Every week, we ask a real estate professional for their Short List, a collection of tips and recommendations on an essential topic in real estate. This week, we talked with Sue Koch, the chief navigator for Soaring Solutions, LLC, for her top five social media mistakes to avoid in 2015.
A new year often comes with many resolutions. I’ve heard from a lot of people who have “Establishing a strong social media presence” atop their list for 2015. What about those that have already been working hard at their social media strategy – what changes should they make as they look toward a new year of success? Below, I’ve provided a list of the top mistakes commonly made in social media. One great step would be to eliminate these habits from your implementation, and watch your brand elevate from the improvements.
5. Stop Expecting Everything to be Free – Yes, social media is “free.” To use the platforms to connect with friends and colleagues and share your rants, loves, sense of humor, and videos of your children and crazy pets. Keep in mind that every social network is also a business. When you use social media as part of your business marketing strategy, your end goal is to make money, right? As is theirs.
Over time, each social channel has changed with respect to how their algorithms work, and the ability to broaden your reach organically or via advertising. Social media is a pay-to-play world now. On the positive side, you can go pretty far to advance your brand on a limited budget. I’ve seen clients spend only $30 to $50 a month on Facebook or LinkedIn and take their brand to new levels of following and engagement. It is time to accept this new model, set aside a small budget to test paid reach, measure results and see where it takes you.
4. Failing to Acknowledge – Social media is a great way to connect to clients, leads and business partners. But how would you feel if a service provider came to your office, told you a bunch of details about their business and how great they are, and left without listening to you or answering any questions? That is too often how social media is used. Remember, social media is about creating and maintaining relationships; it is not a billboard.
Make sure your notifications are on, and that you check back to your posts to make sure you are acknowledging your community and answering their questions. If another real estate professional answers a question about a property or a process before you do, you’ve lost that potential client and any referrals that may have come from them.
3. Selling – You may think, “Well isn’t that the point?” Sure, that may be the end goal, but in today’s world, the pushy salesperson is not winning all the business online. They are getting unfollowed and blocked. Remember the social over the media. Create a relationship with someone, build trust and educate them, and the business is certain to follow.
2. Hashtag Overuse – There is a reason LinkedIn killed the hashtag. Please, stop using it there. Facebook is not Instagram, limit yourself to one or two. Yes, hashtags work and have relevance on Facebook. They also drive people nuts. Consider your audience. Let people see your valuable message more than the blue hot linked search terms you hope you show up on.
1. Auto-Posting Everywhere – People are on to this tactic. They see the LinkedIn status that matches the tweet that matches the Facebook post that went out all at the same time. And when they do, they unfollow. Maximize your social media real estate. Post on different channels at different times to reach the widest potential audience you can when they are there.
Sure, it’s faster to auto schedule a bunch of posts to all your social channels. But wouldn’t you rather show genuine attention to your audience with great relevant content and gain high-quality clients? Consider the value of the results as it bears to the process.
If you have been making any of the above social media mistakes, don’t fret! Often it is out of habit; something an “expert” told you to do; or a remnant from the way things used to be. Now is your chance to take things up a notch and get a leg up on the competition!
Sue Koch is the chief navigator for Soaring Solutions, LLC. With 17 years experience in corporate/consulting work, Koch has worked with start-up tech companies, global corporations and mom ‘n pop shops. An AFAA certified group fitness instructor, published author and Certified Professional Coach, Koch was also featured in the 2012 Edition of the CRAVE guide, “Crave Chicago the Urban Girl’s Manifesto 2nd Ed.”