Liking, commenting, posting, scheduling…Maintaining a social media presence can take some effort. When you're a Realtor®, it can also provide countless benefits you won't get otherwise.
Eric Vaughn, a Realtor in Athens, GA, says many in the real estate industry underutilize social media because they don’t know what they can get out of it or how to use it.
According to DC-based Realtor Karen Szala, "A big step for agents who've been practicing since before social media is to accept the value in staying top of mind and present themselves as local experts."
To help you understand its value and how to put it to use, here are just a few reasons to use social media, from the real estate pros themselves:
You can spread the word
South Florida Realtor Karen Elmir says increasing visibility is vital in the real estate world.
"I often post listings on my social media platforms," she says. "This helps give viewers an inside look at what's on the market."
You can develop and maintain relationships
Social media also provides the ability to easily engage with your followers—whether past, present or potential clients. And if your presence is consistent and well maintained, you can increase your followers list and continually broaden your audience.
You can reach new areas
"It's very important to use hashtags to tailor your posts to the areas you want to reach," Elmir says.
Because when potential homebuyers are researching where they want to live, your posts can appear in their search with the help of relevant neighborhood hashtags.
You can stay top of mind
Even if the majority of your followers aren’t current clients, using social media regularly will help you stay top of mind when they need help selling or purchasing a home.
"Keeping a presence on social media allows me to keep reminding them. I'm a Realtor without beating them over the head with it," says Monica Weddle, a Realtor in Raleigh, NC.
You can increase sales
Social media's ease of accessibility makes it simple for potential clients to reach out, resulting in an increase in sales.
Weddle recalls a time when a friend reached out within two weeks of liking her professional Facebook page.
"I was able to sell her home and find her a new one before the end of my first month in the business," she says.
Szala adds that she’s had similar experiences with social media.
"I have sold two DC homes from Facebook messages to my business page and have one on the market," she says. "Facebook and Instagram make it easy to message people, even if you don't know them, or make person-to-person referrals."
How to get started on social media
With all the different platforms and reasons to post, where do you begin? Here are a few tips to get you going:
- Just start—and start small: Weddle suggests starting with a platform you're already familiar with. "Even one social media account can have a big impact," she says.
- Keep your social media handles consistent: When your handles are consistent across all platforms, it'll be easier to tell clients where to find you, and they'll have an easier time tracking you down.
- Include your contact info: "Make it clear you want to be contacted and how," Vaughn says. To do so, put your preferred method of contact at the end of each post.
- Don't overthink it and be yourself: In a world of countless Realtors, give your followers an insight into who you really are—and don’t overthink it. "Set yourself apart the easy way: by being yourself," Weddle explains.
Even if you've found success as a real estate agent without using social media, there's always room to grow. Social media is merely another way you can reach clients and establish your brand—and if you're not using it to your advantage, then you're missing out on untapped potential.
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