How to Market Real Estate on Social Media

One of the main problems of real estate agents, is getting listings. To make it work, you shouldn’t just focus on your website. Social media and the online world, overall, could be a marvelous extension of the brand you present yourself as offline. If you take advantage of its options, you’ll reach more people, build trust and most importantly - sell.


Here are a few things you should know about social media marketing for real estate. 


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Photos

It’s important to say that high quality photos are the KEY when marketing real estate. Unless you have someone who walks by the house and immediately falls in love (and that is not how it usually goes), you have to create an appealing offer which starts with beautiful photos. 


You have two options: Take your own photos or hire a professional. There are definitely pros and cons of both of these, but it’s completely up to you as to which option is better. If you decide to be your own photographer, there are some things you should know before starting. You should learn how to work with different lighting, what are the differences when shooting indoor versus outdoor and so on. There are many tips for beginners that will help you out.    


On the other hand, hiring a professional photographer is almost always a win. You won’t have to worry about the quality because they know (or should know!) what they’re doing. Just make sure you clearly explain your expectations and the look you want them to capture.



Videos

It doesn’t matter if it’s your website or any social media profile. Videos are getting more and more popular. As a real estate agent, you have an amazing opportunity to use them. Of course, personal tours are the best, but video tours are right behind them. There are many ways to create great real estate listing videos.


An appealing video with nice lighting and creative close-ups can be a powerful weapon. Videos allow you to be more personal and actually talk to people. However, videos will be another expense, since they have to be professional to catch people's attention. For that reason, you may have to hire a videographer, so it’s important to make sure it fits into your budget.


Here are some nice examples of listing videos:


Social Media

The need to keep up with recent trends of the internet has never been more important. That includes social media. The best real estate marketers use social media to reach more clients. You should leverage platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or even Twitter and LinkedIn. 


Facebook


Create a business page through your personal account. It’s good to use a professional-looking headshot or a logo as your profile picture, because you want people to get the best first impression possible and that means your page should be in high quality - photos, posts, everything. Of course, the same goes for other social media sites. 


Be creative and give a good thought to design. It’s an element that always enhances users’ experiences with a brand. Don’t just focus on the design of your website, do it on social media, as well. Portray your own brand with professional and polished photos and graphics. That is often a great way to grow user engagement on your page.


Interact. Facebook allows you to create and host events (e.g. to invite your Facebook followers to open house), create an album with descriptions (to showcase the best photos of each property) or add videos. 


The ‘About’ section should catch your audience's attention and include strong key phrases that describe your company values. Facebook gives you 155 characters to do this. Most searches pull information exactly from this section, so try to use these few words well and explain your company’s services and main benefits briefly, but distinctly.


There are so many groups on Facebook - lots of them regarding real estate. Join these groups, interact with people, promote yourself, share properties for sale.

Instagram


Not every real estate agent has discovered the magic and power of Instagram. Yet, it’s a great place to market properties. Why is that? Firstly, Instagram is all about beautiful photos, eye-catching designs and aesthetic profiles. And what's a better way to visually promote properties than with pretty pictures? 


Instagram added the business profile option some time ago, so now you can use it to promote your posts and advertise. Besides that, you can add a category that best describes the type of your business’ (such as an Estate Agent). This category is shown right under your name on your profile page. 


Many social media platforms are used very formally with businesses which isn’t wrong, but Instagram should be creative. Using complicated language and salesy phrases will seem boring for those people who use it for fun. Instead, write catchy captions, tell a story…


Hashtags, hashtags, hashtags. Hashtags are very important for the system of searching on Instagram. You should use generic and local descriptive hashtags. This will expand the reach of your photos. In case you decide to use a lot of them, write a short caption and then add hashtags into the comment section of your post. That way your followers won’t feel overloaded with hashtags. 


DON’T buy followers for your account. Having a huge number of followers might feel nice, but it’s absolutely useless if it’s not real people with real needs who actually decided to follow your profile, because it has some kind of value for them. 


Instagram can really be very useful for marketing your company, showing off its culture, values and brand, overall. It will also give you the possibility to reach new potential clients.



We’ve written a whole article on Instagram for real estate here. You can check it out for more tips.

