Many agents are using social media platforms to connect with potential customers. As a business building tool however, LinkedIn is one of the few social media platforms than can help you engage with and influence your peers and keep your finger on the pulse of the industry.
Although your customers are your primary concern, there are some aspects of your business that just could not function without the stakeholders you could reach and influence via this B2B platform.
If you are actively engaging in social media to build awareness among potential customers, then you should not neglect the corporate brand building you can do with LinkedIn. Just like attending networking and industry events to forge contacts and gain knowledge, this is a great method for building your brand with your peers too.
Actively seeking to grow your reputation among industry peers can reap rewards, such as attracting new suppliers, investors and staff, or securing speaker spots at industry events and conferences. If you are putting the effort into nurturing client relationships online, there is no doubt you should be seen to be doing this with your peers too.
Sharing news of supplier or associate success on LinkedIn demonstrates that your finger is on the pulse; an agency that’s good to work with.”
By utilising LinkedIn to its full potential, you can: connect with trusted suppliers; build your reputation in the industry; attract and retain staff; build the reputation of your individual business leaders; and share knowledge and best practice to solve business challenges and discuss industry issues.
There are over 750,000 property professionals on LinkedIn in the UK alone, and here are our top tips for using LinkedIn to reach, learn from, and influence them.
Create a Company Page
The first step to succeeding on LinkedIn is to create a Company Page. Similar to Facebook, this will be the platform you publish from and use as a base for all your activity. Simply enter all your company’s information and connect to a relevant business email address, then add images and appoint admins that will be able to edit the page and you are ready to go. Your Company Page is a great place to share company news, such as staff vacancies, awards, promotions, business results and supplier contacts, and you can also publish any corporate press releases and blog posts.
Do not use it to publish your latest properties for sale or as a call for more properties, etc. – this is not the correct platform for those types of posts. It is also worth noting that just like on the consumer platforms, it should not just be about you. Sharing news of supplier or associate successes (and tagging them to each post) will set you up to have the favour returned later down the line and sharing pieces of industry news from across the web will demonstrate your finger is on the industry pulse: an agency that people will want to work with.
Use the Publishing platform
If you really want to reach industry peers with your company’s opinions and knowledge, LinkedIn’s publishing platform is the best way to go about this. If you have a blog on your website (and if you don’t, you really should!), this is a great way to get your knowledge out there and put yourself at the centre of industry debates. Every time a post is published, all contacts in a person’s network are notified automatically, as well as it appearing in networks of connections and mutual connections of anyone that interacts with it.
Publishing articles can only be done from a profile account, so once your blog is live choose an appropriate author and get them to paste the blog post into the box marked ‘publish a post’ on their home page. It does not have to be the same author every time but it should be relevant to the content. If you do not know where to start ask your key staff which industry issues they are really passionate about and get them to put pen to paper – you might be surprised!
A great way to really embed yourself in the industry is to talk to those around you at networking events, and via LinkedIn you can do this without even leaving the office.
Perform a quick search on LinkedIn for property industry groups in the UK and several hundred will appear but a good place to start is impartial bodies, such as the NAEA. Daily, industry topics are discussed, problems solved and suppliers connected. You can join in and answer questions – helping out your peers – and equally get yourself out of a tough spot. For example, who are the best surveyors in Essex? Can anyone recommend a great residential Sales Manager? How do I improve staff morale during a slow sales period? You could connect with valuable staff, get answers to help your business and raise awareness of your company – all free of charge.