Clearly, with the rise of online classifieds like Realestate.com.au and Domain.com.au it’s obvious that the majority of home buyers do their research online. That’s fine, but what is it that makes the connection between social media and real estate marketing such a great pairing?
Recent research has shown that 94% of millennials and 84% of baby boomers used any array of sites both social media and otherwise to search for their future home.
Added to this is the fact that home buyers are clearly using their own social media to find a new house. Communication between agents and buyers on social media is however at an all time low – no one is responding!
Why is that? We’ve seen only around 11% of agents even responding to incoming messages. Further to that, the industry is ranked 4th in the list of Top 10 Most Annoying Industries on Social Media!
Essentially what this tells us is that the industry and agents within it are focused only on promoting themselves and their properties and not enough on actually engaging with customers. Luckily for the bad performers, there’s a bunch of fairly simple methods that can be employed on social media to drive engagement.
Here’s 16 ideas you could use to enhance your social media marketing efforts for real estate agents in Australia.
1. Enhance Social Sharing Possibilities
It’s not rocket science to find a real estate agent online these days. Think about what your clients do to find you typically. It’s a Google search with a search phrase something similar to “real estate agent in [city of choice]”. The fact of the matter is, if your website accurately represents you and shows information about you, then you’ll be easy to find.
Here’s where the fun can begin. Wouldn’t it be great for your prospective customer to be able to share the picture of their desired home on social media? Some simple share buttons on the property photography really makes the difference here.
A quick look at the Realestate.com.au listings will illustrate for you how it can be done easily and quickly.
2. Leverage Reviews & Services
Reviews and Service listings on social media are basically a mainstay these days. Particularly on Facebook you’ll find that reviews and services are basically at the top of each page.
Being able to easily see an array of positive reviews on a Facebook page will instantly open the eyes of any prospective customer and will make you stand out above the other agents they may be reviewing.
It’s vital also to make sure that you’re easily available for appointments and messaging through the channel – if people can find you they’ll want to talk to you!
Make sure you reflect the same information on your website. It’s vital to ensure that the people who find you on Social Media can also then get onto your website and convert their interest into action. Make sure your testimonials are visible on your website just as they are on your Facebook page.
3. Use Facebook Groups, Your Own & Local
Facebook now allows you to link Groups to your Facebook page. Start your own group and you can offer an enhanced, personalised service to your customers.
An added bonus is the fact that Facebook Groups allows you to circumnavigate the Facebook algorithms for pages.
Consider a Facebook Group as your own private help center. Buyers and Sellers can communicate through the buying process and will be able to help each other rather than just talking to you.
If that’s not something you’re comfortable with, being involved with Facebook Groups that are in your local community is a great idea to get your face out.
Make sure that you use the local and regional groups respectfully and provide advice rather than just selling yourself.
4. Enhance Facebook Cover with Video
A wonderful little marketing space these days is your Facebook cover image. Facebook has recently added the feature allowing you to post Videos rather than still images and it automatically plays when someone visits your page.
The auto play videos instantly grab any visitors attention, for an added zing you can also add a call to action button that matches your video content, for example “Book Now”.
You can see the video animation on the Hocking Stuart Armadale page, albeit simple it covers their latest listings without spamming the visitor: https://www.facebook.com/hockingstuartarmadale
5. Go Live at a Property
Facebook live allows businesses to publish what they’re up to at any given point in time, opening their business door to the world.
This is a particular boon for real estate agents who can deliver ‘open for inspections’ live via Facebook, thus showing up in the Facebook feeds of their followers.
Typically ranking very highly in the Facebook algorithm, Facebook Live videos help show a ‘behind the scenes’ unedited view of a property. A neat little feature can be to include a Q&A whereby as series of questions are received before the video is taken and then are answered during the video.
Do you want some help running your Facebook Live stream? We’ve got some ideas for you!
6. Facebook 360 Degree Photos or Videos
Ever seen those photos that move as you move your phone around? They look like you’re inside the photo, scrolling around and getting a 360 degree view of everythign?
Facebook has brought this to it’s news feed, including both photos and videos.
Sure, it’s fine to have a wide angle shot, but a true 360-degree image really sells every aspect of a property.
Think about the different aspects of a property or a house. Think about it’s amazing views or perhaps the amazing alfresco area. What can you highlight?
Leave no stone unturned with these great photo and video features.
7. Facebook Messenger Chatbots
It’s likely that as a real estate agent ( particularly one in Australia! ) you’ll receive a raft of questions that are all pretty much the same.
If these can be answered easily, perhaps a Facebook Messenger chatbot could be useful. Using a chat bot allows you to automatically answer questions that take a similar if not the same form.
Think about a chat bot that could answer questions like:
- What are the closest listings in this area?
- Describe the features of [this] house?
- Which listings are in my price range?
- What should I do to prepare my house for sale?
Irrespective of what you decide up on, make sure you still monitor your messages, Australians are always skeptical of talking to a robot.
If you need more information on creating your own chat bots, drop us a line. We’re happy to answer any question you might have.
8. Utilise Brilliant Photography
This may sound like an obvious one but so many people don’t give it the proper attention.
