We have seen how social media can help people around the world share their opinions and concerns. But it’s not just a political and media game-changer; it’s also a great business asset.

This article will present some social media trends that real estate marketers who are planning for the future should take note of.

How social media usage has evolved

The platforms that reigned in the early 2000s have either become extinct or nearly so, while others have seen exponential growth over the past fifteen years. This means that more than 3.5 billion people out of 7.7 billion people in the world are on Facebook, Youtube, TikTok or Whatsapp.

An example of how explosive growth can be is TikTok. Launched in September 2016, TikTok had over half a billion users by mid-2018. The app has over 800 million active users as of 2020 and has been downloaded over 2 billion times since 2016.

In other words, Tiktok’s user base increased by 20 million users per month between 2016 and 2018.

In the past ten years, there have been significant changes to what the main social media platforms offer.

For example, Facebook has launched a new cryptocurrency called Libra, Instagram reels, a dedicated news tab, and social VR/wearable AR glasses. Facebook’s growth from 2008 to 2018 has been huge, going from covering 1.5% of the world to 30%.

Social media can be a very effective tool if used correctly. It is important to know how to get the most return on investment from social media.

How real estate agents use social media

On average, users spend three hours on social media per day. Since it is ingrained in our daily lives, marketers have an opportunity to reach out to their audiences directly. So the question is not whether to use social media or not, but how to maximize your ROI from social media.

While some people may argue about whether or not platforms like Instagram are relevant for real estate, the fact is that millennials still make up the largest percentage of home buyers. Based on a report by Transunion, the number of GenZ mortgage applications increased significantly from 2018 to 2019.

But the people who are looking at these listings are not interested in seeing just pictures of the listing and posts that say “call me.” Both millennials and Gen Zs avoid feeling like they are being sold something.

82% of realtors surveyed in an article on RealEstateBees agreed that the Covid-19 pandemic has opened more marketing opportunities. Professional photography and video are important when advertising listings on social media to capture buyers’ attention and interest.

What Are Our Social Media Predictions In Real Estate?

1. An increase in real estate customer service automation in social networks

In the near future it will be difficult to tell the difference between a conversation with a bot and a conversation with a human. Ogilvy Consulting has found that 80% of brands will be using chatbots for consumer interaction by the end of 2020. AI is predicted to increase to a $190 billion industry by 2025.

The takeaway for Realtors:

Although human interaction will never be completely replaced, we are already beginning to see affordable and quite advanced consumer chatbots. Tools can be used to chat with clients, answer questions, set up interviews, and request paperwork.

Some chatbots are able to save transcripts of their conversations with leads in your CRM. This can be useful for keeping track of customer interactions. Chatbots are available 24/7 so you can keep your office open virtually 24/7.

2. Sync between big data analytics and social media platforms

This means that you would be able to more easily determine the types of information that your audience is interested in. The tools for social listening are becoming more advanced.

The growth of big data analytics will allow marketers to see trends in how their audience interacts with their posts and make better decisions.

The takeaway for Realtors:

It is more important for real estate brands and influencers with a lot of followers to be trendy. But the key to social media isn’t necessarily in the numbers. You can measure engagement by looking at likes, shares, and comments, but that’s not all there is to social media.

You can rinse and repeat what works. You can use big data to figure out what your audience wants. You can improve your social media advertising and posting strategy by getting a better understanding of what is working and what is not.

3. High LinkedIn video organic reach continues

The number of LinkedIn Live streams has increased by 158% since February 2020. Live video and native video posted on LinkedIn will still have high organic reach.

LinkedIn favors videos. Although LinkedIn started as a B2B platform, it has grown to encompass a wider range of demographics and industries. This is still one of the best tools for business networking.

The takeaway for Realtors:

LinkedIn is not only a place to upload resumes, but also a place to network with other professionals, learn about new job opportunities, and research companies. It’s a great place to build a network with other realtors, experts, and real-estate-adjacent professionals. You can still get business from LinkedIn without seeming sleazy.

To build your authority on LinkedIn, post videos and live-stream content. This could include market analysis, real estate industry updates, personal experiences with buying or selling during the Covid-19 pandemic, testimonials, or your own accomplishments. According to some social media experts, the organic reach you get on LinkedIn videos could be up to 10 times that of Facebook.

4. Authenticity still wins

The pandemic has revealed that people want to communicate with and listen to others. Many brands are featuring more user-generated content and appearing more authentic in their responses to customers and fans online.

An example of this is Airbnb, which use user-generated content for their Instagram exclusively and have seen a lot of engagement as a result.

The takeaway for Realtors:

84% of millennials say they don’t trust traditional advertising. This research is important because it provides insight into what the largest group of home buyers are looking for. While user-generated content is predominantly used by product-based companies that would like to see people using their products, service brands like AirBnB are becoming increasingly interested in it because it creates greater engagement.

If you incentivize your followers with a contest, you’re likely to receive videos or pictures of the best places in your community. And you rank submissions by points. You could interview influencers, clients, or people who are important to you. You can also post testimonial photos and videos.

