Using social media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn to help build real estate marketing is nothing new. But Pinterest — a relative newcomer to the social media world — might prove the most valuable social medium for real estate agents.
For those that don’t know, Pinterest allows users to “pin” images and videos they like online to individual pin boards. Friends can easily see those pins and share them. It’s got a strong social aspect but also — and maybe more importantly — Pinterest is powerful because it drives more traffic to websites and blogs than Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, or YouTube (study by Simply Measured). With 25 million users, the potential for exposure is huge for real estate agents as well as home buyers on Pinterest.
Click to enlarge. Source: Media Bistro / Pew Study
Additionally, a recent Pew Study has shown that women are five times as likely as men to use Pinterest and that most of those women are highly educated and affluent. And according to National Association of Realtors (NAR), single women are buying houses at twice the rate of single men, making them the second largest home buying demographic after married couples.
You see where we’re going with this, right?
As fast as images go viral on Pinterest, you could get images of new listings out there in front of a LOT of women (buyers and sellers). You can create pin boards showcasing your listings and community, as well as pinboards boasting about your listing’s gourmet kitchen and incredible landscaping. Showcase your expertise in real estate with fun infographics and videos. Anything that shows you’re an expert in your field and understand your clients.
Basically, Pinterest will do three main things for real estate agents:
- Increase website traffic;
- Help with search engine optimization (SEO) (see: Real Estate SEO Essentials, Parti 1: Keyword Research) and;
- Deliver a great branding experience for your buyers and sellers.
Based on this helpful video presentation by Erica Campbell, the Director of Social Media for Homes.com and ForRent.com, here are seven of our favorite Pinterest ideas for real estate:
1) Introduce your team
Use head shots and go above and beyond. Under the pin description, share each agent’s story and experience. Make it personal, keyword-heavy and link it back to your About Us page or to their LinkedIn or Twitter accounts.
Lakeshore Realty, a North Lake Tahoe Real Estate agency, does a great job introducing their staff in their “Meet Our Team” board. The descriptions are keyword-heavy and the images link back to their website.
2) Showcase your listings
Source: Wishpond infographic.
Don’t just upload the photos. Make sure you have all metadata behind it so that your pins can be easily found online and linked back to your website. Add pricing by adding the dollar sign followed by a number in the description box; Pinterest will automatically add a price tag to your pin. Use hashtags, an effective way to be discovered. Use general hashtags such as #RealEstate, #Home, #HomesForSale — but also use geo-specific hashtags such as #Durham, #NorthCarolina, #Brooklyn.
3) Lifestyle content
Click to enlarge. Source: Brandon Gaille.
This is where Pinterest’s strength really lies. Pinners enjoy spending time on lifestyle content such as arts and crafts, style and fashion, food recipes, humor, and of course, home ideas. The number one category on Pinterest is “Home” and the #1 most popular board name is “For The Home.” That means there are plenty of opportunities for you to gain engagement by pinning fun lifestyle photos related to homes. Examples: Dream Homes, Home Decor (as you get savvy, you can create a board for each individual space in the house like kitchen, bathroom, kid’s bedroom and garden), Seasonal Boards (i.e., home staging for summer, fall, winter and spring).
Pinning lifestyle images is a great way to share personality with your clients. Susan Parker, a Real Estate Broker from Greenville, NC, has obtained 3,500+ followers on Pinterest by having boards about beauty/health tips, home design ideas, DIY projects, food and drinks, and more.
4) Go local
This is a great way for you to show off your knowledge in the local community — not to mention that, with the right keywords, it will help your website rank higher in the search engines. Here you can pin about great places to eat in your town, schools, nightlife, beauty spas, community parks your prospective buyers can take their kids and dogs. You can be the go-to source of what’s good and cool in the area. What better way is there to improve your personal branding?
By pinning images of your area, not only will be perceived as a go-to source but you’ll also make it easier for others to find your online when searching for things to do in your town. Michelle Potter, a Real Estate Agent in Denver, has 8,400+ people following her pins about Denver’s homes, neighborhoods restaurants, fun things to do and more.
5) Real Estate advice
In addition to being a local source, you can also use Pinterest to prove you’re knowledgeable in real estate. You may already be giving advice in your blog or website so Pinterest is another great outlet to promote it. Also, repin posts from reputable sources in the industry such as NAR, Inman News, Lisa Archer from Geeky Girls, Housing Wire, and RIS Media.
6) Include videos
Create a board specifically for videos. As mentioned in a previous blog post, 90% of all web visitors will be watching video in the near future, according to 2013 Consumer Electronics Show. Video marketing is a trend you have to understand and exploit in your real estate marketing plan. Adding a board for your videos will increase your rank for SEO but will also give a face to your brand. Ideas: pin customer testimonials and listings.
7) Open house and staging ideas
Going back to lifestyle content, this is another great spot to share your ideas and personality with your clients or even a great way to store ideas for future listings. Examples of good pins: cookies and snacks recipes, home design ideas, floor plans, event decor, and open house invitation ideas.
Once you have a small “showpiece,” you can move on to get followers. The key in using Pinterest for real estate marketing is to build recognition, be perceived as an expert and trustworthy professional in your field, and drive traffic to your website or blog, which will then be more likely bring you leads.
Do you have any other ideas on creative ways real estate agents can use Pinterest? Share them below in the comments.
Follow Adwerx on Pinterest for real estate infographics and home improvement ideas.