If you’re wondering how you can take advantage of social media for your real estate business, know that visuals trigger increased engagement among social media users. Pictures mean more traffic and ultimately more leads! Content that includes a visual representation of some sort, be it a photo, an infographic, a chart or a video, is much more likely to create a buzz among your fan base than a text-only message.
Depending on the focus of your business, utilizing social networks such as Facebook, Google+, Instagram or Pinterest can help you tell the story of your property through images.
Even Twitter, with its 140-character policy, has recognized the importance of visuals in social interaction and updated its functionality to better accommodate visual communication. In fact, Twitter has concluded that including a photo in a tweet increases the likelihood of retweets by 35%. Including photos in your social media strategy will get you more likes and shares, which ultimately results in a wider advertising reach.
Irrespective of the platform you choose, the message needs to be relevant, clear and well-designed.
Match content with photos on Facebook
Social Media Examiner has shown that photos receive four times as many likes as text updates. To draw crowds to your business page, you need to entice users with catchy images complemented by valuable content – anything you deem important or relevant to prospects in your niche or local selling areas.
To give you a clear idea of what we mean, here is an example from Point2 Homes, one of the largest Canadian listing portals:
The content shared is mostly visual and combines real estate listings with posts about market trends, home buying tips and tricks, and interior design features, all backed up by appealing visuals. For Point2 Homes, this has proven a winning combination and is something to emulate on your own page.
Try an image-sharing social media platform, like Pinterest
With Pinterest, it’s easy. Your message gets through with almost no words required. Users love sharing ideas and imagery. They pin, like and share content like there’s no tomorrow. And the best part about it? Pinterest drives traffic directly to your site, no detours required.
The posting possibilities are endless. Property managers might want to consider creating an individual board for each property they manage and focus on highlighting the best the community has to offer. Real estate agents can create boards highlighting the features and amenities of the neighborhoods they service.
Don’t forget to name your boards and image files properly and include them in the right Pinterest category so that people can find them easily. When scouring Pinterest for ideas, users search specific terms, e.g. “DIY pallet coffee table” or “how to build a gallery wall,” so make sure your text descriptions match the photo and resonate well with your target audience.
To easily measure social engagement on Pinterest and understand what best caters to ‘pinners,’ you may want to check out Pinterest web analytics. Like Google Analytics, this feature allows you to see which pins are getting the most re-pins, which pins are getting the most click-throughs and which page of your site the pin came from so you can tweak your strategy accordingly.
Pro tip: To see if your site has been “pinned” by other users, type pinterest.com/source/URL in the search bar. (For example, we type in pinterest.com/source/point2.com to see what gets pinned from Point2’s website.)
Feel you can do more? Head over to Google+
The best place to start on Google+ is the Communities section. What’s great about the Communities feature is that you don’t necessarily need to be “friended” or “followed” by others for prospects to see your posts. You just need to be relevant.
Communities on Google+ are built around shared interests and passions. You can create or join other communities and engage in conversations with people who share similar hobbies, from interior design and rental decorating to apartment marketing and poker nights. All posts have the option of including appealing imagery in a range of sizes.
To get the most of the Google+ experience, make sure you add new content regularly, when people are most likely to see it. The best time to post according to Social Media Week is weekdays, between 9AM – 10AM.
Key takeaway: For a visual message to be shared a lot, it needs to either provoke an emotional response or be relevant and helpful to your target audience.
What are you doing to increase social media engagement? Feel free to voice your thoughts in the comments section below.
Today’s guest post comes to us from Amalia Otet, an online content developer and creative writer for RENTCafé, a full marketing and leasing platform featuring social media and reputation management tools, plus online leasing solutions, rent payments and maintenance requests.