Any time a new social media site gets launched, people within the real estate industry scramble to see how and if it should be applied to the real estate business. Sometimes, it’s like stuffing a square peg into a round hole. Sometimes, however, the medium is right for reaching out to people (clients) in non-threatening ways.
The first issue is that people want to treat social media differently than how social media should be treated.
Social media is exactly that – it’s social. People aren’t as concerned about your everyday business activities as they are about who you are and what you stand for. That’s how relationships are created, maintained and solidified.
The second issue is that not all social media sites are created equally. Facebook invites a different form of communication than LinkedIn, which is different again from Twitter. And Pinterest is different than all of those!
What is Pinterest?
For those of you born before 1980, do you remember those corkboards you used to have in your classroom, where the teacher would pin motivational sayings, pretty pictures and outstanding examples of homework and tests? Pinterest is basically the digital version of that.
You can create different boards for different moods/subjects, and pin pictures found from websites and other Pinterest users. The reasons businesses have started to really get involved with Pinterest are two-fold: the demographic reached and the ability to link websites to images.
There’s something in marketing called “hub and spoke” – you have a central hub, usually your website, that all the other sites you’re on (the spokes) lead back to. Pinterest feeds into that kind of marketing by allowing you to feed people back to your website. So, for example, you can have a Pinterest board about homes where you pin your listings….which, when clicked, all lead back to your website.
Let’s think about that in terms of real estate. Who is your major demographic in your clients? Who do you work with day-in and day-out? Don’t discount this next question either – who is your ideal demographic? Who do you wish you could work with?
If your answers include women, between the ages of 18-60, you’re going to want to at least consider Pinterest as part of your online business strategy.
Getting Started on Pinterest
Once there, you’ll want to fill out your profile, including keywords for how you want to be found (i.e., your area, your specific specialties, etc.).
Next, you’ll start to create boards. Think about topics of interest to you and of interest to potential clients. If you’re stuck, here are some possible ideas.
Finally, you’ll want to put information on those boards. You can use Pinterest’s internal search function (in the upper left-hand corner), or you can find material off of your own website or others’ websites. A handy tool when using a browser and looking for potential pins is the “Pin It” button that can be added to almost any browser.
Like any social media site, Pinterest may not be the one for you. However, if the demographic fits for your real estate business, if you’re interested in visual marketing, and you’re willing to put some time and effort into it, Pinterest may pay off for you!