It’s no secret that most potential homebuyers take their home search online. The online market dominates real estate sales and leads and is responsible for the overwhelming majority of closings.
According to a recent study from the National Association of Realtors, social media alone has become an integral part of attracting clients and closing deals. According to NAR, 47 percent of real estate businesses quote social media as the best source of quality leads, and 66 percent of first-time homebuyers are millennials, a generation that is largely on social media.
If your new year’s resolution as an agent has anything to do with building or maintaining a solid online presence, now is the time to look to social media as the solution to boost listings. But how exactly can you leverage these platforms and your audiences and convert them into closings?
Gain consumer insights
If clients are happy with your service and the homes you showed them, they’ll tell their social media networks even if they don’t tell you. Just like with any other business, if consumers are satisfied with the work you do, they’ll tell you online.
But why stop there when it comes to consumer insights? Instead of enabling clients to talk at you, give them avenues through which they can talk with you. Enable clients to voice their opinions and feedback directly through feedback forms, messaging integrations and public posting, and you’ll be surprised at the kinds of insights you can gather.
“Analyzing online discussions on social media with the keywords you associate with your brand as a real estate agent can help you develop a deep understanding of your customers’ attitudes and perceptions,” said real estate agent Kelsey Charles. “Anything that can give you such a deep understanding of your community and who you’re serving is a great resource.”
Post and promote new listings
With an estimated 3.6 billion people globally on social media today, there is no better place to get eyes on your listings than on these platforms. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn are incredibly popular for real estate advertising, and even offer tools to facilitate that kind of marketing.
But posting listings alone isn’t enough to truly convert scrollers into clients. Promoting your posts online through paid advertising is the best way to reach a wider audience; boosted Facebook posts will be seen by people even if they don’t have your page on their radar — same with Instagram and LinkedIn — and the leads will start pouring in.
“Connecting with clients and leads through Facebook groups, especially, is a recipe for maximum client support and care,” Charles said. “I created a Facebook group to build an organic lead generation system based on building those real relationships, and that has been pivotal to my growth as an agent. That advantage is definitely one I think all agents should consider.”
Change how you make connections
Have quality content online and understand all the ways social channels make it possible to connect with potential clients in new and interesting ways, if you know what you’re doing. Be aware of the market and social media trends and lean into them when it makes sense. These are crucial to setting yourself apart in what can be an incredibly crowded market.
One of the best ways to do this is to leverage the visual component of social media channels. Virtual showings and tours — which became more in-demand than ever during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic — aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. In fact, many homebuyers will make an offer on a home without even seeing it in person.
As the market continues to ramp up, the virtual mindset of looking at homes isn’t going anywhere, and people are looking for a way to truly see where they may end up living. If you can equip prospective buyers with the resources to see those houses and make an educated decision, you’ve set yourself apart already.
This year, it’s time to get serious about social media. It’s a powerful lead generation tool and something that can be leveraged to reach a global audience and convert clickers to customers with little to no effort. As you look ahead to working as a real estate agent in 2022, social media should be a big part of your career — and these insights will help jump-start your efforts the right way.