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2009-04-17 17:14:04

Get Eyeballed with Facebook and LinkedIn

 

Lots of old-fashioned thinkers and marketers are asking the same exact question: Where are all the eyeballs these days?
 
And I’ve met my share of agents and brokers who’ve been asking that question, too. It’s a key question because when all is said in done in the marketing arena; it’s the number of eyeballs that really matter.
 
Ask folks in the newspaper business, they’ll tell you all about it while they stand in the unemployment line. For the last 15 years, eyeballs have been rolling away from print and to the Internet. And that fact has left newspapers out in the cold – quite literally, outside on the driveway and unread.
 
Because my job as coach and consultant depends on agents and brokers being profitable, I like to share what helps them. And here’s a piece of information you can’t afford to ignore (unless you’re looking to get out of real estate): Go where the eyeballs are and you’ll succeed in real estate.
 
Yes, the answer is the Internet. But specifically, they’re showing up more and more on Facebook and LinkedIn, two of the more popular social networking sites on the Internet.
 
At the end of February, Facebook reached 275 million users (that’s 550 million eyeballs for those of you counting) around the world, according to research firm comScore.
 
And LinkedIn reports it has over 38 million members worldwide. A new member joins LinkedIn approximately every second. What’s more, executives from all Fortune 500 companies are LinkedIn members.
 
Real success stories are starting to emerge. I read about an agent in Missouri who, days after getting a LinkedIn profile, connected with a client who ended up listing with the agent twice in three years, and he got $3 million in referral sales just by having the profile.
 
So how can agents and brokers benefit from Facebook? Here are a few things:
 
1. Market properties to a specific group or friends. Plus, share your listings with other agents -- before they land on the MLS.
 
2. Increase contacts by getting past and current clients to add you to their networks. And include links to your profile in all your online marketing materials.
 
3. Create defined groups such as first-time homebuyers. For example, you can start a “St. Louis Homebuyers” group and answer first-time buyers’ questions. You can also start a referral group with hundreds of agents.
 
4. Consider pay per click Facebook ads, typically .10 per click and you can send visitors directly to your listings. What’s more, you can choose the demographic you want to target. 
 
And for LinkedIn, consider these ideas:
 
1. Build your database of contacts. Simply invite LinkedIn people to join your network with a quick note, something like, “I’m glad to see you’re on LinkedIn. Maybe we can connect to help each another in our businesses. Can you add me to your network?”
 
2. Find the big hitters. Because LinkedIn is business oriented, you can connect with decision makers such as the relocation coordinators, human resource managers and others.
 
3. Get (or give) answers. LinkedIn has added a feature called LinkedIn Answers so folks can network with their questions and answers and share advice. 
 
4. Publish your online resume to help better define who you are and your business niche.
 
And then tying it all together with a special social networking site like this -- RealTown. In fact, RealTown offers a great system for tying this all together to manage from a single site.
 
A final note about LinkedIn and Facebook: You get out what you put in, just like a live networking event. So be proactive, outgoing, persistent, and of course, charming.
 
Also, I have some more free information on social networking on my website called  “Real Estate 2.0: Social Network,” http://www.corcorancoaching.com/BrokerAgent.php
 Please take a minute to learn how to maximize your social networking time.
 
Best of luck to you!
 
Bob Corcoran is a nationally recognized speaker and author who is founder and president of Corcoran Consulting Inc. (CorcoranCoaching.com, 800-957-8353), an international consulting and coaching company that specializes in performance coaching and the implementation of sound business systems into the residential or commercial broker or agent’s existing practice. e look forward to hearing from you.  Sign up TODAY for your complimentary business consultation. http://www.CorcoranCoaching.com/bpw.php

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