Integrated marketing programs allow companies to leverage a suite of communications strategies and tactics to achieve their business goals. An integrated approach aligns online and offline activities, and integrates the appropriate divisions and teams, ensuring the program implemented is on-brand and on-target. And, while your real estate public relations program may be strong on its own, it’s nothing if your news and thought leadership aren’t reaching the right audiences. That’s where social media marketing comes in.
Why should my real estate firm use social media marketing?
Effective social media marketing programs start with goal setting. What are you looking to achieve by setting up a company page for your construction company? Why would a residential developer want to user Twitter? How is Instagram going to help your commercial brokerage firm attract buyers and sellers? Does YouTube have a place in telling your architectural firm’s story?
With your goals clearly defined, it’s time to determine which platforms are best suited to your audience and your content. If coming up with one or two high quality images for your monthly e-newsletter is difficult, Instagram likely isn’t for you. And, if you’re looking to integrate social media into your sales strategy, Facebook may not be the best avenue to pursue. Regardless of the platforms you choose, ensure they are reaching the right audiences and you have a steady stream of high-quality content to keep the audiences you cultivate engaged.
How can social media marketing strengthen my real estate PR program?
Among social media’s strengths as a marketing tool is the ability to build relationships. In the case of Twitter, in particular, there is an opportunity to build relationships with many of the editors and reporters from the real estate trade publications and mainstream media in which you aspire to be featured.
Monitoring an editor or reporter’s Twitter feed provides valuable insights into the topics they have recently covered and can also help to spark creative ideas for story angles that you may be able to pitch them successfully. Last, but certainly not least, it also helps you to understand who that individual is as a person. For all you know, you may have the same go-to lunch spot or an affinity for the same types of travel. Remember, effective relationship building doesn’t start with a hard-sell.
Can I reach new audiences through social media?
Social media marketing is a valuable tool for expanding the reach of your real estate PR program. While your in-house team or PR agency may be engaging print, broadcast and online media, social media provides an opportunity to share your latest bylined articles and feature stories with clients and prospects. Take LinkedIn for example. The thought leadership piece that was recently featured in the local real estate journal can be not only posted to your company page, but shared by individual members of your team through their own LinkedIn profiles. If you have a team of five brokers and they each have an average of 300 LinkedIn connections, that could give your brand and expertise exposure to 1,500 new contacts.
Is sharing real estate PR materials enough to propel a social media marketing program?
No. Now, let me elaborate. Media coverage generated through a public relations program makes for great social media content. That said, it can’t be the only content you are sharing. Social media marketing offers designers, developers, brokers, property managers and the like an opportunity to position their company as a source and a resource. What does that mean exactly? While you’re a source of timely information about your firm, you also want to be perceived as a reliable resource of data, industry trends, etc. By sharing content from strategic partners, referral sources, media and other credible sources, you can offer your social media audiences a diverse mix of high-quality content that is informative and engaging.
Public relations and social media marketing programs work hand-in-hand to help local, regional and national real estate organizations to achieve their marketing goals. When integrated and aligned, real estate PR and social media increase a company’s brand equity, and bolster audience awareness and engagement.