Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 12

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 12

We are back and the tables have turned, the market has seen a bit of a shift, discount brokers, referral programs, strategic partnerships, they are all in full force, and for Real Estate Agents, there has never been a more important time to focus on BRANDING.

In a space where all traditional training is typically centered on real estate law, rules, regulations, protecting clients and customers, and overall deal-making strategies, it can be easy to allow branding to fall by the wayside.

So what is branding?  How does it come into play?  Why is it so important?  And what can you do, as a real estate agent, to ensure that your brand is one that your tribe is connecting with?

Branding is defined as “the promotion of a particular product or company by means of advertising and distinctive design.”  With that, we must ask ourselves a series of important questions.  First, what is our product?  Well, I would say that our product is not a thing, but a who, we are the product.  Yes we are selling properties, and one may argue that the property is the product, but it is important to remember the context to which we are speaking.  In this sense, we are not talking about selling, where what we are selling, the house, could be considered the product.  In this context, we are talking about branding, and despite the beliefs of many, selling and branding are not the same things.

The easy way to declutter our ideas of each is to see selling as the act of creating an opportunity and result that allows for one party to take ownership of something in the exchange for some sort of concession.  Selling is what we do when we want a transfer.  Branding, however, is very different.  Branding is the act of creating an almost invisible buffer around yourself that pulls people in that typically share the same or similar values, beliefs, thoughts and/or morals, as well as other attributes, as you in turn, branding creates trust.  Transfer and trust are not the same.  For the sake of this article, we will discuss branding, creating trust.

We stated that branding is the promotion of a particular product or company by means of advertising and distinctive design.  And we discussed briefly the difference between selling and branding, with branding or trust-building, our primary focus.  However, when we read the definition above, it is vitally important to pay close attention to the second half of the definition, “by means of advertising and distinctive design”.  With so much that can be shared regarding these two topics, let’s discuss the part that is distinctive design, with tips for advertising coming in our next article.

Take note of the distinctive design that you are sharing with the world, with your tribe.  This is what either sets you apart from the masses or lumps you in with the crowd.  That being said, it is crucial that we find ways to create and market your brand, your distinctive design, in turn garnering trust.  When creating your brand, remember, you are always on display, you are always on the clock, someone is always watching.  Now you may think it is exhausting to create a brand, but remember, you already have one.  You have been creating your distinctive design since the very first day you showed up on earth.  The significant difference through the stages of life happened when you were able to decree what way you wanted people to see you.  Creating an environment where your actions are seen in the light you want them to be is very important.  It isn’t exhausting building a brand, simply be who you want others to see.  If you want people to see you as the road rage queen, drive through your town screaming and honking at every car that makes one move you don’t like.  If you don’t want to be seen in such a way, smile, way, and mouth, “It’s okay.”  Either way, you are building a brand, one simply is that which will keep you on a good foot when you happen to run into that person again, in turn, possibly building your business.

So how do you establish the brand you have always wanted?  A few simple things:

• Define the brand you wish to create.

  • Be the best version of yourself.  Health, both physical and mental.
  • Study the market and your completion, always be capable of adding value to a situation.  Watching those that are already doing it is a great way to create a baseline for your brand.
  • Give everything away.  Don’t just share in life and on social, the things that highlight you as a real estate agent.  Instead, highlight life.  Highest the good, bad and the ugly.  Talk about your journey, record it, share it, scream it from the mountain tops.  You would be surprised how many people grab hold of your brand when they see it as something relatable.

Lastly, one final tip, be “Authentically Empathetic”.  This is more than just being “real”.  This is being you, as you were meant to be.  This is understanding and expressing the hearts of others.  Be willing to put yourself out there, mind and heart alike, sharing your true journey and relating to the journey of others.  Never pass judgment on the situation others are in, instead, empathize with their situation.  Note that I am not saying take pity on them, but rather understand them and be the issue solve, be the solution.

You want to be “the” brand, be “the” answer.

