This is a question that we’ve been batting around at our LinkedIn chat spot for PropertyManager.com. It’s not a no-brainer by any stretch of the imagination. As one participant (Alex with Fourandhalf.com) put it, “The question we often get is: “Why do I need to be actively posting on Facebook and Twitter?”
My response to that question was, “You never know when a prospective resident or a new owner-client will pick up your posting. Social networking like Facebook and Twitter also means you can send out a blast to all your friends and connections asking them to send you referrals. Sometimes all we have to do is make our needs known in a tasteful way and people will step up to help us grow our businesses.” That comment seemed to get the ball rolling. Another respondent named Angela remarked, “I am very active on Facebook personally and business, but what is the advantage of Twitter? I really don’t get it?” To which I responded, “Twitter is a good way to ask for help, ideas, or feedback. So if you want to expand your business why not Twitter that you’re fishing for some good ideas.”
This conversational experience on LinkedIn reinforces my belief that social media is working in a big way. Not only to attract business for our property managers, but to solicit new ideas and fresh perspectives. An example was the next comment from John, who weighed in with his point of view that deepened the scope of the conversation.
“Twitter, Facebook and all forms of internet media play a role in the future of our industry. Potential renters, buyers and sellers turn to the internet for research (and recreation). Being on these platforms allows you to reach a greater audience, allowing you to connect your properties with the people that want to be in them. In addition you’ll receive feedback from others in your field of expertise. It’s a Win-Win.”
So goes the confirmations that help us realize that there are obvious and hidden benefits to using online social media. The best way to discover these benefits is by conducting your own experiment. Start using both Facebook and Twitter to promote your business and to let everyone you know that you’d appreciate their thoughts, referrals, ideas and suggestions.
Find out why people like Alex responded to John’s comment above with this kind of personal experience: “Spot on John! We call this phenomenon: the rise of the thoughtful consumer.” Alex continued by writing, “You can see the trend through Google search statistics, for example, the term: “investment property how to” is searched 200,000 per month in the US. Who’s going to show up with answers in your town? Those who take the time to produce original, high quality content will be rewarded with high Quality Leads – the thoughtful consumer. The thoughtful consumer will do their own research and when they call you, they are ready to do business.” Those are excellent points and convincing as well.
Social networking and media does matter to property managers and the people they work with. In a recent article on this topic more compelling evidence came to the surface. What I want to reiterate also happens to be the final comments from that article on why you should consider using Facebook and Twitter to promote your business. “Finally, customers’ expectations play a part, as well. For the longest time, all people expected a business to have was an address and a telephone number – by the year 2000; you were expected to have a website. Now, in 2012, customers expect a business to have a meaningful social presence, as well.” That, as they say, may be the bottom line!
Here’s a link to the article that started the discussion: http://fourandhalf.com/why-social-media-activity-matters-to-property-managers/
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