Let’s face it: In a world filled with more real estate agents than ever before, standing out from the crowd can sometimes feel like an insurmountable task. When the constant need for more impactful branding is combined with an agent’s insanely busy schedule, things get even more out of hand. We’re right there with you, which is why we’ve put together a handy guide to easy brand building hacks that you can execute in less time than it takes to watch an episode of “House Hunters.”
1. Update Your Google My Business Profile
We’ve talked before about just how important it is to flesh out and claim your Google Business Profile. This easy-to-maintain tool can take a Google search from this:
The combination of photos, contact information, and reviews from past clients in one easily accessible place is a huge brand-building tool for any agent. You can’t just “set and forget” your Google Business Profile, though: Google requires users to keep their Google Business Profiles updated if they want to continue being seen by Google searchers.
If this all sounds overwhelming, don’t worry: The easiest things to add to your Google Business Profile (photos and reviews) are also the most impactful.
When adding photos to your Business Profile, be sure to select listing photos that are both current and well-shot. The photos you add will appear prominently within your Google Business Profile, and centering beautiful photography is a surefire way to make a great first impression while engaging in some subtle brand building.
Adding reviews to your Google Business Profile requires a little more work, but the payoff is well worth the investment. You can reach out to past prospects in any way that works for you, whether that’s reaching out through your CRM or sending a hand-crafted email. Just a single response makes a massive difference: In fact, research shows that agents with just a single review on their Google Business Profile receive a 71% lift in profile views!
2. Run a Set of Awareness Ads on Facebook
We’re big fans of Facebook advertising, and awareness ads are some of the easiest ads to run. There’s no need to do any in-depth targeting with awareness ads, so you can realistically build and launch a group of ads in less than 15 minutes as long as you’ve got some quality imagery to work with.
There’s no “right” choice when it comes to that imagery, though. Some agents might choose to feature a beautiful new listing in their awareness ads, while others might choose to use some simple design software to create an informational graphic.
When writing the copy for your new awareness ads, spend some quality time thinking about what sets you apart from other agents. Do you have extensive experience working with military families? Are you an expert on the landscape in your farming area? Do you have a host of great reviews on your Google Business profile? Call those out in the copy of your post, then encourage users to click through your ad to learn more about you and your business.
For example, take a look at this ad from JSP Realtors:
This brokerage made the smart decision to use their awareness ads to highlight their outstanding reviews. There’s no listing photo here: This brokerage has instead decided to use pictures of satisfied clients as the centerpiece of this ad. By taking advantage of the idea of social proof, this brokerage has created a compelling value for themselves while simultaneously enticing interested parties to click through and learn more about their business.
3. Share a Post with Relevant Hashtags
Finally, it’s time to flex your social media muscles. If you have any sort of social media following, particularly on Twitter or Instagram, there’s an easy (and free) way to get your content — and therefore your brand — in front of a wider audience than just your existing followers. That’s right: It’s time to embrace the humble hashtag.
We’ve discussed the brand-building benefits of maintaining a strong hashtagging strategy before, but for those of you who aren’t familiar with them, a hashtag (or #) is placed in front of a word or phrase on a social media platform in order to create an indexable database of related content. Once you’ve typed out a hashtag and shared a post, any user can find that post by searching for the hashtag you’ve used.
Hashtags can have serious impacts on the reach of your social posts: In fact, research has shown that posts with just one hashtag included see 70% more engagement than posts without hashtags. Don’t get too greedy, though: That same research showed that posts with more than 7 hashtags included see a decline in overall engagement.
Before adding hashtags to your next post, browse through location tags around your area — what are people around you talking about? How do they use hashtags? Are there any seasonal or region-specific tags that you could repurpose in your own content? These are things like #summer, #OCMD (Ocean City, Maryland), or #sweaterweather that see wide usage across verticals.
Beyond those local hashtags, be sure to include some hashtags with broader reach (think #realestate). These oft-used hashtags may not boost your engagement directly, but they’ll have a noticeable impact on the number of people you’re able to reach with each post.