The 'WHY' of Social Media - Developing a Social Media Strategy Part II

By
Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams West Sound Realty

"Social Media is the new Water Cooler.

It's where People Connect and Interact"

~ Rich Jacobson ~social-media-takes-you-to-where-people-are-connecting-and-interacting

Before we jump into the nuts and bolts of developing a social media strategy, I thought it would be best to understand the bigger picture of why you, as a real estate professional, should be using social media to grow and promote your business.

Here's one of the best definitions I've come across for social media:

"Social Media is the collection of tools and online spaces available to help individuals and businesses to accelerate their information and communication needs." - Axel Schultze -

If there's one area that people in our business typically neglect, it's in developing and implementing a detailed and deliberate marketing plan. Most of the time, we simply play 'Follow-the-Leader' and employ whatever methods those around us are using. We get a website, send out postcards, giveaway calenders, call on 'expireds,' join the Rotary Club, and then cross our fingers, hoping that new business will come our way as a result. Rarely are we intentional in our marketing efforts, nor do we take time to analyze and evaluate what methods are the most effective.

And so it is too with many who wander into the social media arena. A fellow agent in your office has encouraged you to join ActiveRain, so you signed up. Or perhaps you overheard someone sharing with excitement how they had attracted a new client through their blog on ActiveRain.

The fact that you're here, reading this article, demonstrates your intrigue and interest, and more importantly, a willingness to adapt or try new things. Your courage to step outside of your comfort zone is to be commended.

So why social media?

Expanding Your Digital Footprint

First and foremost, using the tools of social media allows us to expand/enhance our digital footprint. With more and more consumers accessing the Internet for their home buying and selling needs, one of our primary strategies should be to spread and enlarge our web presence. It's not enough to simply maintain a website. Our end goal should be to dominate a specific geo-targeted area and maximize our 'findability' for select key search terms. In other words, when consumers enter particular key search terms into a search engine, terms that are relevant to your local market, some element of your digital footprint should show up in the search results, i.e. blog article, website, pod-cast, video, etc..

One of my former managing brokers always used the analogy, "The more hooks you put into the water, the greater your chances of catching the Fish!" An effective social media strategy necessitates varying levels of participation on multiple platforms, networks, and applications.

Connecting with Your Sphere Digitally

Using social media empowers you to make meaningful connections/interactions with your Sphere of Influence and potential clients. It enables meaningful 'touches' to occur faster, more efficiently than more traditional methods. That's not to suggest that you should abandon your previous marketing efforts. Utilizing social media should simply augment, not replace the tasks you've been doing up to this point, especially ones that result in new business. Nothing will ever replace the value of face-to-face contact. And some people just aren't engaged in using the Internet on a regular basis. But what you'll find is that social media can become one of the most cost-effective and results-oriented marketing methods you can employ.

Now that you hopefully have a better understanding as to the 'Why' of social media, in our next installment we'll begin to map out some specific practical strategies you can use to develop your own successful social media strategy!

For Your Further Reading Enjoyment:

"Developing a Social Media Strategy, Part 1"

"Hello?! McFly!? It's called Social Media for a Reason!"

"Establishing an Internet Presence: Are You Creating a False Front?"

~     o     ~     o     ~     o     ~     o     ~     o     ~

Rich Jacobson is a licensed real estate professional providing knowledgeable empowerment and relentless representation for his clients of residential properties and vacant land throughout all of Kitsap County WA and portions of Pierce, Mason, and Jefferson Counties. You can also find him at KitsapLife.com, SOUNDBITEBLOG, Crabbing in the Hood, Facebook, Twitter, or e-mail:  kitsapagent@gmail.com

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  1. Gene perez 12/02/2009 07:42 PM
  2. Carol Pease 12/02/2009 10:14 PM
  3. Laurel Stone 12/03/2009 09:06 PM
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Rainmaker
1,306,038
Ron & Alexandra Seigel
Luxury Real Estate Marketing
ra@napaconsultants.com

Rich:

I love social media, and we advise our clients of its importance at all time.  However, it is not the ONLY solution, and it JUST does not fit everyone.  What makes life fun is the variety of people in this world.  Everyone has a unique response and a unique need.  In marketing it is important to assess the uniqueness of one's market place and address it and work with it.

