4 Smart Tips for Real Estate Agents to Develop a Social Media Outreach Plan

Real estate agents do not typically have it easy when they try to reach out to their existing and target customers through social media marketing. This is because with an increasingly crowded social media space, a gazillion companies are out there vying for your potential customer’s attention. So unless you are laser sharp with your focus, it is possible that your posts will drown in the flood of marketing messages.

Also, it is important to remember that most users do not enjoy being bombarded with marketing messages through social media channels. They would rather interact with companies that share useful, new, informative, and interesting messages.

So how do you tailor your social media marketing strategy to reach the right people at the right time, and in a non-intrusive and helpful manner? Here are a few tips.

1) Choose the Right Channels
Real estate agents should be able to reach the right audience through the right social media channels. It is only when social media posts and ads are targeted at the right audience that you will get the desired results.

All social media channels are not alike in that each serves a different need of the user. LinkedIn is used mainly for professional networking and connecting with people working in similar areas. It may not be the best place to scout for prospective home buyers.

But LinkedIn can be used to build brand identity and trust for your business. You will be able to connect with industry peers and prospective customers. It is the ideal platform to build thought leadership and brand awareness. Sharp and accurate market insights, upcoming trends in your industry and latest news and updates are all apt content to post on LinkedIn. Ensure that you have a robust website, an active Business Page and your full contact information linked to your profile. This will make it easier for users to follow and connect with your business.

LinkedIn also offers an opportunity to be a part of industry groups, connect with peers, and drive efforts to build thought leadership. Be regular with your posts on Pulse, which is the publishing platform on LinkedIn. Once the content you post gains traction, it will be seen in the feeds of not only your followers, but also a much larger and targeted audience.

Social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are great if you have content tailored to meet user needs. Since these sites also offer a great platform to showcase visual content like short videos, property listings and infographics, you can create content that is engaging and interesting.

2) Make Optimal Use of Facebook
Facebook is, without doubt, the largest social network in the world. It is the platform where users come together to discuss virtually anything under the sun. You can make use of the massive reach of the channel to stay engaged and connected with prospects and existing customers.

It is crucial that you do not carry out Facebook networking through your personal account. Create a brand page where you can post content, embed content from your website, run contests and giveaways, cross-promote branded content posted on other platforms, and most importantly, interact with your fans and followers. Arivify has done a great job of promoting their latest blog posts on their Facebook page.

Facebook ads are a powerful means of reaching your target audience. You can target your ads by defining the audience based on age, interests, location, activity, lifestyle, and/or online shopping activity (spending habits). If you have email addresses of a selected list of prospects, it is possible to show your ads only to this group.

Page Insights (Facebook analytics tool) is your key to unlocking audience interaction. With Insights you will be able to glean valuable information regarding the form of content that gets maximum traction. Usually, people hunting for a home or looking to invest in real estate will enjoy watching videos and images of prospective buys, and will also show interest in the latest statistics and trends regarding real estate buying in the locality of their choice. Also, take note of the days and timings when you get maximum activity, and determine your ideal posting frequency based on this information.

3) Make Use of Instagram
Real estate business, especially home buying, has a lot of emotions tied to it. It is also a very visual process with consumers being heavily influenced by how they perceive or experience your product. Great visual content will always score well with your target audience. And what better social network than Instagram to deliver your message?

You can create business profiles that work like Facebook’s business pages. The analytics or insights you gain from having a business profile can be used to improve your content.

High-quality videos and pictures make for most compelling content on Instagram. You can also post interesting infographics and sharable graphics. Sponsored carousel, video and photo advertisements can be used to target defined audience.

Instagram Stories appear above the regular user feeds and are interspersed between stories of two brands or companies that the user follows. These ads cannot be watched more than once and disappear after the first view from the user’s feed. If you are wondering about how to run a real estate campaign, check out the accounts of realestatekirkby and Stage2Properties. Chad Carroll, a real estate broker in Florida, uses drones, professional quality videos, and great music to tell stories of properties. Real estate is not what you would expect to tell a captivating visual story, but custom animations and unique templates help you do exactly that. You can weave a story about your locality or homes, or customize visual tours of neighborhoods, open houses and listings.

4) Go Local
Your business is hyper-local, so your social media ads should also be the same. Hyper-local ads appear in social media feed of users of the targeted location. AdWords help you geo-target ads to users across various social networks. You can choose your target audience on the basis of critical factors like location, age and interests.

Also, make it a point to feature what’s happening in your locality in your social media posts. Instagram Stories ads about happy customers or short videos of happenings in the locality where your business is based will help build a positive vibe for potential home buyers. You can also blog about community events and festivals, and cross-promote the content across your social media handles.

As a real estate agent, you will have to approach social media marketing just the way any big multinational business would. You will have to invest time and money, and plan your social media outreach as carefully as possible. With proper use of insights gained from analytics and application of the right approach, your real estate business will be able to get the desired traction and user engagement.

Lori Wagoner

Lori Wagoner is an independent content strategist who gives online marketing advice to small businesses. Lori has blogged at Tweak Your Biz, The Social Media Hat and many other business and tech blogs. You can reach her @LoriDWagoner on Twitter.

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