Social media lays claim to the world’s largest and most demographically diverse audience, with its population of more than 2.3 billion users. The Guardian reports that Facebook members alone total one-seventh of the world’s population, with 1.6 billion monthly active accounts.
What this means to you is that regardless of your target audiences, you can identify them using social media. For example, if you were selling a vacation property to empty nesters in Chicago and Los Angeles, you could easily target both audiences on Facebook.
Within your sphere of influence, the majority of your potential clients are likely to be found and targeted on Facebook and other social outlets. A near-universal population, coupled with the strength of multi-media channels, allows real estate professionals the opportunity to directly reach highly specified target audiences as easily and as efficiently as mass audiences. No matter the objective of your campaign, the intended reach is in your hands.
Social media offers both a vibrant audience of potential clients as well as the tools needed to reach them. Yet, many real estate professionals lack the knowledge and experience needed to best apply those tools to their outreach efforts. The results are untapped resources and missed opportunities—only 12 percent of The Impact of Social Media in Real Estate survey participants report receiving more than 25 percent of their leads through social media.
For real estate professionals interested in growing their social media presence, the following time-tested outreach strategies can help them get started on the right foot.
- Develop a strategy to speak to the audience you want to reach in the way they want to be reached. See Content section on page 36 of the full guide (available for download at the link below) for step-by-step guidelines in addressing your strategy.
- Identify possible referral sources, connect with them on social media, and engage with their content by liking or commenting to further build your connections. Sources can include brokers, clients, and partners such as contractors, attorneys, designers, and school officials. For example, reach out to former clients who you know are satisfied with your work and willing to connect.
- Target clients similar to your existing clients, which can be accomplished in two ways:
1. Organize your clients by demographics and target those demographics when reaching out to new clients on social media. With a Facebook business page, and advertising, each post you make has the option to include targeting within the post-edit tools as you create your post. When you choose to target audiences for your post or your ad, you will be walked through the wide array of demographics and options you can choose.
2. Choose the more advanced option that allows you to upload your email list to the advertising tools and target “similar” audiences for advertising posts. This means that Facebook can find the profiles associated with your client lists’ email addresses and target people with the same demographics! (Further details on this can be easily found in the Facebook Ads Manager.)
- Use the email addresses of current customers and target their accounts on social media if they do not yet follow you. You can do this by uploading your client list to the Ads Manager and having Facebook find all available profiles connected with those emails. Invite those clients to connect with your social page.
- Review your social media followers for different client types and develop specific messages to encourage recurring business strategically. For example, consider the following:
- For young parents, consider sharing lifestyle articles on raising children in your area.
- For older clients, and prospective retirees and downsizers, share market reports so they can understand the local real estate trends.
- Congratulate your clients on their milestones, achievements, and other celebratory events.
To find the full guidelines for taking advantage of the social media resources at your fingertips, download The Real Estate Agent’s Guide to Social Media whitepaper here.