We will see you on the next one.  Be loved, be well, be your best.

Have questions, a topic you’d like to learn more about?  Email [email protected] with the subject CRP Article Topic and we will work on fitting it in.

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 11

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 11

We’ve spent several months learning about social media posts, timing, and overall best practices.  We even jumped into video creation, publication and more.  With all that in mind, this month let’s cover some of the go-to apps and platforms that help add ease and consistency to our social media experience.

Hootsuite is a great social media management platform that allows users to work through its dashboard interface to post, schedule and manages content from Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google+ and Youtube.  Because of Hootsuite’s multi-platform capability, it tends to be used by most.  It’s important to recognize that while Hootsuite is most popular, it does take some getting used too. 

Initially, once you create your Hootsuite account, you’re going to add your social networks, from there you’ll create streams for each social network.  A stream is things like your Facebook News Feed, your Twitter account, or even the Twitter of someone you follow, essentially every aspect of the social media networks you want to track.

From this point you can post, schedule posts, follow feeds, almost anything you would do from your individual social media platform, but all from the comfort of one site.  Also, hoot suite offers an app for your mobile device.

The next go-to platform is Planoly.  Planoly is a platform focused on Instagram.  Similar to Hootsuite, you are able to schedule posts with captions, hashtags, tags, locations and more.  One of the major benefits to Planoly though is the ability to do what Planoly calls, visually plan.  When you’re logged into your Planoly account you’ll see a preview of your Instagram wall, and in turn, better be able to plan your future posts.  This is a huge benefit when your goal is to create a structured theme for your brand on Instagram.

Another perk to Planoly is that you can plan themed story posts.  This can be huge!  Remember, as we’ve said in so many previous articles, your brand is something that you a constantly creating.  Platforms like these allow you to be more strategic in creating your perfect online presence.

Next up, one that you may not think falls into the go-to platform, YouTube.  A lot of the time we think of our social media presence as one that lives on more common networking sites such as Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat, Twitter and LinkedIn.  YouTube, however, has quickly become the go-to search engine for the masses.  Because of this, it’s important that you upload your videos and treat YouTube as where you house all of your video content.  Essentially, it becomes your video library.

And the last app that we will cover is one of my big-ticket apps, it’s called, WhenToPost.  WhenToPost is an app that syncs with your Instagram profile and, based on content engagement, tells you every day what three times you should be posting.  Then entire idea when it comes to building your social media presence is to garner engagement.  This app helps you to not only gain higher levels of engagement but to do something that is arguably more important, create consistency.

These are just a few sites and apps that will help you to “set it and forget it” when it comes to your marketing efforts.  I hope you’ll grab these and put them to work.  Until next time.

See you next month!

Have questions, a topic you’d like to learn more about?  Email [email protected] with the subject CRP Article Topic and we will work on fitting it in.

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 10

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 10

Here we are at the end of the Four F’s, Friends and Celebration.  As we cover the root of our last F’s, Fitness and Family, we will spend some time focusing on examples of how to execute strategic posts, as well as focus a fair amount of attention on how with a focus on nothing more than these topics, you can build your real estate brand into a “Top of Mind” machine.  Let’s dive in.

Fitness: is unique, it can make you look like a goofball, but also, it can offer the opportunity to proclaim to the world that you’re living your best life with a health focus through more than just fad diets and awkward gym pictures.  Instead, this topic gives you the unique opportunity to blend much of what we’ve learned in previous articles.  The incredible opportunity to highlight friendships, businesses, locals, foods, instructors, fitness regimens and so much more.  Let’s have a go at it.

The Don’t Do This Example:

Gym video/photo, lifting weights while your phone is propped up on a dumbbell, and you’re wearing a muscle shirt tank top.

Do This Example:

A photo with your Robeks 800 lb. Gorilla Smoothy sitting on the railing with a backdrop of your gyms sign with text like this… “#Robeks 800 lb. Gorilla, #24HourFitness and all the will power of the #GreenLanternCorps.  I’m staying healthy so that when it’s time to run with you to the finish line of buying/selling your next home, I’ll be ready.”

