By Brian Geick
Everybody wants to participate in the newly evolving world of social business. You’ve been told how important it is to your future success. I’ll bet you’ve even set up your accounts and taken your first steps to getting started on all the big social networks. So why haven’t you seen results? Where are your new leads and clients? You know they’re out there. Recent studies have shown that 67 percent of Internet users are on at least one social network, but they’re not following your business. Let me tell you why. It’s because they don’t care about anything you’re saying. Have you ever been stuck in a conversation that you found to be lifeless and boring? In real life yes, we all have, but on social media it doesn’t happen. There are too many simple and easy ways to avoid conversations that don’t interest you. What you post, whether it’s on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter or LinkedIn, is everything. It’s your life, your business; it’s a little piece of you and your brand in every post.
This brings us to the million dollar question: What should you post to get more people to do business with you? Traditional marketing tells you to advertise and sell yourself, but people won't like and share your ads. Well, what if you talk about how great you are at selling homes? Bragging about your skills on social media today can be as annoying as an Internet pop-up ad. If you went through this same thought process and came to the conclusion that there is absolutely nothing in the world to talk about, this next part may come as a bit of a shock.
It's not about you. It’s about what you provide for your followers and fans. You need to aim for that sweet spot between your unique expertise and your client’s interests and needs.
It’s not a symbiotic relationship in the beginning. People are going to want information that you have and they are going to consume and keep consuming all of the information you put out there if it’s aligned with their interests and needs. What subject matter do you as a local real estate professional have authority and credibility on that is interesting to your current and future clients? The local community is a great one. This topic alone should provide you with an almost endless supply of content that sparks their interest. There’s interesting facts about the history of your neighborhood, great local restaurants, answers to frequently asked questions, unique local events and every other detail that differentiates your market from the surrounding area.
The other big topic you’re an expert on is real estate, of course. If you’ve mastered home staging, share the secret tricks you use to make homes look more charming. Are you more skillful with short sales? Then tell people how they can get started. If you’re an all-star investor, tell people in detail what they should be looking for in a property to get a good return. Something very interesting happens when you do this. The people taking in this information come to look at you as an expert on the topics you post about. Once you’ve established that credibility, they’re your client even if you haven’t done any business with them yet.
A common misconception about social media is that you only want to interact with people who are buying or selling a home right now, when in reality you should just be trying to establish that credibility with them regardless of where they are in the buying cycle so that when they are ready, they’ll come to you. Even if they’re not buying or selling a home they may know someone who is and we all know the importance of referrals. When they’re ready to do business, they’ll come to you.
If you’re just getting started on Facebook and you want to learn more about how to use Facebook in your marketing mix, check out HSA Home Warranty’s free, five-part series Winning Listings and Converting Buyers with Facebook.
Brian Geick is the Social Media Specialist at HSA Home Warranty.