The Top 7 Reasons We Don’t Act on Social Media!

Acting is often the easiest step to take when starting something new.  So, why won’t we ACT?  There are many reason we don’t act or simply start.   When I educate agents on social media and digital marketing, the comments I hear include:

Carrie, “I’m just too old.”

“I don’t want everyone to see my personal information”

“What if I make a mistake?”

“I don’t have time to learn something new.”

“Who has time for this?”

“I’m not sure where to begin”

The list goes on and on.  Many have excuses, however, if the truth be told, the way we engage with consumers is changing.  If we don’t ACT on Social Media, we might be replaced by the agent that is willing to ACT.

Maybe I can help.  If you are challenged with the Top 7 Reasons We Don’t Act on Social Media, I have solutions for you.  Don’t let the 7 Reasons keep you from acting.

1. Not sure where to begin? Pick one of your social media accounts and schedule time to learn it.  Have conversation with the people on your personal page.  If you have a business page, share content about your communities, your listings, upcoming events and things to do in the areas you farm.

2. I don’t have time for social media. No time for social media?  Really? You have time to build a brand, generate leads, and build relationships.  We do this everyday.  If you adjust your week and schedule your social media marketing, you can take time to be social.   There are many ways to plan your social media marketing.  You may choose to take 15 minute a day to market on social media.  Another option might be to take two hours, one day, a week to pre-schedule your marketing.   What works for you?  How much time do you spend talking in the office?  Take this time to plan your social media.

3. I don’t know the rules for advertising on social media – The rules are simple.  Read the terms of agreement for social media.  Facebook wants you to have a business page if you are selling something.  Adhere to real estate license law and the Code of Ethics.  If your goal is to generate a lead when you post on social media, make sure the average consumer knows who the sponsoring brokerage is, don’t share other agents listings without permission and don’t share anything that’s a violation of Fair Housing.   Think before you post.  If it doesn’t seem right, it might not be ok to post.

4. I don’t have any followers! You didn’t have buyers and sellers when you became a real estate agent.   THINK!  How can you gain followers on social media?  Add your social media links to your direct mail marketing, to your email signature, and invite your sphere to like your pages with an email blast.

5. Video – No way, I do not want to be seen on camera. I am with you on this one!  I don’t like to be seen on camera.  I don’t even like to watch my own videos.   If the truth be told, I create video and avoid watching them.   When I was a teenager I would break out in a sweat if I had to speak in front of the class.  Couldn’t figure out why.  Now I know.  When you know your subject speaking in front of people or video is easy.  So, If I can do it, you can do it.

6. I don’t know what to say on video or Facebook Live, Instagram Live or Periscope. Just like talking to your clients you can talk on video.   When you became a new agent, you were scripted.  We used notes to speak intelligently to our clients.   That’s exactly what you’ll do when creating video.   Script yourself.  Use bullet points to begin.  If you’re extremely uncomfortable have someone interview you.   Try the prompter app from your Google Play Store or your Apple App store to get started.

7. Procrastination – most struggle with not starting because of anxiety and stress. We often procrastinate because learning something new might be difficult.   Don’t let putting off something new.  Start using social media on purpose today.

Social Media has been around for years.  Many of the early, non-college students, began using Facebook in 2008 or 2009.   If you were lucky enough to start using social media in the early adoption years, understanding the functionality is easier to understand.  If not, don’t waste another day.  Integrate social media marketing into your business plan.  Visit my YouTube channel on Facebook and get started today.

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Generate Leads with Snapchats New Feature

So, what is this new feature?  The new Snapchat feature allows your friends and others to see your exact location, literally.  My daughter, Lauren, figured out that the new feature let’s everyone know when she is at home in the house.  That might be concerning for many.  The great part is you can turn it off and switch to Ghost mode.   Setup Ghost mode or leave your location mode on.  The choice is yours.  Steps to allowing the world to see you or not!

  1. Pinch your screen while in snapchat. The first time you pinch you’ll see these steps:

See the World with Snapchat

2. Find your friends and select who can see your location.  Do you want to become a ghost or allow your family and friends to see you?  Real Estate and networking Tips below.

