Never in history has it been easier to keep in touch with current and past customers while simutaneously meeting new prospects. How? Social Media. It has forever changed the way we communicate and has become a very powerful tool for staying connected. In business, you need to brand yourself and keep your brand top-of-mind when your customers are in need of your product or service. Social Media gives you the power to stay in front of your customers, keeping your brand relevent while sharing interesting, informational content. 

The key is to keep it social. Social media platforms are a great way to stay connected, but there’s an 80/20 rule. 80% of the content you post should be ‘social’ as in sharing information, stories, etc. while only 20% should be promotional. Social media is more about engagement and conversation than self promotion. People want to work with individuals who take pride in their work and are passionate about what they do, so its ok to be promotional just don’t go overboard. Real estate professionals are very connected to the communities they represent. They know what each has to offer, what schools are close, area conveniences and so on. This information, when used appropriately, is a powerful resourse for individuals. Find a good balance between the personal and business information you share and more people will want to connect with you.

While this can all seem overwhelming at first, once you get started you’ll soon learn that sharing information through social platforms is an easy process that when leveraged can help you quickly and easily find, form, and strenghten customer relationships. The more connected you are, the greater chance you have for more opportunities and referrals. 

Start small. There are so many platforms available, so don’t feel like you need to jump in to every available medium. Pick one and get comfortable. Facebook and Twitter are two great ways to connect and engage. With Facebook you’re able to share experiences and interact with people. In otherwards, be social. And the great news is, real estate professionsals are already great at socializing so carrying this over into an online strategy is a relatively easy process. It gives you a way to stay connected with your personal and business sphere of influence. 

Twitter gives you the ability to reach beyond your direct sphere of influence as it is an ‘open community’. While it takes a bit longer to build an audience on twitter, it’s easier to share information because your content is limited to 140 characters total. This makes it easy to create stimulating content that’s intriguing and engages your audience to follow you in order to find out more information. It’s important to also keep in mind that when potential customers are searching for you, these social medial profiles will appear on page one results when someone is searching for you or your business by name. This makes it extremely important to brand these profiles and ensure the posts are professional.

Once you’ve made the decision to jump in, it’s important to first identify what you hope to achieve. Who are you trying to reach and why? If you want to target people over the age of 35, focus on Facebook and LinkedIn. Actually, 79% off LinkedIn Users are over 35.2 You also need to make the commitment to actively use the platform you’ve selected. Just signing up and making an occassional post will not produce results, leaving you frustrated, so you need to set realistic expectations and track your results. Social media is a process. You don’t expect to meet and get to know every person in the room when you go to a party or social function. Instead you take your time talking with people, learing about them, and making connections. Social media is no different. When you start posting content you will see your network begin to grow. The more personable, interesting, and relevant your content is the more people will comment and share your information. 

Social media is a great forum for showcasing your personality and your expertise to a substantial amount of people on a regular basis. It’s not only a very efficient way of staying in touch, it’s a way for others to stay connected to you too. Another benefit of using social media is that it is trackable in real time. It’s measurable through the amount of comments, likes, shares, tweets, pins, etc. 

The benefits of adding social media into your marketing mix are invaluable. First and foremost, it’s FREE! It gives you more control over what potential customers view when searching for you online as your social media channels will pull in search results. It also opens the door for two-way communication. Unlike other methods of marketing, it encourages dynamic conversations. Listening, of course, is a hugh component of this communication. The more responsive you are to your connections, inturn the more resposive they will be to you. 

Have fun with it! This amazing tool can enrich both your personal and professional life. It builds trust within your networks because people can see ‘inside’ and connect with you or your brand on a more personal level. It’s an opportunity to share meaningful information and build lasting relationships. Afterall, life is truly about the relationships we build along the way.