Participating in social media can be addictive for some and overwhelming for others, but whichever bucket you fall into, social media is an ideal space to create a personal brand, engage with your audience, generate leads and ultimately grow your business.
If you’re new to social media, learn to avoid common pitfalls, and if you’re a social media expert, pick up a few pointers to launch campaigns on additional social media platforms.
FIND YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA FIT
Each social platform offers opportunities to capture an audience and earn leads; it’s up to you to find the platform that feels most natural, best suits your business style and appeals to your audience.
“Using Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn and/or Twitter properly can absolutely generate leads. It’s not so much that one is better than the other, but you should determine which of these platforms you will use and feel comfortable engaging on, and which platforms you think your audience is on.” —Cuevas
It is important you establish yourself as a local expert in the places where people are already talking about your market and join the conversation only when you have something of value to contribute
INVEST IN SOCIAL MEDIA ACTIVITIES
Be sure to dedicate enough time to remain relevant to your audience on each of your selected social media platforms. Save time by narrowing your scope to just a couple of platforms.
Returns on your investment will not be immediate, but should pay off in the longer term if you’re participating appropriately and building a helpful brand. Once you’re comfortable with your presence, paid amplification is an option. But great success can come with the investment of time alone.
If you are running Facebook Ads then you will need a budget. The only cost of establishing yourself as a market expert on social media is your time and creativity. Provide a balance of content: personal, promotional and useful
Getting into a rhythm of content can be one of the hardest parts of building a brand on a new platform. Be careful to avoid overly promotional content and instead focus on content that sets you apart from your competitors. Remain as authentic as possible so your audience can get to know you and feel comfortable reaching out when they’re ready to buy.
“Use this simple rule: Give, give, give, then ask. Give valuable content away more often than posting listings for sale. The more valuable content you put into the system the more return you will see” —Cuevas
DISTINGUISH YOURSELF AS A SOCIAL MEDIA EXPERT
If authenticity and relevant content are the pillars of top-notch social media marketing, then you can imagine how poorly you’ll fare if you use social media like an advertisement space. Stand out as the most useful agent in your audience’s network by offering unique information and perspectives.
Cuevas and L’Eplattenier noted these common pitfalls:
- Don’t treat your followers as a distribution list for your listings.
- Don’t sell your audience; help them.
- Don’t replicate tips and tricks already inundating the space. Offer new, expert information.
- Don’t expect immediate or obvious ROI.
“The agents who use social media to create and build relationships are the ones who will win. You don’t have to sell, just offer and create value.” —Cuevas
“It’s basically the same thing that separates good agents from bad agents. Like great agents, social media winners focus on helping instead of selling. Like bad agents, social media losers are too pushy. They view their audience as dollar signs and only focus on selling.” —L’Eplattenier
TAILOR ENGAGEMENT TO SOCIAL MEDIA
Tactics that work well on Instagram may fall flat on Facebook, or vice versa, simply because the audience in each space expects a particular approach to engagement. Customize your messaging to the platform you’re using.
“The best practices for using any one of the social media platforms is to respect the platform and engage on each one properly. Don’t treat them all the same.” —Cuevas