Why Social Networks Are Relevant…
Marketers still haven’t figured out that the interaction between people on social networks is unscripted. And like the people interacting within these networks, marketers have to learn to just react to what’s going on. The following graph should further hasten a consistent effort towards your social efforts. Numbers rounded. Source: Forrester Research’s ‘U.S. Interactive Marketing Forecast, 2007 to 2012,’ Oct. 2007
Social networking is all about relationship building. Over these last couple of weeks, our social discussion has revolved around the arduous task of sustaining an appealing profile, attracting active participant groups, while determining whether or not it is worth creating/starting a social networking profile. If you are still unsure of whether or not social networking has monetary value, Nike, Coke, Proctor Gamble, Axe have all found social success. Any agency that understands it’s all based on conversation and not on messaging is going to be more than entitled to and welcome in the environment. Take a look at the following article, which highlights Disney case study. It is a great example of how maintaining contact with the consumers proves to be advantageous rather than constantly bombarding them with unattractive advertisements. If you are able to “create a story” within your ad, it enables your viewing audience to be that much more invested with what you are trying to say. Jack Pan, VP-marketing strategy and special projects for Disney, reminds the suitor the lesson to be learned is that social networks allow marketers to more efficiently expand their group of consumers while getting the most out of already established marketing properties. With large companies joining the social media experience, what will remain the same for many of these consumers will be the companies ability or inability to grow within your existing community of friends, by keeping them engaged, intrigued, and willing to participate. The above graphic should serve as a reminder for all that social network spending is not a fluke.
For real estate professionals seeking to distinguish themselves amongst their competitive peers, the opportunity to engage in these conversation markets can prove to result in fruitful dividends. Due in part to the reach, social networking can allow realtors to pinpoint their relevant information for those custom tailored searches done by adept visitors. This will inform these visitors your own willingness to engage in these burgeoning approaches, while also improving your credibility amongst other search engines. Social Networks like Facebook are about breaking down barriers to engage in conversations. Conversational marketing is an integrated approach that seeks to engage groups of people through strategic initiatives that attempt to push messages, shape impressions, or align with markets through new social channels.It’s the difference between leveraging an opportunity because you can bring value to the discussion vs. selling an opportunity simply because you can capitalize on it. By experimenting with new forms of media, can actually change marketing from a business of bullying and deception, to a genuine form of respectable and valued sense of service and personalization.If there is one thing that we can learn about social/conversational media is that people and the markets they represent have rallied against one dimensional approaches and have demanded personalization, transparency, and sincerity. Gone are the days of talking “to” people and controlling the message from company to influencer to audience. Now companies are forced to let go as "audiences" have given way to the very people we chose to leapfrog for the greater good of mass marketing.Brands have become democratized. Audiences have evolved into factions of people linked together by common interests. Control is lost and now is now firmly placed among, and cultivated by, the people. There is no audience in conversations. Nor is there an audience for any other form on social Media. Each venue comprises of groups of people and they each come to the table with a different recipe of experiences, preferences, dislikes, and prejudices all wrapped in a blanket of skepticism and hope.But whether companies agree or not, the fact is that conversations are taking place with or without them, no matter how many ads they run, key words they buy, or press releases they push out over the wires. We’re witnessing the shift from B2B (business to business) or B2C (business to consumer) to P2P (peer to peer) marketing – or better described as conversations between people.Ultimately, the shifts within social/conversational marketing ultimately impact and benefit brand resonance, loyalty, and therefore, fuel the philosophy that markets are also conversations.
• Find out what social bookmarking sites other bloggers in your industry are targeting and finding success with. It will help you limit wasted effort.
• Be careful if you engage people who post bad feedback or comments about you online. If they are showing up in the search engine results on the first page, as the thread continues while you defend your position against someone (or multiple people) who dislike you, the more you respond to the posts, the harder it may become to ever get it off the first page because it becomes more popular in the search engine’s eyes.
In the beginning, try to read as much "popular" content as you can, to get an idea of what kind of content people want shared with them. With real estate information, if framed as instructional and overwhelming, can undoubtedly turn away potential visitors. Consequently, post comments on these real estate stories, making sure that you are being objective in your commentary. Only post comments if you have something substantive to say, and don’t try to use comments to drive traffic to yourself or otherwise hijack a comment thread.
Once you’re completely comfortable with the site and understand the community dynamic, you’re ready to start submitting real estate insight you think other people will value, and start sharing them with others. Try to submit and share in moderation. Always start with sources that are already popular with the community so that you can minimize errors in judgment and accidental submissions from less-respected sources.
Even when you try to stick to the basics, not every story you submit will be popular (nor should it). Furthermore, while it is okay to share real estate property information that you’ve submitted with your friends by using on-site or off-site communication methods, if you over do it, you will start losing friends fast. No one wants to read every single story you submit (so please only share your best picks of the week). Over time, if you’re sufficiently social with other users your profile and your submissions will gain more visibility. Once your profile is visible and you’ve had some successes, you’ll have a small real estate niche group of users taking note of your submissions and voting/commenting on them. You are developing a following but beware: these real estate friends can be fickle if you don’t reciprocate. The consistent effort you put into credible niche communities will pay dividends. Befriend these like-minded community members that enjoy your content, and thank them for keeping an eye out for you. These are the people you should be networking with. It’s called social networking for a reason; no one can do it alone. You need to make friends along the way to help give you that extra push towards escrow. Make sure that you check out the content that these users are sharing and give it at least as much time as they’re giving your content. You may have a good eye for content but keep in mind the people that help you along. Real estate transactions began and ended on handshakes, whereas the social media atmosphere has evolved these standard real estate industry connections to initiate via well formulated networking skills within the world wide web.