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I have to admit that I loathe posting about myself. I dread looking at my Facebook account if I’ve missed a few days, and I’m frustrated with the importance we place on social media. At the same time, I know that social media is a powerful and easy way to stay in touch.

As a business owner, you’re missing out on an opportunity to be in front of your clients if you’re not on social media. It’s as simple as this: if you’re on it, your sphere of influence knows you’re in business. If you’re not, you’re quickly forgotten because someone else is.

If you’re not active on social media right now, follow these five tips to get things going. If you’re active but want to step it up a notch, something here may resonate with you to get you to the next level of online engagement with social media marketing.

1. Create social media accounts. You’ll need accounts on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram—both personal and professional. Facebook and Instagram are linked, so you can share content from Facebook automatically on Instagram. Some REALTORS® are adding Snapchat and TikTok, and you can do that if you want, but I recommend sticking to one of the top three to start.

2. Find one hour a week to comment on other people’s posts. Scroll through your content on social media and comment. Don’t just “like” photos, but rather, add thoughts and feedback here and there. The engagement not only sends a message that you’re active but will also encourage others to do the same with your posts.

3. Plan to post 3-5 times a week in addition to your “Just Listed” and “Just Sold” posts. Don’t know what to post? Try posting articles or photos of you and your team in everyday activities to increase brand awareness. You can even plan your business posts two weeks in advance, and I encourage you to do this by creating a spreadsheet with the date of the post, the blurb you’ll use and a link to the photo you’ll use with the post.

4. Use tools such as Buffer or Hootsuite to schedule your posts or time-block weekly. For example, every Monday, Wednesday and Friday before you leave the office for the day, add a quick post. Buffer, Hootsuite and similar programs will do this for you, combining steps three and four.

5. Keep up with your SOI and Top 50. If you’re calling your top people regularly, take a quick peek at their social media account(s) before you call them to see what’s up. This shows interest, gets you up to speed quickly and provides a starting point for a conversation.

I’m not the biggest fan of social media platforms, but I’m a believer in their benefits. If you can embrace social networks as part of your marketing strategy, it’s a very inexpensive and effective way to get out in front of your community.
Sarah Bernard is a REALTOR® and team leader with RedKey Realty Leaders in St. Louis, Missouri, the host of Real Living with Sarah Bernard, and a senior coach with Workman Success Systems.