The pace of marketing homes online has accelerated quickly over the past few years, so much that 91% of real estate agents are active on different real estate social media channels and websites. If your agent isn’t doing everything under the sun to share, post, and blast your home out online, you might as well kiss that home sale goodbye.
Kathleen Caponigro, one of the top real estate agents in the Pocono Mountains region in Pennsylvania, weighed in. She said, “We’re on every home sale website–and there’s tons of them, but we utilize all of them.”
Because your home sale depends on how well your agent markets it on social media, you need to know if their work is up to snuff. Plus, there’s always room for growth, so why not have a few tricks up your sleeve to help your agent out if your place isn’t getting any traction? Here’s how you can make sure your real estate agent is doing your home justice on social media.
How Real Estate Social Media Marketing Works
Your real estate agent’s social media strategy for your home sale is like a professional soccer match. The agent puts players on the field: your listing blurb, the photos, physical handouts, an email about the property, Instagram/Facebook posts. Then, the agent comes up with plays: posting the listing on Facebook, blasting an email out to his contacts, or sharing list photos on Instagram, etc.
The plays all work together to ultimately score goals, or offers, on your home. The key is to put out the best content possible. Caponigro says, “With all of the [real estate] websites out there…the exposure is there. You just have to make sure you optimize interest by having good photos and good verbiage.”
Is Your Agent Using Instagram to Market Your Home?
First things first: ask your agent if their brokerage has an Instagram account. If so, you’ll want to create an account yourself (if you don’t have one already) and start following them right away.
Instagram is all about volume, quality, and how easy it is to direct users where you want them to go. And the key to spreading your Instagram content? Hashtags and location tags.
Take a look at the Instagram post below, because this agent knows what she’s doing.
Exquisitely designed home that features views of SF Bay, the Marin Headlands, Alcatraz and partial views of the Golden Gate Bridge. Impeccable design and superior materials align soaring ceilings, custom windows and doors, outdoor patios, lush garden originally designed by Thomas Church, an atrium and decks create a magical ambiance of light and space. Would this be considered a dream home for you? . Questions about Buying or Selling in the Bay Area? Call, DM, or click the link in my bio for more information. . #mondaymansion #mansionmonday #motivation #motivational #mondaymotivation #motivationmonday #mansion #realestate #inspiration #homesweethome #luxury #luxuryhomes #bayarea #sanfrancisco #sf #goldengatebridge #igerssf #sflove #sfhomes #sfrealestate #sfrealtor #bayarearealestate #sfblogger #sfviews
Notice the location tag specific to the neighborhood, Marin Headlands. Then, she added 24 relevant hashtags. Some of these were targeted toward other real estate agents who may have clients looking to buy in the area (“SFRE” and “SFRealtor” for example). Others are meant to show up for buyers searching for homes for sale in San Francisco (“SFhomes” and “bayarearealestate”).
The agent also used a professional shot of the home–most likely one of the listing photos. As for non-listing photos? Those belong on an Instagram story. An Instagram story lives above the normal photo feed and only lasts for 24 hours.
Since stories disappear, people usually post content that’s less polished than a normal Instagram post. It’s also where you advertise events that are going on right now as you can only post photos and videos you’ve taken in the past 24 hours. It’s a great place for your agent to do a video walkthrough before a showing or during an open house.
Your agent should also go on “Instagram Live” at least once. Live feeds are, you guessed it, live. If your agent is holding an open house, she can go live with Instagram. Potential buyers can comment what they think as she’s taking a video. Best of all? They can hop in the car and go see the home immediately, because Instagram Live happens in real time.
Let’s recap. If your real estate agent is killing it on Instagram, then you’ll see:
- Your listing photos turned into Instagram posts.
- Several posts about your home over a few weeks, and especially when it’s first listed.
- Relevant hashtags and location tags on every post to spread the word.
- At least one Instagram live session.
- Stories that include more casual or close-up shots of your home and videos of the property.
Tricks Your Agent Should Use on Facebook
According to the National Association of Realtors, millennials (aged 37 and younger) make up the largest group of home buyers at 36%. The millennial generation is also the most active today on social media. 82% of people aged 18-29 use Facebook, and 79% of people aged 30-49 use Facebook. That means that a ton–if not most–of your potential home buyers are on the platform. That’s why you need your real estate agent to knock this one out of the park.
1. Your Agent Should Post Your Listing to Facebook
Take a look at real estate agent Jordan Bennett’s Facebook business page. Bennett, who ranks in the top 1% of agents in Mission Viejo, California, posts well-designed “Just Listed” and “Improved Price” announcements for his listings, open house flyers, and fun, engaging blog posts and photos. He uses short bullet points and emojis in his posts to give Facebook browsers the key details right upfront—number of beds, baths, square footage and price.
Your real estate agent should do the exact same thing. Make sure your agent posts your listing to their business Facebook page. Then, be sure to like it, share it with your friends, and tell your friends and family to share it with everyone they know. Know of any Facebook groups for your neighborhood? Be sure to post it there as well.
