One of the key shifts in online marketing that has occurred over the past 5 years is the evolution of social media marketing. What is astounding is how far removed most broker websites are from executing baseline social media strategies effectively.
- Brokers have largely ignored developing a social media strategy.
- Only a few have a social media director.
- Agents are aimlessly running wild on social media in ways that diffuse the impact of a common voice.
- Social Media calls to action are poorly represented on listing detail pages of broker websites
- Social Media is poorly leveraged on agent profile pages on broker websites.
Brokers need to begin to think of the role their brand plays in social media. The first thing that needs to be deployed is the ability to listen to social media. This is called Reputation Management. Everyday, there may be people singing your praises or criticizing your services and you are not hearing them. It is a huge mistake. Here are 50 companies that sell social media monitoring software. Pick one and use it. http://socialmediatoday.com/node/1458746
Brokers need to begin to use social media to communicate internally as well as externally. If a broker cannot use social media to communicate to its staff and agents, then it cannot communicate externally as a unified group. Skilled agents and staff work as brand ambassadors through their social channels to promote a common good. To ensure they are sending out a unified broker message, companies must establish a strong framework for communication in house before ever reaching out to the public.
Simply making sure that every agent with a Facebook account subscribes to the broker account for notifications can accomplish a lot. When the broker publishes something, agents are notified, they like it, and they share it.
Many real estate brokers struggle with the notion that the agents are the brand. Prospects and Customers are increasingly taking to social channels to learn about brands, engage with them, and share their experiences with peers. They are looking for a human interaction to characterize their experience. If they cannot find anything, they are likely to go somewhere else. This simple fact makes social everyone’s job.
If you are running a brokerage, it is time for you to take social media seriously. You must ensure that you have an established strategic plan, and that you train your agents on social collaboration. By working together, your voice is louder.