In the highly sought-out Toronto real estate market, industry professionals are bracing for the latest disruption to the space – millennials. In the not too distant future, this generation of young professionals will become the largest group of first-time buyers, and it’s a sure bet they’ll be heading straight to the internet to look for an online solution in their search for a home.
Today 90 percent of home buyers begin their search online and 91 percent of successful realtors use Facebook to post their listings. At the same time, 84 percent of successful real estate agents use YouTube, 65 per cent use Twitter and 54 per cent use Google+.
It’s hard to deny the power social media has made on a multitude of industries, and it’s even harder to ignore the fact that online marketing has transformed the entire real estate profession.
Larry Weltman, customer services representative at AccessEasyFunds, a leading real estate commission advance company, recognizes the importance of having an online presence as a real estate agent and encourages realtors to continue to embrace social media.
“In the past, connecting an agent with a potential client was done by word of mouth or from finding a realtor flyer in your mailbox. Now, oftentimes, it’s done with the click of a mouse,” says Larry Weltman.
Weltman goes on to explain, “In an age driven by technology, it’s more crucial than ever for sellers and agents to remain active on social media in order to garner interest in newly listed inventory.”
As real estate continues to expand its access across the web, successful agents realize the importance of posting listings on Facebook and Instagram to get people to click.
Vivien Sharon is a realtor for Sotheby’s International Realty. She showcases the homes she sells on all of her social media pages to stay on top of trends.
“Social media is very, very important today because the majority of buyers are looking to the Internet to find properties and to find an agent if they don’t already have one to source out what they’re looking for. People do check you out and they do google you,” says Sharon.
While social media is a major lead generator for real estate businesses, there is a right way to engage and attract clients that won’t bore them in the process.
For instance, agents may find it useful to post real estate tips that relate to the buying and selling of homes geared toward first-time individuals. Another marketing tactic sellers can use is to showcase local events or businesses within the community they are selling, or to share testimonials from previous buyers or sellers about their experience.
Agents should also avoid overselling their audience. Afterall, a client will buy a home when they’re ready and no amount of pushy sales tactics will speed up this process. Rather, giving the home buyer value and awareness is key to making a sale when the time presents.
In the end, agents should put themselves in the shoes of their buyer. What would you like to see if you were buying a home? This thought, combined with becoming interactive through social media, will make a significant impact on the way real estate agents reach their audience.