As we all know, relationships require ongoing investment in order to thrive and flourish. And while the connections you build with past, current and future clients are important, they aren’t the only relationships you need to be concerned with…
The relationships you have with members of your personal circle play just as big a role in your success as a real estate agent as the connections you’re able to form with your customers. Your personal circle may include close friends, fellow agents, trusted business partners, family members or even past clients that send you repeated referrals. Really, it doesn’t matter who these people are – it just matters that you invest the time needed to sustain and grow these connections, lest you risk these relationships breaking down when you need them the most.
Fortunately, the advent and widespread adoption of social networking websites has made it easier than ever to build your social influence amongst members of your personal circle. To see how this can be done, check out the following steps and start adding them to your daily activities ASAP!
In my opinion, the key distinction that all real estate agents must recognize about social networking sites is that they’re not all about you!
Far too many agents log on to Facebook or Twitter to share something like, “I just closed a huge deal on a great property out in Hermosa Beach!” Here’s the thing, though – most of the people who follow your social profiles couldn’t care less about this achievement. Sure, a few of them might “Like” your status or give you a quick “Congrats,” but these types of updates certainly aren’t helping to create meaningful connections between you and the members of your inner circle.
Instead, the key to using social media marketing to boost your social influence is to make your profile updates about the members of your personal circle – not about you. As an example, posting a message on another agent’s Facebook Wall that says, “Congratulations, saw you just closed the property on Hickory Street,” or even “Love your new profile pic!” will do infinitely more for your growing relationship than posting messages about your own accomplishments.
Just by keeping the idea in mind that social networking updates should be “them-focused” – not “you-focused” – will make a major difference in the results you see from your social media marketing activities. Of course, maintaining this mindset isn’t enough on its own. You’ve also got to put these principles into action!
A few different “them-focused” social networking activities you can try include:
Get familiar with each of these options and then set a goal for the number of daily outreach actions you’ll take in order to expand your perceived social influence. For example, you might set a goal of completing 10 separate outreach activities each day – which might break down to four Twitter tweets, two status updates, two image tags and two Facebook Wall messages (or any other combination that suits your personal style). Spread these activities out throughout the day and across different members of your personal circle, and you’ll quickly start to see an improvement in your overall social influence.
I can’t emphasize this enough, but while it’s a good idea to set measurable goals to determine whether or not you’re actively engaging with your personal circle, the last thing you want is for your chosen actions to become stale and predictable.
Social networking websites aren’t opportunities to exploit your professional relationships for personal gain. Remember this is “social” media, not “business” media. So when your followers and members of your inner circle see you posting the same formulaic status updates day after day, they’re going to get suspicious about whether you actually care about them (or just about the potential value your relationships represent).
To prevent this from happening, focus on making every social outreach action you take valuable and authentic. Recognize specific successes or accomplishments, or provide truly helpful (and very limited) advice that’s tailored to each recipient. By demonstrating that you care about the people you’re connecting with, you’ll be able to successfully leverage these innovative social sites in order to expand your social influence across your personal circle.