The modern age of technology poses unique challenges for real estate agents, as well as providing new opportunities.
For a prospective real estate agent, the challenge of attracting, engaging and doing business with clients via social media could seem an intimidating and time-consuming endeavour.
Fortunately, we have spoken to a number of South Australian real estate’s most prolific users of social media, who can shed light on the strategies essential to success in this area, and the effectiveness of them.
How important do you deem social media to success in the real estate industry in this day and age?
I consider social media, and particularly Facebook, to be one of the most underrated and cost effective tools available to real estate agents and their clients. The ability to create targeted campaigns which provide enormous visibility and interaction for properties at a relatively low cost to my Vendors make it a vital component of my marketing this financial year. I anticipate that marketing properties on Social Media with paid campaigns will only increase in future, to the point where it would be strange for an agent not to do it. It doesn’t replace the real estate search portals, rather it is another strong tool we can use alongside them. My only regret with social media is that I didn’t harness it further a year ago.
What strategies do you employ to market yourself on social media?
Right now I am using two key strategies to market myself on Social Media.
1. Sponsoring all of my listings on Facebook. I target the local area with sponsored posts and the results have been phenomenal. An example would be a property at 7 Cobblestone Close Gulfview Heights that I put on Facebook last week. It had over 21,630 views, 87 likes, 115 comments and 15 shares in one week. The open inspection had a turnout of 42 different groups and 8 offers. Where did the successful buyer first see the property? Facebook!
2. Running Competitions. Similar to properties where I boost the posts, I boost various competitions throughout the year. My most recent being a Showdown ticket giveaway which garnered 27,175 views, 228 likes, 332 comments and 268 shares. This is a great way to increase the amount of likes on your page.
What social media platforms do you use and why?
I predominantly use Facebook as I find this to be the most user friendly and effective social media tool. To a much lesser degree I use Instagram. Having only recently begun to utilise Facebook in what I consider to be an effective manner, I want to spend more time bringing this to a much higher level. Once I am satisfied with where my Facebook page is at and how it is running, I will look to branch out into Instagram.
Which demographics are you trying to target when promoting on social media?
Everyone! Everybody at some point would like to buy or sell a home or at least know of someone who does. Facebook is a brilliant method of prospecting to many people, as it is a 24/7 signboard for my business and my brand. Utilising social media as part of my broader prospecting strategy will hopefully bring in more business for myself as well as better sales results for my clients.
How does the effectiveness of social media marketing compare to other methods of reaching clients, such as physical advertisement and face-to-face encounters?
On social media I have been asked for appraisals, carried out listing presentations (via Facebook Messenger), signed up listings and found buyers for my properties. I don’t believe it can be relied upon as your sole method of securing business and selling homes, but I do believe that it will continually grow in its importance over time. Compared to physical advertisements I prefer it for its cost effectiveness but nothing can quite replicate the impact that strong face-to-face encounters can have. Social Media is becoming a bigger part of the ‘online interview’ that potential clients will carry out on you.