Thoughtful is a key word here. If you want your firm to thrive you will need to be social-savvy and aware of the upcoming social media trends, in order to get the most from all your online efforts.
Every quarter my team looks into what’s popular and working in the digital marketing world and thinks about how we can apply these tried-and-tested methods to our firm’s property department.
Here are the top five social media trends for 2019 we’ve found and suggestions on how to apply them to the property business:
According to the team behind social media scheduling tool Buffer, the biggest social media trend for 2019 is in-the-moment content as opposed to highly-produced content.
Buffer refers specifically to the use of stories, which are now features of not just SnapChat and Instagram but also Facebook.
Stories are live videos or images that remain on the platform for a limited time.
The benefit of stories is they can give your stakeholders a real insight into the inner workings of your business.
Your followers may also engage with them better, as stories are perceived as being newer and fresher compared to other types of more static content.
The great thing about stories is that they don’t need to look polished; they are supposed to seem authentic and spontaneous – so a quick iPhone video of your staff at work will suffice, without any professional videography skills.
Showing off your team members and the personalities behind your brand via stories is likely to really resonate with your followers, especially younger ones.
Show your firm’s human side and experiment across your platforms to see what works.
Sprout Social highlights transparency as a key theme for social-savvy brands.
A Sprout survey found 55% of customers believed the brands they followed were only somewhat transparent on their social media platforms.
These survey recipients wanted to see more transparency online in areas such as: product and service charges; company values; business practices; company policy changes; employment practices; pricing decisions; marketing activities; financial performance and diversity and inclusion.
Ways recipients feel brands could be more transparent on social media include: admitting mistakes; honest responses to customer questions; posting about why things are priced a certain way; providing information about business performance; and being more open about the firm’s views on political and cultural issues.
These findings provide invaluable insight for those working in the property industry in particular, where customers and clients are often in the middle of very expensive and momentous life events.
Our clients deserve and expect transparency – given the faith they are placing in us as property professionals to make their dreams come true.
For example, we’ve already begun posting more about our price schemes.
Telling a story
Deep Patel, in his article for Entrepreneur, discusses the importance of building a narrative with your social media content in 2019.
Patel wrote that along with human stories, businesses need to build a strategic narrative behind their brand.
“Narratives capture moments and experiences shared between a user and a product; they’re the conversations that are occurring, and they’re often about trying to create a broader, more positive change,” he wrote.
We really love Patel’s advice.
In terms of property, one way a firm in the industry could begin telling a story about what they do, is by following the progress of a client from instruction to completion, and even beyond, as the client, for instance, settles into their new home.
Social media platform Hootsuite talks about the emerging importance of Facebook groups.
If you have a Facebook business group, you are able to create a Facebook Group, where you can address the niche interests of your followers – for example finding the right mortgage; buying the perfect first home; staying financially savvy.
This is a really interesting new function on Facebook and we look forward to seeing how our colleagues in the property industry utilise it.
Engagement, engagement, engagement
2019 will be all about quality over quantity, according to ClickZ’s social media trend report.
Brands should be focusing on quality content that really engages their audience, not just clickbait. Even Facebook has announced that its latest algorithm will favour content that produces ‘meaningful’ interactions, not just clicks and likes.
How can you produce engaging content? You’ll need to start really thinking about what your client wants to see online and develop a solid engagement strategy for every channel.
ClickZ also advises that you should aim for every piece of content you post to be interesting, appealing, and engaging.
Sounds like it’s time to put our thinking caps on.