Save time on social media by doing some soul searching now

In the world of big business, social media is the “poor man’s” marketing method. That may be, but with experts suggesting you budget at least 12 hours for social media per week, social media isn’t cheap.

Over the next two posts, we’ll cover some best practices for the scaling down the opportunity costs and getting some real returns on your social media investment. We’ll start with the hard part—looking in the mirror.

Find your business objective

Nothing saves time like limiting your options. Let’s set aside the Facebook stats and Pinterest best practices for now, and focus on your goals. Why does your company need social media at all? Maybe your portfolio is small and you want to build awareness for your practice. Maybe you’re ready to expand your reach to another segment of the housing market. Take some time to uncover the core need of your business and be ready to stand by it. Ideally, your business objective should be a strong indicator for which social media channels will be strategic for your later on.

Find your own reasons.

It’s amazing how the sense of media fragmentation (goldfish brain?) suddenly goes away when you log in with a job to do. Before opening new social accounts or launching another campaign, take some time to remember why you became a Realtor in the first place. At what point in your life did real estate become a goal for you? What were the barriers to getting started and how did you overcome them?  Social networks reward passion. Before you log on again, find yours. It will save you hours of screen time.

Social networks reward passion. Before you log on again, find yours.

Review your client records.

Reviewing old files on closed deals and demographic information through your website and social media accounts can be a strong source of direction for what content will work in your corner of the social media market. If you’re new to the demographics game, YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Twitter and Pinterest all offer analytics dashboards to their business accounts, and there are a number of free software resources for making your life easier and combining accounts.

Make a channel plan.

Now that you’ve broken ground with your business objective, personal goals and audience profiles, digging a social media channel strategy is easy. You’re already thinking like a brand—now it’s time to set your sights on the most relevant social platforms for that brand, get signed up, and lay out a content plan for each.

Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and Twitter are currently leading the real estate pack—though Pinterest is climbing to relevance too. No matter the platforms that become central to your social strategy, the key is see them as critical access points to your customer base. For top performing Arizona Realtor Don Matheson, understanding the uniqueness of platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook goes hand-in-hand with understanding his audience and future clients: “My favorite is LinkedIn. But the goal for all of them is to understand them better, utilize them more, and to segment audiences and target market to each in a positive way.”

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