Mixing Personal with Business – the Facebook conundrum

By
Real Estate Services with Roost

As some of you know, I’m a huge “fan” (pun intended) of the opportunity Facebook presents for Real Estate professionals (both agents and brokers) to engage, build relationships and ultimately generate referrals.

In fact, we believe in it so much at Roost that we’re betting a huge chunk of our technology muscle on helping REALTORSâ take advantage of this opportunity with our Social Real Estate Toolkit.   But that’s not to say we have all the answers, after all – this is still a very new and quickly evolving world.

Here is one particularly interesting question we’re trying to help our clients wrestle with…

Should I separate my personal profile and my business presence on Facebook?

This is an interesting one because there may not be a more polarizing question in the Social Media world today.   If you ask this to a room full of real estate professionals, I guarantee there will be an energetic debate.

Near as I can tell, there are basically three schools of thought here (comment if you have more!):

1)   Keep ‘em separate - Facebook wants all business discussion to happen on Fan/Business/Community pages, and it may even be a violation of Terms of Service (scary!).

2)   Keep ‘em separate – Business is business. I don’t want prospects/clients/etc to see the things I’m talking about in my personal world.

3)   Mix it up – My business is my personal life and vice versa.  If I didn’t want to leverage my personal network on FB I wouldn’t be here in the first place for business.

My take – Mix it up!... but carefully…

In my opinion, most REALTORSâ are only going to get real return in referrals from Facebook if they figure out how to overlap their personal presence with their business one.   Let’s face it – as an agent, if you’re good at what you do you’re always on.   A key part of what makes you successful is your ability and passion to network and build personal relationships (that can turn into referrals and endorsements).  Facebook was built for this.  Your personal network is your business network.

That said, your friends (and their friends) will be merciless in the use of the “Hide” button if you spam them.  That means auto-posting listings every hour, pushing open house info constantly etc is unlikely to win you new business and very likely to get your updates hidden.

OK, so what should I do?

First, your personal profile is where you build out your network.    Make it your mission to have a large and growing base of friends.  Friend people you meet at open houses, parties, and so on.

Second, use your personal profile to build relationships and engage with people on a personal level.   Don’t be afraid to talk a little real estate in there - it’s your life, right?  But do it in a way that’s conversational, not spammy. 

Finally, promote your Fan page to your network smartly and subtly.  Find creative ways (the Roost app is one) to offer more real estate content on your fan/business page that your network will find interesting.

Bottom line - your personal profile is about you, your fan page is about business

WHAT'S YOUR TAKE???

...Next up – thoughts on creating a Fan page that actually engages prospects.

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Re-Bloggged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. o k 04/13/2010 11:43 AM
  2. Derek Overbey 04/16/2010 09:04 AM
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Topic:
Real Estate Technology & Tools
Groups:
ABC's of Real Estate Marketing
Facebook Tips
Realtors®
Social Media Marketing
Social Networks
Tags:
facebook
social media
fan
profile
roost
marketing
networking

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Rainer
35,001
Whitney Peddy
de Luxe Homes & Estates

My Facebook is for my personal friends and family and colleagues. I don't have the energy to keep up with two but I try not to post anything too personal.

April 15, 2010 10:13 PM
Rainmaker
296,443
Ryan Hukill - Edmond
Realtor
ShowMeOKC Team of Paradigm AdvantEdge

I've built my social presence on mixing it up and continue to do so, while recently implementing a 'fan page' as more of an experiment to see if I can find a useful (profitable) way to use both.

April 15, 2010 10:17 PM
Rainmaker
1,490,010
John Novak
Henderson, Las Vegas and Summerlin Real Estate
Keller Williams Realty The Marketplace

Hi Alex - I really like what Roost has done with your app for our profile and fan pages. Will be working on both of these this weekend.

April 15, 2010 10:45 PM
Rainmaker
489,778
Sergio Rebollo Jr.
Real Estate TeamMates

Welcome to ActiveRain. This is a great community to network with others as well a great place to learn from other's experiences and knowledge. I've enjoyed it; I hope you enjoy it as well.

April 18, 2010 06:55 PM
Rainmaker
532,321
Kathy Toth
Ann Arbor Real Estate Experts - Kathy Toth Team
Ann Arbor Market Center Keller Williams

Alex, welcome and great post.  I am on the learning treadmill and a mixer.  Both are about relationships and I am new to facebook, but with Ben Kinney's suggestions, am working on fan pages in that media.  Frankly being an agent seems like a 24/7 job to be available to opportunities.  Either way it is about networking with those who raise thier hand in whatever media they prefer.  The consumer drives the transaction.  We can create relationships in either media.

How we handle these interactions sends a message to the world about who we are and how we conduct business as real estate professionals. In both we should be aware that the things we say and do can create an impact that can go far beyond our original intent and last forever.

 

April 21, 2010 04:46 AM
Anonymous
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Rainer
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Alex Chang

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