3 Easy Steps To Maximizing (and Preserving) Your Online Profile
By Joe Sesso
This year Homes.com will be at the 2012 NorCal Real Estate EXPO on May 24th 2012, at the Sacramento Convention Center! This year, Homes.com will be sharing with attendees the importance of preserving their online reputation as a real estate professional. How much do you value your reputation online? Most agents would say they greatly value their reputation, but what can Real Estate Pros do when a bad review is posted of your service?
It’s a common trend, that people are more likely to post bad reviews when they are unhappy with the service/product they were provided. The same goes for Real Estate Professionals. If you do a great job, people will refer you, but will they go out of their way to Yelp about you? Probably not. On the flip side, what if they were upset with your service. Do you think they might post bad reviews on every site they can find? Maybe.
Online reputation management is a serious business that can make or break an agent or firm. Now the question is, what can you do to maximize your profile online and minimize bad reviews? A new product by Homes.com just may be able to help. It’s called Search Impact, and it has a proven, three-step process to maximizing your visibility online while minimizing the effects of negative reviews. Here is an overview of what Search Impact can do for you:
Step 1: Reputation Management: Your reputation is everything in the real estate business. If you’re labeled as a bad or unethical agent, it will cause serious damage to your business, growth and reputation. Here are some statistics from the National Association of Realtors:
- 70% of consumers trust online recommendations and business reviews
- 87% of buyers would probably recommend their agent to friends
- Reputation was the 2nd most important factor when choosing an agent
How do you build your online reputation? First, be found! You need to have a business profile on Yahoo, Google and Bing, so consumers can find you in a search. You then need to be on the popular review sites with reviews from clients. Examples like Yelp, Google Places, and Openlist are places where consumers search for reviews. Remember, 70% of consumers trust online business reviews. Remember, most of your happy clients will not go out of there way to post reviews. Search Impact has a great system for encouraging clients participate in reviews quickly and easily.
Step 2: Social Media: Most agents are on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. The fact is that most agents don’t have a solid social media strategy when prospecting and interacting with leads and clients. In the same NAR survey, it was found that 48% of buyers were referred to agents by family or friends. That’s nearly one out of every two buyers! Also, 90% of people trust their friends’ recommendations on Facebook, according to Socialcommercetoday.com. That’s impressive, and that’s exactly why you need to have a strong social media campaign that both reaches and connects with your sphere of influence.
As Jimmy Mackin of Inman News said,”Social media for Realtors isn’t about pushing your listings…it’s about growing your referral network.”
First, create a Facebook Business Page to connect with consumers. Search Impact will build one for you, or if you have already created one, Search Impact will help assign you a Social Media Assistant that will be your right hand person for Facebook assistance and take action on your page. This assistant will guide your page toward increased professionalism and engagement with your audience and fans. Then you need content and I’m not just talking about listings. I’m referring to real estate news that your readers want. Most agents lack the time to scour the Internet for such articles. Search impact will be an administrator on your page and add this content for you. It won’t only be national news, but local as well to maximize visibility. Watch your “likes” skyrocket and your engagement increase over time as the Homes.com team used the Search Impact product and the Social Media Assistant interacts on your page based on your business. This will help you gain influence and credibility in your area as a leader and create huge referral opportunities. This will increase the likelihood for you to gain a client, proceed in a transaction, close a deal and make a sale.
Step 3: Online Marketing: Let’s assume you have a website, but other than sitting in cyberspace what specifically is it doing to help you and your business grow? How have you analyzed your traffic, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and what is your plan to reach buyers and sellers that currently don’t know you or your site exist? The easiest way is to create a strong online profile is through social media, Youtube, and blogging. There’s a science to it and research is crucial to this premise. Keywords will be your first target. You need to find out what key words are being searched by consumers and then use those in online tags to increase your SEO presence. Online video is huge for this as well. Consumers love video because of the interaction and entertainment. With more and more independent research, providing relevant interesting content is key. Appropriate keyword research, active content, and entertaining articles are a must in marketing.
Sounds like a lot, right? Your a Real Estate Professional regardless if your an agent, realtor, assistant or another team member, your busy and we want to help. Your job is to sell real estate. Let our product team handle your online marketing for you. We will create a community and promo video for you, work with you on maximizing your SEO, constantly search for the most popular key words for you to utilize, and help you with Meta Titles and descriptions. This is what you need for powerful online marketing. All of these items result in improving your online reputation and visibility online which also could set you apart from the competition. Setting you apart from the competition is most important when gaining a new client presenting with options for you will represent them.
Simply put: Search Impact is reputation management on steroids. If you want to build a strong brand but not spend all of your time doing it, Search Impact by Homes.com is the way to go. Begin your journey of improvement with us and your reputation online, continue this Real Estate adventure being the best in the business, close the transaction because your niche and we will do ours. Make sure to visit the Homes.com booth #130 so you can get up to speed on all there is to know about your online reputation.