Social media for real estate is a vital marketing activity because homebuyers are increasingly searching for properties online and this includes social media platforms. 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)
In this blog, we’ll look at what social media marketing is and the benefits that social media for real estate offers. We’ll touch on what you need to know to create a social media strategy and leveraging each social media platform effectively.
Table of Contents
- What is social media marketing?
- The benefits of social media for real estate
- Creating an effective social media strategy
- How to leverage today’s social media platforms
1. What is social media marketing?
“Social media marketing is the use of social media platforms to connect with your audience, to build your brand, increase sales, and drive website traffic. The five core pillars of social media marketing are strategy, planning and publishing, listening and engagement, analytics and reporting, and advertising.” (Buffer)
“Social media marketing is also the process of creating tailored content for each social media platform to drive engagement and promote your business.” (DigitalMarketing.org)
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 for real estate requires a well thought out marketing 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
Identify what it is you want to achieve through social media. This may be to increase website traffic; enhance brand awareness; promote your property listings; generate leads and boost sales, etc.
Identify your target audience
Not every audience is the same on every social media channel. You need to identify who the audience is you wish to attract and who are most interested in your product. This requires creating buyer personas (people that can be grouped based on demographics like age, job, role, income level, education, location, etc). Once you understand who your buyer personas are, the next step is to find out where they can be found online. This will help you establish what social media channels to leverage.
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
For content to have impact, it needs to be valuable, informative and answer the questions your target audience is looking to answer. It must also be relevant to the channel on which it is being delivered. 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
We’ve established that content is very important. But even the best quality content won’t get the engagement you seek if it’s posted at a time when nobody is looking for it. Knowing when to post your content is crucial to maximise brand exposure and grab your audience’s attention. It will also help with boosting lead generation and conversion. This SproutSocial provides valuable insights on the best times to publish posts.
Monitor and respond
Having social media presence is not enough. You must respond to your audience when they comment on a post, send a DM or mention your brand. This interaction is what creates a connection between your real estate business and your audience. It’s what builds trust and establishes relationships with people that you want to turn into loyal customers.
Use your CRM to monitor and adapt campaigns
A smart real estate CRM system like Qobrix provides the tools required to manage sales and marketing campaigns. The Qobrix CRM Campaigns module allows you to easily track the source of a lead and attribute it to the campaign from which they originate. Knowing which campaign generates the most leads enables you to modify those that are performing badly. You can also generate reports per campaign and share these with your sales and marketing teams. This will help them identify where the leads are coming from and which are converting into opportunities or sales.
4. How to leverage today’s social media platforms
To properly leverage today’s social media platform requires knowing how to use them in the way they were intended. Let’s take a look at some of the more popular social media channels in use today.
Facebook is most probably going to be where most of your target audience is at. Leverage the platform to engage with prospective leads and opportunities. Use Facebook to publish consistent property related content and make use of its ability to book appointments. Monitor for comments and feedback from customers and engage accordingly. Build a community and keep your audience updated with company updates as well as your most recent listings. If you’re looking to target a specific demographic, Facebook Ads are a great way to do this.
In terms of sharing visually stimulating content, Instagram is where your real estate business needs to be. Highlight your listings by sharing high quality property photographs. The platform is renowned for attracting an audience through the aesthetics of the posts. This is no different for real estate businesses who use the channel. Make use of beautiful, high-resolution visuals combined with engaging copy to attract likes, shares and followers. For real time posts that connect, use wildly popular Instastories as well. They’re a quick and easy way 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. Of those, 500 million accounts watch Instagram stories daily.
From a networking perspective, LinkedIn is a great option. Set up a company page and publish content regularly. Establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry by sharing insights on current market trends and consumer behaviours. Use it also to promote your listings.
According to this QuickSprout article, real estate listings with video receive 403% more inquiries than those without videos. This makes video an incredibly powerful marketing tool for any real estate business. 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 takeaway: Social media for real estate works provided your message on each channel resonates with the audience you’re targeting.
It’s clear that social media for real estate is a valuable tool to promote your business, market your property listings, engage with prospective homebuyers, increase lead generation and conversion and boost customer retention.