Social Media, and Separating our Business and Personal Lives.

Managing Real Estate Broker with Howard Hanna Rand Realty License # 49FA1074963

With so much being written on Facebook, Twitter and other social media's real estate applications, many people are choosing different camps. You have those who embrace social media, many of whom are deriving business from it, and then there are those who are either skeptical or prefer in their words, to separate business and personal. I see the point on both sides, but I do believe that the skeptics can have their cake and eat it too. 

Facebook is not for shamelessly spamming and promoting yourself to your friends. Those people are annoying and probably generate zero business. Moreover, it is against Facebook TOS for your Facebook profile to be an advertising vehicle. My personal Facebook page is not spammy, but it does get a feed from my blog. If I were so motivated I'd figure out how to turn that off but it isn't an issue. Note the difference in my personal and business pages.  

Personal page

J Philip Faranda Facebook personal page

Facebook has a business only tool anyone can create. It is separate from your personal page, and is a better forum for more business oriented content. Once you have 25 fans, you can create a vanity URL. Mine is 

Now my business page:

J Philip Real Estate


Facebook is not for making business contact with people you have no prior connection to. You know who I am talking about- some guy in Colorado who wants to sell me 500 coffee mugs with my company logo or a real estate  motivational speaker I never heard of will not get access to my family photos.  

Facebook is a sphere of influence tool. People who already connected with you are the "farm," not  people you have never met. 

When you tell people your business and personal are so separate that you don't want to mix them you can unwittingly create the impression that you have a weird double life. Or, at least it is fun to think so. 

My hat size is 7 3/8

Comments (29)

R. Dwelling
Roaring Branch, PA

I attended a training on this as well.  Your points are on target.  Thank you for the information.

Jun 24, 2010 02:26 AM
Craig Rutman
Helping people in transition - Cary, NC
Raleigh, Cary, Apex area Realtor

I've always maintained that business is business, friends are friends and family is family. Keep them all separate and you'll never have problems.

Jun 24, 2010 02:58 AM
Jason Sardi
Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina - Charlotte, NC
Your Agent for Life

J. Phillip - I like the way you are using Facebook.  "Facebook is not for shamelessly spamming and promoting yourself to your friends."  Agreed.  I've deleted many folks for said annoyance.

Jun 24, 2010 03:20 AM
J. Philip Faranda
Howard Hanna Rand Realty - Yorktown Heights, NY
Associate Broker / Office Manager

R- Thanks for the comment. I love to be agreed with. 

Craig- I hope I don't owe you a royalty for my lame photo.

Jason-Me too. 

Jun 24, 2010 04:44 AM
Cara Marcelle Mancuso
Golden Girls with SW Desert Homes - Tucson, AZ
Call a Marana neighbor, I'm THERE!

Very nice post.  I try to keep my personal page on Facebook about well, stuff!  And on my business page, a mix of links and posts geared to my professional side.  I'm not all about statistics, I want my "likers" to see me as a whole picture - but it's professional.  Come "like" me! I just hit 25 fans.

Jun 24, 2010 05:08 AM
J. Philip Faranda
Howard Hanna Rand Realty - Yorktown Heights, NY
Associate Broker / Office Manager

You are liked! Now make that vanity URL. 

Jun 24, 2010 05:33 AM
Crystal Tost
RE/MAX Realty Professionals - Calgary, AB
Real Estate Made Easy

Speaking of Fan pages and vanity names, I am a couple fans short on my page for a vanity name, maybe some of you could help out please??



Jun 24, 2010 09:06 AM
Ted Tyndall
Davidson Realty Inc. - Saint Augustine, FL
I will help You find the Home YOU want to Buy

Philip, good post. I agree with keeping the Facebook for eople you already know or at least know of.

Jun 24, 2010 09:14 AM
Chad and Sandy Neumann
Chad and Sandy Real Estate Group - Jacksonville, FL
Jacksonville Realtor (904-414-6200)

Philip, you inspired us! We have been teetering on the edge, but you have shown us that we CAN have our privacy and our "promotion" (albeit, honest and professional) on a business page. Well done, and keep the tips coming!

