How to hit the jackpot on social media
Social media for estate agents is a bit of a strange area. In the modern world, your Instagram feed or Facebook page have the potential to win tons of new clients and tens of thousands of pounds for a teeny tiny expense, so why don’t the majority of estate agents treat social media as a key part of their digital marketing strategy?
I think it’s part unfamiliarity, part disbelief and part concern over time.
As with anything, social media is a learnable skill. With a little bit of effort, it really doesn’t take long to work out what is of value to local people (hint: your latest sales and lettings listings are NOT of value, but local tips, property insights and advice to landlords and sellers are).
Regarding disbelief: although people are not yet searching for homes on social media, homeowners do look at estate agents’ Facebook and Instagram pages for reviews and content. What would you like them to find on yours?
And talking of time, you don’t want your social media to take up your whole day – and boy-oh-boy can it be a total time suck – but you also don’t want to rush things. It’s important to take at least a little time to ensure that what you post is engaging, relevant, useful and, above all, spelt correctly!
Social Media Content Strategy
I suggest you start by allowing 15-30 minutes per day for the social media channels you are running for your estate agency (you will get this down as you become more proficient). That’s enough time to think things through, run a few ideas around in your head, sketch out some text for engaging social media content, edit your photo and finalise your post.
Some days you’ll find just a few minutes is enough, while others you might struggle a bit to get the wording right.
This is why it’s a really good idea to have a system for the types and topics of posts you’re going to put live on your social media channels. Then you can at least schedule some of your posts in advance, and edit them before they go live if you can’t think of exactly what to say when writing the draft post.
Remember to set reminders to finalise any incomplete social media posts before they go live – you don’t want to be the estate agent that posts half-finished or nonsensical content!
15-30 minutes each day adds up to around 6 to 12 hours per month – and that’s without getting lost in posts on your business page’s feed, or indeed on your personal account! It’s very, very easy to get distracted, particularly on Facebook and Instagram with all those pretty pictures: so focus on the job in hand and then get out as soon as you are done.
Does this sound like a lot of time to you? Well, it is. If you want your estate agent social media pages to draw sellers, landlords and many thousands of pounds to your estate agency, the work needs to go in. It’s really easy to tell a half-hearted social media channel from a fully-functioning one – there is no way you can hide a lacklustre page.
Why Estate Agents Need Social Media
Think about the immense value your social media pages can deliver. You can create a clear and engaging image of the way you work – and accurately target your audience – in a way never before possible. Long before a potential customer even thinks about contacting you, you can become their favourite local estate agent.
You can be their first port of call for useful property information and you can show off your prowess and performance to every homeowner in the neighbourhood, without them having to lift a finger. You can plant your estate agency in their minds as the no-brainer go-to choice for selling or renting their property: by the time they come to meet you in real life, they’ll already feel they know and trust you.
It’s important to keep an end result in mind, so what do you want to achieve with your estate agency’s social media?
My view is that you want to achieve – at the very least – £50,000 of instructed business a year. That’s new sellers and/or landlords giving you new property listings that generate at least £50,000 in extra commission to your estate agency, every year. How does that sound? Pretty good I’d say.
Social Media Ideas for Estate Agents
So, what kind of social media posts do you need to write to draw in that amount of money? How can you develop an image for your estate agency that will allow you to increase your commission rates? How can you write engaging social media posts that will demonstrate you as the number-one choice for future sellers and landlords? What useful property advice and useful information can you provide that will get local residents talking with admiration and respect?
All of the above is possible: the only choice you really need to make is whether you have someone in your office who has the time, inclination and skills to run your social media pages to optimal effect. If you don’t, split the responsibility between the team.
Whatever you do, DON’T outsource it. It’s simply not possible to recreate the atmosphere and events of your office through someone who isn’t there.
P.S. You can read more about social media for estate agents in my other articles: Seven Deadly Instagram Wins For Estate Agents and Build A Killer Facebook Page For Your Estate Agency