It isn’t enough to post to Facebook or Twitter every few days; an effective social media campaign is all about knowing your target audience and engaging with your community on a daily basis. From getting started on LinkedIn to reaching millennials through Instagram, follow these tips to grow your social media presence and drive your business.
1. Make a plan
Before you bother making a company Facebook page, take the time to create a long-term social media plan. Think about who you want to reach and where you’re going to reach them, and come up with a basic outline detailing how you will achieve your objectives.
Just like with any campaign, results will only come if your efforts are consistent and targeted. Forget about posting haphazardly once or twice a week; instead, commit to a regular schedule and expect to spend time building and maintaining your online presence.
2. Start with the 'Big 3'
Every CRE social media campaign should start with LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.
Start by building your personal profile. This is the first thing most of your prospects will see, so take the time to describe your role and what you offer. Once you’ve polished your profile, engage with members of the community by sharing content in industry groups, highlighting properties you're working on and talking about recent deals you've made.
Ideally you want to post content about every two days, but on LinkedIn especially quality is more important than quantity. The best posts position you as a leader by offering useful information that genuinely helps others.
Facebook boasts the world’s largest collection of private groups and brand pages, and yours should be one of them. Unlike LinkedIn, don’t engage with the community through a personal profile. Use a brand page to highlight your best content, and invite friends, coworkers and prospects to visit your page.
Try to post on Facebook every day. Take the time to engage with people who comment on your page and share content that will drive people back to your blog or properties. Avoid being overly self promotional by finding or creating content to engage your viewers.
Twitter is great because it’s easy to get off the ground running — simply create a company account and link it to your work email and you’re ready to go. Once you have your account, work to become a vital part of the conversation by mixing content, posting everything from breaking industry news to pictures of your newest property. Use the right hashtags to join the conversation and drive traffic to your posts.
Twitter is all about quantity. Tweets are maxed at 140 characters, so try and post five times a day or more to stay engaged with the community.
3. Use Instagram to target millennials
Every CRE social media campaign relies on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, but those targeting millennials should add Instagram to the list. The image and video sharing app doubled its user base to over 700 million active monthly users earlier this year, and a Pew Research Center report from last year said 59% of 18-29 year olds use it.
Instagram lets you use pictures and videos to show off everything from properties to tenant improvements. That’s a powerful tool, considering visual posts typically get 150% more retweets than textual posts. This is especially beneficial in the world of CRE, since so many parts of the industry are visually-driven.
Most CRE social media campaigns currently ignore Instagram, but don’t make that mistake. Use Instagram to get ahead of the competition by tapping into one of the fastest growing social media platforms.
Everyone loves social media marketing because it’s free. But if you really want your campaign to get attention, be prepared to invest. You can pay as little as $1 per post to boost your content on Facebook. Doing this will multiply how many people see your post, so definitely consider it for your best content or breaking news.
Social media advertising scales with any budget and ranges from promoting a single post to getting laser-focused leads on possible prospects. Use a combination of sponsored and organic posts to maintain interest in your campaign while reaching people outside your typical audience.
Successful social media campaigns are ultimately about creating content. From Facebook posts to articles on LinkedIn, content is what draws people to your business and establishes you as a thought leader in the industry.
Start a blog to make the most of your efforts. This will give your viewers something to circle back to and draw traffic and attention to your brand. If you can’t maintain a dedicated blog, look for opportunities to submit guest posts to top blogs in your market. And like everything with social media, use an arsenal of platforms to distribute your content to as many people as possible.