REALTORS: Building Social Media Success

Everyone is coming to realize as more and more websites get online you really must have some way to set yourself apart from the hundreds of millions of other websites online.

One way to do this is through social media. Social media provides the most accessible, easy to use, and widest reaching platform for nearly any business model – this includes real estate. We’re glad to see so many Realtors waking from the Field of Dreams marketing mentality and taking interest in seizing their digital destinies.

It is for that very reason that we’d like to offer some good general practices for finding more success in your social media efforts.

Be Patient
Rome wasn’t built in a day – neither is any kind of success that is worth while. It
will take time, even months, to really begin to see returns from your efforts.

Be Consistent
When fans know what to look for they can look forward to it. Use whatever network you like, but use it every day for best results. There is nothing more embarassing than having someone visit your page and see that it hasn’t been updated in months.

Be Relevant
Don’t know what to say? Listen to what people in your target demographic are
interested in. If your focus is the 55+ crowd posting stuff about the hot new boy
band probably won’t win you any fans. Providing content that is relevant to your audience is the best way to gain interaction and keep fans coming back.

Be Bigger than Real Estate
Make your focus not just real estate, or promoting your listings. Use the rule of
hamburger – make your content 80/20…that is to say 80% positive thoughts, quotes, jokes, pictures, or local interest posts; maybe 20% about real estate or hard marketing your services.

People today are bombarded by thousands and thousands of pieces of advertising every day; if you are just one more source of things for sale you will likely be tuned out.

Be Realistic
Social media is not a silver bullet for all your marketing needs. It will not instantly make your traffic soar or bring in a flood of leads — furthermore that isn’t what it is even about. Social media isn’t about selling to the people you’re connected to, it’s about connecting with the people you’re selling to. It’s about building relationships and establishing trust online.

Have questions about how you can benefit from social media? We’re always glad to talk shop! Contact us with your questions and be sure to follow us on our social portals to stay up on the latest news and tips to help you move more real estate!

We Move Real Estate – and Our Office!

We’ve Moved!

Update your address books – we’re in a brand new office here in Meridian, Idaho!  Same amazing real estate technology services in a great new location!

For over a decade Tour Real Estate has provided the very best online marketing for real estate agents in the Northwest; we continue that vision today.

We have many great developments in the works for the coming year and want to thank all of our customers who have enjoyed our sterling services so far – you have helped make us great!

For payments and meeting arrangements our NEW office is located at:

Tour Real Estate Inc.
1406 N. Main St. Suite 109
Meridian, Idaho 83642

Not a Tour Real Estate customer yet? Why not!?
We provide some of the best, most dynamic real estate websites available on the planet! More than just templated websites we also specialize in custom REALTOR® websites for individual agents and brokerages. Connected Socially? So are we! We love helping real estate professionals make the most of today’s popular social networks – visit our website today to get just a taste of what we have available.

Update: Featured Listing Slideshow

Tour Real Estate Inc has just made one of our old features even better! Our standard featured listing slideshow is now even more functional! We listened to your suggestions and have now made the image a more standard size so that it will re size any image pulled from MLS and display it without cropping problems.

This slideshow update also allows users to watch the slides uninterrupted or quickly skip through them. If you have more than one listing featured in the slideshow (by entering it in your toolbox) your website will choose a random listing to display each time the site is visited – presenting your prospective clients with new images to keep their interest peaked!

We here at TourRE are constantly striving to provide you with the very best real estate technology online today. Part of that is listening to what our customers tell us is important to them; this update is just one example.

There are numerous updates in the works for several of our other standard web functions as well as great new features coming down the line even as we speak! Stay tuned to this blog (you can subscribe on the right) or LIKE our Facebook Fan Page to stay up on the latest real estate market news and our own development info.

Brokers: Get Connected

Interconnectivity is the key to unleashing the power of the internet. Search engine algorithms are mysterious and unpredictable, social media is yet too unproven for many to trust solely for return on investment. For those brokerages looking for a solution Tour Real Estate offers this simple example of how we can leverage the internet’s greatest strength to exponentially increase your traffic and digital exposure.

Build a Powerful Network
Despite algorithm changes authoritative incoming links  are still KEY to ranking well in search results.

We can connect each of your agent’s own highly optimized individual websites to your main office hub, using diverse keyword anchors to create a powerful flow of traffic.

Create and Optimize
Duplication is death. Automation, anti-productive. Search engines want fresh content  for the top sites they present and your visitors demand the best online tools and features. Neither will tolerate a website that is hard to use or that works poorly.

We can provide elegant eye catching designs to envelope the sleek technological functionality of your dynamic website with us and offer some of the most comprehensive marketing tools for real estate professionals available today.

Develop Your Digital Destiny
Regardless of if we like it or not, use it or not, social media has arrived and is one of the most powerful means of exposing your services and listings to a vast – and growing – audience. We believe taking part in the social conversation shouldn’t be something that has to be cumbersome;  offer extremely flexible strategies from simple consultation to full hands-on management.

We’d love the opportunity to talk with you about preparing an effective plan to help you grow towards a successful future in real estate online – contact us today in order to discuss your ideas.

