A bitter pill for you first: likes and comments on your social media posts -- even your number of followers -- do not equal business.
And anyone who is telling you different, is lying to you.
Those numbers may make you feel good but they are just "vanity metrics" which almost never directly correlate with sales.
So, you might be asking, what is the point? If I can't pinpoint the ROI (return on investment) of each of my social media posts, why should I bother posting at all?
One of our clients, Steve Wickland, said it really well the other day, he said; "Mindshare = market share."
In other words, you have to get people to think of you if you want to build your real estate business.
But the problem is that to occupy enough of their mind space to get a deal down the line, you have to constantly remind your contacts and connections of your value. But you have to do it in a way that doesn't "fatigue" them, which is marketing-speak for what happens when someone goes, "dang, Garry emails me every day -- I gotta unsubscribe, I'm over it."
To prevent that fatigue, good marketers use multiple channels of communication to stay connected with their audiences.
- Blog posts
- phone calls
- Text messages
- Social Media
And the more channels you use, the more ways people in your sphere will have to reach out to you when they're ready. And that's also super important. If you’re hard to get ahold of, they’ll get ahold of someone else!
So growing your followers on social media isn't about "getting more leads" or even so much about increasing the number of people following you. Rather, the Follow Me Strategy is just innovative ways to showcase your value while opening up multiple channels of communication.
5-Step Follow Me Strategy
#1. Make sure that your social media accounts appear on your website.
The first step is to add your social media accounts to your website. This is most often accomplished by linked icons on your site's header or footer that visitors can click and then be taken to your various social media platforms.
This is a very important strategy for a bunch of different reasons.
First, social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram are credible and recognized sources of information about people and businesses. Because of this trust, search engines like Google put a lot of stock in the data they provide. Connecting your social media accounts to your website is the fastest way for Google to start acknowledging your site as an authority on your identity, and THAT is crucial to getting your site to show up on the first page of search results when people look for you online. And the more people see your site, the more people see your social media links, the more followers you get.
The second reason is for social proof. Social proof is a powerful marketing tactic that you see everywhere in your daily life: online reviews to the side of an online order form or comments on an advertisement. Having your social media accounts on your website is a form of social proof for site visitors, demonstrating that you're a real person and providing them with additional channels for learning about and communicating with you.
You can add all of your social media links to your AgentID Site, here.
#2. Share your business posts on your personal profiles.
This makes the most sense on Facebook and Instagram.
But real estate is a huge part of your life, and your audiences on your personal social media accounts would love to hear about your work every once in a while. And if they're thinking of real estate, this could be the perfect reminder that you have good info to share about it!
A big tip: don't just share the post without any additional commentary. Add some flavor! You're trying to subtly encourage people to go visit your business page.
Instagram is a little different in that you can't natively share posts to your grid, which is what shows up on your profile if someone was to visit your instagram account.
But what you can do very easily is share a post to your Instagram STORY, which are short videos that appear on your profile for just 24 hours. When you see a rainbow circle around someone's profile picture on Instagram? That means that they're currently sharing an Instagram Story.
Stories are a big reason behind why Instagram enjoys the highest level of engagement of any social media platform, so they're definitely worth using, and this is an easy way to get your feet wet.
#3. Cross-promote your socials
Tell your audience on Facebook about your Instagram account, for example. Talk about social media platform A on social media platform B to encourage some of the people who follow you on A to follow you ALSO on B. This is all about opening those multiple channels of communication.
#4. Email your list
Here’s an email we use to encourage email contacts to follow us on social media.
The subject line is "The best place for local real estate updates," which is enticing because it begs the question "what is the best place and how do I get access to it?" We've also included an emoji, because that's statistically proven to increase the open rates of your email campaigns.
Then the email itself starts off strong by telling people exactly what they're going to get out of reading this email: "If you want useful real estate tips OR you just want to look at beautiful houses... Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, whatever."
Now, it's very important not to go overboard here. You don't want to promote more than one social media platform in this email. Including more than one will reduce the overall impact and effectiveness of this email -- meaning you'll actually get less clicks and followers.
The next part of the email tells them how else they'll benefit from following your social: "You'll get an inside look at the latest homes on the market, plus advice on real estate and homeownership." And to make it sound a little fun... "You might even catch us in FRONT of the camera too".
Finally, in the last part of this email, you'll give them a link to check out your profile -- this should be the same link that you included on your website, by the way, not just your handle -- and remind them to actually follow you as well.
Now the "Follow Us" email should be used by people who are regularly emailing their lists. If that's not you, though, it's okay! We have a solution!
It's called the "Re-Engagement Email Template" and we include it with each month's Monthly Value Program. (Check out this month's current Monthly Value Program, here)
The re-engagement email basically says "hey, I've fallen off the horse in terms of staying in touch with you but I'm going to fix that now. You can expect great real estate info from me on a regular basis, starting with this, my latest blog post."
Something you can include in your emails all the time are links to your social media in your email signature.
So in my email signature in this example, I have our phone number and website linked. You could also include the links to your top 2-3 social media profiles here as well. A lot of people will actually include little images of the Facebook and Instagram icons and link those images to their profiles so it's not just text here.
#5. Use the Trusted Partner Program to reach new audiences on social media
Simply promote your favorite contractors, restaurants, title companies, and the like. .
So who do I mean by trusted partners? This is any person or business to whom you'd feel comfortable referring business. We actually have a full training on how to gather this list of partners, how to reach out to them to develop a reciprocal referral relationship, and how to provide value to your sphere by promoting their business.
Use these strategies to vault yourself into the top 5% of social media marketers, open up new channels of communication and steadily increase your listings.