Although I wouldn’t consider if to be a fully rounded strategy to networking, I do have some habits that I try and maintain. I am trying to cultivate a fairly large following on my social media. However, I am targeting those people who are local first. Real estate is generally a local market. Most people don’t ask for a realtor to refer them to another realtor where they are thinking of buying, although that would be completely possible. People who are buying residential say, “I’m buying here, I need a realtor from here.” So, the first thing to do is to network with local businesses. Although I am not a realtor, I’ll be running the social media for an entire realty brokerage, so it is important that they be connected.
Once I’ve created the first members of this network, I can interact with them via social media. For example, I’ve been interacting with local businesses by responding to their tweets, or mentioning events that they are having on our Facebook page. By creating a sense that we actually care about what is going on in the community other than what we are involved in, people are more likely to return the favour, broadening our reach. Since I am not the ‘face’ of this particular company, attending events under the banner of the brokerage is not as possible. However, for my other business, I would certainly try to attend as many local events as possible. I really enjoyed the event that I attended for credit in this course, and I now know where to look for more like it.
In the next six months to a year, I intend to post regularly on all the social media related to both my business and the realty brokerage. I will also constantly be interacting with as many local businesses as possible on social media. I will encourage the members of the brokerage to interact in person when they can, by attending local events and functions. Once I become more comfortable, perhaps I can even create webinars or tweetups for local businesses or clients.
Although social media is informative and allows you to touch a wider audience, I really believe that nothing can beat in person networking. The trust that can be built in person, face to face, is incredible. There is no substitute. Finding the people you want to network with though, is done well through social media.