Let’s look at it this way: When you decide to have a yard sale, what is one of the first things you do? You advertise it to death! You promote it through Facebook, Twitter, the local paper and emails to friends. Most certainly you will put signs up in your neighborhood including one in your front yard alerting everyone that you have amazing stuff to sale. This is exactly what a buyer and his real estate agent need to do when putting a home on the market. Advertise it to death! Social media is here to stay and serves as a valuable tool in getting word out about your home. Anyone who doesn’t take advantage of this, is selling homes the old-fashioned way, and that just doesn’t cut it in today’s real estate world.
As a realtor, I depend on the Internet to promote my clients’ homes. I have found that some of the best ways to use social media is to take advantage of every opportunity out there. Is your real estate agent using these promotional tools? If not, you need to ask why.
1. Facebook: This is an amazing site for sellers. Here, a home can be viewed and shared by many, some you would never be able to reach if you didn’t have a Facebook page. The key is to make sure that the site is updated regularly. Let your friends on Facebook know if you are having an open house, or if you are in a top school district. Ask people to “share” if they know someone looking in your neighbourhood. Create a photo album with excellent photos and captions that describe each room. Anything that is exceptional about your home, be sure and mention.
2. Twitter: The same with Facebook can be said for Twitter, though it can only be said in 140 characters or less! Use words such as: Check Out My Home For Sale, then link to your realtor’s website or your own blog/website that we will discuss further down. Update frequently, but not too much that you annoy your followers!
3. Blog/Website: Certainly your real estate agent has a website right? But you too can make a simple blog or website on your own that gives out all of the information regarding your home. It’s easy to promote via Facebook and Twitter, just make sure the photos are excellent and the property description is quick, to the point, and professionally describes what you want everyone to know about your home.
4. YouTube: Again, another valuable tool. This is like inviting hundreds of people to an open house. Make sure the video is of excellent quality and gives buyers a good idea of what your home is all about. Load on YouTube, then promote via Facebook, Twitter and your website.
5. Signage: Professional signs should be placed in your front yard, and also around your neighbourhood. You would be surprised how many people passing by, follow signs to view a home for sale that they may never have known about unless signs were posted throughout the area. Often times, buyers will drive around and casually look at neighbourhoods they like, so they need to know that there is a great home waiting for them!
6. Print Advertising: While 90 percent of buyers look at homes via the Internet, it’s not time to disregard advertising your home in local newspapers. This is still a useful way to promote your home, particularly if you are targeting older buyers, many of whom don’t rely on social media.
Creating a buzz about your property by posting information about your home is now mandatory when your home goes on the market. Searching for sellers has taken on a whole new meaning in the past several years. But don’t let it backfire on you. Here are a few things to avoid when promoting your home with social media:
1. Don’t Spam: In other words, don’t go crazy and continually post about your home. No one likes to see his or her Facebook and Twitter accounts clogged with advertising, so the best thing is to promote when you have something to say about your home.
2. Don’t Promote Using Bad Grammar And Photography: Talk about shooting yourself in the foot. If you don’t put your home in the best possible light, then you are promoting something that buyers will avoid. Dark photos, or photos showing a messy, cluttered home as well as bad grammar when describing your home, will have your audience running away from your home, rather than taking note or sharing with a friend.
3. Don’t Ignore Your Sites. Once you go to the work of promoting your home on the Internet, don’t ignore it. Check regularly to see if buyers have asked questions about your property, if they want more information or if they would like to see more photos. Update occasionally with new photos or if you are lowering the price.
There is no question that when a seller includes social media in marketing their home, the extra effort is worth it. For those buyers who set up Facebook, Twitter, upload photos to websites such as Picasa, and host videos on YouTube, then you have just opened the door of your home to hundreds of potential buyers that print media just can’t do anymore. Homeowners know their properties better than anyone, so share the interesting, emotional and valuable details about your home. Working with an agent that promotes your home as well through these resources, means that your home may be sold faster than you think. And in today’s buyer’s market, that’s always good news.