people without costing you anything. If you use social media along with the right online marketing research service that will help you analyze the competition and find out their best tactics for you to use, you can turn social media into an even more powerful tool. Read a Semrush review, for instance, and you’ll see how this service can help you learn from your competitors’ success and use it to your advantage.
Related: Online Lead Generation for Agents: 7 Ways to Beat the Competition
Social Media Engagement Tips
Given the benefits of social media engagement mentioned above, you should now have more than enough reason to start working on your small business’ social media pages. Distinguish yourself from the competition by making full use of the following tips in engaging real estate customers in your social media pages:
- Capitalize on video for brand awareness. Videos taken and produced well can be pretty powerful, especially if you also follow it up with quick responses to comments and reactions from your followers. Video marketing stats show that video is a good investment as it builds awareness and credibility, sparks engagement, shows your authentic side, appeals to emotions, increases optimization opportunities, boosts lead conversions, encourages shares, and increases return on investment.
If your audience is mostly on Facebook, focus more on graphics since research shows that 85% of Facebook videos are viewed with the volume turned off. Make a playlist of similar videos on your page or pin a featured video to the top of your page to introduce your small real estate business or show off a new product. Make sure to upload the video directly to Facebook. With every video, don’t forget to include a clear call to action.
If you’re on YouTube, don’t be afraid to get personal with the audience, be more experimental with your content and focus on what works, and post videos regularly. To increase your YouTube videos’ shareability, allow embedding for distribution, and optimize your videos’ titles and metadata.
Related: 5 Digital Real Estate Marketing Ideas for Agents
For powerful videos on Instagram, cut down on words. Stick to a theme to create a more visually appealing Instagram feed. Keep everything simple by focusing on highlights in your IG videos.
Twitter videos are made more effective by presenting a story arc, using topical content, including people in the first three seconds, and adding some text to them.
- Use catchy captions or titles. Use your creativity and wit to encourage people to click on your post or interact with you. Ask a question that will prompt them to answer and start engaging with you. Post relevant content with eye-catching headlines, something that compels them to click on the content, and encourages them to comment or start a discussion thread with other followers.
- Host a competition. Find a prize that your followers and prospects love and make sure to include mechanics in the contest that will require people to like, react to or share your social media page or post.
- Post only high-quality content. Invest in well-researched, informative, error-free, and compelling content. Be consistent in producing these types of optimized content to establish your authority in your industry and earn the trust of your followers. This will help you become their go-to source for any information related to your line of business. Use only high-quality photos and videos. Remain consistent in terms of quality to avoid disappointing your followers. Even a single bad image or video may discourage them enough to unfollow you and ignore your page.
- Respond to comments quickly. Just like how people love receiving reactions and comments to their posts, they also love it if businesses respond to them. It makes them feel important and listened to, which improves their perception of your business.
- Pepper comments with your social media profile links. If you include the links to all your social media pages while interacting with customers, it may encourage them to click on those links and explore your pages since the links are right in front of them.
- Ask your followers. Even a simple “What do you think?” question can start a dialogue. You also create polls and learn more about your followers while keeping them engaged. Simply asking timely, thought-provoking questions can create a flurry of activity in your social media pages.
- Encourage your followers to create content about your brand. There are various ways to do this, starting with creating a relevant real estate hashtag, using # and a unique phrase that best describes your brand, and inviting your followers to start posting using that hashtag. You may also host contests that encourage followers to upload original content related to your brand, from photos and videos to essays, illustrations, recordings, and more. Another thing that you can do is to motivate people to review or rate your products.
- Give your followers an offer that they can’t say no to. It could be free or discounted membership, discount promotions, or instant coupons. To further motivate your followers to start and continue interacting with you, give the offer a time limit.
- Put the spotlight on active followers. Just like with any platform, social media users love to be appreciated and recognized. If you’re a realtor, for instance, you could share stories about how some of your clients have managed to finally own a house after overcoming a few challenges along the way. Facebook even awards a Top Fan badge now to the most engaging followers of a Facebook page. That is a good way to keep motivating your followers to continue liking, retweeting, and sharing your posts.
- Provide value. Your content should do more than just promote your products. It should also include educating your followers and readers through tips, step-by-step guides, news, and more. This kind of valuable content is likely to be more visible online if people appreciate the learning they got from it and share it with others.
- Appeal to emotions. Awaken some strong emotions among your audience by posting stories, videos, and images that showcase your customers’ and prospects’ life now. If you’re a real estate agent, how about posting a video of a family moving into their new home, photos of a beautifully designed house with a compelling story of its background, and more?
- Offer a solution to your audience’s usual problems. While engaging your followers, make sure to follow them and listen to what their pain points are. Write content that addresses those pain points and you will get their attention.
- Show how your business works. People are naturally curious, so they would love a sneak peek at your behind-the-scene happenings. Take this opportunity to assure your customers that everything that you are doing is for their benefit.
You can use these tactics to further strengthen your social media power. These can serve as a great compliment to your conventional real estate marketing tactics, too!
This article has been contributed by Lidia Hovhan.