If you can’t hire a professional photographer to get the best quality photos that you possible can, at least buy a decent camera and check out some YouTube videos.
Sometimes this can be very difficult if you have a house that is empty, the reality is that people want to be able to picture themselves living in the house.
Recent survey work has shown that 83% of home buyers want to see photos online, with 70% of those people needing the images to show furniture for them to be able to visualise themselves living in the house.
Brilliant photography makes a real difference. The better the photos, the more attention-grabbing they will be on a highly visual network like Instagram.
9. Using Landing Pages that are Social-Specific
Converting those online leads is a crucial skill for real estate marketers. Getting them in the door is fine but getting them to inquire is the next step.
When it comes to online lead generation, your landing pages could mean the difference between getting a new lead and not.
Again, in recent survey work, 72% of agents surveyed felt that their web leads were lacking.
It’s very common that agents will have only one landing page and that will be their sole source of lead generation. It’s just not that simple, there’s a number of different ways to illicit action from a prospect and you need to have all your bases covered to get the outcome you want.
In short, you’ll need multiple landing pages.
An example is, you might create a ‘download only’ piece of contact that gives tips on how to choose your homes price. People must enter their email address to be able to view it. By contrast, on your homepage you may want to include a lead generation form asking people to simply schedule a consultation.
The science of creating a landing page is as much an art as the art of creating a landing page is a science. It’s all about testing, running multiple experiments then figuring out which is the best, over time.
10. Social Media Monitoring
People talk about their intentions to buy or sell a home on social media all the time. Why not setup some alerts to tell you when they start talking about it!
This may not be the easiest on all platforms with recent privacy restrictions, but on some, for example Twitter, it’s a very easy thing because everything is public!
Platforms like Sprout Social and Social Mention can keep an eye on these platforms for you, alerting you as soon as an event happens.
11. Get involved in Local Events
Being seen by your local community is pretty important for a real estate agent. The obvious benefit is that they know who you are! Social Media is a great way to amplify this.
Once you’re involved in a local event you’ll get to leverage their social content, be seen by their followers and be involved in their conversation. It also helps demonstrate your interest in supporting their future events.
12. Celebrate of Milestones
This sounds like a simple thing but so many forget. Celebrating certain milestones gets people engaged and makes you look great!
Whether it’s a recent auction that’s been successful, a high price achieved in a certain area or simply a new set of keys for a tenant, your potential clients will see these successes and want to get on board with you as a result. It’s about the emotion of being associated with the best.
It also helps differentiate your content a little bit, given that real estate content can often simply be the same stuff over and over, photos of houses and sale prices.
13. Build Up Trust
Being a real estate agent is all about gaining the trust of your clients. If they don’t trust you, they won’t list with you or buy from you. Lets face it, it’s hard enough to get clients to trust you in the modern day, so anything that can give you an edge is useful!
Share useful information. Blog posts are a good start, but adding in things like infographics, free information, property reports, etc, will all provide extra reason to trust you over another agent.
Offering free advice always brings more trust then not.
14. Stay Relevant After Closing
So you’ve sold the house, moved onto the next deal, what use are your prior clients now?
Bad move, bad thought. Your prior clients are incredibly important because, if nothing else, they have friends, probably friends in the local area! Sure it may be 7 years before they move again but their friends could be in a totally different cycle.
Remember to stay relevant in what you’re posting. Don’t just make it look like you’ve sold your stuff and you’re moving on.
I’ll bet you didn’t know this, but 70% of surveyed home buyers don’t even remember who their agent was after only one year of the transaction occuring!
As before, it’s vital to build up trust and keep it.
Think about things like renovations, home improvement, the like. Things that your current customers may actually be interested in now that they’ve moved in! Local news and events can also be considered useful in this category.
Put simply, staying relevant and front of mind for your customers means they might refer other customers!
Yeah right. Just like everyone else. Surely that’s no good.
Video are as important now as they ever were. With expanded options for advertising, increased bandwidth on mobile phones and multiple platform options like stories and LIVE, videos are more relevant than ever.
Think about bigger ideas. Rather than just normal walk throughs, consider maybe hiring actors who are relatable to your target clients. Think about things like tutorial videos, how-to’s for certain topics.
Think about partnering with other experts in the field and you can both split the cost and the content, it can be a great way to get eyeballs on your content for basically no cost!
16. Connect with your vendors & customers
An oft overlooked feature of social media is ‘connecting’ with people! It’s something that’s so easy to do, so long lasting yet so infrequently done.
As an agent, sure you’ve got a business page but I’ll bet you’ve also got a Facebook profile. Consider adding your vendors and customers to your Facebook profile. Making them ‘friends’.
This not only helps skip the Facebook algorithm, it also makes them stickier for life, as the only way to remove you is to ‘unfriend’ you, and who wants to unfriend someone?
These are but a short list of the different ways you can spice up your real estate social media marketing efforts. There’s probably another 16 more we could list!
Using an agency or a system to keep track of everything for you can be very useful and something that as a professional you should absolutely consider.
As always, if you need help with your real estate social media, please drop us a line!