Follow that up with an IG & FB Story post that is the same thing, but at a Quiz option that says… “What are you doing to stay healthy? a. Yoga b. Gym c. Walking d. Nothing :-(“

Remember, you’re going to be sprinkling in very deliberate posts about real estate in your feed, but it’s important to be someone people engage with, people watch, people are entertained by.  Posts like these will help you do just that.

Family: is arguably the best of all the F’s.  Simply put, who doesn’t love a picture of your baby mid crawl, your pup tearing up the couch, your kid’s midwater balloon fight, your loving spouse on the grill or relaxing on the deck?  The key, the vital component, show appreciation whenever sharing family, and invite others to engage.

The Don’t Do This Example:

A Bedazzled photo of your family in the local Sears store with a brick background and matching outfits.

A post rambling on and on about how your teenage son or daughter got into trouble, all the while putting down their teachers and hoping others chime in.

These posts do nothing for your brand but make it something that you don’t want it to be.  Yes, you relate to others, but in the worst way.  Yes, you are top of mind, but again, in the worst way.

Do This Example:

Take any of the examples I shared about family, turn it into a beautiful photo, a video, or a boomerang.  Add text like… “My heart.” or, “Summer is officially here!  What are you and the family doing to celebrate?  Drop a photo in the comments!  The best picture gets a custom yeti cup!”

Post like these create engagement, allow others to feel good about their family, and offer you an opportunity to subtly add in a real estate twist.

That’s it, the Four F’s, food, fashion, fitness, and family, as well as celebration and friends.  You’ve got them all, as well as great examples of what to and not to do.  Now it’s time to act.  Remember, all the preparation in the world won’t yield results until you begin to put the action behind the desire.  So start posting, follow the tips and yield your harvest, your brand, become the agent on the tip of everyone’s tongue.  The agent that everyone in your sphere immediately thinks of when given the opportunity to talk anything real estate.

Create a strong online presence and integrate real estate specific posts within each platform that suits the purpose of the specific platform.  Ultimately, you will begin to organically grow your following and your client base, all while expanding your sphere and creating engagement.

Important:  Nothing you are doing here is aimed at creating new business in the next 24 hours.  The entire purpose is to create long term trust and authenticity, share knowledge and create a place where people can come for constant information, education, and entertainment.  You will not see a harvest in 24 hours!  Stay focused, constant and continue to share great content.

See you next month!

Have questions, a topic you’d like to learn more about?  Email [email protected] with the subject CRP Article Topic and we will work on fitting it in.

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 9

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 9

In our last article, we opened the door of Celebration and Friends, the ability to take alluring moments in life, friendships both new and old and create engaging social media posts, touching, moving and collaborating with your sphere and client base.  These subtle shifts to content, the intentional thought that behind what for many would have been a thoughtless post, are all parts of what will further develop your content, increase your reach and ultimately create further trust and belief in you, by your sphere as the “go-to” in this new age of real estate sales.

As we continue on this path, as promised in our previous article, we will expand on our social media content with the Four F’s.  So what are the Four F’s?  If you’ve been reading our past articles, you may have caught me mentioning them, they are food, fashion, fitness, and family.  Keeping with the same format of last months article, let’s dive in and discuss the key parts and best practices in sharing the Four F’s across different social media platforms.

Food: Anyone who knows me knows that I’ve got the pallet of a small child who’s only got a taste for chicken tenders, french fries and apple juice, so… chances are you’re not going to see too many posts from me with the most elegant and unique foods.  You may be just like me when it comes to eating, Plain Jane, boring food, or you may be what I’ll call my “foodie idol”, the type of person that will eat anything, go to any restaurant and order the most insane item on the menu and dive right in.  Either way, share!  Share your experience, the tastes, the flavors, the engagement with staff and other patrons, the ambiance, everything.  Invite people to feel your experience, more than just see your post.

