Three ways to up your social media game in 2017

Make 2017 the year you take full advantage of everything social media has to offer your business. It’s the most popular way to get in front of a lot of people often. Done well, it can be fun for your client base and an effective way for you to keep your pipeline full. Previously, we discussed Instagram for agents, but visual media is important across the board when it comes to social media.

Much like the MLS, the big wow factor in social media comes from photography. Make sure that you get great photos of every property you list. No drive-by photos taken with your phone barely hanging out of your car window, please! It’s best to get a professional real estate photographer to handle all of your listings. Develop a relationship with a good one, and spend a few extra bucks getting some nice lifestyle shots of your farm area, too.

Now, use these amazing photos everywhere. Every platform has a way to share photos – so use them all. Here are three more platform-specific ideas:

On Pinterest, create a board for each property that has property photos and highlights the benefits of living in the area (those lifestyle shots work great here). Make sure to use a lot of vertical photos, which play better on Pinterest than square ones do. Use free online editing tools like Canva to add borders if most of your shots are horizontal. Making sure your photographer knows that you need both vertical and horizontal shots from the outset will help. Be sure that you’re not only pinning real estate listing boards on Pinterest, though, or you’ll just be wasting your time. Make sure to create other useful boards as well so that people who aren’t in the market right now will follow you. Boards can include tips for speedy housekeeping, home organization, spring gardening ideas, home maintenance guides, and any type of household-related topic. You’ll still have a focus, and will be more interesting than just someone who is in the business of selling houses.

On single property web sites, use as many photos as you can. Make sure to add captions that not only describe what can be seen, but also provide ideas of what could be – the room may be decorated as a formal living space now, but could it be an office, play room, guest room, music room, media center, or artist’s loft? Alternatively, guide the viewer through the property by laying out the photos in an order they might encounter as they walk through the house and narrate. Something like this, “From this welcoming marble foyer, guests can choose to turn to their right into the cozy office with wood burning fireplace (see next picture). Provide clues to what the eye cannot see. Add social sharing buttons to these pages so clients and buyers can easily share their listings within their spheres.

On LinkedIn, people don’t want to see pure advertisements for your listings on LinkedIn. It’s much more useful to leverage those great neighborhood photos by sharing something you learned from the experience. For instance, share a thoughtfully written piece about a lesson learned from a particular deal. Use caution here. Don’t use stories that reflect negatively on you, your client, another agent, or a home. You can, however, share a cool new thing that you learned about a neighborhood, or about something that came up during inspection that you never would have thought to ask or check for in your own home, or tell a heartwarming story (with permission, of course) about how a client was able to overcome a challenge to reach their goal. Be professional, and be personable.