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Facebook’s Emily White Offers Best Practices For Real Estate

By Molly on July 28th, 2011

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“Real estate agents created the idea of a personal profile. You all did this before we did.”

 

We’re live blogging this week from the Inman News Real Estate Connect conference in San Francisco, CA! One of the featured speakers at the conference was Emily White, Facebook’s Director of Local.

Emily is not only qualified to speak at Real Estate Connect because of her professional title, she has also moved nine times in the last ten years and could talk until she is blue in the face about how much she adores her real estate agent, Miles.

Emily took the stage to talk about the best ways to leverage Facebook as a real estate agent. She opened by saying, “real estate agents created the idea of a personal profile. You all did this before we did.” With that in mind, she encouraged each real estate agent to create a personal, business page using his/her name as the page name. In Emily’s opinion, buyers and sellers choose their agent because they like and trust that particular individual, so the Facebook page should promote exactly that.

Emily explained once you set up a page you need to “host” your fans. She went on to say, “you wouldn’t host a party and then not welcome, feed and entertain your guests. You need to really host your fans on your Facebook page. Take care of them.”

How should you take care of your Facebook fans? Emily encourages posting to your page three times per week. She argues, “three times a week keeps you top of mind with your fans without crossing over into spammer territory.”

Once you have your initial fan base, how do you continue to grow it? Emily shared a statistic that 75% of consumers show their support for a local business by telling a friend. With that in mind, she urged agents to ask new acquaintances and clients to “like” their page during the initial meet and greet conversation. She said, “just as you would hand someone your business card at the end of a great introductory conversation, you should also ask them to kindly “like” your Facebook page.”

How powerful is the “like” on Facebook? Emily noted that with something like Facebook deals, a deal with a “like” by a friend is ten times more likely to be purchased. The same goes for spreading the virtual word about your business page.

Toward the end of her presentation, Emily encouraged agents to offer incentives for “liking” your Facebook page. For example, “like” our page to be entered to win a $50 gift card to the local restaurant of your choice. Who doesn’t want free stuff?

In closing, Emily noted that 52% of consumers discover a new, local business on the recommendation of a friend. The same goes for choosing a real estate agent. Use Facebook as one of the primary tools that delivers you referrals.

Agents, do you have a personal, business page on Facebook?

 

Follow our live updates from Real Estate Connect on Twitter, @Century21, and on the conference hashtag, #ICSF.

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avatar Molly
Molly is a member of the @C21 social media team. When she's not live blogging from conferences or interviewing System members, you can find her reading about interior design, writing restaurant reviews, and imagining what the kitchen will look like in her Parisian dream home.
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