Unless you have been living under the rock for the last year, you have probably heard about social media for real estate internet marketing. Real Estate Social media is THE new real estate internet revolution and it is taking over the internet. For the past several months, I have been using social media myself. I have been able to form many different personal relationships, create business partnerships, gain real estate leads and increase my presence in the real estate world.
Today, I decided to share with you 7 social media sites that will help you increase your internet presence, form partnerships and business relationships, and even flip houses to make some money. But before I go into resources, I need to share with you the reason why you should be doing this.
Why would you need to invest your time into Social Media Marketing?
Here’s the short answer: Because in today’s society, it works. Here’s what I mean by that…
In today’s world, every real estate agent, real estate investor, house buyer, house seller, distressed property owner, and everyone else in between can just jump on the internet and find what they are looking for. People are no longer restricted to working with real estate agents and relying on MLS listings to find a house. They are not restricted to working with their bank to get an approval for a mortgage, running around from one open house to another, being swayed by pressure tactics and relying on other people to purchase or sell a home. Not anymore…
According to National Association of Realtors, in 2007 84% of all buyers searched on the internet before buying a home. WOW! That means that over 3/4 of buyers searched for their next home on the internet. Are you convinced yet? No! Consider this then…
Interruption marketing, such as TV commercials, snail mail, newspaper ads, and radio commercials are loosing their market share every single day. People are tired of being interrupted by advertising. Consumers have choices. Things like TIVO, XM Radio, and your good old garbage can prove that the old way of advertising is slowly diminishing. The new way of marketing is here. Things are moving faster, a lot faster. Consumers are in control. They can choose whataver, whenever and however they want to access information, eat their favorite food, listen to the music, watch what they want to watch, and buy what they want to buy.
I could go on and on but I think you get the picture.
How do you use Social Media? What is the one underlying secret to Social Media?
There are many different aspects of social media marketing. There are dozens of websites you can use for your social media marketing. People try to use tricks and tactics in social media sites to their advantage. But that rarely works and if it works, it’s a short term solution. The one and only secret, if you want to call it that, is the following:
To succeed in marketing using the social media and Web 2.0 sites, you need to incorporate 2 things and do those 2 things without fail: Build relationship and provide great information to the community.
One of the biggest no/no’s in social media is that you should never blatantly advertise yourself and your company. Social media sites are run by people, consumers and users. Remember this: “People hate to be sold, but they love to buy.” Never advertise your business on social media websites. You can provide your websites and business information in the areas provided to you on that particular site, but that’s it.
You need to interact with the community. You need to provide people with genuine help and answer questions to their problems. Once you do that, people will come to you. They’ll seek you out and they’ll find you.
So, now that we established what and how of use social media marketing, let’s get into the top seven social media sites for real estate professionals including you, shall we?
TOP 7 Social Media Websites for Real Estate Professionals
(in alphabetical order and oh yeah, I’m not getting paid for any of those recommendations)
1. ActiveRain ActiveRain is a Real Estate Networking site for real estate professionals. As of me writing this post, there are over 98,000 members there. You can signup for a free membership, create your profile, and start interacting with the community.
Action Tip: Make sure you use their unique referral program. As of right now, the service is free. You can use the referral service to find the best real estate professionals, real estate leads and form local real estate relationships. One of the best parts of the referral service is the ability to search on a local level, right in your county.
2. Facebook One of my favorite social media sites. I use Facebook on regular basis. Unlike Myspace, Facebook has developed a platform that prevents spam. It is a very professional network that is growing at an unprecedantant rate. Everyone on Facebook is real. Their identities are real and because of their profiles, you can form great relationships in a much better way.
Action Tip: This tip was one of the tips I was going to share on my July 22 Brain Dump Webinar But I decided to share it here. (If you are going to be on the webinar, don’t worry because I have more tips to share with you).
Unlike other Ad services around the internet, you can target your EXACT audience on a much deeper level by using Facebook Ads These ads, when properly configured, will be displayed to the right person at the right time. You can target your audience by age, location, keywords and their relationship. Also, I will be sharing some more real estate marketing secrets with my Real Estate Internet Marketing Domination Facebook Group in the near future.
3. FlippingPad All real estate, all real estate investing. Flipping pad is designed specifically for real estate investors. It’s a great site for creating relationships with other real estate investors in your area and around the country. You can list your Pads (flips) there very easily. If you are a rehabber or a wholesaler, this site is a great opportunity to network and get new leads.
Action Tip: Interact with other investors in the forums section of the site. Ask and answer questions that provide valuable information. More you interact, more visible you become among flipping pad members.
4. LinkedIn Linked in is one of my favorite sites I use to form relationship among real estate professionals and other industries. This one site has provided me with many leads, different relationships and outsourcing opportunities. Sign up is free as well. Once you signup you can start networking and building relationships with others.
Action Tip: Make sure to build out your profile. When people search for you, they can find you by your keywords, places, employment, and experience you have in your resume. When searching for people, never spam others. When asking people to be added to your network, it is best to ask people you know first.
Just like Facebook, LinkedIn is very protective of their members and can cancel your membership if they suspect you are spamming other members. If you would like to join my network, send me a message from my LinkedIn profile , tell me you saw me on my blog and I’ll be more than happy to network with you.
5. Localism How would you like to own your neighborhood? The entire neighborhood! Well, here’s your chance. Join this site and whenever someone goes over to their city on Localism, you’ll be right there in front of them. So, become a neighbor at Localism and you are well on your way.
Action Tip: To become the Top Neighbor, make sure you provide quality information on your blog there. I’ve noticed that top neighbors are the ones who are most active.
6. Meetup Another great site to create relationship and connections for yourself. Just like LinkedIn, Meetup is a great way to network in your area.
Action Tip: Form a Meetup Group in your area. This is a great way to mastermind with other investors. Your imagination are the limits to what you can do there are.
7. Trulia Over the past year, Trulia has become very popular. Many buyers and sellers head over to that site in search of finding answers and/or selling their home. So, how can you benefit there? Through their Trulia Voices.
Action Tip: Trulia Voices gives people the ability to ask their question and for expert to answer those questions. This is the place where you can answer common questions for people who are in need of selling their house.
Hmmm, could this be a way of finding possible sellers? I think so… Make sure you answer their questions and don’t blatantly advertise yourself. Most of all, don’t spam or you’ll get banned. I just looked on their site and there was one lady looking for a foreclosure and short sale specialist in her area. I don’t think it can get any easier than this 🙂
I’m on a roll. Here’s 2 more bonus sites…
8. Twitter What the hell is twitter you ask? if you haven’t already heard of this site, Twitter is a social media site that uses micro-blogging technology. Basically, you post short posts on their site, under 140 characters. You can follow and be followed by others. This site is focused more on building personal relationships than anything else. I am planning on experimenting with this platform in the next few months and will keep you updated.
Action Tip: Signup for twitter and you’ll get addicted. Don’t believe me, try it? 🙂
9. Zillow’s Duscussions Similar to Trulia’s Voices, you can use Zillow to answer questions from people that need answer. By answering questions, you become an authority and who knows, you might get your next deal there. As always, don’t spam and do be selfish.
Alright, I’m burned out. This post took me a little longer to write than I expected. I hope you enjoyed it and found some golden nuggets in here. Write your comments and let me know if you are using any of those sites. What do you think about them? Do you have any questions? Don’t be shy? 🙂
To Your Success,
Founder of Real Estate Black Book
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