As you know, a lot of Realtors these days are utilizing social networking to get the message out about a home that they are trying to sell on behalf of their client. Consumers are posting their homes on Craig’s list and Zillow in hopes of attracting a buyer. They post the home information week after week on their profiles, but they never seem to get a lead and or inquiry. Shortly thereafter, they abandon the process and tell everyone that social networking didn’t work for them and you know what, they’re right.
The reason they are right is because they are doing it wrong. They have missed the point of the entire platform and how it works. According to Webster’s dictionary, the term “social” means, “of or relating to human society, the interaction of the individual and the group, or the welfare of human beings as members of society.” The key term in that whole thing is interaction. You cannot just post material day after day on social networking sites and never interact with other people. You need to comment on their posts, their home listings, their pictures, their comments, and their games. When you do that, you start a dialogue. The dialogue turns into a conversation and the conversation may turn into a friendship. Once you make friends then you can do deal! I’ll say that again in case you missed it. You need to make friends first and then that gives you the opportunity to do deals like sell a home. If you follow that rule about making friends first, then you’ll finally see results from social networking. This rule applies to any business and not just real estate.
I was recently consulting a non-profit group on internet and social marketing. They thought that they could spend $1500 a month on internet marketing and see a direct P&L result of say $3000 a month. Social networking doesn’t work that way. It’s not a cash machine where the standard profit and loss balance sheet applies. Here is what I told the nonprofit on what they could expect if they embark on an internet social media campaign:
“The most likely scenario to see a return on your investment will be in the form of relationships. You will broadcast a message and make yourself known to thousands of people every day (which is 100 times more than what you are doing now with a passive website). Out of that, conversations will happen, relationships are made, databases are formed, and followers ensue. Over time, those relationships will become stronger and leads to visits to the Ranch and that will lead to someone stepping up making a one-time gift donation of say $10,000. Then a second person will step up with a one-time gift and so on and so on.”
That’s the way social networking makes things happen. So stop posting information about homes; start conversations or provide value added information that start conversations. Make a friend and do a deal.
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