IMG_82123. Ghost mode prevents the world from finding you.  When in ghost mode you’ll have the ability to find those that turned off Ghost mode.  Turn it back on when you want people to see you.  Just don’t forget to turn it off.  Otherwise, anyone has the potential to find you.

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4.  If you add specific friends they have the ability to view your story.  A story built around a specific group of people.  Maybe your family, high school friends, real estate friends, your company, college friends, etc.

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5.When Ghost mode is turned off others will see your bitmoji.  That’s me below. My husband, kids and immediate family can always see me on the map.

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6. When in Ghost mode only you can view your location.  This image doesn’t appear on anyone else’s map.  You’ll have the ability to view others on the map but they can’t see you.

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This new feature might have you worried.  I would definitely turn it off when at home or when I’m out and about.  With social media we should be concerned that it’s so easy for someone to find us. However, if you are take advantage of the location feature, in our out of Ghost mode, it might help with your real estate business.  Think, when would you want people to know where you are?

  1. Open Houses – tell your network to find your next open house via Snapchat.
  2. Networking events – let others know where you are so they can connect
  3. Turn on the feature when showing houses so your family can find you.  This is a great safety tip.
  4. Are you member of an organization that has events?  As a Women’s Council Member, I can turn on my location so you can find me at the next events.
  5. Tell others when you’re in the office.

What other ways can you use the location finder?  Think out of the box and start building a business based on location.  If you aren’t 100% ready to turn on your location, create a new Snapchat account just for business and log out when your done with your event.  Or just don’t forget to switch to Ghost mode!  Let’s get snapping!  Follow me on snapchat with user ID: CarrieJoLittle

Social Media Marketing Plan for AGENTS

Aside

1. Select the time of day to share on Social Media

There is no cookie cutter method to social media marketing.  Selecting the right time to share or post on social media is key to a successful real estate social media marketing plan.     The best times of day to post can often depend on your followers or customer personas.   Millennials are on social media all day using their mobile apps.  About 60% of mobile users are accessing their social media sites throughout the day.   So when are the best times to share on Social Media?

2. Choose your content

Many agents have no idea where to begin when adding content to their Facebook Business pages.   But if you take a few minutes to think about the real estate industry I am sure you can come up with information you want others to know about Real Estate.   Here are a few tips for choosing content.

  • Use statistics from your MLS to share city specific data
  • Share industry specific information
  • House Logic has a FREE REALTOR content driven website – You’ll need your NRDS#
  • How about information you receive from your Board, NAR and your REALTOR Magazine
  • Do you know your local city events, farmers markets and building programs
  • Facebook and Hootsuite allow future scheduling.   Plan your social content posts.

There is no excuse.   Become the industry expert on social media

3. Follow up is key

Make sure you have the Facebook and Facebook Pages apps on your smart phone, tablet or iPad.  By using these apps you can respond to real estate questions in a real time format when you say “Yes” to push notifications.

4. Engage your followers

Are you an expert at networking?  Are you good at talking on the phone?   Are you a good writer?  If you can do any of the above you can engage your followers.   Talk to your Facebook friends, family, network and Fan Page Likes.  When your followers post make a comment, Click LIKE or send a private message.  Of course, if it’s someone’s birthday.  Say “Happy Birthday.”  By doing these simple steps for engagement you can increase your social presence and let your “Facebook Sphere” know that you exist.

5. Review your Analytics

Facebook Pages has an Insights section so you can track your followers:

  • LIKES
  • Reach – Agents can track their organic and paid reach
  • Visits – Who is visiting your page and how are they getting to your page. Do you have special pages on your Facebook page?  You can track those visits as well.
  • Posts – When are your followers online
  • People – Who are your followers? Below is an actual chart of my Real Estate followers.

Everyone can build a Social Media Marketing plan.   I recommend starting with Facebook.  Facebook is still the most used Social Media Site in front of Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and Google+.  Join me at the MORe #TechFest2014 to build your Facebook Real Estate Fan Pages.

Why is Customer Loyalty Important for REALTORS®

Customer Loyalty is extremely important to real estate agents.   Loyal customers for a real estate agent are like GOLD.  Loyal customers will continue to refer business to that agent over and over again.  So how can an agent create a loyal fan, customer, or customer database?

