The internet is all abuzz about Twitter.
Twitter is a â€śmicrobloggingâ€ť platform that lets you send 140 character â€śTweetsâ€ť (sort of like instant messages). People â€śfollowâ€ť you, and you â€śfollowâ€ť others. Itâ€™s a social networking platform that is undergoing tremendous growth. (See this article from Nielsen Ratings for more info. And note the largest user demographic is those aged 35 â€“ 49. Thatâ€™s prime home buying selling age folksâ€¦)
Realtors tend to jump on anything that has even a hope of getting them business — and there is nothing wrong with that provided you investigate and understand what it is you are getting in to. And yes, Twitter can get you business. It is a wonderful tool for expanding your Sphere of Influence and for networking with other professionals in and out of the real estate industry.
While there are no â€śrulesâ€ť for the proper use of a platform like Twitter, there are unquestionably some guidelines and generally acceptable etiquette practices that, used properly, will accelerate your business growth and used improperly may result in you never getting anything out of Twitter.
For the last couple of weeks, Iâ€™ve been gathering random Tweets from Realtors who are, in my opinion, â€śdoing it wrongâ€ť. Iâ€™m leaving the names off as the intent is not to publicly humiliate anyone. The intent is to try to help educate those that want to use Twitter (or any social network for that matter) to expand their business.
I give you these little nuggets. Of note is the vast majority of these are brand new Twitter users (I have redacted some personal info like names, specific locations, brokerages, etc):
â€śI am a realtor looking for clients who are interested in buying a home or selling their home.â€ť (users first, and only Tweet)
â€śRealtor. Have put properties under contract this week. Things are getting better with rates and inventory.â€ť (users first, and only Tweet. At least it provides some useful info)
Â â€śSOLD SOLD SOLD…another double end today for me @705K ….flying high! Is this a recession sure doesn’t feel like one too me!â€ť (Not a new Twitter user. But please, no one likes to see someone gloatingâ€¦)
â€śSOLD! 2nd 1/2 million double end of the year! I feel like I’m in Vegas I can hear the bells ringing!!â€ť (from the same user above).
â€śCall if you live in the Illionois area and looking to buy or sell a home I am the Best Realtor in Illinoisâ€ť and â€śSelling Homes working with buyers and sellers call me if you need the best Realtorâ€ť and â€śSELLING HOMESâ€ť (users only three Tweets. Ever)
â€śLOOKING FOR FOR PEOPLE THAT NEED HELP WITH FINALLY BUYING THEIR FIRST HOME! IM A REALTOR AT COLDWELL BANKER REAL ESTATEâ€ť (Users first, and only Tweet. And really, THERE IS NO NEED TO SHOUT!)
â€śAre you looking for a good REALTOR in Las Vegas? I am here ready to help you. It’s a great time to buy right now. Let me show youâ€ť (users first Tweet)
And I could go on and on and on. There is stuff like this all over the â€śTwitterverseâ€ť.
How are Tweets like these perceived by Twitter users?Â Here are two actual examples:
â€śDear God, please make it illegal for realtors to sell homes on Twitterâ€ť
â€śYeah, some recent Realtor convention must have had “Twitter and Your Real Estate Business” as a panel.â€ť
You see, in the world of Twitter and social media / networking, the â€śhard sellâ€ť doesnâ€™t work. Iâ€™d even go so far as to say that in real life today, the hard sell doesnâ€™t work.Â
Hereâ€™s the deal. For Twitter to be useful, you need to ENGAGE with others. Broadcasting to the general public that YOU ARE A TOP PRODUCING REALTOR! does nothing. Do you walk into a cocktail party full of people you donâ€™t know and shove a business card in their hand and ask them if you can help them buy or sell a home? Do you walk up to a complete stranger and say, â€śWhat recession? Iâ€™m double-ending deals right and left!â€ť (Please say no. Please.)
Then why would you behave this way in an internet social network?Â
You can put in your Twitter profile that you are a Realtor. Put a link in your profile to your blog or web site. But donâ€™t jam your profession down peopleâ€™s throats. Itâ€™s just not necessary, and in fact will be quite detrimental to your success on Twitter, or any other social network.
You can make your expertise known by responding to questions about real estate, sharing real estate news and blog links (NOT just your own!) and via the occasional (very occasional) Tweet about your day.Â
Hopefully youâ€™ve seen here how not to use Twitter. I threw in a little about how to use it but will offer much more in my next post (which will not be in three months like this one wasâ€¦). In the meantime, if you want to learn how to use Twitter to improve your business, I suggest following a few and paying attention to what they are doing.
You can follow me too! @PhxREguy.
See Jay’s follow up “How To Use Twitter!”