There have been endless articles written educating agents on how to use Twitter. There are also a ton of helpful posts about how to manage your time on the site so that you maximize your success without getting caught up in the world of pointless tweets.

Yet, despite the articles and the help, most agents are still using Twitter as a megaphone instead of a smartphone.

Don't use Twitter as a megaphone instead of a smartphone.

Don't use Twitter as a megaphone instead of a smartphone. - image courtesy of author

Here are a few ways to help you turn things around to start using Twitter correctly:

Ease up on the broadcasting

Promoting yourself is a necessity, but 90 percent of the time you should be talking with your followers instead of to them. Open house mentions, new blog posts and new listings alerts get old very quickly. Your followers will start treating your tweets the way they treat the commercials on their DVR: They’ll fast forward right through them and pretend like they don’t exist.

If you sign on to Twitter and no one has sent you any messages, that’s a good indication that you’re broadcasting too much and your tweets are being ignored. Start a conversation, even if it’s just saying hello to some of your fellow agents. You’ll be surprised at how much paying attention to someone else will get you noticed.

Respond when people talk to you

If someone was standing in front of you and asked you a question, would you stay silent, or would you respond? When you receive a text or an email, do you hit delete or do you answer? If you couldn’t imagine ignoring people in those scenarios, why is social media any different?

A sure way to make someone feel like they don’t matter to you is to ignore them. If you receive a message and you’re too busy to engage completely, that’s OK. Respond immediately with a thank you, and then a longer follow-up later, or even the next day, but don’t ignore the message. Ignoring people is the quickest way to get yourself unfollowed.

Keep it light

Aren’t too fond of property or tax laws proposed in your state by a particular political party? Keep it to yourself. Your professional, public Twitter profile is no place to be discussing politics. Remember, your goal in being on a site like Twitter is to make yourself approachable. You can do that only by keeping it light. Obviously, you’re entitled to your opinions and every single post does not have to discuss real estate, but on your professional Twitter you need to steer clear of hot-button issues. Finding one person who agrees with you is not worth potentially alienating 100 prospective clients, or offending any current ones.

These three are the most common mistakes agents make, but they are extremely easy to reverse. Remember, you’re connecting with others on a different medium, but you need to be the same as you would be face to face, even if it is by using only 140 characters.

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