  1. Selling houses is easy but taking care of a client above and beyond what’s expected is also important to the transaction. When an agent does more than the expected the client is likely to refer business to you. (Click to view One of my recent sales, Vincent still can’t believe he owns a home in America)
  2. To create loyalty real estate agents need a good CRM tool to track current, past and future clients. It’s also important to rate the groups in your CRM.  By the following
    1. Who is the most likely to refer to you
    2. Who will refer if asked
    3. Who will use you again if they remember you
    4. Who should just be removed from your database
  3. When you know this key information then staying in front of the client becomes an important part of your business. By incorporating direct mail, social media, hand written note cards and e-mail marketing into your Customer Loyalty program your database will remember you.  Many agents often have client parties for their database also known as a Sphere of Influence. Others host a house warming for their new buyers to generate buzz and customer loyalty.   You buyers will appreciate the fact that you hosted their event and never forget it.

Getting this right is up to each agent and their teams.  There are many agents that use systems to keep their clients engaged with a variety of content marketing.     Each month I send out a mailer to my database of clients that are likely to refer business to me.   In addition to direct mailers, I encourage my clients to follow me on my social media platforms by including the direct links in my marketing.   By creating content that engages my database they will always remember when it’s time to buy or sell real estate.

When agents create customer loyalty programs they build a business that will continue to bring in new buyers and sellers no matter how the market changes.

“When business is good it pays to advertise;

when it is bad you have got to advertise”

– Red Auerbach

Customer Experience Metrics for Real Estate Agents

Customer Experience Marketing Analytics for REALTORS®

What Metrics should an Agent track to determine the best customer experience?  Agents all use different forms of marketing to succeed in Real Estate.   I selected 4 areas that I believe an agent might analyze.    The customer experience will be different for each area.

 1.  Direct mail

When we use Direct Mail to generate leads it can often be difficult to track.  Using postcards or letters to reach a potential customer we are hoping that the person handling the mail will actually read it and make a decision.  Today when we go to the mail box to pick up mail, even I head straight for the recycling bin.  If the customer does call agents needs to track where the lead was generated from. Most Real Estate agents are usually focused on getting the lead then they are tracking where the lead came from.  Whenever you get a lead via email or phone always ask, “How did you hear about me”?  By asking the question and adding the lead to your CRM with a Direct Mail tag you will be able to track if Direct mail works for you.

 2. Website

Does your website provide the ability to track visitors?  Can a potential buyer or seller freely shop for properties? Or does your site require sign up to pre-view listings?   If potential buyers and sellers have the ability to freely shop you could be missing out on potential leads.  Make sure you can track which pages are viewed most and create a way to have the visitor sign up to receive listings or information.   If your website doesn’t provide CTR, Click Through Rate, talk to your website manager to incorporate CTR.   Otherwise, you have no idea if people are actually coming to your website.

 3. Social Media

Social Media is a great way to engage a potential customer.   The key to a good customer experience is engagement.  If you aren’t actively engaging your future buyers and sellers then you are missing out on great opportunity for an interative customer experience.  When an agent uses social media tracking a lead should be easy.  Most of our friends refer business via private messaging on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.  The most used social media sights today.   Other lead opportunities on social media are using paid advertising to specifically target different groups.  My favorite way to track this platform is by using a lead capture form that lets someone sign up to receive information.

 4. E-newsletters and e-cards

Every agent may want to consider having a good database.  A database is the key to your success.   When you have a list of people like friends, family, sphere of influence, past clients, current clients and those that are likely to refer you an agent has an opportunity to send monthly newsletters via email.  These newsletters keep the agent in the forefront of their database.   By using e-cards for birthdays, anniversaries and holidays your database will also know that you remember them during the important times of the year creating an effective customer experience.   Adding an e-newsletter and e-cards are great but make sure the product you choose has analytics that track CTR (click thru rate).  If people aren’t clicking you either need, better content, a new database, or a better e-blast, CRM, system.

All of the above are great ways to generate leads.  Whether you choose to use all 4 or just one make sure to keep track of every lead generated.   However, the most important key to your success in making sure you have a really good CRM, Client Relationship Management product.  By tracking how each lead is captured in January you can adjust and focus on the lead generator that works best for your business.

Real Estate Agent CEM