UPDATED Realtor Website Function: Social Links

Due to your requests we’ve now updated our social links function in our client toolbox. Originally designed to allow our user agents to easily link out from their main websites to popular social networks, this function has quickly gained popularity among our more tech savvy users who know the importance of having everything connected.

So what’s new?
Our most recent available social networks are Google Plus and Pinterest. If you have active accounts there that you are using you can now link out to them by simply pasting your profile url into the toolbox in the proper place.

What is Google Plus?
While the jury is still out, many people jokingly refer to Google Plus as the social network that’s not there. Well, it may not be quite there YET but it is well on it’s way. With Google moving it’s “Places” function into Google Plus “Local” the search engine giants new social network will soon be playing an even bigger role on how consumers find things locally. Combine that with it’s AWESOME video chat functionality called “Hangouts” and no one can argue that Google Plus is well poised to begin a social takeover.

What is Pinterest?
Pinterest is the hottest new social sharing site. Mainly consisting of images, video is also supported, this new network encourages users to find amazing things online and “pin” them to their own digital walls. As this network is almost solely visually driven it is not only extremely powerful ( if done right ) but also very easy to get lost in.

Are you a REALTOR® with questions about social media? Tour Real Estate can help you make sense of the online world, including today’s most popular social networks. With search engine rules changing every other day man experts are suggesting that a strong social presence may be the best way to insure a stable digital presence and maintain exceptional customer service online.

REALTORS: Social Networking Success

The game has changed, but there’s still a lot to be said for a good name.

Technology has revolutionized the way real estate is done; this can both be your biggest challenge and your greatest asset. For a short while SEO alone offered a refuge for the small but determined individual, but with the recent changes to Google’s search algorithms the stability of those methods has come into question. While a firm foundation in solid search engine optimization is still the best place to start, in this increasingly competitive market you need a little more to get ahead.

Enter social media.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock you’ve heard about Facebook, Twitter, and some of the other big boys of the social world online. You are likely already using at least one of these type of networks for personal use. And you’ve heard of others using these systems to increase their real world interactions and to create more business – you may even have business account setup – but aren’t really sure what they’re supposed to be doing to help.

Here are some things to consider when evaluating your social networking strategy:

realtor social managementSocial media success is a lot more than just a lot of icons on a page. Just having profiles setup on those sites really isn’t enough.

It’s called social networking for a reason. It works most effectively when all of the elements are interconnected and working together. It’s a fact, over 80% of all potential home buyers look online before they even think to start working with a REALTOR® and social media can help you improve your chances of being the one they choose.

More and more people these days will search and skip right past the first few results to see what returns show up from social networks. Many are even simply skipping a search engine altogether and searching directly ON the social networks in question.

The question is: what will come up when they search for YOU? Is what they find best serving your goals? If you’re not sure you may need to more closely examine how you are presenting yourself online.

You see, what shows up in those social results is just as important (maybe even more so) than the fact they show up at all. There is nothing more embarrassing or sad than clicking a link to a blog or twitter profile only to see “Last Updated, March 9, 2010”; the only thing close is to visit a profile and see nothing but the bare bones information or “coming soon” promise.

So the first best tip would be: if you’re going to have a profile on a social network USE IT. Make sure it is up to date – or if you don’t intend on updating it frequently make sure the content and information you put there will stand the test of time.

The last best tip would be: USE the social profiles you have. (sounds similar to the first tip doesn’t it?!) Social media, like your website itself, is just a tool and like any tool it can’t help you if you don’t use it. A $5,000 titanium alloy hammer will sit in the box and never drive a single nail if it is not used; the  same thing applies to social media.

Social media can help you increase your digital footprint and gain more exposure for your website, listings, and services, but you need to make sure all your profiles are connected and presenting a consistent message.

Even in this technology driven industry word of mouth is still one of the most powerful ways to gain referrals and new clients. Social media is the digital form of word of mouth. If you are providing great content and maintaining interaction levels with your follower base you may soon be amazed at the fact that they are the ones driving the success of your efforts online as much as yourself.

By leveraging these networks and nurturing your audience you can in essence custom tailor the face you present to the world online. Isn’t it best then to make sure you’re wearing your best winning smile?

Have questions about using social media? Too busy to blog? Too tired to Tweet?  We can help you understand social network marketing and even offer a number of social media management services for today’s progressive real estate professionals. Contact us to find out more!

Realtor Video Feeds from Youtube

What’s new? How about a Youtube Homepage Module?! You can now add your most recent Youtube video to your homepage. This function updates automatically any time you post a new video and adding this module to your websites main page allows you to share videos from your real estate Youtube channel with no extra effort.

It’s simple to add: Login to your Client Toolbox and click Social Links on the left. Make sure you’ve entered your Youtube channel URL (make sure you use the proper URL format displayed). Once that is entered just visit the Customize Homepage Content and add the Youtube module from the available default modules there.

Just one more feature for our dedicated real estate website customers – provided at no additional cost! Find out more about all of our great website functions by visiting our main real estate website page.

Get out there and make some videos and enjoy!