I love social media. It connects me with my friends and family, friends from years past, and has even reunited me with my 3 brothers I didn’t know I had growing up. It also is a huge source of new business for me, and I think I balance personal and business social media pretty well. I like to let the people who visit my AGENT|LEVERAGE page get to know me, and I am “friends” with hundreds of agents. But if you’re unclear on how to draw that line, read on and learn what mistakes you need to avoid to make your social media presence a success.
The internet has been around long enough now that former teens who are entering the job market have seen the affects that poor choices made in the past can cause (remember My Space?). As a Real Estate Agent, you’re in the same boat. It’s super important to use social media carefully to enhance your business reputation, while still letting people in just enough to get to know you. Mess this up, and you can lose out on working with new buyers & sellers.
Not Keeping Personal & Business Separate Enough
This is getting more difficult as the days of being anonymous online are over. Today, just about everyone can be known via Google, and in some cases you have to sign in with Google or Facebook or other methods thereby verifying your identity in order to participate in online discussions. But, it’s important that you draw a line between your personal life and business life that is as clear as possible. If you use the internet to market your business, you’re probably going to have to limit your online personal life to a select group of people as well as a select social network such as Facebook.
Falling Prey to the Social Media “Overshare”
Put simply enough, everyone doesn’t need to know every detail about your life. Is it really smart to share pictures of yourself in your underwear, even to your husband or boyfriend? You never know when you will get hacked and that private information is out there for the world to see. In addition, while you want to be a real person to your audience, they really don’t need to know your intimate details or the bathroom habits of your children. This may fluctuate a bit (mommy bloggers can probably get away with the second one), but for the most part, real estate agents shouldn’t over share, it’s not attractive.
Not Being Consistent Enough
The best way to manage your online reputation is to keep your brand consistent across all accounts. This means using similar or the same headshots, the same logos, the same colors and the same information about yourself and your business. By inadvertently leaving something out, you might accidentally confuse someone or make them think you’re being less than honest. Even if it’s an accident, you don’t know how others will view it. Double check to make sure that everything you say and do backs up who you want to represent yourself as online.
Not Googling Yourself
There are a variety of tools for monitoring your online reputation such as Google Alerts, Mention, Vertascan, TweetBeep, and others will help you manage your online presence so that you are the one dictating what people know rather than others dictating it for you. You can find out what’s being said about your brand, your name, and your products or even similar products and services so that you can stay ahead of the buzz and even create the buzz.
Not Staying Up-to-Date with Privacy Settings
Most social media accounts offer some privacy options. A great way to manage your privacy on Facebook is to set up a closed and private group for your friends and family that you trust so that nothing can be searched or discovered that is personal or embarrassing. Facebook also offers other privacy options like the ability to approve images you’re tagged in. Use these options to get the most out of social media and protect yourself and your business from misunderstandings. You definitely don’t want that picture from the party last weekend leaked to potential sellers, do you? Or this one?
Every day there is something in the news about someone who said something taken out of context or said in jest that gets someone into a lot of trouble to where they lose jobs, clients, and even an entire business. Listen to April, and don’t become a statistic.
Do you need help with your social media presence? Guess what? We do that!
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