By now you probably know you need to be on social networks. With more than 900 million active Facebook users, 175 million tweets a day, and two new members joining LinkedIn every second, social media has become another communication channel you can’t ignore.
Here are a few hidden secrets of social media every agent should know to maximize your online presence and ensure social networking is an effective piece of your prospecting plan.
1. If you aren’t on social media you may never be found
What you see on Google is now being customized for you, based on your social networks, and the same goes for your friends & fans. It’s known as social search – where the search engine takes into account the social graph of the person initiating the search query. Even if you don’t “need” social media to generate business, it’s still likely you want to be found in searches, and your social involvement is key to those results. What’s that mean for you? Get on Google+, click +1, and build your social network across the web to make sure you, and your content get found.
2. You don’t need a Facebook page
Facebook is littered with abandoned business pages which never garnered much attention or likes. Fortunately, that doesn’t mean Facebook can’t work for you. Groups can be a powerful tool to increase your online interaction and expand your relationships online and offline. Don’t stick to real estate only groups, consider joining or creating online groups for offline organizations & groups you belong to – church, book clubs, alumni groups and more.
3. Your network doesn’t see or hear everything you say
While you may like to think your friends and fans are stalking your every word, tweet and Facebook update… they aren’t. A 2010 study found that 71% of tweets go unread. While you don’t want to spam your network with the same content over and over, take a lesson from your kids- sometimes it’s ok to say it again.
4. It’s ok to talk about business…. sometimes.
At times, it can be frustrating for agents who hear they aren’t “allowed” to talk about real estate. In many of these venues we have to be social without being salesy. Fortunately there are some venues where it’s ok to talk about biz.
- LinkedIn is the social network for business people. Make sure your profile is complete, share your successes, and participate in discussion groups to make the most of it.
- The Trulia agent iPhone app is the first real estate app just for agents that allows you to check in to homes you tour and share properties with clients. We developed checkins so agents can prove their neighborhood know-how and demonstrate which local markets they have expertise in. Download it now.
- Don’t forget Trulia Voices, one of the most active online real estate communities on the web. Write blog posts, answer questions and start discussions in your local area to build your online reputation and generate free leads.
5. You don’t need to be everywhere, all the time!
While social networks are always on, you don’t need to be. There is an addiction factor to social networks that simply can’t be ignored. You need to be present, but be productive and turn them off as well. They can be a huge time suck to your day to day business, and be harmful to your personal relationships.
Interested in learning more about how to effectively use social media in your online marketing plan? Register now for Trulia’s free online marketing summit for real estate pros.