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How Social Media is Shaping the Real Estate Industry Real Estate agents have started using social media channels at every stage of marketing, be it for lead generation, sales or brand building

By Amit Jain

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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India is a country that houses more than 460 million internet users, making it the second-largest internet market in the world after China. The increase in the number of Internet users has expanded the outreach of digital platforms manifolds.

Like every other industry, the phenomenal growth of social media has changed the way the real estate industry functions. Agents have started using these channels at every stage of marketing, be it for lead generation, sales or brand building. It allows realtors to develop their enterprise as they are able to instantly connect with existing clients, potential customers and their competitors. Further, majority homebuyers today have taken to the Internet whilst looking for their dream house.

There are numerous benefits a business owner can reap from social media, however they need to mindfully select their medium and the nature of their content. Following factors determine the value of social media in the real estate sector:

Improves Brand Visibility

The primary reason behind using digital media platforms for promotion is that it assists in building the name of the brand. It helps position oneself in the market, subsequently catching the attention of new clients.

A strategy that is a good blend of insightful posts coupled with crisp content is deemed to be an effective way of establishing the image as an industry expert. Business owners need to be certain of the taste of their target group and roll out material that will fit their likings. Such tailored posts keep the audience engaged, and they keep coming back for more information.

Helps in Networking

Successful organisations have a very strong network base, and are very well connected with everyone present in their internal as well as external business environment. Social media does not only help in retaining current clients, but also allows one to reconnect with consumers from the past, attract potential buyers and keep a tab on the activities of their peers and competitors.

One can reach out to their existing and old customers via Facebook, and use the platform to ask for referrals for one's business. Business owners can even utilise their posts to prompt their followers to share articles or links with individuals interested in purchasing a property.

Further, digital media sites are great for gaining competitor insights. They help with understanding the strategy employed by other agents and how they are marketing their product. An individual can also communicate with their business peers for exchanging ideas, sharing experiences and getting into collaborations.

Diversifies Marketing Efforts

Marketing offers business ventures with a large number of methods for promoting their product. Employing multiple marketing modes can prove to be beneficial as the returns will come from varied segments. Apart from merely using traditional ways, realtors can use a mix of online advertising and social media marketing to expand their outreach. Updating accounts on pages like Twitter and Facebook can help one in generating awareness amongst current and potential clients. Using YouTube "pre-rolls' that speak of new listings is yet another way of keeping consumers informed.

Additionally, a video format can help one project a true visual of the property and in turn, pique the interest of potential buyers.

Offers Platform for Flow of Verified Information and Content

Information is the key in today's time. Reaching the right audience and sharing information in the shortest possible timeframe with accuracy and cost effectiveness is important for any organisation.

Social media enables companies to share and broadcast news, information, updates, and progress to its customers and all stakeholders seamlessly. Also, it enables likes and shares by social media followers, which increases the reach amongst friends and peers.

Boosts Website Traffic

Sharing blog posts and articles on social networking sites helps one connect with an audience that is keen on opting for expert opinion whilst making their purchase decision.

Using SEO friendly terminology can help drive more traffic to business pages. Regularly updating content helps in lifting website rankings as search engines favour fresh content. Finally, when the pages and tabs are linked to multiple sources, both online and offline, a top-of-the-mind recall is created amongst consumers.

Amit Jain

CMD, Arkade

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