The Don’t Do This Example:

[Picture of Food] or I love “Restaurant Name!”

Do This Example:

Restaurant Name, you’ve done it again!  Every time I’m here, breakfast, lunch, dinner, a quick take out order, it doesn’t matter, you outdo yourself.  Something about the feel, the food, the smiles, thank you for delivering a high-quality product, with great service from incredible people!

Include [Picture of Food]

This post offers an opportunity to do so much.  You’re hitting beauty, information, appreciation, credit and a lot more.  The point here is that you have lifted others up all while posting the photo of the delicious food that you aimed to post initially.  Also, you’ve done something we have spoken about in many articles, that is to increase the engagement of your content.  How?  By sharing such specific information, tagging the establishment, those that may work there, you have open the doors to them commenting, sharing, liking and more, but also, you have opened the door for their sphere to then see your content and follow you.  Ultimately making them your sphere.

Fashion: This one can be a dozy because who’s to say one person’s fashion is better than the others, but stay with me and I will show you how to get engagement from a simple fashion post.

The key here is to engage your audience with questions, and possible comparisons of your own fashion, not that of others.

The Don’t Do This Example:

Did you see so and so’s outfit on the Grammys?  Ewe! or Look at what this crazy person was wearing in the mall! [include Picture]

Do This Example:

I just picked out this new outfit for the (#Include the name of an event you are attending).  Don’t you love it?!

Another example would be…

We just picked up 2 new hats, which is your favorite?  I love the… [include pictures of both].

It’s so important that you include the hashtag and take the vendors as well as anyone you know that helped you so that you can connect your content with others attending the same events, be highlighted by the stores you frequent and continue to open the door to the opportunity for people you know as well as those you don’t to engage with your content.

Next up is Fitness and Fashion and that’s where we will pick up in our next article.  Both of these topics can create positive and negative reactions to your posts so it’s for sure going to be important that we share in a manner that lifts people up, highlights life doesn’t make you the person people don’t want to follow and actually shows your heart.  Remember that people love authenticity and honesty, real life.

So next month we will wrap up the Four F’s and open up the conversation about when to post what where and how often using these 6 topics we’ve covered.  We will look at how by posting constantly with no more than these topics, you will be able to develop a strong online presence that will flow into your real estate career by organically growing your following and in turn your client base.  And lastly, we will discuss just how long you’ll need to follow these steps before you will see your harvest.

See you next month!

Have questions, a topic you’d like to learn more about?  Email [email protected] with the subject CRP Article Topic and we will work on fitting it in.

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 8

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 8

Here we are, the season in full swing, the market moving, buyers and sellers seemingly happy as deals are struck, and you, running your race, dominating your space, or at least aiming too. 

For months you’ve read articles, this one and others alike, you’ve scoured through youtube videos, watched others in the industry as they’ve to lead the way in video and social media marketing.  Still, you’ve delayed, for one reason or the other to find your niche in video and social media marketing.  You’ve figured what you don’t want to do, even who you don’t want to be, and that’s okay, because the reality is, we are all different and will show differently to our clients and sphere, but we must activate, press go.

Or maybe you’re the agent we just referenced.  You’ve been running with every tip, you’ve been focused and planting seeds.  Over the past few months you have noticed a substantial increase in social activity, but now, what’s next?  It seems hard to continue to develop content, to know what your clients and sphere want and will connect with most.  You’ve even begun to track analytics but simply need to identify the best content for your space, content that will allow you to stay consistent and relevant.

No matter where you fall in the examples shared above, this article will help you to both get off the ground with a plan to post relevant, consistent content, as well as to up the ante with focused, directed material that will remove some of the wonders of “what’s next”.  So as you learn what actually is next, fill your posts with these key win points and find that your content will become, while still real estate related, more authentic and credible.

The Four F’s, Friends and Celebration.

