Love It or Hate It
One of the "hot button" issues for Real Estate Agents right now is related to Social Media Marketing (Facebook, twitter, Pinterest, etc). It would seem that most agents fall in to the "Love" or "Hate" category on this topic.
I guess I fall in to the "Love" category, simply because it's within my comfort zone. I'm too old to be counted among the Millennials, the generation normally associated with internet communication; but I've always been a bit of a tech nerd, so I gravitated toward these forms of communication pretty early.
Whether I love it or hate it is a little irrelevant though. In fact, whether you love it or hate it doesn't matter much. Whether you're comfortable with it or not, it can't hurt to learn about it. It may not matter whether this is how I want to communicate with my clients if it's the method my clients want to communicate with me.
Does it Matter?
Does it matter? What does matter is that over the next 2 decades, the primary client base in Real Estate is going to come from a generation that grew up with this technology. They're not uncomfortable with it. In fact, they welcome the open information it gives them. They're expecting to learn a little about the people they want to do business with...and they will absolutely use what they learn to determine WHO they will do business with.
How are my clients affected?
What does this matter to my clients? Well, a lot, actually.
For my clients who are buyers, it means that I can utilize communication strategies that will allow a much more open and efficient flow of information between all the parties involved. Pinterest to show you ideas, my website to guide you through listings, a Facebook group that allows us to brainstorm your needs in real time.
For my clients who are listing a home, it means that I am able to reach out to more people in a much more personal way and tell them about your home. Of course your home will be on the MLS, and of course I'll market it in a variety of avenues. But, I'll also be using Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram to put your listing in front of people in a way that lets us tell a story. Your house won't be just one more listing on a larger sheet full of listings. Your house will be a home, with a story, and the people who see it will appreciate that.
For my future clients, it means they get to learn about me, my business, my philosophy, my sense of humor, my reading preferences, and anything else they'd like to know. They can learn a lot about Real Estate by checking out my business Facebook page. They can learn a bit about Real Estate and a lot about Cycling by checking out my video blog. They can learn a lot about who I am, as a person, by checking out my personal Facebook profile. They can learn about who I am as a business person from my LinkedIn. In short, my future clients can make a better, more informed decision about who they do business with. Agents who fear this openness are going to struggle as Millennials drive the market. Agents who embrace it, and who share their passion for this business, will spend less time looking for clients and more time helping clients who looked for them.