For instance, our client in the Napa Valley walks out of the door to get a cup of coffee and a croissant at the local bakery,  Fifteen minutes later, she has a listing and a buyer.  That is her brand of social media, and yes she is on the internet and on social media.  What works in her market is her visibility, her PHYSICAL visibility!

And yes, she is the #1 in sales in her marketplace!  You have to tallor your stategy to the MARKET! It is not only about the newest and hottest!  Some agents have completely dropped out of print because they are parotting the mantra, "Print is Dead".  Check out your local newstand and see how many New Moon photos are on magazine covers, trending on Twitter, and on Google.  The entertainment industry gets it!  It is using the media as a servant of your strategy!

Thanks for writing this.  For some, success will come from picking up the phone!

December 03, 2009 10:30 AM
Rainer
146,725
Gary Pike
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Metro Brokers

Thanks for the post and the links to your other posts.  The more I learn the more I need to.  For me, having the time to do the social media thing will be a challenge, but a necessity, and will just need to schedule time to make it effective.

December 03, 2009 10:42 AM
Rainmaker
1,234,841
Gene Riemenschneider
Turning Houses into Homes
Home Point Real Estate

I found Rain Camp yesterday to be very helpful in getting my head around Twitter and a better understanding of Facebook.

December 03, 2009 10:46 AM
Rainmaker
570,044
Bill Gillhespy
Fort Myers Beach Realtor, Fort Myers Beach Agent - Homes & Condos
16 Sunview Blvd

Hi Rich,  Extremely well written as usual.  I would add one observation:  There are, and will continue to be. many who will not jump on the SM bandwagon and yet adapt to this market in other ways so as to be successful.

December 03, 2009 10:56 AM
Anonymous #50
Anonymous
Ian Mann

Hi Rick

I am a retired 30 year professional in the telecommunications industry and have spent the last 6 years as an assocaite sales person with C21 in Moncton NB., Canada. My two sons, the new generation of buyers, constantly remind me that you are absolutely correct in utilizing the social media ro increase business. Realtors who do not change will definitely be left behind! I am trying to get on board.

Cheers

December 03, 2009 11:12 AM
Rainer
96,197
Nicholas Goraczkowski
Your Mortgage Resource - (720) 83-RATES

I aree. The more exposure that you give yourself, the more people might find you and think "hey, I want to do business with this person"

December 03, 2009 11:39 AM
Rainer
33,837
Robyn Schnadelbach Bruno
The Nola Gal - Making New Orleans Home
Mirambell Realty

Thanks for the tips! Great post. I agree that you cant just follow what everyone else tells you to do but find your own niche. As a younger agent, i have been working on expanding my name through social media. I am trying to get the younger internet clients who are using the internet to search homes! They sometimes don't even think to get themselves an agent b/c they are house searching on their own! Thanks again for the post

December 03, 2009 02:12 PM
Ambassador
1,089,579
Melissa Zavala
Broker, Escondido Real Estate, San Diego County
Broadpoint Properties

I'm looking forward to the next post. I'd like to see how you put it all in practice.

December 03, 2009 03:15 PM
Rainmaker
238,497
Highland Beach Condos David Serle
Boca Raton Agent David Serle
RE/MAX Services

I absolutely love social networking sites.  I am an avid facebook user, limited twitter user, and love the AR.  I do believe many more each day are realizing that in order to promote yourself and your business you must be on many social networking sites.  We can't however just be on them we have to participate and share information.  Why do I want to talk to 1 or 2 people a day when I can talk to millions.

December 03, 2009 04:07 PM
Rainmaker
167,002
Ann-Marie Clements
M.S. Ed., Principal
Kezhi International Consulting Co. - Vancouver, B.C.

