With an estimated nine out of ten consumers now beginning their home search online, it has never been more important for agents to understand and embrace the benefits of having an online presence.
At Mega Tech, Tony Giordano, author of The Social Agent, encouraged attendees to go beyond being simply "present" online and focus on creating an online presence. While a website is important to have, the key to building your pipeline is to get social. "A digital relationship is 100 times more powerful than a real life relationship in the same period of time," said Giordano. "It is critical to create the relationship while the lead is still hot." In the past, when agents met potential clients, they would hand them their card and wait weeks for them to make contact. Now, with social media, as soon as agents meet a potential client, they can find them online and begin the conversation immediately. The more social channels agents are present on, the more reach they have. Giordano reminded attendees that their initial meeting is their listing meeting and they should use their social presence in their listing presentation to illustrate how they use social media to rapidly close deals.
Giordano explained the basics of the most commonly used social media channels and how to use them correctly to create an online presence that yields results. Social media allows agents to market their business exactly as they desire. If they want to be a luxury agent then they can go online and act like one. How? Post luxury listings. Share content relevant to the luxury industry. Be present online and establish yourself as the industry leader in your market. It doesn't stop there.
Having an online presence means to go beyond text and harness the power of photos. "The photo algorithm used online is incredible," said Giordano. When someone likes a picture or a post on Facebook, that activity is shared with their friends. As a result, thousands of people have the potential ability to see your listing photo posts. people you don't even know. Facebook is just one of several social media platforms available. Consumers check an average of 10.4 different sources before making a purchase a decision. To really maximize your potential reach, take advantage of all of the available social media platforms and be sure to use the correct approach. Here are three of the social platforms that Giordano discussed:
LinkedIn the professional network: Update your resume! Giordano also cautions against endorsing your local competitors. "Endorse agents in other states, but don't endorse your local competition."
Google+ is the SEO network: This social platform got off to a rough start and had a low adoption rate. Where this platform lacks in popularity it makes up in importance. If you are not using Google+ your website SEO could be suffering. "In recent news releases it has been admitted that activity on Google+ directly impacts where your website will rank in search results."
YouTube is the video network: This is a platform where you can post short videos about your business, the industry, and even showcase your listings. Similar to photos, videos are powerful tools and easily shareable.