Pinterest 


What is Pinterest? Very simply put - it’s a social media platform that’s spinning around pretty, aesthetically-pleasing photos - similarly to Instagram. But it’s not just that. Pinterest has shown to be a good place for generating real estate leads. 


On Pinterest, you can create boards of related images, and you can use each board for a different property. It doesn’t only have to be photos. You can add articles, reviews of local cafes and restaurants, nearby attractions and interesting places or just any tips for people who are looking for a new home. Remember that Pinterest is about being creative and playing with the different options this site offers. 


LinkedIn


We use LinkedIn to make valuable connections. Connect with influencers, your local residents (the Advanced Search feature can help you with finding local leads) or even other real estate agents and create an audience. 


Publish content every day to show consistency. Post your listings, but try to include something more in your feed. Write interesting articles about your field, provide information and tips that will be new and helpful to people.

 

You can create a LinkedIn Showcase Page to really spotlight your brand. Add your main listings into this feature and show the most important content. 


Spend some time creating your bio and make it authentic, include information that’s good to know about your services or that send the message of your brand. 

 


These things go for every form of social media:

Don’t copy anyone. You’re your own person and your own brand. The differences make you interesting. 


Engage with your followers and other users overall. Like, comment and follow. That’s exactly what helps you grow your audience organically. 

Real estate on social media is a lot about paying attention to details. Don’t stop observing which posts have the best responses, which photos are the most liked or which video is your followers’ favorite. There is much more to dig into when it comes to the things you can do with social media. 

Develop a strategy and stick to it. Stay consistent and keen. 

Many people use social media to get inspired or even to find new properties. All you need to do is be active and wait for them to find you. 

What do you think about using social media for real estate? Do you have a strategy that’s been working for you? Let us know!

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Beginner's Guide to LinkedIn Advertising

LinkedIn connects more than 630 million professionals. Its main focus is to build strong and long-lasting career connections and quality content. The platform is definitely on the rise and there are plenty of ways you can leverage it for your business or personal brand.


Knowing the fact that the organic reaches for business pages for Facebook and Instagram are decreasing, LinkedIn offers a chance to reach your audience more effectively.


So, how can you get the most out of the biggest social network for professionals? First of all, know the basics. LinkedIn (and any other advertising platform) can be overwhelming, which makes it easy to get lost. Don't try to understand everything. Choose to learn what matters to your business the most.


We have prepared content that will help you get to know the very basic idea behind advertising on LinkedIn. We call it the Beginner's Guide to LinkedIn Advertising and within it we cover the following topics:

  • What LinkedIn is really about
  • Get to know the LinkedIn interface
  • Types of LinkedIn accounts
  • Setting up your profile
  • Introduction to Campaign Manager
  • Setting up the first campaign
  • Choosing the right objective
  • Setting up your target audience
  • Introduction to Ad formats
  • Setting up your budget
  • Tools to make your life on LinkedIn easier


Dig into the LinkedIn advertising by downloading the e-book below and let us know how it helped you boost your business.

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40+ Tools for Creating Visual Content on Social Media

It is well-known that visual content is the basis of success on social networks. It’s easier for users to consume pictures and videos, than text. It’s also more visible in a mess of other content. According to some studies, tweets with pictures receive up to 150% more retweets than plain text posts without pictures. So, it is clear that the importance of visual content is steadily increasing and you definitely shouldn't ignore it.


You don't have to worry, you don't need to hire expensive agencies right away. You don't even have to learn to work with complicated and expensive tools, like Photoshop. Fortunately, today there are plenty of free online and mobile apps available to create visual content in just a few clicks.


In this article we will introduce you to 40+ tools that are available on the internet for free. We use these tools on a daily basis, so we can highly recommend them.

Canva

By far the most famous online tool for creating all kinds of visuals, and not just for social media. Canva allows you to create literally everything you can think of — from nice Facebook covers to Instagram Stories to beautiful Infographics. You can choose from dozens of templates and it all works for web browsers or mobile apps.


Vizzlo

Whether you need a simple pie chart or a complex business graphic, Vizzlo's portfolio offers you a broad range of different visualization choices. It works for browsers and it is easy to use. You can enter your data using the simple sidebar, and then choose to import spreadsheets from Excel or Google Sheets. Add the result to your slides and documents or directly share it on all your social media channels.


