Social media. For some, those words instil a sense of dread and fear, whilst others revel in the memes, cat videos, and gender swapping Snapchat filters.
Whichever camp you fall into, most people know it’s important to be doing social media, but the sheer scope of the digital landscape can intimidate people into doing nothing. Should you be putting pretty property pics on Instagram? Should you offer Snapchat viewings? How can you best use Facebook to reach your audience? How often should you tweet? Is LinkedIn good for investors? And where does Pinterest fit in?
We’re here to tell you to take two things: a breath, and a step back. And we’re going to give our best advice on where to start.
Where to start?
Firstly, there’s so much out there. The temptation is to create accounts on everything and post to everything. This often involves people setting up automatic posting, in order to share the same post across all platforms. This often doesn’t really work in terms of getting results, because every platform has its own unique audience and features lending itself to serve a specific purpose.
By posting a picture of a property and linking it to your website with a very brief description, you might have a presence on each platform but just having a presence isn’t enough.
What are your social media goals?
You might be thinking ‘hold on, I just want to know how to post content to Facebook. How is this relevant?’.
By writing out what you want to achieve from social media, it gives you a benchmark to aim for, but will also determine which platforms would be more useful to you.
- Is your focus on engaging with investors to help them grow their lettings portfolio?
- Are you in a university town dealing with student lettings and wish to reach foreign students and their families?
- Have you opened a branch in a new area and wish to engage with the community and increase your local following?
We could go on. But once you know what you’re looking to achieve, you can take a look at the social platforms and see which is going to be the best fit. Have a glance at our very quick run-down to see if any jump out at you.
Facebook (in its current form) was founded on the principle of building community, so this is a great way to engage with things which are going on locally. Whole towns have their own Facebook groups where people post everything from complaints about their bin collections being missed to praising the organisers of local events and everything in between. These groups can be a great way of gaining local intel, as well as very occasionally slipping in a gently promotional post.
As far as your business page is concerned, you can utilise the platform to build a local following organically, but the other great thing about it is that you can create paid ads by boosting your posts to a very specific audience. Are you pulling out all of the stops on a particular property? Boost it to everyone aged 18-65 within 10 miles of its location and see what effect it has on your open house bookings!
Instagram is focussed on the visual, so if you place an emphasis on stunning property photography, this is a great outlet. With millions of users searching hashtags daily for interior design inspiration, it’s a great way of getting your name out there in an organic way by utilising hashtags, but again you can also promote posts and specify which area you would like them promoted to.
Twitter is all about having conversations. There are often twitter ‘hours’ for local areas, in which local businesses and residents convene digitally for an hour a week to have a chat and discover what’s going on.
It’s a fantastic relationship building resource, not so good for promotion as users aren’t very receptive to things which don’t have the capacity to spark conversation. To get the best from Twitter, keeping it monitored and being responsive to engagement is important.
LinkedIn is a fantastic place to share more business-related content. It’s also the best platform to appeal to investors. Sharing thoughtful content positioning yourself as an industry leader is the order of the day here!
Snapchat is where (generally) the youth like to reside. It’s niche, and probably wouldn’t be relevant to most agents, but it could be an excellent resource for student lettings, showing students around accommodation blocks with short snaps etc.
It’s a lot, and there can be a lot of work involved with planning, creating and implementing an effective social plan, but it doesn’t have to be a headache. We live and breathe this process, so if you’d like a chat about how to make social media work for you, don’t hesitate to get in touch on 01923 627777 or email firstname.lastname@example.org!
You can view our standard social media packages here but we can also offer bespoke packages for your exact requirements.