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We are fortunate to live in a time where, when done properly, we can generate real estate buyer and seller leads for little to no monthly expense.  In the “Good Ol’ Days” of real estate, we paid for printing and postage for newsletters and postcards, mail outs to our “farming” areas, etc, etc, etc.  While all of those processes are still very effective, they are quite expensive.  Today’s technology can generate leads for you at a fraction of the cost through the process of inbound lead generation.  Inbound lead generation involves generating leads by having the prospects contact you instead of you contacting suspects in hopes that some of them will turn into prospects.

Social Media Marketing for Real EstateSo what exactly am I talking about?  Here’s a 4 step plan to generating leads using inbound marketing.

1.       Blog – Adding engaging and useful content to your website on a blog allows you to showcase your expertise and helpfulness to potential buyers and sellers.  “But I don’t… (enter excuse for not writing blog posts here)”  Then, hire someone to do it for you!  It is much cheaper than you think.  In fact, we offer a program that you can subscribe to that will send you a “Done for You” blog post up to 3 times per week for a little more than a dollar a day.  All you have to do is copy and paste the post to your blog.  Click here for more information or to subscribe.

2.       Social Media – These amazing tools allow you to distribute your blog content to hundreds or thousands of people for free.  Socializing on these sites will help your business tremendously. 

3.       Webinars – You will have to spend a little money on this one to subscribe to a webinar service, but I promise you the expense is worth it.  A first time homebuyer webinar that you’ve promoted on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter is an incredible lead generation tool.

4.       PPC and SEO – Pay Per Click and Search Engine Optimization are tools that can help to increase the reach of your marketing efforts.  These two will help drive traffic to your website or blog.  We all know that traffic equals more buyer and seller leads.

Implement these 4 steps in your marketing plan to generate some very inexpensive leads to carry your real estate sales into the dog days of summer, and if you have an idea you would like to contribute to this topic, please leave it below in the comments section.

Photo provided compliments of http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/view_photog.php?photogid=1708

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We all know that Facebook is constantly changing, modifying, and adding new functions to their platform.  Within the past several months Facebook has added new features/functions to their platform that I believe can help to increase your engagement with others. 

The first, and probably the most controversial, way is to enable public subscribers on your post.  Facebook now allows you to post on your personal profile page and allow public subscribers to see your post.  Enabling this feature is done in the account settings area of your profile.  Some of you are going to say, “Now wait a minute, I don’t want everyone knowing what I have to say on Facebook. Not all of my posts are for people I don’t know to see.”  And to that, I say, “Hold your horses.  Read on.”  Once you have subscribers to your feed, you can determine which group of people sees your particular post by clicking the dropdown box next to the “Post” button.  Select “Public” and post.  That’s it!  You just sent that post to everone subscribed to your news feed whether they are a friend or not. 

The second and probably the best way is to build an interest list.  This is a list that other Facebook users can subscribe to.  These lists are akin to an RSS feed for a particular group of Facebook users.  Use this tool to build a list around topics and draw people to subscribe.  You can also see the updates of only these list members, like a news feed, and interact with them that way.  Use this function by clicking on “Add Interests” under the menu section of your “Home” page (you may have to click “More” to find it).  You can build your list first and Facebook will also suggest people to add based on the topic.  Once you’ve added people to the list you can comment on their walls and posts to create much more engagement.

Try the above two functions and see if your Facebook engagement level increases.  Remember marketing online is about being top of mind with suspects and prospects.  Being engaging will keep you top of mind.

So, are you scared of the posting something for possibly the whole world to see as described in the first tactic?  Leave me your thoughts in the comment section below.

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I’ve been accused of only liking Twitter for one reason… so I can put the letters “Tw” in front of any words I use when discussing the social media outlet.  Of course, that is not the ONLY reason.  The real reason I like Twitter so much is because it is a very quick way of getting a “to the point” message out to hundreds or thousands of followers.  Oh yeah, and because there is at least one really cool way to grab leads from Twitter very quickly.  Many of the Realtors I speak with are either just learning Twitter or have decided to ignore Twitter altogether because of the misconception of the average Twitter user.