Jun 24, 2010 09:25 AM
Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®
Lewisburg, WV
Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate

Philip, I do not do much on FB, but do have a personal and business page.

Jun 24, 2010 10:06 AM
William James Walton Sr.
WEICHERT, REALTORS® - Briotti Group - Waterbury, CT
Greater Waterbury Real Estate

Philip, you hit the nail on the head.

I saw your comment on Mitchell Hall's post saying the exact same thing, and I was wondering if you were going to say more about it. I'm glad you expanded your thoughts on the matter here. Impressed, I am, really. And that's a very hard thing to do!

Jun 24, 2010 10:45 AM
Cheryl Ritchie
RE/MAX Leading Edge - Huntingtown, MD
Southern Maryland 301-980-7566

I let the chips fall where they may and it is one big mixture of friends and clients and customers. I am what I am is how I figure it.

Jun 24, 2010 11:20 AM
Crystal Tost
RE/MAX Realty Professionals - Calgary, AB
Real Estate Made Easy

I am kind of like that too Cheryl! I think you have to be friends first to suggest your page, so it kinds of lumps in together. I just make sure never to post anything I am no proud of online anyway, no matter where we are we still have a professional image to uphold.

Jun 24, 2010 02:07 PM
Carol Culkin
Diamond Partners Inc - Overland Park, KS
Overland Park Residential Real Estate

J Phil -I think some Realtors are finally getting it and I see more of those in my circle of facebook friends taking a better approach these days.  Because, I don't ever pretend to be somebody I'm not, I feel comfortable mixing business with pleasure but I post less about real estate on my personal page and that's where I'm more about having fun. I think it's important that people do see my personal side. I am not living a double life. I am what I am. But, my business page is ALL buisness. I realize that if I post everything real estate on my personal page it would be like being at a party of non-real estate friends and talking non-stop about 'my business this and my business that", after a while people would be looking for an escape route.

Jun 24, 2010 03:52 PM
J. Philip Faranda
Howard Hanna Rand Realty - Yorktown Heights, NY
Associate Broker / Office Manager

Carol, Crystal, William, Nueman, et al- thanks for your comments and insight. I am bushed and turning in early, which is rare for me. I hope tomorrow everyone gets an AO. 

Peace out



Jun 24, 2010 04:23 PM
Kathryn Maguire (757) 560-0881 - Chesapeake, VA
Serving Chesapeake, Norfolk, VA Beach

J Philip, great post!  I have seen so many businesses do an outstanding job of using Facebook as a way to promote their business.  As for me, I am still working on it. And that last photo of you was priceless, very Village People-esque.

Jun 25, 2010 01:35 AM
Melissa Zavala
Broadpoint Properties - Escondido, CA
Broker, Escondido Real Estate, San Diego County

Phil: Thanks for the facebook tips. Facebook is something that I'd like to work on a little bit more.

Jun 25, 2010 01:41 AM
Jenna Dixon
Momentum Real Estate Group LLC - Marietta, GA
55 & Over | New Constructions | Horse Farms

J. Phillip - My concern about FB is the connection between the business page & the personal page.  I don't want a connection!  I have a son and granddaughter that live out of state that I like to keep up with on FB.  However, because my son is young and well, let's just leave it at young, he is not always the most discrete FB friend.  And the way that FB works, often his activities with his other friends show up on my page.  Which is not a good look for past clients and customers. 

Is there a way to separate the 2?  Personal.                Business.

Jun 25, 2010 03:21 AM
Malik Crichlow
GoodBuy Homes NJ Essex & Union County Real Estate specialist - Maplewood, NJ
Maplewood,SouthOrange,Union Real estate

Excellent post, I stay connected with my sphere via facebook and its one of the best ways to stay connected. 

Jun 25, 2010 03:08 PM
J. Philip Faranda
Howard Hanna Rand Realty - Yorktown Heights, NY
Associate Broker / Office Manager

Malik- my point exactly.

Jenna- You might want to check your privacy settings. I'm not sure if there is a clear cut answer in your case outside of getting your son to change how he posts. 

Jun 25, 2010 04:00 PM