Boost Your Social Media Presence
Win consumers’ attention with these six tips from Century 21’s global director of social media.
December 19, 2014
Creating the right online persona for your company is crucial, especially since 78 percent of consumers say a brand’s social media presence influences their purchase decisions, according to a 2012 study by Market Force, a consumer research firm.
Broker to Broker tapped into the expertise of Matt Gentile, Century 21’s global director of social media. “Social media has greatly expanded the opportunities for you to reach your customers, but you have to be willing to spend the time necessary to provide value to your audience,” he says.
Below are Gentile’s top six tips for improving your social media presence.
1. Start with one social media network. Either Facebook or Google Plus are good starting points. “Facebook is one of the most well-recognized and utilized social networks in the world,” he says. Facebook users also tend to linger, allowing for better brand building and marketing recognition. Google Plus, does have more relevance for search engines. So, if you use G+, Gentile recommends taking advantage of Google’s mix of free and paid tools (known as “search engine optimization tactics”) to ensure you are being found on Google.
2. Open a company business page. Title it something that’s very specific to your business and touts your local value proposition. For instance, if you sell condos near the beach in Seaside, Fla., then you may want to call your business page “Seaside Condos,” rather than “Jane Smith, REALTOR®,” Gentile says. This makes it easy for customers to find you in search results and identify what you’re selling immediately.
3. Point to quality content. Gentile defines “quality content” as any content that has direct appeal and value to your audience. It’s important to know your audience—and that starts with knowing yourself and your company’s culture. “There is a premium on the genuine article. Today's consumer can sense a fake persona from a mile away,” he warns. “For some brokerages, it may be appropriate to post photos of the local ball fields and a short description of the town. Others may want to provide professional write ups about the latest, greatest gadgets for automating your home. To find shareable content from third-party sources, Gentile recommends using a combination of Feedly and BufferApp. These sites enable you to quickly grab content that is relevant to your customers and publish it to Facebook and G+ profiles and business pages, Twitter, Linkedin, and others. “The more quality content you provide, the more it will be shared,” he says - and the more of those new eyeballs will begin to recognize you as a source.
4. Post photographs that resonate with your audience. “Visual marketing is incredibly important,” Gentile says. “According to a recent Internet trends report there are over 1.8 billion photos uploaded and shared each day.” The quality of the images is less important than their local relevance and how they tie back to your personal brand, he says.
5. Use a social media management platform. A platform enables you to manage all your social media channels from one place—and to schedule posts in advance, a big time saver. “Facebook or any social network can be a sinkhole if you are not disciplined,” Gentile says. “A social media management platform enables you to distance yourself from the network so you treat this form of marketing like any other form of marketing, with business goals in mind and precise execution.” He recommends Wildfire by Google or Hootsuite, because both easy to use platforms.
6. Boost visibility. Targeted Facebook ads can help boost awareness of a new or renovated social media page. Use specific demographics in your ad’s parameters to help reach potential customers in your market. Facebook’s targeted “boost” ads cost as little as $40. Facebook’s analytics will show you how successful your ad is.