No matter the size of your business, as a real estate agent you’re always looking for that next competitive edge.
After all, it’s a tough industry and you’re probably quite familiar with all of the other real estate agents currently operating in your city or town. How do you stand out? And could a social media manager help?
Your expertise and ability to navigate the marketplace no doubt play a part in your present success. But, your marketing efforts are what can bring your business to the next level. As a real estate agent, it’s part of the job to stay on top of what’s current. This doesn’t just apply to home values.
In your research on how to better market your business, you’ve had to come across the topic of social media at some point. If you’re like many professionals, you wondered if social media could really bring value to your business.
Do real estate agents need a social media presence?
The short answer is: Yes, there are real estate agents expanding their business thanks in part to their social media marketing.
To summarize some key points, here is what jumped out that could be relevant to your business right now.
Millenials are quickly becoming the demographic to target when it comes to home sales and they are more responsive to digital marketing than they are to more traditional forms like print ads or banners. They are looking for a personal touch. They want to do business with firms that make connections with them. These are connections only social media can make.
62% of Millenials report that online content drives their loyalty to a brand. Where do they primarily engage with this content? You guessed it. Social media.62% of Millenials report that online content drives their loyalty to a brandCLICK TO TWEET
Not only is social media engagement expected, but it needs to be timely as well. 66% of consumers expect a response on social media within an hour. There’s plenty of risk and reward here. Loyalty boosts your business, but failure to meet consumer expectations can mean bad reviews and no referrals.
Bottom line, what does that mean? It means not only should you be engaging in social media marketing as a real estate agent, but you need to do it right.
The question then becomes how to effectively manage your social media presence. Do you outsource it? Do it yourself? Hire someone? There are pros and cons to each solution. Let’s take a look at them.
When going with the outsourcing option, it’s really two distinctly different options. The first is to hire an agency that specializes in social media marketing. In this scenario, you are truly outsourcing because you’re leaving the project in the hands of experts while you continue to focus on the day to day operations of being a real estate agent.
The other option is hiring a social media manager in-house. Now you’re adding to your payroll, but there is a dedicated person on staff working in your office.
There are plenty of reasons why it makes sense to outsource your social media efforts to an agency. The biggest advantage is that relatively speaking this is the least costly option. There are tiers of service available and you pay per month.
- No additional payroll
- No need to pay for health benefits
- No need to worry about if there is enough work to do every day to justify having a full-time employee for this (although, spoiler alert, there probably is)
Additionally, you know you’re getting expert assistance. An agency that specializes in social media has been doing this for years and knows how each social network works. The guessing game about which tactics work and which don’t or the trial and error over content strategy can be skipped completely. There is great value in peace of mind.
The only real con to using an agency is that since you are outsourcing your social media, it’s going to lack your personal touch. Someone else will be representing your brand. Potential problems can be mitigated though by being hands on with your account manager and regularly offering materials or suggestions that you want to be included in your posts.
Do it yourself?
You may also be considering just handling your own social media. The big benefit is that all of the communications are coming from you, the expert on real estate.
You know what you want to promote. You know how to give correct responses to inquiries. Most importantly, you’d be handling any customer interactions yourself so you are “the voice” of your business.
But, there are downsides to attempting to run your social media campaign while also running the rest of your business.
Most importantly, you’d be handling any customer interactions yourself so you are “the voice” of your business. But, there are downsides to attempting to run your social media campaign while also running the rest of your business.
We’ve compiled some of the major reasons why many small businesses fail at social media marketing. What most of it comes down to is a lack of time.
Do you have the time and the resources to devote all of the hours needed to do the proper job of managing multiple social channels?
Can you dedicate time to content strategy and engaging with the public?
If you’re out showing houses, this can be next to impossible to do at the level needed to see any success.
Tools of the trade
There are tools that do make managing your various social media accounts easier.
The goal is to automate as much as possible so you don’t have to be constantly staring at your feeds.
Buffer is our agency’s tool of choice, and lets you schedule posts in advance so you can get all of the week’s content written in one shot and then know that it will post to all designated social media accounts at the appropriate time. You’ll also get some pretty robust analytics so you can pinpoint what’s working and what isn’t.
In the end, what route should you take? It really depends on your individual situation.
Does your current workload allow you to devote the proper amount of time to run a successful social media campaign? Does your budget allow for hiring a dedicated social media manager?
You’ll want to ask yourself if you feel comfortable in your knowledge of the various social media networks to properly leverage them.
Let’s be honest. It’s a lot of work.
If you feel like the best option would be to partner with an agency that specializes in social media or you want to learn more, contact us. We’ll work with you to come up with a solution that will best fit your business goals.