A good social media marketing strategy is essential for real estate agents if they want to generate leads and make sales. Sprout Social provides some interesting stats in this regard:
- 77% of realtors actively use social media for real estate in some way, shape or form
- 47% of real estate businesses note that social media results in the highest quality leads versus other sources
- 99% of millennials (and 90% of baby boomers) begin their home search online (as opposed to in-person referrals)
This blog will explore what social media marketing is and how it can be effectively used in 2022. It will also cover how to create a successful social media strategy for real estate.
1. What is social media marketing?
The goal of social media marketing is to connect with your audience, build your brand, increase sales, and drive website traffic using platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. The five core pillars of social media marketing are strategy, planning, listening, engagement, analytics, and advertising.
Social media marketing involves creating content that is tailored to each individual social media platform in order to increase engagement and promote your business.
2. The benefits of social media for real estate
There are several benefits that social media can offer your real estate business. For now, let’s look at 5 of the most important:
- Social media platforms are some of the most used spaces across the web, a place where people are actively participating. This provides the opportunity for real estate businesses to reach out and interact with their target demographic where they are at.
- Social media channels typically offer a way to showcase a product or service offering visually. In the case of real estate, this is an obvious benefit. A realtor or property developer can quickly promote a property or project through high quality photos or real-time videos. This reduces the need for in-person visits, saving valuable time and resources.
- Social media can provide a way to increase traffic to your real estate website if sharing content that is relevant to and resonates with the audience being served. Every piece of content is an opportunity to convert a potential customer into a homebuyer.
- Social media analytics provides crucial insights into audience demographic and behaviour. This can be very helpful to know whether tweaks need to be made to your social media strategy for more effective targeting.
- Social media can help you humanize your brand. Use the channels to define your brand’s personality and then use this tone/voice consistently across channels. Show off your real estate team through photographs and have actual humans respond to comments or posts. This Forbes article provides some great tips on this topic.
3. Creating an effective social media strategy
Social media marketing requires a well thought out strategy that seeks to achieve key business objectives. For your strategy to be effective, you will need to be mindful of the following:
Establish your goals
Before you start using social media to achieve your business goals, you need to figure out what those goals are. You might want to increase website traffic, promote your property listings, or generate leads and boost sales. Once you know what you want to achieve, you can start using social media to make it happen.
Identify your target audience
You need to tailor your social media strategy to each specific channel. This means understanding who your target audience is and what motivates them. Establishing buyer personas will help you determine which social media channels to use.
Other ways of establishing your target audience are by:
- looking at who your competitors are engaging with on their channels and who is responding to their posts
- talking to your own customers and asking what social media platforms they typically prefer to use
Serve diverse content
If you want your content to have an impact, make sure it’s valuable and informative. Provide answers to the questions your target audience is asking. For real estate, consider serving the following type of content:
- Real estate updates and news to keep your customers, opportunities or leads informed as to what is going on in the industry.
- New listings and property highlights to give your audience direct insight into your entire real estate portfolio
- Tips, tutorials and how-to’s on all thing’s real estate, This could be to do with renovation, landscaping, gardening, interior design, budgeting, etc. The choices are infinite
- Customer testimonials to build trust and credibility; provide social proof; to humanise your brand; and for increasing conversions (Wyzowl)
Know when to post and how often to post
Even the best quality content won’t be successful if it’s posted at a time when nobody is looking for it. It’s important to know when to post content in order to maximize brand exposure, get community engagement, and increase lead generation and conversion. The following SproutSocial article provides valuable insights on the best times to publish posts.
Monitor and respond
It’s not only important to have social media presence, but it’s crucial that you respond to your audience on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc. This interaction helps build trust and relationships with potential customers.
Use your CRM to monitor and adapt campaigns
A CRM system like Qobrix provides the tools to manage sales and marketing campaigns, including campaign tracking and reporting. With this information, you can improve underperforming campaigns and better understand which ones are generating the most leads.
4. How to leverage social media platforms in 2022
To use social media platforms effectively, you need to understand how to use them as they were intended. Here are some of the most popular social media channels.
Most of your target audience is probably on Facebook, so you should use the platform to engage with prospective leads and opportunities. Publish consistent content related to your properties, and use Facebook’s ability to book appointments. Monitor for comments and feedback from customers, and engage accordingly. Build a community and keep your audience updated with your company’s updates and your most recent listings. You can use Facebook Ads to target a specific demographic.
If you want your real estate business to be where the visually stimulating content is, then you need to be on Instagram. Highlight your listings by sharing high quality property photographs to attract an audience that appreciates aesthetics. Take advantage of the platform’s quick and easy Instastories feature to share moments and advertise your brand in a way that feels more authentic. There are currently 1 billion monthly active users on Instagram worldwide, 500 million of which watch Instagram stories daily.
Networking is a lot easier with LinkedIn because you can connect with so many people in your field. You can also post content on a company page to establish yourself as an expert in your industry. Sharing your insights on current market trends and consumer behaviours is a great way to get started. You can also use LinkedIn to promote your business listings.
