Leverage Instagram for Your Business

October 5, 2015

Instagram has emerged as one of the largest social media platforms with more than 400 million monthly active users and about 3.5 billion “likes” that occur nearly every day. This photo-rich site offers real estate professionals plenty of ways to up their reputations and better engage with potential clients.

The average interaction on Instagram is about 10 times higher than Facebook. As such, more real estate professionals are turning to Instagram to promote their business. Patty McNease, director of marketing for homes.com, offers some of the following ideas:

1. Share a behind-the-scenes look at your life as a real estate professional. For example, if you work with a team, share your company culture and showcase different events that are occurring at your office. For agents who work solo, share a photo of an open house or a closing gift. Don’t forget to show your personal side too, such as if you’re a marathon runner, dog lover, or wine enthusiast.

2. Show your listings. Don’t just post a standard photo in front of the house or photo dump a bunch of photos of the home. Break up your posts. Pinpoint a special feature in the home and then post one a day – for example, showing off the renovated kitchen one day and the fall flowers in the front yard a few days later. Try creating a collage. (Instagram has a collage interface called Layout , which you can use to create collages and upload instantly to Instagram then. Or try  PicMonkey or Font Candy.)

3. Add a location to your posts. Adding a location to a post results in 79 percent higher engagement, according to “Simply Measures Q3 2014 Instagram Study.”

4. Embrace the hashtag world. Hashtags like #realestate are ways to optimize the Instagram posts you publish, making your image searchable so others can find it even if they don’t follow you. Tag your post with a keyword – such as the neighborhood name or #newhome, #househunting, etc. – and your picture will then be grouped with images posted by other users who are using the same tag. Aim to use five to 10 hashtags with every post.

5. Interact with others. Find those with similar interests and like or comment to their posts. Use the “@” sign when you mention others in your own posts – these @ references provide 56 percent more engagement than those without, according to studies.

Source: “Five Ways to Grow Your Real Estate Business Through Instagram,” RISMedia (Oct. 1, 2015)