When I teach my clients about being a successful social networker without spending a lot of time or money, I start of by explaining a concept I call The Hierarchy of Social Networking. It outlines the steps needed to climb the mountain of social networking.
The base of any social networking is to set up an account. You obviously can’t begin to climb the social networking mountain without an account. You’d be surprised how many agents still don’t have Facebook and Twitter accounts.
After setting up your accounts and clients start to “like” and “follow” you. It is imperative to have some regular content posted to your accounts. I always suggest working with a service that will post your listings on your social networking accounts for you.
Almost every time I mention this I get push back from agents. They say, “If all you do is post your listings you’re going to turn clients off. They’re going to de-friend or un-follow you. They don’t want to only see your listings.” I actually agree, but this is where the hierarchy comes into play. Having social media accounts is better than not having social media accounts. And posting listings on a regular basis is better than not posting anything at all.
Let’s pretend you do have a client de-friend you because you only post your listings, but you have another call you and express interest. Well I’d say that’s a success. It is so much better to post something than to not post anything at all. But that’s not where we want to end up, so let’s keep climbing the social networking mountain.
The next level in The Social Media Hierarchy is regularly posting relevant content. How do you do this without taking up all your time? Find a service provider who offers a program to distribute relevant content to every agent’s social networking sites in your brokerage. Agents connect their social networks to the system and when a company administrator posts an article it trickles down to all the agent’s accounts in the brokerage. If the brokerage wants a more localized approach an office administrator can also post for the agents in their specific office.
At this level in the hierarchy you will look like a seasoned social networker. You will have an active account, posting your listings and relevant content regularly. The best part, you won’t even have to lift a finger. But that isn’t the top of the hierarchy it’s just the least time consuming and easiest way to actively post on your social networking sites.
The highest point in the hierarchy is personalized content and interaction. There’s no program or technology that can replace a personalized approach to social networking. Replying and interacting personally with your clients and friends is the most effective social networking but it’s also the most time consuming.
I have heard success story after success story from those who use social networking to grow their business. It is a technology that can lift your sales to new heights. Start climbing the social networking mountain by working with a company that can do the heavy lifting for you. This will help you look like a social networking expert and allow you to focus on the most importing items of real estate.
Robert Davis is the CEO of CirclePix.