Instagram Best Practices for Real Estate

Have you ever considered creating an Instagram profile for your Real-Estate Agency? Should your digital marketing strategy include this important social network? We want to show you why this will be a very smart move.

We already gave you some tips with 5 Ways to Generate Sales from Your Realtor Website  now we want to dig deeper with your Social Network marketing strategy by introducing Instagram.

Let`s say I want to buy/rent a house, commercial space, or an apartment. I`m going to start the search online, look for the real estate websites, filter the area I`m interested in, type, size, price and I`m ready to browse through photographs. Now there are a lot of agencies, a lot of ads, and bunch of small, bad quality images all over the internet. I want to see nice pictures, good quality ones – that show details of my potential new home. Maybe some of these realtors have Instagram, so let`s check there? Because, if they have Instagram I`m going to love checking out their photographs there. I`m thinking they must be modern, cool, up to date agents and I`d like to work with them.

Now who am I? Potential client, who is most likely younger than 40, who is active on Social Media and I prefer seeing photographs and images above everything else.

Statistics have confirmed who will be your target market within Instagram. Young couples looking for a place to call their first home, or looking to upscale when they have have children.

Maybe they are students who want to rent a place close to their University or young professionals searching for a commercial space? Perhaps individuals who want to start living independently, now that they have a good job and solid income? These people are your target market, people who spend much of their time browsing pictures on Instagram.

We`ll assume that your agency already has Facebook page and if this is correct, you are already half way there. Instagram is growing to be very popular platform and it is all about photographs, short videos, images and most of all – visual effect. It`s connected to Facebook, so you can easily work with both platforms at the same time, the main difference here is that there is no place for just text, or posts where you describe what are you doing where and why? On Instagram, you show everything with pictures.

Sure, you have a good Realtor website with a gallery of images, but not everyone checks that consistently. Younger generations like when things are less time consuming, fast and easy. They will scroll through social media on many occasions during the day. It`s on their phone, so they can easily come across one of your beautiful posts and they are hooked. This can take them to your website and provide additional information to seal the deal.

When we say Instagram is very popular, we really mean it, and here`s why.

If you are still not convinced that your real-estate needs an Instagram account, here are some useful business-related numbers that may help you decide on this one:

  • There are 15 million registered businesses using Instagram business profiles.
  • 80% of Instagrammers are following a business today
  • Instagram has 1 million monthly active advertisers—up from just 200,000 in March 2016.
  • In March 2017, over 120 million Instagrammers visited a website, recieved directions, called, emailed, or direct messaged to learn about a business based on an Instagram ad.

Impressive numbers, right?

We`ll take it that you are hooked on Instagram, or at least intrigued by it. We will follow up with some useful tips on how to create your Instagram account and how to make it successful.

  1. Download the Instagram App from your App Store, log in  with some basic information, user name and password or by using your Facebook/ Google account)
  2. Create your home page, profile picture and small bio that will say a few good words on your Real Estate Agency
  3. You are ready to start posting images, videos and other useful content.

If you are a first-time user, Instagram has a great Support page where you can easily follow all the steps to create your profile.

Now that you are all set, let`s talk about the content you want to share on your page.

Images

Instagram is all about sharing images. Take this as an advantage. As a realtor, you already have photographs of everything you are offering, why not share some on the platform that appreciates this type of content.  However, be careful, you want to put high-quality photographs and authentic ones. You don’t want to share images that aren’t yours, that are taken from other sites. This could reflect in disappointment of your clients if they discover that the thing you are showing on your profile is not actually the thing you are offering.

Don’t worry if you don’t have a professional photographer for your small agency, or fancy equipment, even though this is very useful to have. Today`s smartphones can make wonderful images and Instagram offers so many editing options and filters, that can help make your photographs unique and beautiful. You just need to have a good eye, a right angle and you are all set.

Bonus info, try out Canva to make cool banners and posters that can fit all platforms.

Earlier, Instagram would allow you to post only one photo at a time, but from this year, Instagram offers a possibility to upload Album of up to 10 photos or videos. So, if you want to share latest house that you are offering, you can make an album with all available rooms,  showing all qualities this house has, so your potential client can just scroll through them while enjoying Instagram. Don’t worry, this process is very simple.