Graphicriver

An endless collection of various templates, fonts, logos, flyers and much more. Graphicriver is where you can find ready-made graphic designs for almost any digital content. You don't need to hire an expensive agency and create all visuals and graphics from scratch. It is often enough to modify existing templates. This saves you not only a bunch of time, but also money, because the prices of the templates are very low.


Tip: If you are not familiar with editing graphics, try to outsource it via Fivver.


Landscape

Size matters! At least when it comes to social media. Landscape has hundreds of recommended dimensions, sizes and ratios across different platforms and devices. It is easy to get lost in these constantly changing numbers. So try to use Landscape by Sprout, it helps you resize multiple images for your profiles automatically.

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How a Marketing Automation Tool Will Guide You to Create a Perfect Strategy

Marketing strategy is probably the most abused word in the marketing industry. Everyone talks about strategies, but few know what it really represents. It has nothing to do with curating your presence on Facebook nor developing a Chatbot for your website. Trust me, strategy is something completely different.


Being an entrepreneur who is running a small business is already tough itself. Marketing, in most cases, is a process that slows you down as you have to learn it, hire people to execute your vision or deal with an agency (and their high fees). Luckily, with tools like groost life gets a bit better. Prepare a good strategy and automate your marketing efforts. Let's find out how.


Luckily, some tools can guide and educate you without you having to learn. Automation platforms are built to cover the majority of your marketing tasks. Having said this, they search for ways to guide you through the process of a successful onboarding in a simple way.


Before we get started, let's clarify what a marketing strategy means.


A strategy sets a target of where it is we want to be within a certain period of time. Now we are at point A, so where is the point B we want to reach. Marketing strategy, to narrow it down, answers these three core questions:


  1. Who is our customer?
  2. How do we position ourselves?
  3. What objectives do we set?


First, we need to clarify who we're aiming for – our target audience. Our target audience represents our potential customers. Getting to know them as thoroughly as possible will be crucial for the next steps. Secondly, we must focus on positioning – the way our customer sees us, what he thinks of us, what jumps to her mind immediately after the name of our brand or product is pronounced. If you think of Volvo, what jumps to your mind? Is it safety? This is not by mistake. Volvo wants to be considered the safest car, and they do everything they can to be perceived this way. That's positioning. Lastly, we ask ourselves, what goals we want to achieve. Knowing where you want to go and being able to quantify it helps you stay on track at all times!


Of course, you may want to conduct in-depth research on both internal and external factors (SWOT analysis works for internal factors, PESTLE for external) to find out how your business gets both positively and negatively influenced. While analysing, keep an eye on your competitors to know how well they do (and why). These points are, nonetheless, tied to your overall business, not solely marketing. Let's just focus on marketing for now.


Did you answer the three core questions? Great! Now see how automation tools can guide you to not just create, but also execute your strategy – complete the tactical steps.

1. They encourage you to focus on your customer

All tools from the most complicated to the easiest ones focus on a customer. Look at how Hubspot does it – they offer you a CRM to store all your customer data, track the website activity of your customers and segment them for email marketing and social ads. Customers are at the very center of their product features. So that should be the case in all of your marketing activities. In our latest post, we've covered the importance of being where your customers are – be customer-centric. Marketing automation platforms guide you without your assistance, so you can use your energy elsewhere. 


We've built a tool for an easy and efficient campaign management. It is so easy that non-marketers run their campaign within minutes. We focus, needless to say, on a customer- first approach. We encourage you to create your marketing persona and center your campaign around this. See how we do this below:

2. They offer you many ways to create content

Content – be it emails, social media ads, website forms or blog posts – is what should give a real value to your customer. There are many types of content (educational, comedic, aesthetically pleasing…), but all of it should be easily recognisable. What I mean by that is that every piece of content shows it's YOU and your business, and does not belong to anybody else. Using your logo in the header of an email or a social media creative helps easily identify your business. Your claim in headlines shows it's you, your brand colors signify it's you, the tone that plays at the beginning of each of your podcasts says it's you… With every piece of content you build the complete picture that pops into a customer's head when someone says the name of your brand or product. Presenting your unique attributes over your competitors and repeatedly identifying yourself with a certain market category helps your target audience discover who you really are – and what makes you unique. Automation platforms not only allow you to create content you need for your business to be successfully present online, but also guide you through these steps, so that you don't do it wrong.


