Five Free Tools to Boost Your Social & Video Marketing

Five Free Tools to Boost Your Social & Video Marketing

Video has become one of the most effective marketing tools for Realtors. Video is winning when it comes to attracting the attention of your social media followers.

Are you all in? Or are you still holding off, because you don’t like how you look and sound on video?

Here’s how you crush the fear of being on camera …

If you are still not convinced, let me give you a few tools to make your social video marketing easier. They are mostly free. So, go ahead and grab them.

If You Don’t Want to Be on Camera …

If you don’t want to be in front of the camera use one of these options:

Record a Video of your Screen

To share a neighborhood market update, display the housing stats from our Board of Realtors on your computer and explain what they mean while you are recording a video of the screen.

Which tools should you use?

Facebook Live has an option to record your computer screen. You could also use the Loom Chrome browser extension.

The video below explains how it works. ​

Create a Slide-Deck

We’ve been using a tool called Content Samurai for more than a year. It lets you create slides, add pictures from their online database, and record yourself reading the text on the slides.

They even offer digital voices, so you don’t have to talk.

Content Samurai costs around $30 per month. If you want a “free” alternative, check out Lumen5.

Facebook Live Interviews

A great way to establish yourself as the go-to Realtor in your community is to interview small business owners, teachers, and community leaders a short Facebook Live Interviews.

BeLive.tv is the perfect tool for that. It allows you to share your screen, so viewers can see 2 or more people simultaneously on your FB Live Show.

They offer a free trial. I am told you can keep it free even after the trial expires.

Video Email

Email is 40 times more effective than Facebook for converting leads. That’s according to Kristi Kennelly, a speaker at last week’s OAR Convention.

Combining email with video increases conversion rates substantially. You probably heard of Bombbomb – the video email service I am using for this newsletter. They are popular with Realtors, however, subscriptions are between $40 and $60 per month depending on the level of service you choose.

There’s a free alternative by Vidyard. It’s a Chrome extension that allows you to record webcam videos in your browser and send them with your gmail account.

There are lots of tools that will help you build a personal brand and promote yourself through video. With all the tech we often forget that YOU are the most important component of marketing.

Make a commitment to one marketing channel and implement it consistently.

This is a long-term game. There’s no quick fix to building your personal brand.

How to Consistently Create Original Content for Social Media

How to Consistently Create Original Content for Social Media

Last week I explained why many agents are not successful with social media marketing. One of the reasons was the lack of original content.

Interesting, original content compels people to join your audience and read or watch everything you publish.

Let me show you how to overcome the content challenge and create fresh, engaging content for all your social media channels in less than one hour a day. ​

Step 1: Four Core Articles Per Month

The foundation of my content strategy is to create one high quality article each week.

I prefer to start with written content. It’s a solid base that can be easily converted into other forms of content, such as video, audio, or picture stories.

Creating a solid article will take 1 to 2 hours. It’s best if you block out that time on a specific day of the week and write the article without distractions.

Here are themes for 4 articles you can compose every single month:

  1. Market Update Analyze the monthly housing stats published by the Board of Realtors.
  2. Answers to Common Questions Write down the questions you get asked by your customers and answer them in the article.
  3. Success Story Describe the challenges you helped your clients overcome while buying or selling a property; include a testimonial.
  4. Local Events You are the local expert. Tell your audience what’s going on in your neighborhood or city. Share stories of events you attended.

Step 2: Where to Share Your Articles

​Now you have a solid piece of content. Here are 5 easy ways to share it with your audience.

  • Blog Post the article on your very own blog, together with a great picture. Dependent on the article you can take the picture yourself or download it from a free image sharing site like pexels.
  • Email the article to everyone in your database. Add a personal note at the beginning and a call to action at the end.
  • Linkedin Publish the article or a summary on Linkedin. They have a great platform for sharing full articles.
  • Facebook Share a link to your article together with the picture and a short introduction as a Facebook Post.
  • Twitter After you published the article on your blog share a link on Twitter.

Step 3: Repurposing Your Articles

To get the most out of your written content you need to repurpose it for other media channels. Here’s how you do it:

Video

Convert your article into video by recording yourself telling the story or creating a slide-show and recording it on video. We’ve been using a service called Content Samurai, which automatically divides your article into individual slides and then prompts you to record each individual sentence to create the video.

Post the video on:

  • Youtube
  • Facebook
  • Vimeo

Audio | Voice

Next you want to convert your article to audio by recording yourself reading the article.

Voice will be really big in the near future. Get a head-start on the technology and publish your recording on Podcast platforms, such as:

  • Anchor
  • Stitcher
  • Itunes
  • Don’t forget to share a link to the podcast on all your social channels.

Pictures | Memes

Your article probably has 3 or 4 different sections. Take each of the sections, find a fitting image and create a meme (that’s a picture combined with a phrase to provoke some thought or humor).

