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Is social media really worth the time and effort required to do it right? The simple answer is yes. It’s a direct, reliable, and accessible link to current and emerging audiences of luxury real estate consumers. But it requires routine, rigor, and structure to do it well.
Robin Hess is a Real Estate Associate with Monument Sotheby’s International Realty, and Linda Sansone is a Real Estate Associate with Pacific Sotheby’s International Realty. Here, they share why social media remains relevant in the luxury real estate space, as well as four pillars to focus on.
Showcase the caliber of your properties and professionalism
While both Sansone and Hess agree that Facebook and Instagram are great platforms for engaging with buyers and sellers while garnering visibility for listings through photos, videos, and stories, they both cite another key social media platform—LinkedIn.
That’s because consumers in the top bracket of the market tend to be highly informed, and want to collaborate with the best in the business. “LinkedIn is where most luxury clients will go to check the credentials and performance metrics of our team,” says Hess.
Social media can serve as a hub for all your marketing efforts
“Social platforms have become another form of a CRM,” Hess adds. “We stay engaged and relevant with active consumers and provide them with easier access to our skills.” Social media allows agents to target certain audiences, while analyzing engagement metrics to provide tangible insights into their marketing performance overall.
Expand your reach
Through social media, you’re not limited to prospects in your region and its feeder markets. “You end up finding a common denominator with a whole new audience you may never have considered,” says Sansone—audiences that span the globe.
Hess notes that aside from marketing listings and engaging prospective buyers, social media is also a good way to attract and recruit new team members.
To make the most of social media, here are four core pillars of success:
Like more traditional marketing initiatives, social media should be pursued with intention and purpose. “I post three to four times a week on the same days,” says Sansone. “And on Monday morning, I have a strategic social media plan in place for the week.”
It’s so important to be tactical. “Use targeted social media campaigns to draw out and engage with every qualified consumer—represented and unrepresented—to not just gain new prospective buyers, but to give your sellers the broadest opportunity to receive an offer,” says Hess.
When Sansone first started social media for her real estate practice, she focused on listings, sales, and events in the community—but she has since branched out. “My audience likes relevant stats and personality,” she says. “Invite them to get to know you. Sellers may decide they want to work with you if you have something personal in common.”
Sansone expects to see more sharing of video content and more personal stories. “Viewers tend to always favor my videos, whether they’re of a fabulous property, something about me, or something about my dogs. It is amazing how many viewers relate to and like the posts about my dogs!”
“Many luxury buyers and sellers want exclusive, sometimes private, experiences as they conduct their business,” says Hess—and through direct messaging on platforms such as Facebook and Instagram, social media facilitates these more candid engagements. But along with exclusivity, quality is also imperative.
“Professional images and video are so important, as luxury clients will expect luxury content,” says Sansone. “Hire a professional photographer or videographer to showcase you, your community, and the architecture and interior decor of your listings—don’t forget to include more personal shoots as well, something with your pet or family, or doing something you love outside of real estate.”
With so many real estate agents leveraging social media to reach consumers and build their brand, what’s going to set you apart? “Don’t just do what everyone else is doing,” says Sansone.
“By sharing something unique, you give your community something to connect with in addition to your business. For instance, I love fashion, so for me, different outfits—shoes, handbags, accessories—are all part of my personality. I now have followers commenting on and waiting to see the next look!”
Accruing visibility, credibility, and popularity on social media is a cumulative process, and it’s important for agents not to be discouraged if they don’t see immediate results. Trust that your posts are adding value for buyers and sellers. If you commit to consistency, personality, quality, and creativity, it won’t be long before you have a clear return on investment.