Twitter at 5: still misunderstood, misused in real estate

Realtor Notebook

Twitter had a birthday this week and is now 5 years old. I have been using it for four of those five years. Twitter is a part of my business and a part of my life, and it all seems so basic that it is hard to remember life before Twitter.

I am thankful that I learned how to use it before the "How to Use Twitter" classes for real estate professionals became popular. There was no such class when I first signed up and started tweeting.

Most of the people who teach it today were not using it four or five years ago. It does not take long to learn the mechanics of using Twitter, and no formal training is needed. It takes longer to understand Twitter and how to leverage it for business or personal use. The first time people are exposed to potential real estate uses for Twitter, a typical reaction is, "I don’t get it."

Some of the large real estate brokerages are providing social media training for their agents. I can tell which offices or groups of agents have had their Twitter training. The agents set up accounts and then follow other agents.

Most stop using it within the first month, but some hang in there — and some of those agents obnoxiously promote their open houses before giving up after a few months because there are still only three people attending the open houses and no one seems to want to follow them.