An easy way to create meme’s is Canva.

Post your meme’s on:

  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • Facebook

Step 4: Bonus Content

With the advance of Facebook Live and Instagram Stories there are countless ways to create engaging content. To fully take advantage of these channels you need to build content creation into your daily work-flow.

It has to become a way of life. And requires a lot of discipline and a willingness to be in front of the camera all the time.

The article content strategy I explain above can be easily scheduled. You can prepare a week’s worth of content on a single day and schedule distribution. You can also outsource most of the repurposed content to fully leverage yourself.

​Let me know how this content strategy works for you and where you need help.

For more expert tips and strategies head over to:

https://columbusrealestatecoach.com/blog 

And be sure to follow us on Social media!

What Agents Get Wrong about Social Media Marketing

What Agents Get Wrong about Social Media Marketing

Social Media is a sizzling hot topic for real estate marketing. Many agents believe it’s the “Silver Bullet” that will resolve all of their prospecting woes. Sadly, many agents are not successful with social media marketing.

Here are 3 reasons why your social media strategy may not generate more business for you, and what you can do about it.

Why Agents Fail with Social Media Marketing

1. Lack of Consistency

Consistency is the key to any marketing program. Additionally, If you don’t keep reminding the people in your sphere that you are (still) a Realtor, you won’t get any new business or referrals from them.

You have to stay top of mind. In today’s hectic world this is more important than ever, as consumers are constantly bombarded with advertising messages.

The frequency of posting varies dependent on the social channel you use. You may get away with one article a week on your blog, but you will have to post daily on Facebook, and even more often on Twitter and Instagram.

2. No Paid Promotions

Social media marketing is not free. The no-cost strategies that keep you in front of your audience take a lot of time. I am talking about Instagram Stories and Facebook Live Video, which are currently the most effective ways to get organic reach.

If you want to go beyond your sphere you have to promote posts and run targeted campaigns to generate buyer and seller leads.

A few months ago, I shared our experience with paid Facebook advertising. Click here to read the article.

Social Media advertising is still very inexpensive as compared to traditional marketing.

Do not miss this opportunity and learn how to design effective campaigns. There’s a lot of free information on the Internet. Call me, if you have any specific questions.

3. No Original Content

If you want to become a social media personality you will have to create original content. It’s not good enough to like or share someone else’s post. You have to contribute.

Creating content is time consuming. Writing this weekly email newsletter takes an hour or more if I have to research the topic.

​Original content is the only reason why someone would consider following you. If you just share posts and comment on articles you are limiting your reach.

You are probably wondering how to overcome the content challenge.

​Next week I will let you in on how I create content. I will show you exactly where to find topics and how to get the most out of your original content by re-purposing it for different social channels.

Stay tuned for next week’s Agent Insider email.

The Social Media Movie

John Lincoln, CEO of Ignite Visibility, created this 4-minute movie. He interviews 10 social media experts who explain how you can find success on different platforms. Go ahead and watch it right now!

For more expert tips and strategies to grow your real estate business and database, please visit:

https://columbusrealestatecoach.com/

And be sure to follow us on Social media!

FB: https://www.facebook.com/ColumbusReal…

IG: https://www.instagram.com/agent_insider/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/RE_AgentInsider/

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6rBxhegHv6YnOTBg-h4gQw

The Facebook Live Revolution

The Facebook Live Revolution

The Facebook revolution is happening right in front of our eyes. I am talking about the fact that a majority of Facebook posts contain video. In my Video Masterclass I’ve been encouraging agents to use video. We predicted that 80% of Facebook will be video in 2018. It’s happening right now.

Over the weekend I noticed that many Realtors are promoting their listings using Facebook Live. Some of you also record video clips to advertise your services or simply educate your followers.

Very impressive! Great job!

Here’s a sample of an agent duo presenting a market update (please note that they are not from Columbus).

View the Video Here

Attention & Top-Of-Mind

Video is all about grabbing the attention of your followers and staying top of mind.

Live videos get the most attention, because Facebook promotes live videos over all other content. This means your clips will show up in the news feeds of all of your friends and followers.

To stay top of mind you have to post Facebook videos and live broadcasts on a regular basis. Consistency is the name of the game.

Here are my suggestions:

Establish a regular broadcasting schedule and give your Facebook Live sessions a name like the “Joe Doe Realtor Show” – broadcast once a week.

Post short clips every day and give your audience a peek into your life as a Realtor. For instance, comment on unique features of a home you are showing or introduce your viewers to your home inspector.

Interview a client and ask questions about her home buying experience, and how she liked to work with you (customer testimonial).

If you feel comfortable doing it include personal clips showing your dogs, activities with your kids, even vacations (WARNING: I do not recommend showing live streams while you are on vacation and everyone knows your home is vacant. Always be cautious with social media.)