You’re probably thinking, Friends and Celebration, I get it, Phil, but what are the Four F’s?  Well, before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s understand that there is more to posting then simply throwing up a post.  Each message, each post, each share has got to have intention and purpose.  A pointless post is just that, pointless.  Always aim to reach someone with your content, always aim to connect.

Let’s cover Celebration, then Friends, and next I’ll share with you what the Four F’s are.  All of these will include an example of how you can take events, moments and experiences, and turn them into engaging social media posts, ultimately touching your sphere and client base in one way or another.

Celebration:  You’ve accomplished something, you’ve worked hard, you’ve reached the peak of this mountain we call success.  Now what?  Celebrate!  Too often we as successful salespeople work our tales off only to accomplish a goal and simply move on to the next.  Taking time to celebrate is vital, not just important, it’s vital.  Celebration, gives time to reflect and appreciate your efforts, ultimately allowing you to decompress.  You earned it, celebrate!

With that, understand that your celebration, while yours, isn’t simply and only for you.  This celebration belongs to every person that had a hand in, on, and around your goal or accomplishment.  So what do you do?  Scream it from that mountain top!  But scream it for them, not for you.

The Don’t Do This Example:

I just accomplished… I’m beyond happy about it!  I can’t believe it!  This is amazing!  I’m so proud of myself.

Do This Example:

Thank you!  Thank you to… And of course… So and so have been and continue to be amazing!  Today, due to the efforts of all these amazing people, today we…

The difference is clear, the difference is in the “give”.  Through giving the celebration away, through screaming it from the mountain tops, through sharing in authenticity, you do more than post about something you did, instead, you reach the hearts and minds of all that see your post.  And might I add, because you tag each person that you have given and/or shared the credit with, you unwittingly enter into their sphere as well.

Friends:  Just about all of us have friends, right?  And with those friends, we experience life, some of us more than others, but the key when it comes to sharing on what we will call the “Friend Scale” is the invite.

When exploring, experiencing, living each day with those that have built a connection with you and are a part of your life, share these experiences through social media.  Where it be a post, a picture or the absolute best, that’s right, you know it, video!  No matter what method you use, share the experiences, but as you may have guessed, the way you share is equally, if not more important than what you share.

The Don’t Do This Example:

I and my besties are enjoying a night on the town. or. Good friends, enjoying good food.

Do This Example:

Tonight we are out, we are enjoying the company of great friends, both old as well as new.  We are at… chatting and reflecting about the past, even more exciting, planning and dreaming of the future.  Great people, great friends, great future.  Join us, this time or next, you’re a part of it all.

What this message does is adds a sense of beauty to your time out, invites others to be a part of the evening or the next, lifts up those that you are out with (remember to tag them), and, for the super savvy reader, did you catch what we did?  We mentioned where we are, tagging the location, the restaurant, wherever we are, in turn opening the door for their entire client base to see this post as well as future posts.

It’s also important to note that it appears there isn’t anything wrong with the first example, except that our goal is to invite people in, to engage them and in turn they themselves, on their own accord choose to continue to engage with you and your content.  Over time, through your unique posting style, your informative messages, your sense of enjoyment, people will look to know what you’re doing, they will follow you and all the while keeping you top of mind in the world of real estate.  Remember, you’re still constantly posting real estate.

So what’s next?  The Four F’s, no more suspense, at least until our next article.  The plan is to share with you the Four F’s and how to use them.  As well as to give you an example of a full posting sequence for both IG and FB.  And of course, harvest season.  It’s vital to understand the timing of your reward for all of this hard work.

See you on the next one!

Have questions, a topic you’d like to learn more about?  Email [email protected] with the subject CRP Article Topic and we will work on fitting it in.

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 7

Social Media Done Right… the New Standard for Real Estate Agent Marketing – Part 7

Social Media Influencers, what are they, who are they and how exactly can they play a role in building our business.

