Have real estate agents missed the boat when it comes to using social media? At what point does it stop being work and just become a hobby?
I do believe that social media marketing (SMM) has a place in the modern sales repertoire, but not at the cost of other more efficient programs. It seems to me that an agent would want to start with a decent base (likely a blog) and then build outposts that lead back to that base. I think Seomoz’s Rand Fishkin tackled the priorities well in his recent post. Why spend so much time and energy on social media if your SEO is in the toilet?
Like many agents, I get quite a bit of business from referrals – a common argument for involvement in the re.net. The majority of my referrals come from three places.
- Past clients who are happy the services I provided them
- Windermere agents from Western Washington where most of my second-home buying clients live
- CRS agents who prefer to refer to an agent with this designation and the level of experience /expertise it represents.
NAR members should download the NAR Relocation Report for their area. Where are people really moving from when they move to your town?
For Chelan County, WA people mostly move here from Washington state . The first out of state county to provide us inbound migration is Los Angeles County CA – 11th in the list of counties. The total number of families that moved here from L.A. is less than 2% of the total.
On the other hand, Western Washington counties in the Puget Sound region – King, Pierce and Snohomish provided 28% of the total movers.
I rarely get any business from agents who I know or have befriended through my involvement in Activerain or Twitter. I’m sure folks would refer to me if they had clients, but the truth is, they don’t. The numbers in the relocation report back that up. I need to focus on getting referrals from Western Washington.
Does it really make sense to have a Linkedin account that is just you connected to all your online real estate buddies from across the internet? Does it make sense to push your Facebook Fan page in the race to get 1000 fans if all your fans are really just other agents who hope you reciprocate?
Shouldn’t your Linkedin account be filled with recommendations from clients who were happy with your services and would recommend you to others? Shouldn’t your Facebook Fan Page be a place for actual Fans?
Does it matter if you have 2000 followers on Twitter if half are other agents and the other half are spambots? I don’t Tweet for agents in Vermont or Texas. I expect my local news and chit chat would be boring. I hope they aren’t upset when I don’t follow them either. I tweet for my friends who I have met at Seattle Social Media Club. I tweet for Seattle area agents. I tweet for my new-found friends who work for the local newspaper or other local businesses. I tweet for all the people in Seattle who love my little faux-Bavarian vacation town and the recreation that surrounds it. I tweet to make connections that will lead to business or friendships.
Is your involvement in social media about points and followers or is it about running a business?