How many times have you thought “I wish my Instagram photos were as good as theirs.” Sometimes it feels like everyone else has professionals doing their social media for them, doesn’t it?
A couple of photos on interesting houses might get a few extra likes, but what happens when you’ve shared pictures of all the “good” properties? What next? How do you continue to build interest (to homebuyers and sellers) on Instagram?
They’re legitimate questions that plague most real estate agents, and you’re not alone. It may seem impossible becoming the next popular Instagram account, but it’s not. You just have to be a little sneaky…
Turning Dull into Interesting
Companies with tangible products, like shoes or new gadgets, can have an easier time displaying their brand in creative ways -- because they have actual products to work with. They’re the ones we usually mesmerize over.
In real estate, your product is more service-oriented, making the photo-battleground centered on you and the homes you represent. Turning normal houses into properties to drool over, or your service into something amazing means you have to stop yourself from taking the normal route.
Don’t post regular images of the home’s exterior with captions resembling: “Beautiful home on 123 Wentworth Street. Come check it out. It’s a must see!” Instead, look for ways to show the home in a different light -- like how a seller has decorated the living room for guests. Basically, sell the personality and intent of the house (i.e. how someone could use it).
The same goes for you and your office. No one needs more selfies, but think about the impression a homebuyer gets if you take a photo of a team meeting where you’re discussing upcoming development plans for the city/neighborhood. It leaves an impression that you’re staying on top of the market and taking care of your clients.
7 Instagram Ideas to Post for Real Estate
1. Behind-the-Scenes Shots
Everything about real estate is focused on person-to-person interactions … so, humanize your services. Give homebuyers and sellers a sneak peek at what goes on in the office, or what you do on a regular basis.
Again, don’t just make a selfie or a team-selfie. Give context as to what’s going on. Example: Take a photo of a house you’re about to put on the market and say “Finalizing the MLS paperwork on this house today. In 12 hours, it hits the market. If you want a sneak peek before other buyers, contact me today!”
Here’s an example from McKinsey Tutor, a realtor in Austin, TX. She gives a unique snap of her life as an agent.
2. Reposts from Past Clients
Every transaction is a new connection. Most homebuyers, when they move into their newly bought house, will take a photo of the place. They may even take photos of their decorations being hung. These are opportunities to capture on your own Instagram account.
Ask past clients if they could tag you on an Instagram photo they took and share it on your own account. Let other viewers know you still keep in touch and your past clients are happy with their move-in.
3. Really Cool Statistics
To put a creative spin on images with motivational text, try posting a statistic of the MLS market you serve. How much are homes selling for? How fast are they selling?
But don’t keep the statistics limited to real estate. Think about the factors that motivate homebuyers and sellers -- like how close is the neighborhood to common workplaces, what traffic times look like in areas, what schools have A+ rating, etc.
4. Quotes that Speak to Your Clients
Motivational quotes are one of those catch-22 items. Posting too much of them can turn people away. But used sparingly, they can spark renewed interest and even motivation to act (such as buy a house, choose an agent, etc).
The thing to remember with quotes is relevancy. Make them relevant to the people you’re trying to serve. Homebuyers in your area probably have unique wants and problems. Craft quotes to address those. Even get funny with them. It’s easy to make puns about decisions. How many homes do buyers look at, and have to make a decision between? These situations set you up with opportunities to poke fun or even help.
5. Create Mini Listing Videos
Since Instagram allows you to create longer videos and “stories,” you can easily create short, listing videos. Force yourself to sell the property in under 30 seconds. What features do you highlight and what rooms do you show?
This also allows you to get personal. Pitch the listing. Standard MLS data can suddenly have a human-take on it versus written bullet points.
6. Use Your Clients for Videos
I’m sure whenever a client closes on a real estate transaction, they’re in a very excited-happy mood. Capture that with a video! Let them give a real testimonial via Instagram video. You can have them express how grateful they are -- to you -- for helping them. They can do the classic “Price is Right” expression, where they jump up and down in excitement.
Every moment of the process can be captured in real-time and be used to show you and your services. Take a photo. Film an event. Record a story. Showing who you really are, at work, and how you help others is a wonderful way to create a real estate brand. It’s a great way to create interest on Instagram and get shares/likes.
Next time you’re out, give one of the ideas a try and let me know how you did.