Madison Hildebrand is the epitome of a social media all-star: He has a presence on the major social media outlet and works them beautifully. Hildebrand answered a few questions from Inman about the philosophies and realities of his virtual world.
Years in real estate: nine
Job title: founding partner of Partners Trust
Location: Malibu, California
Hours per week spent on social media: 14-20
By default, it’s other Realtors, luxury brands and clientele, and the LGBT community.
Average number of posts per day?
Depends on the day and if I’m traveling. On average, one to five posts.
Which social channels do you work the most?
Twitter and Instagram.
How many friends, likes, etc., do you have?
Facebook (two accounts combined): 62,717
Do those numbers matter to you?
Do you ever give it a break?
When I’m sleeping …
Does social media help your business, and how?
Yes, in the last year it seems even more so than before. We have secured buyers for our listings from photos we’ve posted. It also goes without saying, but it’s free branding and exposure. It doesn’t get much better than that.
What’s your goal for your favorite social channel?
Instagram is probably my favorite at the moment. My goal is always to inspire and make people happy.
What’s your strategy to achieve it?
Supplying beautiful and fun imagery. Whether that’s a Malibu sunset, a fun picture of my dog or my newest real estate listing … I have fun coming up with the clever one-liners, too!
Is it worth it, and why?
It is. It’s worth taking some time out of the day to share what I’m seeing and experiencing. It makes my followers feel connected to me and my community.
What’s your craziest social media-related story?
I once made the mistake of publicly pleading for LeAnn Rimes and Brandi Glanville (both friends of mine at the time) to stop fighting. I received an insane backlash from the Brandi Glanville fans. Oops.
Are your accounts more about being social or about business?
In my industry, there is a very thin line that separates “social” from “business.” My social life supports my business, and often my clients become friends and friends become clients. I try to mix up my posts between exposing my listings and brand and also sharing fun aspects of my life.
How many hours per day are you on social? Do you check it daily? Multiple times per day?
One to three hours per day, I’d say. Yes, and yes!
Do you ever think of retiring?
Retiring from social media? Not anytime soon. It brings too much to my business, and it’s just too much fun at the same time.
Do you consider yourself an influencer?
Yes, I feel lucky to have so many followers and be a public figure from my years on TV. Social media gives me a great platform and connection to people across the globe.
Are you social in real life?
That might be an understatement! As a Realtor, my job really requires that I be social. The more people I put myself in front of, the more I see my business grow.
What did you do with your time before?
Before social media? I opened real fan mail! Before I converted to digital, I faxed, used USPS and hand-wrote contracts.
How do you leverage your prominence or influence on social media?
There are certain situations where you can’t get through to a large company via a phone call. I’ve found that using Twitter can accelerate a call-back time. I was once in a short-sale situation with Bank of America and could not get any answers or help, and time was of the essence. After tweeting them, they called me back within minutes to assist. The same thing happened with Verizon when setting up our clients’ utilities.
Do you have someone helping you?
For the most part, I do all of my own social media, but I do have office staff that assists me from time to time when I’m traveling or in a pinch.
Whom do you follow, and why?
People or companies that are influencers, news sources or offer inspiration (for example, TED and NatGeo). I also follow my competitors, for obvious reasons.
Where do you find the content that you put out?
All over the place! In regards to imagery, it’s usually original imagery I’ve taken from my listings or experiences traveling and in Mother Nature. I’ll also share relevant news stories that I come across and anything related to market trends in real estate.
What has been your all-time hit share?
I’ve had a few posts that have had more than 100,000 views. I think one was my announcement that I was leaving the show, and the other was possibly a photo of me in a Speedo from a Bravo promo I shot. … :)