Social media videos are all the buzz these days. In an increasingly digital and visual world where businesses are competing for attention, video has become one of the best and most effective ways to stand out and to communicate with an audience.

  • According to Pew Research Center, 68 percent of U.S. adults have a smartphone, and 45 percent own a tablet computer.
  • Snapchat is a great way to connect with millennial real estate buyers.
  • With Instagram Stories, you don't have to worry about over posting.

Social media videos are all the buzz these days. In an increasingly digital and visual world where businesses are competing for attention, video has become one of the best and most effective ways to stand out and to communicate with an audience.

Having a smartphone has become a necessity for many. According to a study by the Pew Research Center, 68 percent of U.S. adults have a smartphone, and 45 percent own a tablet computer.

Kristen Abell of the Abell to Sell team, a co-owner and broker at Re/Max of Cherry Creek in Colorado said, “I pretty much always have my smartphone on me. Plus, most clients expect a response immediately with smartphones. The new apps have definitely changed the way I do business. I now have easier access to accurate info 24-7.”

With the increase in the usage of smartphones and the popularity of videos we have seen a wave of different applications and social platforms focused around live video streaming.

More and more companies in the real estate sphere are recognizing the power of video as an online marketing strategy. There are so many ways real estate agents can utilize the power of online video marketing, specifically on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram or Snapchat.

What we love about social media video is that it lets you engage via video with homebuyers and sellers in real time. It’s the perfect way for communicating with a larger audience no matter where the members are.

If you think live streaming is a trend that might fade, think again. Let’s take a closer look at how you too can benefit from this growing movement:

Facebook Live

Most people in this day and age not only possess a Facebook account but also use it on a daily basis; 1.71 billion monthly active users to be exact.

Available only since January, Facebook Live is Facebook’s native live streaming product. It is not only effective but also very easy to use, and best of all it is free. Think about the ability to conduct a virtual open house while talking and responding to questions from potential clients.

The best part? Clients don’t need to be physically on site to visit a property but will still be able to view it and ask questions or raise concerns that you can answer in real time.

There are huge opportunities for real estate agents with Facebook Live to really innovate and get away from the cookie cutter traditional real estate marketing.

Furthermore, pairing Facebook Live and Facebook advertising — an incredible platform that allows you to overlay multiple targeting layers like age, location, marital status and interests — can lead to amazing results.

Snapchat

Snapchat is a photo and video messaging app for iPhone and Android mobile devices. Users can take a picture or video and add text, drawings and a variety of filters.

Snappers set a designated time limit, one to 10 seconds, and send to selected contacts from their list. They can also set a “story” — a snap that pins to their profile and is viewable for only 24 hours after posting.

Although Snapchat isn’t new to the social media world, a lot real estate agents are hesitant to start using the platform for their business.

Undeniably, the platform is a great way to connect with millennial real estate buyers. Moreover, Snapchat is an exceptional tool to engage with your existing clients and can make them feel connected to you during the house hunting process.

An idea could be to send them a couple of snaps of a condo they would be interested in. What we like the most about the platform is that it lets clients scope their options but makes them want to see more — perhaps requesting a full showing.

Another idea would be to host a q-and-a for first-time homebuyers and ask people to send questions through the chat option. You could host a quick tour or a specific neighborhood for your out-of-town buyers. The possibilities are endless.

Instagram Stories

You might have notice that Instagram recently introduced a new feature that lets you share all the moments of your day, not just the ones you want to save on your profile. This exciting new feature that mimics Snapchat and allows you to share multiple photos and videos. They appear together in a slideshow format: your story.

What we like about Instagram Stories is that you don’t have to worry about over posting. Instead, you can share as much as you want throughout the day — and be as creative as you want.

As with Snapchat the photos and videos will disappear after 24 hours and won’t appear on your profile grid or in your feed. If you’re an agent with a new listing, you can display images or videos of the properties with Instagram Stories.

A clever way to use this new tool is to create virtual open houses and invite prospects to follow you on Instagram to view it. This could be a great way to increase your current Instagram following.

Yes, Snapchat has a lot of cool features that you can’t find on Instagram Stories, but it is not an easy task to build a following on that platform (you need to know a person’s username or have them in your phone contacts to be able to add them).

Because hashtags are frequently used on Instagram, it makes it a whole lot easier to find your target audience — it doesn’t necessarily have to find you.

Bottom line: social media video is a trend that is here to stay so why not taking full advantage of it? Plus, we just love the idea of having this technology available only a couple of clicks away on your smartphone. Now is really a great time for real estate professionals to jump aboard and increase their brand visibility while the competition is still low.

Do you plan on incorporating social media video into your marketing plan as part of your digital marketing strategy? Please share in the comments section below.

Estelle Clairoux is the digital marketing director at Hey Mr. Digital Media. You can follow her on Twitter @estelleclairoux or connect with her on LinkedIn.

Email Estelle Clairoux

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