Today, I’m giving you 5 etiquette tips to help you get more enjoyment and buyers and sellers from using Twitter.

1. Do Talk Back – No, not the way a teenager does to his parents, but be sure you interact with those who correspond with you.  If someone retweets you, then thank them for the retweet or even retweet them.  Respond, retweet, or direct message soon after that person contacts you.

2. Spread the Word – If you are going to be tweeting a lot because of an office open house or holiday party, then let your followers know ahead of time.  You are far less likely to lose followers by informing them of an upcoming busy day of tweets.

3. Keep Your Personal Business Personal – Just like all social media platforms Twitter is all about developing relationships with your followers; however, you should refrain from sharing your personal affairs all over Twitterland.  You can share some info but don’t make any more than 10% of your tweets personal in nature.

4. Don’t Air Your Dirty Laundry – If you have an unsatisfied buyer or seller tweeting about you or your company, then get that conversation on the private side of Twitter by using DM’s or just taking that conversation offline (highly recommended).  No matter what you do, do not ignore the unsatisfied client.

5. Refrain from Over Tweeting – Do NOT tweet too much.  In a recent tech coaching session with a Realtor, my student asked me to help her log in to her Twitter and LinkedIn accounts to unfollow and disconnect with a few people who tweet or update their status on those networks too much.  So, how much is too much?  This is impossible to know for sure without asking your followers what they would like to see from you.  But, as a general rule of thumb, try to tweet no more than 3 times per day.

Whether your an experienced Twitter user or a Twewbie (Twitter Newbie), keep these 5 tips in mind when using the platform.  You’ll find that you and your followers enjoy using Twitter much more because of it.

If you have any Twitter gripes or tips, please feel free to leave those in the comments section below.  We can all benefit from reading them.

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Mobile is taking over our world.  I discussed this in a blog post I wrote Thursday.  Read that post by clicking here.  The Realtors who are embracing mobile marketing are positioned to give consumers what they want when they want it and will reap the rewards because of it.  The Realtors featuring mobile marketing in their listing presentations will get more listings because they can offer more for their clients than those Realtors who are not.  The Realtors using mobile marketing to market their listings are in a position to pick up more buyer prospects than those Realtors who are not using mobile.  Ok, I know you’ve had enough, and you want to know more about exactly how you should be using mobile to market yourself and your properties.  Well, here are 2 ways to use mobile marketing to get more buyer and seller leads.

1.       mobile marketing for real estateQuick Response (QR) Codes – QR codes are those funny looking codes you can scan with your mobile phone or tablet to get more information about whatever the designer of the code wants you to see.  QR codes allow for far more storage capacity than a standard UPC code that we are so familiar with.  So, how should you use QR codes to get more buyers and sellers?  Generate QR codes using this website for each of your listings before your listing presentation.  Have the QR code take those scanning the code to the single property website for that prospective listing (or to the property listing on your personal website) and demonstrate how it works to the seller and then get ready to enter that new listing into MLS because not many other Realtors are using QR codes and single property websites to market their listings.  Using QR codes gets buyers calling you about your listings after they view your new listing on their tablet or smart phone.  From there, it’s up to you to put the charm/sales pitch on them to make them your buyer clients. 

2.       Mobile Websites –  Mobile websites are websites that are designed to display perfectly on mobile devices.  Design a mobile website for that prospective listing and feature that mobile site during  your listing presentation and again get your listing agreement out because your competition is most likely not using mobile websites to market their listings.  As you know, anytime you can add additional value to your buyer or seller clients you are strengthening your odds of becoming their Realtor of choice.

If you are looking for some ways to increase your business, then consider adding mobile marketing to your list of services provided to your clients.  If you need some help building a mobile website, then please give Stratus Social Media, LLC a call at 205-202-1723 or email Tammy at tammy {at} stratussocialmedia.com.   If you are currently using mobile marketing in your efforts to increase your business, then please leave a comment with some of your success stories.

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