Social Media NOT Your Silver Bullet
Posted by Jill Courville
It seems like every day there is a new, great thing that is the silver bullet to real estate success. Let me be clear there is NO silver bullet. You can spend all the money, hire all the experts and attend every seminar, webinar, course etc. but there is no silver bullet. Hard work and consistent prospecting is your silver bullet. Social media however can make all that hard work just a bit easier.
In my business, I teach agents to leverage social media to generate leads, build their brand and make more money. Can this be done? Yes! But social media is NOT your silver bullet. It will never replace a phone call, a handshake, lunch with a client in other words that belly to belly personal connection.
So why use social media? Social media is just another way of using the prospecting skills you already have. The skills the Floyd Wickman’s and Zig Ziglar’s of the world taught us. Write personal notes, make phone calls, get belly to belly with people, follow-up, stay top-of-mind and create value. This is nothing new. The only thing that is new is using social media to do some of these good work habits.
I remember about six years back I took this real estate class that was supposed to make you GREAT. In fact, during the class I was GREAT. I was making SOI calls, handing out business cards and writing personal notes (a skill I still do today) but something always felt off. I was repeating the mantra the course had given me to say about referrals religiously. It wasn’t the course that made me GREAT it was the effort I put in to making personal connections.
I know that every sales trainer since the dawn of time has said you need to call your sphere of influence and you do. I don’t disagree. What I always struggled with was the awkwardness of it all. It never seemed like a natural phone call to my SOI, to “just check in”. Of course, it was a sales call. I knew it, they knew it. So instead agents find other busy things to do. It goes like this. Enter office, chat with agent at updesk, go to desk, think about making SOI calls, find distraction, think about making SOI calls, time for lunch, think about making SOI calls, need to make copies of listing flyers, chat at the copy machine, it’s getting late I gotta go home. I’ll make my SOI calls tomorrow. Rinse and repeat.
The beauty of social media is that You can CONNECT with people on a personal, genuine and the buzz word authentic level. Social media gives you an unprecedented window into people’s lives. They will tell you when they are getting married, lost their job, got a new job, having a baby,and when the kids are going off to college. These are reasons why people buy and sell houses. More importantly it gives you a reason to call. Calling to say hi, I saw on Facebook it was your birthday or heard you got a new job is a much easier (authentic) way to initiate a conversation.
Social media is full of conversation starters. Birthdays, anniversaries, books they’ve read, hobbies they enjoy, and places they visited are all things you can talk to your clients about. The real estate conversation will come. You know the question, how’s the market? Now the door is open for you to ask for business or referrals. Most of all you made a genuine connection and your past client, friend or business associate doesn’t feel sold to.
This is how social media is most effective. It’s still you being you. So, is social media a silver bullet? No but it does make the conversation easier, faster, cheaper and instantaneous.