Eight Ways to Utilize Social Media in Real Estate: #1

November 2, 2010 by  
Filed under Robin's Ruminations

#1 Facebook (first in a series)

With over 500 million users, Facebook has become the world’s fastest-growing social medium.  Whatever is its appeal?

Facebook allows anyone with a computer, an Internet connection, and an e-mail address to easily stay in touch with family, friends, classmates, co-workers, and previous customers who have become friends.  If your family is far-flung – even in other countries – you can keep track of their comings and goings, and share news and pictures.  If you have not been diligent in keeping in touch with past friends and classmates (and most of us have not), Facebook makes it easy to reconnect.  You can also keep track of their birthdays, through Facebook.

Setting up a Facebook account is simple.  Just go to the Facebook homepage, and follow the steps.  Facebook guides you through the process, and helps you find your first Facebook friends!  (For additional assistance, download the free step-by-step guide to “Setting Up Your Facebook Account,” on the Resources page of this website.)

As the owner of your Facebook account, you decide who sees each different kind of information you post:  everyone, friends of friends, or just friends.  There are extensive Account Settings and Privacy Settings that you can adjust, to ensure that your privacy is at a level with which you are comfortable.  You can also specify what kinds of occurrences you’d like to be notified about by e-mail, such as a friend writing on your Wall or commenting on something you posted.

As you explore Facebook, you will be able to enjoy some of the entertaining features provided.  These include interactive games, quizzes, and groups and affiliation pages that you can join.

Why would a real estate agent want to have a Facebook account?  Naturally, doing so marks you as someone who is knowledgeable about current trends.  More importantly, it gives people an opportunity to know more about you than is typically possible in a purely business setting.  Why would they want to do that?  Because consumers tend to do business – particularly financial business – with someone they trust.  And they are more likely to trust a person who demonstrates that they are friendly, communicate well, and are involved in their community.

By sharing news items about your community – and about real estate trends in your community – you demonstrate your knowledge of the area.  Post links to interesting stories and area pictures, too.

With Facebook, the focus is on friendship, not on business.  In fact, it breaks Facebook rules to advertise your business in your basic Facebook account.  To support your business, you may want to consider setting up a Facebook business page, which is the subject of the next post in this series.

Forthcoming post: #2  Facebook Business Page

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