3. They encourage you to analyze results

I can not emphasize this any more – if you can't measure something, you can't improve it. Tools like Keap, Hubspot or Mailchimp give you an in-depth analysis of your campaigns and efforts. They truly show you what's important to track and what isn't. When it comes to measuring results, things can get pretty complicated. Don't look at hundreds of metrics, unless it makes sense to you and you see the dependencies between them. If you run campaigns for 200 USD a month, focus on a few things (key metrics) that are tied to your goal and nothing else. Make sure to update your dashboard and, ideally, let the tools send you regular emails with the metrics you are most interested in. It'll save you a bit of time.


To codify the results of any campaign, it is crucial to tie them to your goals. Any campaign needs to be set up with goal(s). Say you want to increase the engagement for your Facebook post and lead people to your website. The number of people reached and the number of people that interacted with your content is what you'll be looking for –the  click through rate will show you the difference between those two (number of people who interacted / number of people reached). Simply put, this metric shows how good and juicy your content is. Did you get a 5% click through rate? Good job! Do you think 5% is too low?  I suggest you check the (industry) standards and judge this afterwards. Some metrics seem to be low, but if you dig deeper, you may realize that your campaign rocks.


To wrap it up, focus on three important questions, choose the right tools to help you execute your strategy and always measure your efforts. Being a small business owner is tough itself, don't put in more work. Let automation platforms help you get rid of the routine tasks and, thus, deliver better results. We've mentioned some of the tools here, so make sure to check it out.

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6 Things to Avoid When Hiring a Marketing Agency

For anyone who’s not an expert in this field, marketing strategies, SEO or social media can be like a maze. If that’s the case, navigating through it can get super difficult sometimes. However, that’s okay! Marketing agencies exist exactly for that reason — to help business owners and entrepreneurs efficiently use their business’s potential in the name of marketing. Naturally, you want your business to grow. You decided that it’s time for you or your firm to start working with a marketing agency. Good for you! But where do you start? How can you make sure that you choose the right one? There are so many questions that might seem tricky, but this list of things you should avoid will answer the most crucial ones.

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6 Reasons Your Online Advertising Brings No Results

Let’s be honest — some online ads simply don’t work. At least we think that they don’t. Or better put, we judge them before knowing the real reason they don’t… Now, there are almost unlimited ways to reach your target audience on the internet: targeting people who search on Google with your search ad, capturing people’s attention with your promoted social media post, direct messaging on LinkedIn or creating a short video on Youtube. There are many channels and many types of ads that can use to target your potential customers.

But why the heck don’t they work for you? Many businesses have rapidly grown thanks to online advertising and yours hasn’t. What is it that makes your campaign inefficient?

First of all, be clear on the problem you are facing. What metrics say that your campaign is not working? Is it the ROI (return on investment — easily put, how many dollars are you making out of 1 dollar you invest in the ad), cost per lead (in case of lead generation campaigns) or number of people your campaign reached? When reporting on your marketing efforts, make sure to be as precise on the desired metrics as possible. “Thoughts” are the worst reporting tool.

Secondly, who is running your ads? Is it you who has access to all the important metrics and reporting or do you outsource ad management to someone else? If so, are they fully transparent on the process of a campaign setting? Do they let you “watch the chef while cooking”?

Let us be clear: this point is crucial. Online advertising is not a black box. It truly works and increases the ROI if done well. But if not, there is no positive ROI, just money thrown out of the window… What I am trying to say is, that there will be plenty of companies charging you for the ad management who are not truly willing to help you. As a result, your campaign ends up being inefficient.

Let’s say you are running the ads on your own and still suffering from lack of efficiency. We won’t let you down. We’ve prepared a few points which — when done well — will increase your ad efficiency.

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Hype vs. Trend – What Really Matters for Your Business?

