(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Social media platforms are giving businesses of all kinds the chance to reach customers in all demographics. Real estate in Dubai is a global investment phenomenon, but the traditional methods of online marketing and listings might be constraining its growth. Here, we're going to look at the unique advantages that social media has to offer.
It's where your audience is
Real estate agents in the loop already know that their customers are all moving online. Eighty per cent of all home buyers are looking online, according to Contactually. Furthermore, around half of them are searching through properties on their mobile, which means that mobile-friendly platforms like social media have a lot more reach.
Only nine per cent of realtors list their properties on social media channels. There's a significant market on channels like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram that aren't being delivered the real estate opportunities that they would be interested in.
Social media usage only continues to grow as well. There are now six social media channels with over 1 billion accounts that are active each month, as shown at Statista. You cannot doubt that other agents offering real estate in Dubai are going to be making the switch, so you want to ensure that you make your mark first.
Show investment potential
One of the most convincing reasons you can offer buyers is the potential growth of any investments in Dubai right now. With a growing number of businesses registered, record-high tourist visits, a booming real estate market, population increase, and more, there is much opportunity to capitalise in Dubai.
Social media channels like Instagram, Twitter and even Youtube could allow you to convey that information much more succinctly. Blog posts tend to lose the full attention of the average reader. Sharing infographics through social media allows you to choose the most appealing bits of data.
Get to the heart of the product
Images get a lot more engagement on social media than links to written blogs. Video can be even more powerful, as posts with videos tend to get three times the attention of written posts. These visual platforms are perfect for Dubai real estate because the visuals of the properties and their surrounding communities are one of the biggest draws.
Turning customers into fans
There are few things more valuable than word-of-mouth when it comes to real estate. To get it, you need to earn the support of your business' fans. One study shows that 100 per cent of clients in all age groups are most likely to find their real estate agents through word-of-mouth. Social media only makes the process easier.
One of the best ways to grow those followers is to develop content they want to see or read. Besides listings, infographics, photos and videos of relevant properties, informative material has enormous potential.
Our top 10 tips
Here are 10 tips on how to grow your following with quality leads and to get ahead of competition.
> Experiment with post timings: Posting content at different times of the day provides different results. You should try to post content at different times to see when you're getting the most engagement from your followers.
> Choose content wisely: When posting your content, you need to ensure it relates to your target audience. The more your followers engage with you, the more likely you will experience an increase in followers.
> Let people know where you are: Always add your location to your post. If you're posting high-quality pictures for example, they will want to know where it was taken.
> Be unique: Your follower's timelines are full of content from other companies and individuals. You have to be able to stand out. Don't post as everyone else does, use a mixture of filters and hashtags, add links, tag your photos, and you can even add emojis and GIFs.
> The higher the quality, the better: One thing your followers won't appreciate is pixelated or overused stock images. Create your unique content. Your followers will respond in kind by liking, sharing and engaging with your posts.
> Engage and be social: The whole point of social media is to engage. It's unreasonable to think that you will get likes, shares and followers if you're not social and interactive with anybody.
> Don't spam: The use of hashtags for people to find you is highly recommended. Use hashtags unique to your content and that makes sense to your audience.
> Keep an eye on competition: Keeping an eye on your competitors to see who they're following, or the types of content that they post is good practice. It's a good measuring stick to see if your content is fresh and engaging.
> Make your audience feel special: Show your followers pictures of things they wouldn't usually see, the reality of real estate is that the job comes with long hours and is hard work. Customers who are interested in properties want to look at exclusives.
> Ignore the haters: No matter what social network you're using there will always be someone who posts something inappropriate or harmful. You will be the best person to judge whether the negative comment holds any merit. Getting into a war of words on a public forum is never a good idea. On the flipside, if someone has taken the time to post something helpful or positive or even to ask a question, always take the time to respond.
The writer is marketing and communications manager at Espace Real Estate. Views expressed are her own and do not reflect the newspaper's policy.