Social media has become a huge business and marketing tool for many industries- including real estate. Instagram in particular is a great tool for showing your clients what homes are on the market , what features they offer, and the lifestyle and community they can expect in the city you serve. Instagram is a very visual platform making it great for showing off available real estate and easily promoting yourself as an agent.
One of the most powerful tools you have as a real estate agent is video. Instagram allows you to make short videos that are perfect for an audience looking for quick information. Having the skills and ability to showcase the properties you're listing can highly affect how quickly you're able to get these homes off the market. You don't need fancy sound and video equipment to make these videos-- a cell phone camera and some easy to use phone apps work just fine!
Share your handle on other platforms
Be sure to link all of your social platforms on your other online profiles. LinkedIn, Facebook and your business website are all great places to start. By connecting all of your profiles, it allows interested viewers to easily find and follow your other online accounts for additional information.
Utilize Instagram video and photo editing apps
While you absolutely want to avoid over-editing your visuals, some apps and programs can help you make subtle updates for great content. Brightening your photos and putting together videos and slide shows to show off your listings are some great examples of this. Try apps like Flipgram or 360Panorama. Don't forget that Instagram also has its own editing feature in-app. Stay away from heavy filters and try subtle edits like increasing brightness and adjusting the shadows and highlights.
Hashtags help people find the content that they're interested in. We recommend only using hashtags that really apply to the content you're posting. By using irrelevant trending hashtags you may receive a few new followers, but they won't be the kinds of people who are interested in your content or your business. Try tags that note your market like #austin or #austinrealestate and tags that explain your content like #onthemarket or #houseforsale so engaged and valuable followers can find your content.
You want to make sure you're posting content on a regular schedule. Think about your audience and when they're utilizing their phones most often. Studies have shown that very early in the morning and later in the afternoon after many individuals have headed home from work are the best times to post. You can experiment with your own profile and find what scheduled days and times work best for your audience and schedule content ahead of time with a social scheduling tool like Hootsuite. You can also use the insights tool on Instagram to track which of your posts perform best.
When you're first starting to grow your Instagram account, it's important to let people know your page exists. As you grow your page, follow profiles with related content. This not only allows you to engage with other account's and the content that they post, it let's them know that your account is one they might be interested in! This can also help you find great UGC or "user generated content". Regram photos your love and give a shoutout to the original creator.
Use the business profile feature
Instagram recently released a new feature allowing business profiles to be created. To make your account a business profile, simply click on the cog in the top right corner of your account to open the settings and select "switch to business profile". The only requirement is to have a Facebook account linked to your profile. Having a business account gives you access to analytics so you can see how your account is performing as well as promote your content to reach more people. The best part about promoting your content? You can specifically target users with an interest in real estate, your market, home design, or whatever characteristics you think would be most successful.
Showcase local lifestyle and events
You're not just selling a home, you're selling a neighborhood and a lifestyle! Showcase local events you attend or restaurants and attractions in the area. This gives more breadth to your content and creates more interest for your page. This can even include outings you're taking yourself! Users like to see a personal touch on accounts so they can get to know the person behind the photos. Make yourself a one-stop shop for any information potential buyers might need to make a purchasing decision.
Growing a following on any social network takes time and patience! Don't get discouraged if your account doesn't have 5K followers by the end of the first week. With consistency and great content, you'll have an engaged social presence on Instagram in no time at all.