Does Your Digital Handshake Stack Up? [Repost]
Digitization can seem overwhelming; however, the game is changing, and it’s an essential part of your business. Here are four ways to step up your digital handshake: 1) Set up the right accounts 2) Represent your brand 3) Have a basic content strategy 4) Obsess over reviews.
“Two out of three buyers researched prospective agents extensively online before working with them.” – Google.
This is the second time I have published this quote and it definitely won’t be the last! Rather than Zillow convincing you to buy leads or some social media guru persuading you to spend $500 per month, this is the horse’s mouth speaking directly to the real estate industry.
This week, a Mortgage Loan Officer made their 4th sales call to a buyer on the second day of receiving a referral. The buyer answered and told him that they had been looking for the right lender and after checking out Yelp! and Facebook they were confident this was the right fit. Consider this: The buyer decided without ever talking to the MLO. Later that week, they came to the office and brought every single last piece of information needed to process their transaction.
Why is it that I can’t find most of you online? If I can, I’ll probably see your personal Facebook page or your corporate information page that says, “Johnny graduated from Chico with honors in 1989 and has been in the business for 20 years.” Good for Johnny, but who cares? Why do some people think that simply having a social media footprint is somehow selling out their referral business? In other words, why do more of us not earn “Honors” where it counts in 2018, on the digital footprint test
The learning curve for digitization can be steep, so the time to figure it out is now. A great digital footprint gives you a lead volume knob and converts clients and referral partners before you talk to them. There are four key components to a good digital footprint in the mortgage and real estate business: 1) Set up the right accounts 2) Represent your brand 3) Have a basic content strategy 4) Obsess over reviews.
Set Up The Right Accounts
Setting up the right accounts is essential to success on social media. Consider where your customers go to find information: Facebook has 1 billion active users, Zillow spends 100 million per year on advertising and LinkedIn is, well, LinkedIn. Start there, but don’t stop there. You should have a significant footprint on all of the major portals. Even if you aren’t active, you can still be impactful. I love when I see someone with a Facebook page that says something like the following: “I love Facebook, but I love Instagram more. Check me out there.”
Represent Your Brand
Your digital handshake isn’t relevant when your LinkedIn profile has your previous employer and your Twitter picture is from 2007. Consistency is key. If you don’t update headers, descriptions, and employment, it is at best, sloppy. At its worst, this is a reflection of how a transaction might go for a potential client. Make sure your descriptions line up and your photos are easily recognizable. Your digital footprint tells clients and partners why they should trust you! Your Elevator Pitch should be clearly reflected across all of your accounts.
Your digital handshake isn’t relevant when your LinkedIn profile has your last employer, and your Twitter picture is from 2007.
Execute a Basic Content Strategy
This requires some discipline but can be simplified. The key is to have the right tools and use them consistently. I use Buffer to manage the day to day postings. I sit down on Monday and Wednesday, scan the news and load content on all of my sites for the rest of the week based on what is happening in the market. Then, when something fun or personal comes up, I post directly. It isn’t perfect, but it works.
Obsess Over Reviews
In case there are still questions, 85% of consumers utilize reviews to evaluate local businesses. Do you still have a binder of reviews in your office? It’s essential to move that binder into the cloud. Plus, reviews are fun and make you feel good. In the end, what adds more value to your business: Five e-mail reviews you post on your site that you don’t promote or one good Zillow review that you had to ask for over the phone? Hint: Today, Zillow review is the correct answer.