This article from QuickSprout states that listings with videos receive 403% more inquiries than listings without videos. Other interesting statistics about YouTube from Oberlo include:
- 2 billion users worldwide use YouTube
- 79% of users say they have a YouTube account
- 78.8% of marketers consider YouTube to be the most effective video marketing platform
- Everyday people watch 1 billion hours of video on YouTube and generate billions of views
- 62% of businesses use YouTube as a channel to post video content
- 90% of people say the discover new brands or products on YouTube
The important point to remember is that social media can be an effective tool for marketing your real estate business as long as your message is tailored to the specific audience you are trying to reach.
How real estate agents use social media
The average person spends 3 hours a day on social media. This gives marketers a chance to connect with their audiences directly. Real estate is one area where people are especially aware of this opportunity.
According to the NAR 2018 report, 77% of real estate agents use social media to an extent, and 47% of real estate businesses believe social media results in the highest quality leads. Therefore, the question is not whether to use social media or not, but how to maximize your ROI from social media.
Even though some people think that Instagram is not important for real estate, millennials still make up the largest percentage of home buyers. Also, a report by Transunion showed that the number of GenZ mortgage applications doubled between 2018 and 2019.
People in the Millennial and Gen Z age groups do not want to feel like they are being sold something when they see social media posts about products or services.
In an article on RealEstateBees, 82% of realtors agreed that the Covid-19 pandemic had opened more marketing opportunities. Helena Noonan of the Noonan team believes professional photography and video are important when advertising listings on social media.
She believes that professional photography and videography are increasingly important for attractiveness and engagement with potential customers, and says that they have been focusing more on social media platforms which have resulted in increased engagement.
What Are Our Social Media Predictions In Real Estate?
1. An increase in real estate customer service automation in social networks
It seems that it will soon be very difficult to tell the difference between a conversation with a bot and a conversation with a human.
Ogilvy Consulting’s 2020 social media stats reveal that by the end of 2020, 80% of brands will be using chatbots for consumer interaction. AI is expected to grow to a $190 billion industry by 2025.
Takeaway for Realtors:
Although human interaction will never be completely replaced, we are already beginning to see affordable and quite advanced consumer chatbots. These tools are able to chat with clients, answer some of their most pressing questions, set up in-person interviews for you, and even do some paperwork requests for you.
Some chatbots can record their interactions with prospects and save them directly to your customer relationship management software. Having a chatbot means your “virtual office” is open 24/7.
2. Sync between big data analytics and social media platforms
This means that it would be easier to know the types of information your audience is interested in. Social listening tools are also going to become more advanced.
The growth of big data analytics will allow marketers to quickly see patterns in how their audience interacts with their posts and make more informed decisions.
Takeaway for Realtors:
It’s more important for brands and influencers with a lot of followers to measure engagement metrics like likes, shares, and comments.
By analyzing your audience’s behavior, you can learn what they want and adjust your social media strategy accordingly.
5. Social media follower count and likes are becoming irrelevant
Brands are becoming more careful with how they spend on influencer marketing, especially with the rise of fake influencers. In addition, Instagram is planning to remove likes as a metric.
Many people use the number of likes on personal Instagram posts as a way to measure their social value. Since it would be difficult to imagine influencers without likes, some believe that Instagram may be taking a stand against influencer marketing by pushing brands towards paid advertising.
Takeaway for Realtors:
Even though likes and shares are popular, they may not be around for very long. When partnering with influencers, don’t base your decision off of the number of likes and followers they have.
Many brands choose to work with many small influencers instead of a few large ones. They believe that they will get more return on investment this way. For example, it may be more beneficial to have ten people promoting your product than to have one person with a million followers promoting it.
3. High LinkedIn video organic reach continues
Native videos on LinkedIn will continue to have high organic reach, while live video streams have increased by 158% since February 2020.
Videos are popular on LinkedIn. The site started out as a place for business networking, but has now grown to include people from a variety of industries and demographic groups. It is still one of the best places to network for business purposes.
Takeaway for Realtors:
LinkedIn should not be thought of simply as a place to find new clients or post resumes. It is also a great place to develop a network of relationships with other realtors, experts, and professionals related to the real estate industry. This is not to say that you can’t get new business from LinkedIn, but that you need to do so without resorting to sleazy tactics.
Mike Sherrard, a social media expert, says that LinkedIn videos can have up to ten times the organic reach of Facebook videos. He suggests that LinkedIn users post videos on topics such as market analysis, real estate industry updates, personal covid-19 buying or selling experiences, and testimonials.
4. Authenticity still wins
The pandemic has demonstrated that people are eager to communicate with and listen to others. In response, many brands are producing more user-generated content and behaving more authentically when they interact with customers and fans online.
It is evident that utilizing social media in real estate is beneficial for agent promotion, advertisements, client engagement, generating new leads, sales, and customer loyalty.