You can also make collages of several photographs if you want all of them to be shown as one post. You just need to download the Layout App for Instagram from  the App Store and it will show up on your page once you decide to post your next photo. This is a great way to show some of your work in progress – if you are dealing with fixer upper. People would like to see the “before and after” images for sure.

#Hashtags

When you are finished with your image post, it`s hashtag time.

These are basically words that relate to your image, your business, work you`ve done – they help organize all that content on this platform. If you track a hashtag it will direct you to similar posts of other users all over the world. So, you want to be part of that and you would want to be tracked this way. You can also make a unique hashtag, sort of a brand and add it to every post your agency publishes. It will be like your real-estate business has its original hashtaging signature, something that others will recognize you by.

Videos

Instagram is not all about photographs and images. You can make some short videos with useful information about your business, or you can make your client testimonials this way, why not change things a little bit. However, keep it short and simple and not longer than 20-30 seconds, your followers wont have patience to listen to long talks here. On the other hand, Instagram is helping you in the way that your video will automatically start, while someone is browsing through the content, without having to click “play”. You want to grab their attention in the first few seconds and make them watch it until the end. If it`s too long and if you go to deep, it`s most likely they will get bored and will want to scroll further on.

Sometimes you will want to make a longer video of a process of making a house, or rebuilt of one, or you`d like to show that a certain apartment is in a great neighborhood and you filmed it all. Instagram has a solution for that as well.  Use the Hyperlapse to make professional videos of a time laps with this cool app

Instagram Best Practices for Real Estate – Siva Creative

Instagram Stories 

This is a great way of not crowding your Instagram profile with too many photos, but still keeping your followers up to date with what is going on right now. You can post images or short videos of something interesting happening today and it will be shown separately for 24h and after that it disappears. Very useful for “open house events” since you do it on a specific day and in a specific time, so you can share some of the atmosphere with the ones who couldn’t make it. Or if you`ve just sold a home, you can share that moment in a short story. You can add fun stickers to it, type text across it, even pick a date and time your story happened.

Closely related, Instagram launched this new interactive tool  – Polls for Instagram StoriesThis tool lets your friends and followers vote on a question or a dilemma you have. For a real estate agency, you can make this an interesting and fun option. You can show a house and an apartment and ask which one would they rather live in, or which kitchen they like more, or what colors of the floor they would prefer, etc. You want to interact with your followers as much as possible and draw some extra attention to your offers. It will also show that you care about their opinion and you find it useful for your business.

Likes and Comments

You want to put a description of you offer along with the photos/videos you publish, but Instagram is not the place where you write long detailed text, you need to keep it simple and informative. Make announcements, invitations, but always accompanied with a nice picture. You can use this part to put a link to your website or Blog for instance.  Share a photo, put a short description that will intrigue them and ad a link to the place you want them to go and read the rest.  On Facebook your text goes before the image, but here, your text will go below it, as your own comment that follows your post.

Also, don’t forget to comment on the posts of other Instagram users. Be active, like, comment, share. You want others to notice your content, well, others want to be noticed to. If someone comments on your photograph, say thanks, and check their page.

Instagram Ads

All these suggestions and ideas we gave you are just a small part of what Instagram can offer your business, you just need to get on board and explore – they are completely free! However, if you want to invest a little bit in advertising, this is also the right place to be.

Instagram has this useful Guide to show how to advertise your business on this platform, and we are more than glad to share it with you. Or If you would like leave it to the professionals, contact us and we would love to provide catered advertisements for your business!

Have fun and show you are a Realtor with personality

Even though this is your business profile, it doesn’t have to be all about Real Estate. People would like to see your interests, places your team members visited, where do you like to eat, or listen to some good music. Also, show that you are socially aware and active member of a society and that you remember and support important happenings around you. Share some inspirational posts and images, remember national and international dates and show that you care. If you came across something funny, share it with your followers, just keep it in moderation and good taste.

We hope this blog helped you learn more about Instagram and all the benefits it can provide for your real-estate business. This platform is modern, colorful and most importantly fast. People make an art out of posting images/videos and adding hashtags. Everyone enjoys looking at nice photos, use this as an advantage and a great opportunity for your  Real Estate Business.

If you decided to become a member, but don’t have time to manage another account, or you still have some questions and doubts, feel free to contact us at Siva Creative. We will be more than glad to help you out. Also, don’t forget to check out our Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/sivacreative/ .

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