2. Your Agent Should Also Go Live
Facebook, like Instagram, has a “live” feature that works very much the same way. Be sure to ask your agent to go live on Facebook during an open house or right before a showing. Don’t just go live on one real estate social media platform, either.
Instagram and Facebook reach different audiences. Your potential buyer could be scrolling Instagram every day, but not as active on Facebook. She could also be an avid Facebook user who checks her newsfeed constantly but has no idea how instagram works.
3. Ask Your Agent About Paid Facebook Ads
Have you ever seen those pesky ads on your Facebook newsfeed that are so accurate to your recent search history it’s kind of creepy? You’re going to want your listing to be one of those ads.
Paid, targeted Facebook ads are an incredibly effective way to show people your listing your agent never even thought of reaching out to. Your agent will be able to set parameters of who will see the ad. For example, they could put only people in your city who have shown interest in real estate. Then, Facebook will show your listing in the form of an ad to potentially thousands of prospective buyers who your agent would have had no way of contacting otherwise.
Pretty cool, right? It’s easy and affordable to run a paid Facebook ad, and your agent may have already set marketing funds aside for your home. To see exactly how Facebook ads work, take a look at our eBook about selling a home online. Otherwise, check in with your agent to see if a paid Facebook campaign is already in the works.
4. Make a Unique Website for Your Home to Market it On Facebook
Caponigro and her brokerage also “create a unique website page for each listing, which is something that other agencies don’t do.”
They come in handy when spreading the word about your home on Facebook. Some enticing copy and the link to the website is all your agent needs to pique interest in your listing.
Websites like this are simple and affordable to make, especially if your agent or their brokerage has made them in the past. Check in with them to see if he plans to make a website for your home.
Can You Market Your Home on Nextdoor?
Why yes, yes you can! If real estate agents could post listings to their personal Nextdoor accounts, then what was once a helpful neighborhood support system would quickly become a cutthroat marketing tool.
What is Nextdoor? Nextdoor is a neighborhood community tool where only verified members of your local neighborhood can join. People post goings-on, safety concerns, items they’re looking for, lost pets, etc. on the site. Because anyone who lives in your immediate area can join, it’s a neat way to market your house online.
In select markets, Nextdoor does allow real estate agents to post listings to the “Real Estate Section” on the left-side menu of the Nextdoor home page. These listings are branded to the agent and do cost money, so your agent will need to factor that cost into their marketing budget.
But you can post your home on Nextdoor for free!
Laurie around the corner or Trisha a few blocks away may have a relative or family friend who’s been dying to get into the neighborhood for years. If you advertise that your home’s for sale on Nextdoor, you could capture the attention of someone who is or who knows a buyer for your house.
You can post your listing once as a Classified listing—on Nextdoor it will appear under the “For Sale and Free” >> “Housing” tab on the left-hand menu.
In Real Estate, Email Can Be Social, Too
An article from Hubspot, a fast-growing marketing software provider that’s been established for more than a decade, shows that 86% of people want emails from companies and businesses they interact with. On top of that, Business Insider reported that nearly 40% of consumers check their email one to three times a day, while over a third are checking it “throughout the day.”
Your email is front and center on your mobile device, and if you have an iPhone you’ll relate to the ever frustrating red notification dot that points to the number of emails you’ve been ignoring. People check their email. Constantly.
And the way that top real estate agents use email marketing can be “social” in its own right. Here’s how:
The Colleague Approach to Email
Agents will share your home listing with their fellow co-workers who are currently working with home buyers in your neighborhood. Caponigro told us, “Many times I will send an email to members of the board of Realtors so that they’re aware of the listing, so yes, I definitely utilize email.”
This approach is highly effective because another agent may have a buyer who has been searching and searching for a home just like yours. Your real estate agent is able to deliver your listing directly into their email inbox, and they can take the buyer to your home to see it. Win win!
The Follow-Up Approach to Email
Your agent may also use email to follow up with buyers who came to an open house. As Caponigro told us, “When I get a request for more information, I generally email the listing with all of the photos.” This technique makes it easy for the agent to keep in contact with a potential buyer she otherwise may have lost.
Tell Your Home’s Story on Social Media
When buyers enter your space, you want them to feel like they’re coming home. One compelling way to do that is to tell your home’s story and post it on your real estate agent’s blog, your personal blog, or a site like Medium. Then you can take that online post and share it across social media platforms like Facebook and even Twitter.
When we tell you to tell your home’s story, we mean that you should pull together everything unique and wonderful that your family loved about the house. Jody Parrish, a top 2% agent in St. Louis, advises home sellers like you to write this story in the form of a letter to buyers.
Paint the picture for them: why will they love watching their families grow in the home?
How You Can Help Your Agent With Real Estate Social Media
Even though your agent will be the real estate social media master for your home sale, there are still a few ways you can help. As we went over earlier, you can:
- Post your home as a classified listing on Nextdoor.
- Create your own social media posts on sites like Facebook and Instagram to get the attention of family and friends. Write them as you would any other status update about your life so it feels personal and in sync with the rest of your profile. You never know what friend of a friend just might be looking in your area.
There you have it! Is your agent doing a great job on social media for your home?
Article Image Source: (Jamie Street/ Unsplash)