Mastering social media for real estate can be a game changer for your business. 

But very few agents are putting out content that either helps create top-of-funnel opportunities or helps close deals at the bottom of the funnel. 

As Tom Ferry said, everything else is just noise. 

Marketing expert Jason Pantana and BAM co-founder Byron Lazine recently joined #1 real estate coach Tom Ferry on The Tom Ferry Podcast Experience to share what’s working—and what isn’t—for real estate agents on the major social media platforms. 

Benefits and downsides of TikTok

One of the big questions on people’s minds right now is whether the TikTok ban will actually happen—and what they should be doing regardless of whether it does. 

The fact is agents need to recognize both the benefits and downsides of TikTok so they can use it effectively while maintaining and growing their presence on as many major platforms as possible. 

Agents who focused on building their brand on TikTok had an advantage in 2022 in that they were able to collect 10,000 (or more) followers in a short amount of time. 

But those who were trying to attract potential clients in their local market were better served on other platforms like Instagram and YouTube. Facebook, as well as LinkedIn, are also better than TikTok for targeting local businesses. 

But if TikTok does get banned in the U.S., Jason Pantana believes YouTube is the platform best positioned to take advantage of that, given its growing popularity as a source of short-form (Shorts) as well as long-form video—and the fact that agents don’t have to pay to get noticed. 

In addition, Mark Zuckerberg said recently that by the end of 2023, 30% of what people see in their Instagram and Facebook feeds will be AI-suggested content, so almost a third of your feed on these platforms will be reminiscent of TikTok.

The way I look at that is as an agent, you’re potentially losing almost a third of your ability to reach your consumers, your network, your past clients and sphere, who are following you there. So, you have a couple of options, but the main option is, you start paying to play

Jason Pantana

As far as consuming information, Twitter is a favorite among many agents for getting insights on all things real estate (as well as other topics of interest). 

If I want to get real information, if I want to consume information that’s going to help me on my YouTube videos, on my podcast, on my Instagram, I’m on Twitter right now. That’s where I’m consuming my information. Twitter is a really juicy spot. And TikTok was good for what I needed it for. I also wasn’t trying to pick up listings personally. And for the team, we didn’t go deep on TikTok because it didn’t make any sense. We stayed on Facebook, we stayed on Instagram, where our clients were.

Byron Lazine

That said, The Broke Agent pointed out during last week’s webinar with Matt Lionetti and Brooks Landry, real estate professionals who don’t post content on TikTok should at least consume it (for as long as it lasts) to stay on top of trends. 

The value of both short-form and long-form video

Agents need to ask themselves whether their subject matter works better in a short-form or long-form setting, and how they can leverage long-form to create short-form clips, so they can have the best of both and make the best use of their time. 

The two main options for creating short-form content are— 

  1. Batch-recording short-form videos
  2. Recording long-form and chopping those up into clips

With the first, you could go on Quora to find out what people are asking about real estate and create short videos to answer each question. Or make a list of the biggest questions being asked by your email list.

You could also go on Twitter, look up real estate-specific hashtags, make a list of the most popular topics and find a way to improve upon the existing content for those topics.

The beauty of long-form videos is that you don’t know what could happen during a podcast conversation that could become an explosive piece of short-form content. 

In a nutshell, you need both. And mixing it up can have a ripple effect that boosts your content and gets more people following your accounts. 

What it really takes to attract your tribe

In one sense, it’s true that “your vibe attracts your tribe.” But new agents need to be aware that they cannot afford to ice out potential clients whose vibe might be different from theirs. 

Adding value and putting your clients’ and prospects’ interests ahead of your ego is absolutely critical to attracting people who want to work with skilled and knowledgeable professionals. 

The content isn’t about you. Don’t make yourself the star. Make your clients the hero. Make the local market the hero. Make everybody other than you the hero. And what happens when you do that…there’s a ‘know, like, and trust’ that just goes through the roof.

Tom Ferry

Internet fame-seekers are a dime a dozen. People like to work with professionals who have their priorities straight. You know you’re there to work for them—not to become a “celebrity” in the real estate industry. 

The most important strategic advice for agents on social

Agents who want more sales, more listings, and more referrals need to be strategic when creating content for social media in 2023. 

Here’s some of the best advice given away during the podcast:

  • Avoid the contagion of trying to become a “celebrity agent” or “moving from the ecosystem to the ego-system”
  • Produce content in your local market that no one has started doing yet—e.g., making hyper-local green screen videos on what’s happening in your market
  • Whether you get a listing from a particular video matters less than if potential clients recognize you (and the value of your content) when you walk through the door
  • Don’t identify your brand with a political party—but don’t be afraid to start conversations about local political topics that residents in your market should be aware of.
  • Make a short list of your most effective content and double down on it. 
  • Use the insights from each platform to identify content with the best results, and do more of that—and go wider
  • Create videos that add value to anyone who chooses to follow or subscribe to your content

Finally, let go of the question, “Is this going to go viral?” Whether each piece of content adds value to the people watching it is the right question to ask. 

From there, you can look at whether your content helps you build rapport with potential clients, simply because they’ve seen your content and it resonated with them or answered one of their most pressing questions.