Estate agents MUST measure their social networking
28 August, 2009 | Web design
We have mentioned social networking many times before, social networking is full of people writing nonsense, complete twitter guide for estate agents, are social networks replacing email, social networking is growing up, but are estate agents measuring their social networking?
Firstly, estate agents should have already started to implement their social networking strategy. Facebook was founded in 2004, in less than 5 years, it has more than 250million active users. The fastest growing demographic are people aged 35 and older who will all, at one point, be looking for property online.
Twitter was founded in2006 and already has 10 million users. It is the fastest growing social networking with 475,000 users in February 2008 and 7 million users in February 2009. This phenomenal growth has been unseen in the social networking industry. Both Facebook and Twitter is currently free for everyone, estate agents should have already created a profile and started their social networking journey.
Many estate agents have started using social networking as a way to provide an online personal service to their customers, link to their website or give property searchers the latest updates on properties available to them. Estate agents that engage their captive audience in this way find that the benefits can be vast; they can see increased leads and sales, greater customer interaction through two-way communication and increased traffic to their estate agent website.
For this to succeed, estate agents must measure the results of their online journey. Jumping on the bandwagon and making a profile for each social network is not good enough. Making a profile for each social network and fully utilising it is good, but not good enough. Estate agents need to make a profile, learn to utilise so they can meet their online strategy objectives and then measure the results. Without measuring traffic, estate agents, at worst, could be on a wild goose chase.
Google analytics is one of the best tools on the web for people, including estate agents, to measure the amount of traffic accessing their website. It gives users three main categories. Visitors (Includes; Visits, page views, time on site, bounce rate), Traffic sources (Includes; Direct traffic, referring sites, search engines, keywords used) and Content (Includes; top landing pages, top exit pages, top content). Users are also able to set goals, such as '20 people visiting the property search page in one day'.
Bit.ly is another fantastic tool in conjunction with Twitter. Resource Techniques explained it for estate agents in the news article 'Have you heard of Tiny URLs? What about URL checkers?'. Bit.ly has another function. Every tiny URL that you create, users are able to check the amount of clicks, what time the click occurred, and what country they clicked from. This enables estate agents to follow every single link that is created on twitter.
From these two tools, estate agents are able to see the traffic patterns generated by social networking. One great example is the time to send messages or 'tweeting' on Twitter. Tweeting after working hours might get better results from property searchers than Tweeting within working hours. This seems logical but estate agents that experiment themselves will be able to see, first hand, the fruits of their labour.
Are you an estate agent thinking of starting up a social networking strategy? Resource Techniques keeps up-to-date with the latest news to help estate agents through the online world. Call us on 0208 457 4777 or visit our contact us page.