Consistency Matters

Broadcasting your first Facebook Live video fills you with excitement. Unfortunately, that’s where most agents stop. You have to broadcast and post consistently if you want to build a brand and get referred by your audience.

There’s this saying “A 100-mile journey starts with a single step“.

After your first Facebook Live broadcast you completed the first step. It’s the start of your journey. Establish your video broadcasting schedule and keep creating videos consistently.

Always remember to cover topics that people find interesting and want to watch. Your audience will quickly tune out if you only post listings.

The Brand Rant – Personal vs Corporate (part 1)

The Brand Rant – Personal vs Corporate (part 1)

 

This article was inspired by a discussion we had during a recent mastermind meeting. One of our agents brought a neighborhood magazine she received at her home. So, we decided to search for Realtor ads, discuss how effective they may be, and how we could possibly improve them.

Where Are the Realtor Ads?

First off, it was difficult to separate the real estate ads from all the other ads in the magazine. Not a single one of them stuck out.

They blended right in with the rest of the ads from landscapers, dentists, chiropractors, lawyers and others who paid a lot of money hoping an ad in this magazine will elevate them as the local expert.

What surprised me was that none of the Realtor ads featured a recognizable brand.

Here’s why this is a problem. If readers look at your ad and don’t know instantly what you are offering, they will skip to the next page.

Some of the agents partnered with a lender to share the cost of the ad. In that case the lenders’ logo overshadowed the agent leading to more confusion with the reader.

I mention this because these agents are with brokerages whose name readers would immediately recognize. Yet, the agents decided to promote their own “personal” brand over the well-known brand of their brokerage, and lost out.

The Myth of a Personal Brand

Creating your personal brand on social media seems to be the silver bullet of marketing these days. Most coaches talk about how to promote yourself on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

If you follow guru’s like Gary Vaynerchuk or Tom Ferry you may believe that personal branding is the only road to success, that posting on social media will generate all the referrals you need.

While social media is “free”, you may be missing 2 critical facts:

  • personal branding is a very long term strategy – you have to do it consistently for years to see real results and become the most recognized Realtor of your neighborhood.
  • you have to supplement your personal branding efforts with paid advertising on Facebook and Instagram to extend your reach beyond your sphere and grow your audience.

Next week I will explain why you need a strong Corporate Brand. Why social media will NOT replace a well recognized brand. And why you are probably wasting money if your brokerage gives you the “freedom to brand yourself”.

To be continued…

Real Results from 2 Facebook Ad Campaigns

Real Results from 2 Facebook Ad Campaigns

Today I am going to share with you the real results of 2 Facebook ad campaigns we ran in December and January. Facebook ads seem to be a hot ticket for generating cheap leads. At least that’s what many gurus promise.

Honestly, I’ve been running FB ads on and off for the past 3 years, with mixed results. Most of the ads were for open houses. And I noticed that their cost has increased substantially in 2017. So, we decided to test new FB campaigns to generate both buyer and seller leads. Here’s how we did it and what we found.

The Buyer Leads Campaign

The objective is to get potential buyers to submit their name, email and phone number to see the interior pictures of one of our listings.

The FB ad shows a picture of the outside of a property. It announces a Hot Listing Alert and prompts the viewer to click a link to see inside pictures of the specific property.

Here’s a picture of the ad:

When a viewer clicks the link, they are forwarded to our IDX website. We are using a Chime as our web platform. When the viewer arrives at the landing page they are prompted to enter name and email (they may also use Facebook or Google+) to log in, before they can see the photos.

Results

Click through rate: 8% of people who saw the ad clicked the link.
Cost per click: $​0.61
​Form completion rate: 4% of visitors completed the login form.
Cost per lead: $3.49

When a viewer clicks the link, they are forwarded to a landing page and asked to enter their address. After they enter their address, but before they see the home valuation, they need to submit their name, email and phone number. When the form is completed, they see an instant home value and comparable sales.

The landing page we’ve been using for the past 4 years is Home Value Leads, a very affordable service that computes surprisingly accurate home values.

Results

Click through rate: 3.51% of viewers clicked the link.
Cost per click: $​0.61
​Form completion rate: 19.3% of visitors gave us their contact info.
Cost per lead: $3.16

Lead Quality and Follow Up

The cost of leads from both campaigns was super cheap!

By comparison, leads generated with Commissions Inc cost about $10 a piece, that’s without the cost of their platform (which runs $1500 a month). I recently talked to a sales rep from realtor.com, and he tried to sell me on leads costing $100!!

The leads we generated from both FB campaigns require immediate follow up by phone, email, and text. The key to converting the leads is to get them to communicate with you, ideally on the phone.

Most online leads are not ready to buy or sell immediately. They may be 6 or 12 months out and will require rigorous and consistent follow-up to become a real customer.

We are currently working with a number of buyer and seller leads that came from these campaigns. None of them closed a transaction, yet.

My bottom line: Facebook advertising is still the most cost-effective way to generate online leads!