Thanks Rich,  I've bookmarked this blog, since it gave me a little more insight on how to creatively and consistently use social media.   I've now included all of my social media on the bottom of my ActiveRain blogs as teardrops... which I also learned here on Activerain...   ;>))

December 03, 2009 05:05 PM
Rainmaker
284,221
Vanessa Stalets
REALTOR, Brentwood TN Homes, Real Estate
RE/MAX Elite

"The more hooks you put into the water, the greater your chances of catching the Fish!" I love that, it should be a sign on my office wall! It is a much faster way to connect and show care. I remember when I first came to AR via an invite from another agent, I had no idea how much my world would open, thank you for giving what you have!

December 03, 2009 06:11 PM
Rainer
122,675
Marian Pierre-Louis
Metrowest Boston
Fieldstone Historic Research

Rich, you give a really good definition here. I've never heard it said this way but in fact you are describing it so accurately.  I especially like the part about multiple "touches".  It's not about have one presence on the internet such as a website.  It's all about interconnecting multiple arenas such as FaceBook, Twitter, Active Rain, website and many more.  -Marian

December 03, 2009 06:19 PM
Ambassador
1,550,626
Christine Donovan
Broker/Attorney 800-610-7253 DRE01267479 - Costa M
Donovan Blatt Realty

Though social media has been a big help to me in the last year, I still need a bit of refinement and appreciate the suggestions.

December 03, 2009 11:13 PM
Rainer
2,784
Charles Park
http://CharlesKPark.com, Broker Agent (Cyperss, CA)

I created twitter, facebook, and linked. And I'm waiting to figure out what to do with it. My friend who works for Seagate, a systems analyst, says it's a fad. Go figure. But I have another who made me his friend on facebook. So without doing anything, I have one friend at facebook. Still trying to figure it out! Thanks for the info.

December 03, 2009 11:25 PM
Rainmaker
128,109
Mike Henderson
HUD Home Hub - 303-949-5848
Your complete source for buying HUD homes

I loved what you wrote. 'Follow-the-Leader' and employ whatever methods those around us are using. We get a website, send out postcards, giveaway calenders, call on 'expireds,' join the Rotary Club, and then cross our fingers, hoping that new business will come our way as a result. Rarely are we intentional in our marketing efforts, nor do we take time to analyze and evaluate what methods are the most effective.

That is the difference between strategy and tactics.

December 03, 2009 11:46 PM
Rainmaker
807,714
Lyn Sims
Schaumburg Homes
RE/MAX Suburban - Schaumburg IL Real Estate - Northwest Suburbs of Chicago

Rich, great post and thanks for the coaching. 

December 04, 2009 04:06 PM
Rainmaker
151,434
Debra Kukulski, Broker Associate
SFR,CDPE;GRI;ABR;e-PRO Realtor, Northern IL
RE/MAX Unlimited Northwest

Thanks for the tips on social media...facebook is a great way to keep in touch with friends, family and clients.  Look forward to reading your other posts!

December 05, 2009 09:16 AM
Ambassador
1,158,806
Tammie White
TW Realty Group, Franklin TN, South of Nashville
Benchmark Realty, LLC (615) 495-0752 or www.TWRealtyGroup.net

Rich, I am enjoying this series.  Lots of good info.  I used the we we calculator and I am in the process of making some changes to my website.  I'm  looking forward to reading the next installment.  Thanks again.

January 20, 2010 11:59 AM
Anonymous #65
Anonymous
Jean
Social Media is a highly efficient, and effective way for the world to inform, and keep informed, via indviduals and multi media sources. Aside from helping businesses grow, and prosper, social media enables us to learn news from everywher and everybody willing to tell their truth. It is, in my opinion, one of the greatest human inventions ever created. We were never able learn/acquire such extensive knowledge so quickly, the old industrial way.
May 09, 2011 08:42 PM
Anonymous #66
Anonymous
Jean
Social Media is a highly efficient, and effective way for the world to inform, and keep informed, via indviduals and multi media sources. Aside from helping businesses grow, and prosper, social media enables us to learn news from everywher and everybody willing to tell their truth. It is, in my opinion, one of the greatest human inventions ever created. We were never able learn/acquire such extensive knowledge so quickly, the old industrial way.
May 09, 2011 08:42 PM
Anonymous
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Rich Jacobson

Your Kitsap County WA Real Estate Broker
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