Even if you think your target demographic isn’t on social media, the data begs to differ. Pew Research confirms that fully half of the world’s population uses social media, a staggering 4.5 billion people. For Americans, that figure rises to 72%. With that kind of reach, you can’t afford to sleep on social media. So how do you figure out what on earth to post?
KW agent Ashleigh Nicole Gillespie gets it. A luxury agent and director of sales for The Umphress Group in Littleton, Colorado, Ashleigh Nicole learned through trial and error how to harness the power of social media to grow her business. “If you aren’t sure whether or not your ideal client is on social media, I can guarantee you that they are,” Gillespie says.
While Facebook may be the first social platform to spring to mind, Gillespie stresses the importance in finding the platform that works best for you and your business, whether that is Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, Snapchat, or Twitter.
More valuable training is available exclusively to KW agents through KW Connect.
What NOT to Post on Social Media
In learning what works for social media, it is also important to address examples of what not to do. To that end, Gillespie offers two.
If you are going to hint at an exciting upcoming announcement – say, a rebrand with a new logo, or your first luxury listing – make sure you can deliver on the payoff within seven days or less. “When you don’t announce it soon enough, people are going to either completely forget you had an announcement, or they’re going to think you talked about it too soon and changed your mind,” she explains. “Either way, what does that feel like? A lack of trust.”
Second, avoid overly negative posts – especially about work and the real estate industry – or obvious fishing for support and/or inquiries, the latter of which Gillespie calls “vaguebooking.”
“The problem with doing a ‘vaguebook’ is it doesn’t invite conversation and it really makes people think you’re having a bad day, which makes them feel uncomfortable,” she says. To make matters worse, when a follower continuously doesn’t engage with your content, the algorithm starts to hide all of your posts from that person.
Of course, everyone has bad days and negative experiences they may wish to share with their sphere, but Gillespie recommends holding off on those posts unless you can add value through humor or an inspirational lesson.
Three Strategies for Posting Gold
Don’t blast every post to your entire friends list.
Instead, create custom lists for different posts, including one for your sphere and maybe another that actually blocks your real estate contacts. Why? Here’s Gillespie’s example.
“As soon as you make a Facebook post asking, ‘Hey, is anybody looking to sell their house?,’ all your real estate friends jump in to tell you about the great listing that they have coming soon, because they’re so excited and they want to do a deal with you,” she says. “And it’s great, but what happens to our sphere when they see all those real estate agents commenting? They might think to themselves, ‘Boy, that post was not intended for me. I know my neighbor might want to sell, but these real estate agents look like they’ve got it.’ And now maybe you missed out on a potential opportunity.”
By limiting your post only to your sphere, you’re more likely to drum up genuine engagement from outside the real estate community.
Blend the personal with the professional.
As an example, Gillespie turns to the social media presence of a fellow KW agent, Rebecca Ellis’s page. The Raleigh, North Carolina, agent has an attractive logo and her brokerage clearly visible. And, she excels at creating connections in her posts and offering insight into herself.
“She’s a storyteller,” Gillespie says of Ellis. “She is just phenomenal at sharing her story. She goes into what she learned, and she admits she was clueless when she got into real estate. There’s that vulnerability that people can just resonate with. She goes on to share her successes and then also her gratitude for it. You can feel that connection. You can feel that if you meet her in person, and she shows up as the same person online, and I think that’s so, so important. It builds trust.”
Set your sights on Stories.
In a hot market, listings likely won’t last the length of a post’s lifecycle. Instead, focus your listing energy on Stories, which only stay up for 24 hours. Once you post it, you can see the names of everyone who watches your Story and then message them directly.
“The power of social media is that it can connect you so quickly with people,” Gillespie says. “Stories have a 24-hour cycle, which is great because it doesn’t have to be as perfect as content that will live on your page forever and ever. And Stories live at the top of the news feed, so it keeps you very top of mind and takes up the entire screen of your user. When do you get the full attention of anybody ever? That’s totally powerful. If you’re not using them, start today.”
Related reading: Storify Your Success: 10 Tips For Building a Winning Brand With Instagram Stories
Need More Social Media Tips? Check out Outfront’s monthly social media calendars, available here.