5. Social media follower count and likes are becoming irrelevant

As brands become more aware of fake influencers, they are spending more carefully on influencer marketing. Instagram is planning to remove likes as a metric, which would change how users interact with the app.

People justify the importance of likes by saying that many people use the number of likes on personal posts as a way to measure social value. Some people think that Instagram’s decision to remove likes from posts is a way to discourage influencer marketing, because influencers rely on likes to show their value to brands.

The takeaway for Realtors:

This suggests that likes and shares will be around for a while, but when working with influencers, don’t focus on likes and follower count.

Many brands are now spending more money on quantity rather than quality. They are choosing to use micro-influencers who have a smaller following but are more engaged, rather than celebrity influencers who have a large following but are less engaged. Instead of working with an influencer who has a lot of followers, you might get more value from working with a smaller team to promote a property.

6. New opportunities with IGTV

There are reasons why IGTV could be successful for marketers. Instagram is spending more on improving IGTV’s features and now allows you to post videos that are less than 60 seconds in length to your feed. If you want more people to watch your IGTV videos, send them a 1-minute preview on your IG feed.

The takeaway for Realtors:

While IGTV is still new and not widely used by real estate marketers, it has the potential to be a powerful marketing tool. This is the perfect time to use this tool to grow your audience and get more views.

You can use IGTV to host virtual open houses, which is a great way to show off your listings. Uploading 1 min clips to your feed will increase traffic to your virtual presentations. It is important to remember who your audience is and to follow up with them after the presentation to gauge their reaction and answer any questions they may have.

7. Engagement not just posts

The main social platforms give more importance to engagement rather than the number of posts. The goal is to create a welcoming and enjoyable experience for users. Platforms like social media might keep favoring engagement metrics, such as comments, over the quantity of posts.

This means that if your posts are not being engaged with, it will negatively impact your future social media To improve post organic reach, think highly engaging posts.

The takeaway for Realtors:

You shouldn’t just post any old real estate listing on social media. It’s important to have a social media strategy for your real estate business. In order to create a social media marketing strategy that is successful, you need to consider factors such as what your goals are, what kind of content you plan to share, who your target audience is, and how much money you are willing to spend. Consider spending on creatives and IG contests. Think up more ways to engage your audience. Sell less, engage more.

8. Rise of interactive ads

The use of game-like mechanics in non-game contexts has been shown to increase engagement levels. It is likely that social media platforms will begin to adopt similar techniques in order to keep users engaged. Brands such as Sephora already allow customers to test out products using Facebook messenger and augmented reality filters.

Goldman Sachs predicts that the virtual reality market will be worth approximately $80 billion by 2025, with $2.6 billion of that coming from the real estate industry. The social media giants are going to add more gamification features and AR filters, especially for ads.

The takeaway for Realtors:

We might see brands like Facebook create their own VR tools that allow people to create their own home touring experience.

Facebook has already bought Oculus, which is a big company in the VR industry. It is speculated that real estate brands will soon be able to create immersive social experiences with the help of Matterport, Oculus, and Google Cardboard.

9. More focus on Groups and communities

It’s interesting to note that Facebook now considers group posts more important than posts from business pages. Group conversations are more like two-way conversations, while business pages try to maintain a certain image. Segmentation features and groups have some functional similarities.

The takeaway for Realtors:

When you’re interacting with your sphere of influence, make sure you create a feeling of community. And not just that. Build an actual community for your clients and prospects.

You could start with Facebook or Linkedin. When you’re engaged with your social community, it helps create a sense of closeness and connection with you and your brand. There are several ways you can promote your community, such as through your other social media pages, your email signature, or by advertising through direct mail.

Why social media marketing is so crucial in real estate

So you already know this stuff matters.

In the real estate industry, the cost of buying leads is increasing. It is becoming more and more difficult to find free and organic lead sources. You will not be able to win against your competitors unless you have more money than them.

Now, the good news.

Social media marketing is F-R-E-E. Despite what some people might think, you don’t need to be active on every social media platform to effectively market your real estate business. Choose the channels that will work best for you and develop a consistent strategy for each one.

Here are three simple questions to help you focus your social media marketing strategy:

  1. What do you want to accomplish? Do you want to generate leads? Keep the convo going with your sphere of influence (SOI)? Promote listings? Different goals call for different social media channels and strategies.
  2. Who do you want to reach? Millennials use Instagram more than baby boomers do. YouTube has the largest user base, but Pinterest users tend to be older and more affluent. Your choice of channel should depend not only on what you like, but also who you want to reach.
  3. What kind of content will be of interest to your audience? Do they want real estate advice? Trend insights? Community info? You’ll want to make sure your content aligns with your audience’s top interests and the type of content best-suited for the specific channel you’re using.

There are some important figures you should look at when trying to figure out which social media channels you should focus your real estate marketing strategy on.

If you want to improve your performance on Facebook or become a YouTube expert, it’s important to understand the differences between the two platforms.

It seems like every day there’s someone in the business community writing about the latest social media channel.

Although the number of users is important, it is not the only thing that matters when it comes to social media. The most important thing about a person is their identity and what they are doing.