How to use Social Media to Connect With Your Real Estate Leads
Nine in 10 home buyers rely on the internet as one of their primary research resources. To meet these searchers and make sure they work with you and not another agent you should connect with them on the platforms they use to seek answers and discuss information about home buying and selling online—social media.
Before we get started: a social media follower and a lead are different. A social media follower is someone who follows you on any social media platform but hasn’t gotten in contact with you through the platform, your website, or any other form of communication, and hasn’t worked with you before. Basically, you two don’t know each other. A lead is someone who has contacted you, signed up for your newsletter, been your client before, or any other marketing qualification that enters their information in your lead-capture system.
This post outlines how to use social media to convert your followers into leads and how to nurture them throughout the customer journey.
Keep in Touch
This may seem like a no-brainer, but if someone comments on your post, you should respond immediately. Comments can have a short shelf-life: within 10 hours of a post, Instagram users receive 50% of their total comments, so it’s extremely important that you stay top-of-mind and respond quickly to ensure your reply is noticed.
Replying to comments is a must, but you should also stay on top of your direct messages. Every social media site has direct message functionality, and many leads skip the email and will send you a message there. Some sites default to not letting you receive messages from non-followers, like Twitter, so make sure to visit your “Settings,” then go to “Privacy and Safety,” and tick the box for “Receive Direct Messages from anyone.” This will ensure you can get DMs even from non-followers.
Never Forget the Call to Action
Nurturing leads isn’t always subtle: being direct with your calls to action (CTAs) helps usher your leads to the right place for them, depending on the post they’re on and what they need next. On Facebook, for example, adding a call to action button on an ad campaign can increase your click-through rate by 285%. That’s impressive.
Now that you know to always add that CTA, here are a few tips for writing great ones that direct your leads right where you want them.
- Write a post-relevant CTA: Double-check that your CTA matches the lead’s intent – What are they searching for and where can you direct them to help them find out more?
Example: You are posting images of a home. Your CTA should drive people to the home listing on your website or your contact information.
- Include your blog posts in your CTAs: Link to one of your relevant real estate blogs to provide more information for your lead. To make sure they are captured when they visit your site, you’ll need lead-capturing capabilities. WolfNet offers real estate websites with lead-capturing tools built in, which allows you to easily nurture and convert your leads.
- Customize your CTA to the platform: Use the language and features that make sense for each social media.
Example: On Twitter you can ask for retweets but not shares, on Instagram you can ask for comments and but not clicks on a link in the post (Instagram doesn’t allow in-post links, only profile links), and on Facebook you can add a CTA button, not ask for retweets. Essentially: follow the rules of the website you’re posting on and maximize their features that allow you to make CTAs stand out.
Use the Right Tools
To keep up with all of your comments, replies, DMs, shares, and retweets, you would either need a 10-person marketing army or an awesome tool. Here are a few of the top social community management and pre-scheduling tools to help you stay ahead of the curve:
AgoraPulse (Best for: Community Management, Prescheduling)
HubSpot (Best for: Prescheduling, Social Insights)
Sprout Social (Best for: Prescheduling, Social Insights)
Hootsuite (Best for: Prescheduling, Social Insights, Bulk Post Uploading)
Zoom In: Tips for Nurturing Leads on the Top Social Platforms
According to Facebook, viewers watch live videos for three times longer than non-live videos. Facebook live videos do so well in part that they are recommended in users’ notifications when someone they follow or like goes live, but also because they have a live commenting function, where watchers can post comments and the video streamer can respond in real-time. Because Facebook live videos are so well-watched and interactive they are great tools for engaging with your audience, also known as nurturing your leads. As an added bonus, live videos can be saved to your profile and rack up even more views and comments after they’ve gone live.
Joining Facebook groups is another great way to engage your target audience and nurture new and existing lead relationships. To find and join relevant groups, visit Facebook’s group search (https://www.facebook.com/browsegroups/), click “Discover,” and then click “Local.” Once you join a group, post helpful tips or house listing notifications—don’t be spammy, though. Keep your shares and posts to the group at one per day.
Twitter has set a character limit for their tweets (280 characters), and most tweets include a link, a short bit of text, 1-2 hashtags, and an image or video—there isn’t a lot of space to go around. This means you need to focus on what you want people to do: your whole post should be one big call to action. Twitter dispenses helpful advice for seeing CTAS success: “Give people clear direction and incentive to click on the link you provide in a Tweet. Use hashtags and @handle mentions sparingly to keep clicks focused on one action: downloads. You can create a sense of urgency by including a deadline.” Replace ‘downloads’ with any function that is important to your business strategy: contact form submissions, email sign-ups, etc.
Ever wondered what your audience is thinking? Twitter offers a poll tool allows followers and non-followers to vote on any number of criteria you choose. Polls spark conversation and show people that you are interested in their opinion, and mainly act as an invitation to interact with you and your Twitter account.
Twitter is also a place to provide knowledge and engage in discussion. When you are followed by someone new, check out their profile. Once you’re there, like a few posts, and if they have posted about homes or have retweeted your content, send them a reply with your contact information. Don’t be pushy, though—if you reply to their post and get nothing, assume they aren’t interested.
To find more leads to nurture on Twitter, search local hashtags and reply to those who are posting about them, even if they aren’t talking about buying a home. No matter if they are showing off a great summer barbeque or a local craft fair, sending an upbeat and encouraging reply will start your relationship off to a great start.
Connecting with your leads is getting easier with the many live and Q&A tools provided by social media. Just recently Instagram launched a new question-and-answer story sticker that allows users to send questions to the story poster who can then chose to answer them in their stories, showcasing their connection with their audience and providing valuable insights. This is a great way to connect you’re your leads and nurture them along their customer journey—Along with the Q&A tool, Instagram polls, emoji slider stickers, and story live streams are great ways to engage your audience (a.k.a. nurture your leads).
As for Instagram posts? The best way to nurture your leads is to post high-quality images with insightful captions and ask a question to your audience every now and then. Remember, Instagram is all about the visual. To use that to your advantage and better nurture leads on this platform focus more on the images and less on the caption: simplify your sentences, have the CTA be the main point, and add those hashtags on the bottom to showcase your awesome home images and videos.
Videos are one of the most important mediums a real estate agent can use to nurture leads. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), 85% of buyers want to work with an agent who uses video. It isn’t just home listings people are interested in—people watch videos on home buying tips, home-buying mistakes, real estate stories, and more spin-off topics. To nurture your leads on YouTube make sure to have a consistent video style and voice that aligns with your brand and that you share your videos on other social platforms (like Facebook and Twitter) and in emails. Why emails? Well, a NAR research study showed that including video in emails doubles the click-through rate and reduces opt-outs by 75%. The same study also showed that and that YouTube is the top video research destination for home shoppers—both points show that video does a great job of nurturing leads in all stages of the customer journey.
Keep on Connecting
Follow all of the tips above and you’ll be a lead connection expert in no time. For more real estate marketing how-tos and information, download our Real Estate Marketing 101 ebook.
WolfNet Technologies is a leading real estate technology pioneer empowering many of real estate’s most trusted brands with responsive IDX modern search, beautiful lead-generating agent websites, and standardized MLS data. WolfNet is known for its unmatched customer support team that’s Minnesota nice, fun, highly skilled and available. For more than 20 years, WolfNet has been helping real estate franchises, brokerages, teams, agents and real estate technology providers lead the pack. Together, WolfNet inspires creative solutions to make businesses thrive throughout the U.S. and Canada. Learn more at wolfnet.com.