The truth is, anyone can be a Social Medial Influencer, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a tall task to earn such a status. Also, it doesn’t mean that we should all seek to become the next Social Media Superstar Personality, in fact, many shouldn’t, it’s just not what we’re all good at. We are in fact, Real Estate Agents, right?

If you’ve been paying close attention to passed articles, you’ve come to realize by now that we aren’t “just” Real Estate Agents anymore. The market, the industry, it’s changed, and while there is certainly room for the agent of 10, even 5 years ago, that very same agent, if they intend to remain, and be relevant over the course of the 5 to 10 years to come, well, that agent had better build a social media presence that speaks to current, future and most importantly, happy past clients. Doing this ultimately means that you’ll become an Influencer or sorts, even if only for a small group of people.

Social Media Influencer
What: A user on social media who has established credibility in a specific industry.
Benefit: Reach. A Social Media Influencer has access to a large (to scale) audience and can seemingly persuade others by virtue of their authenticity and reach.
Who: You. Me. The next person. It’s simply doesn’t matter. Anyone can be a social media influencer.

So how can a Social Media Influencer actually help you build your business? It’s important to understand that just anyone isn’t going to cut it, you’re looking for an Influencer that is fluent in your industry, those that speak and share relevant content to you and your sphere regarding, at least predominantly, your industry. This is very important as it’s important to remember that the goal is ultimately to take on the role, again, even if to only a small group, as the Influencer. And yes, I do realize that this statement alone contradicts my previous statement that not everyone should aim to be a Social Media Influencer. Understand that the point there is to not feel that you must become some over the top, loud, attention-seeking robot, instead, build your social media culture specific to your needs, goals, beliefs, morals, and brand.

Once you identify one or more Influencers that you feel could help develop your presence in the space, begin following them, liking, commenting on and sharing their content, always when sharing, adding your own 1 to 2 sentence snapshot or praise to your post about the content being shared. Show the influencer that you are an avid follower that stays on top of their content. Eventually, begin to reference influencers in your own unique posts, being sure to tag them when you do. As you develop, you’ll in many cases, find the influencer referencing you in their posts, in turn giving you more credibility in your field.
A great example of this would be my relationship with Tom Ferry, the #1 Real Estate Coach in the world. Each time Tom makes any reference to me in his content, I see a huge spike in followers across all platforms. Now, since Tom is typically speaking to Real Estate Agents in his posts, Agents are often who I see following me, which is great when you begin to think about and develop the Agent to Agent Referral leg of your business.

It certainly shouldn’t be your only goal to have other professionals in your industry to follow your content, it’s important to encourage, as I mentioned earlier, current, future and most importantly, happy past clients to see you as the authority in your field, in turn opening their spheres to you as well. Remember, one person has the opportunity to change your career simply based on their willingness to share your knowledge, their experience with you, your empathy, your skills, with others. These people are often your past clients, the current clients are those that you are both actively working with, but also those that are actively watching you, often on social media, and future clients are your current client’s sphere. Reaching your future client’s sphere means doing a couple of extremely important things, giving your clients the best experience possible that they would like to tell the world about, and equally as important, being ridiculously consistent with your posting of great content.

Consistently creating and sharing informative, quality content, which, believe it or not, isn’t always going to be, nor does it need to be industry-specific, is the difference-maker. It can be why people will come to you when it’s time to buy or sell their next home, why they will listen when it comes time to negotiate, why they find it so easy to build rapport, why they trust you. They know you, and most often that means they will allow you to get to know them, better developing your relationship with your client.

I’m sure you noticed the reference to informative, quality content but at the same time doesn’t always need to be industry-specific. This is one of the most important parts of this article, understand what to post. So we will expand on this topic in our next article by covering the “Four F’s”, adding friends and celebration and why these so darn important. We will also discuss the importance of understanding “Harvest Season”, when it comes, how it can keep your business driving forward when the market seems so slow for others and the secret ingredient.

Have questions, a topic you’d like to learn more about? Email [email protected] with the subject CRP Article Topic and we will work on fitting it in.