Stop posting so much on social media. “You don’t have to; it’s not about quantity but quality,” real estate coach Chelsea Peitz said last week during an NAR NXT Up! session. You can increase your reach by learning more about how the different social media algorithms work and leveraging video to build deeper connections, Peitz said.
Sorting the ins and outs of each social media network isn’t easy. But regardless of the platform, video is the heart of social media. Even if you’re a little camera shy, “you have to be willing to put your face out there to one person—just like you do every day in your real estate career,” Peitz said. “Familiarity influences likability and trust. If we’re not seeing your face, we’re not able to build trust as quickly.”
Start With a Direct Message
Build your camera confidence by using “1:1 video,” such as creating a short, unscripted and unedited video using your phone for one person whom you already know. Peitz recommended creating a “visual Hallmark card,” as she calls it, wishing one person a happy birthday. “They feel great receiving it, and it creates a very human, personalized connection,” she said. Also, 1:1 videos can help build your confidence in front of a camera and help you get used to seeing yourself on video.
For delivering your video, leverage the power of a DM—or direct message—via your preferred social network, Pietz said. “If you send it as a text message, they see it—but that’s where it often ends,” she says. “The algorithm used for a direct message is a very heavily weighted data point. When you see one another’s messages, you’re then going to see more of their content [in your feed] in the future.”
Leverage Short-Form Vertical Videos
Short-form vertical videos, often captured from a mobile device, are dominating social networks. Creating short-form verticals can help you expand your reach, Peitz said. She favors Instagram for her marketing, and she posts to Instagram Stories every day. Instagram Stories go out to people who already follow you and can be great for building familiarity and trust with those you’re already connected to, Peitz said. On the other hand, Instagram Reels go out to those who you may not already be connected with and can be effective for creating new relationships and building brand awareness outside your immediate sphere of influence, she added.
Use Instagram Stories to start conversations, connect with your followers or take them behind the scenes on a topic. Make the content relatable. For example, Peitz may create a Story that includes her dog or uses poll stickers to ask followers a question. There’s a bonus with poll stickers: When users participate in a poll you created, the algorithm will push your content higher in their feeds.
For Instagram Reels, which can help you build new followers, Peitz recommended creating educational content, such as videos that answer commonly asked real estate questions (e.g., is it a good time to buy or sell?). “You can amass a library that lives on your IG profile,” she said. Others can find your videos via the hashtags you may include with your posts.
Here are a few other tips from Peitz when creating short-form videos:
- Start with a hook. You have mere seconds to grab attention. Instead of starting your video with a basic introduction of yourself, try something like: “Hey, friends, ever wonder what a million dollars can buy you in [ZIP code]?”
- Use closed captions. A growing number of people are watching videos with the audio turned off, especially when in public. Facebook, TikTok, Instagram and others have a button to transcribe your video to include closed captions.
- Add text title overlays. This allows others to easily see what your video is about when they’re scanning your video library. Most social networks have editing tools to easily add these.
- Show up authentically. Don’t memorize a script or read lines from a teleprompter. Your face will show insincerity. Practice warmth cues and speaking comfortably to the camera, Peitz advised. Can’t remember what to say? Record in clips—one sentence or phrase at a time—and then stitch the videos together, Peitz suggested.