AI, Chatbots, Blockchain, self-driving cars, cloud-computing... You have probably heard of all of those, right? Do these terms represent trend or a hype? What is the actual difference between those two words? And are they important for you, as an entrepreneur who's just getting started? These are probably the questions that jump to your mind when hearing these buzzwords.


There is a HUGE difference between what stays and what doesn't. In other words, not everything will stick and change our behaviour. This is how we can define our keyword, trend: as a change in the behaviour, habits or ways in which things work. It is a constant change. Let me explain trend in a graph, as I am a visual learner and a numbers freak…

Trend Line
Trend Line

On the contrary, hype is something that simply occurs and fades away… without any lasting impact. If I spoke in graphs, hype would look like this:

Hype Line
Hype Line

When the terms are clarified, let us look at the history and point out some of the trends and hypes we, as humans on this earth, have been through…


  1. 1950 – Year when the first credit card was introduced

Presented by Diner's Club, the very first universal credit card came to use and was accepted by some establishments. Had it been just a hype, no one would be using credit cards today… Non-cash payment instruments play a huge role in our lives today – this trend changed our behaviour for good.


Now, imagine a bank not issuing a credit or debit card after opening an account – a business that did not catch the trend. This bank would for sure not survive in today's world…


  1. 2008 – The word shared economy was loudly spoken for the first time

… and changed the way we travel, transport ourselves and purchase goods. Startups like AirBnB or Uber have shown us there is a new way of ordering a taxi or renting a flat for a few nights. Have classic taxi companies had to react to this change? You bet they have!


You can probably guess where this is heading. There are a plethora of examples of trends that have changed our lives. These are real changes that – if businesses ignored them – could be very harmful... 


  1. Now – Podcasts, home voice assistants and voice orders

Here we go. 2019 and podcasts, home voice assistants, voice search, voice order and – you nailed it – everything that has something to do with voice is slowly changing the way we behave. Is this something you should keep an eye on? I believe so. Is this something that is about to change / threaten / boost your business? That truly depends on your business industry and approach.


On the contrary, hype can calmly be ignored (or shortly leveraged). Do you remember the Bitcoin bubble in late 2017? 


If not, let me briefly explain. Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency that was invented in January 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto. Its price has been slowly rising since then, and in 2017, one Bitcoin was worth around 20,000 USD. With no real value behind it! In other words, so much money was invested in this currency that the price rose rapidly. An easy economic rule: when the demand rises (while the offer is limited), the price goes up. But what is crucial, is the value behind it. There was no value at all. And in January 2018...BOOM!

Bitcoin Chart (2018)

Identifying hype and trend can be crucial for the survival of your business. But no one really tells you how to get started. Well… saying that there is a manual would mean there is a way to predict the future.


But there are some ways to prepare yourself. As Gartner puts it: “Three key factors will ultimately enable you to identify the potential impact of a particular technology trend on people, business, IT and the technology market:

  1. New value. Identify clear business opportunities that this technology trend could help exploit, or challenges that it could help solve to produce better business outcomes.

  2. Level of digital disruption. Decide whether adopting this trend would mean changing your organization’s business model or inventing a new one. Could this new trend replace existing technologies or ways of doing business? How could this trend disrupt the technology market? Although, there will probably be opportunities for new providers, new trends can disrupt the services and performance of existing providers on which your organization may rely.

  3. Type of impact. Investigate whether the trend’s impact will be felt only within your organization, or whether it will have an external impact on your organization." 


Yes, you have to know your business and industry perfectly in order to answer those questions. If you decide to simply ignore everything that goes around you, you may get kicked out of business soon… But if you learn, build on your knowledge and keep an eye on the current trends & hypes (as you may not recognize them at the beginning), your chances will rise.


Build on your knowledge. Do not pay attention to what does not affect your business, but be aware of something that does…

We at groost.com are leveraging online advertising for small businesses, which has shown to be a strong trend that is here to change many industries. In 2018, for the very first time, 50 % of the world's population was online. Never before has the percentage of people with access to the internet been so high. And guess what… The number is rising. Is this a trend or a hype? You are now able to answer the question for yourself.


Are you up to date with what's on trend for 2019? Check the Gartner's research here: https://www.gartner.com/smarterwithgartner/5-trends-appear-on-the-gartner-hype-cycle-for-emerging-technologies-2019

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