I was excited to be asked to speak about ‘what’s new with Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at today’s Inman News’ Real Estate Connect NYC conference. There are a lot of exciting things on the horizon, but here is a quick recap of what I feel the real estate industry need to be paying attention to:
Facebook: 3 areas to watch in 2014:
- Mobile. 78% of Facebook users access Facebook on a mobile device. What do your Facebook page look like on a mobile device? What does the content and images look like? If you are a real estate agent or broker, view your content on multiple devices to see what your customers are seeing! Facebook video ads
- Advertising. Facebook has gone through many iterations of it’s ad product. Now, there are more choices then ever. You can create 8 different ads based on your end goal – more likes, engagement, website clicks, app downloads and more. The most recent news is that in April 2014, Facebook will be doing away with Sponsored Stories, however ads will be still structured to target based on user’s interest and likes. Also, Facebook just began rolling out video ads to a select number of business page admins. This will be interesting to see how this develops in 2014. Just like any other advertising, think through why you want to run an ad, and what will the process feel like for the customer. Paid Facebook advertising can be a great way to spread your message, increase likes and ultimately – increase your business by targeting your extended network
- Newsfeed. Like it or not, competition for the Newsfeed is fierce. Typically on any given day, only 10-20% of the people who like your Facebook business page are seeing your content. How can you affect this?
- Strategy – in 2014, it will be even more important to create compelling content, create a consistent posting schedule and create a Facebook ad strategy. Remember, your social plan can not have a “set it and forget it” feature. Tip: make sure you are pinning your key content a few times a month to keep it at the top of your Facebook page feed.
- Context – are you providing the right content, to the right people, at the right time? Time of day, day of the week – these are key things to looking at. Tip: if you haven’t viewed your Facebook Insights recently, check out the Posts features where you can view what time of day the people who like your page are most likely to be online and engaging with your content.
If you are an investor in Twitter, stay tuned, the first-ever quarterly earnings results on will be announced on February 5. You can follow @Twitter and the official hashtag:#TWTRearnings to follow all the details.
5 areas to watch for Twitter in 2014:
- The feed: photos and video. In 2013, Twitter changed it’s feed to showcase photos and video in the feed (very Facebook-esque) which changed the dynamic of photos and videos to just being links to being very visual. When planning your Twitter strategy for 2014, make sure to take into account your visual content – photos and videos.
- Lists – recruiting, retaining. For a real estate broker – recruiting and retaining are your bread and butter. If 2014 is the year you dive into Twitter, one of the top things you need to consider is segmenting your Twitter followers. Create a private Twitter list with your potential recruits and make it part of your strategy to engage with them regularly.
- Analytics – Topsy.com. Topsy.com is a fantastic platform for Twitter analytics. They were recently acquired by Apple for $200M. It will be interesting to see what Apple does with the enormous amount of data from Twitter that is collected.
- Advertising. Twitter advertising is another great opportunity to extend your reach. It’s extremely targeted like Facebook – this will be one area to watch in 2014.
- Video: Vine. Vine – a Twitter company has taken off with leaps and bounds. It’s a fantastic platform to capture 6 second videos. Want to be inspired by what big brands are creating on Vine? Check out this list of companies rocking it on Vine.
The other new thing to watch from Twitter’s co-founder is the new app, Jelly. Launched January 7, 2013, Jelly is a bit like Quora in that you use it to ask your friends advice on what they think of things – perfect for when you are shopping for the perfect outfit or the perfect home. There is a 240 character limit and the entire app revolves around visual content and leveraging your existing social networks. This is app is very much in it’s infancy, but it is certainly one to watch in 2014.
Instagram: 3 things to watch
- Demographics. More and more younger people are flocking from Facebook to Instagram. Looking to target Gen Y and Millenials? Instagram may be the way to do it (because their parents aren’t on there – yet!)
- Advertising. There is no advertising on Instagram yet, but I do predict we will see ads this year. It will be interesting to see how Instagram rolls out ads in a way that isn’t intrusive nor interfere with the “clean feed” that users have grown accustomed too.
- Visual content – photos + videos. As we talked about photos and videos are only getting more and more important to post and Instagram is a great platform to tell the story of what it feels like to live in the community, to share success stories with clients and to share personal things that connect you with others – family, hobbies, travel, and more. But, just like any other social media platform, posting content is one thing – but taking the time to engage intentionally with people is key. Whether you are an agent or broker, there is a huge value in making an intentional strategy to connect with 5 clients or 5 agents a week on Instagram.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this too. Leave me a comment here or on my Facebook Page! Also, if you’d like to receive my free content grid that will help you tremendously as you start to think about 2014 social media planning, I’d love for you to join my email list – click here!