Twitter for Real Estate Marketing: Can you Drive Real Estate Leads through Twitter?
I’ve heard this more than twice “It’s near impossible to drive leads through Twitter”. It’s actually not impossible. The good thing about social media is that there is always a conversation happening. And guess what? You can always join the conversation.
Andrew Molz, SMM and SEO consultant, describes an unconventional strategy he points out to real estate agents in his coaching sessions.
“When I teach our free Social Media 101 classes to brokerages, toward the end of each class, I’ll pull up Twitter on the big screen for the class to see. Then I’ll go to the search bar and type in the hashtag #iHateMoving.”
“Next, I’ll change some of the location features within the search parameters (it’s much easier than it sounds, I promise) to display tweets that are near the city I am visiting.”
“I’ll have a timeline full of tweets from individuals nearby who are talking about how they hate moving. I simply explain to the classroom of Realtors that this is an excellent starting point for jumping into the conversation with that Twitter user. Just mention how they could purchase a home if they have a 620 credit score and earn X amount of dollars per year — and you have a conversation.”
“The classroom then looks like every one of the agents has a lightbulb go off in their head. It’s something that’s so simple, yet so out of the box, that not a lot of agents are doing creative marketing strategies. Then agents begin tinkering with hashtag search phrases such as #iHateRenting, #LandLordProblems, #MovinOnUp, etc.”
Here’s just one of many creative ways you can use Twitter to converse with and potentially convert high quality leads. What about creating these conversations?
Twitter, at its most basic, was developed in 2006 as a messaging platform for communications between families, coworkers, and friends. Later on, brands began to catch onto the potential of this new platform. In 2017, Twitter’s revenue reached $2.44 billion (Statista, 2018).
Getting new leads on Twitter would depend on your ability to optimize your tweets for best engagement. Twitter allows real estate marketers to leverage tools like Twitter cards to drive new leads. You could also build a large following and leverage branded hashtags to grow your brand’s presence on Twitter. Let’s expand on these:
What are Twitter Cards?
As at 2017, there was a unique Twitter advertising highlight that allowed real estate marketers to collect information on name, email and Twitter handles of potential prospects. And they’ll submit these all without having to go through a landing page or lead gen funnel. The lead generation card feature was great while it lasted yet leads were mostly unqualified. Twitter discontinued this on Feb 2017.
This prompted marketers to switch to the next best thing, website cards that lead visitors to a landing page or post. Twitter users more than the average social media user are more interested in new content. 81% of Twitter users say they keep up with news every day. Plus they use the network heavily, 71% using it several times a day.
So apart from Twitter being a good source of market information and mortgage trends. This means Twitter could be a great way to drive traffic to your real estate blog or landing page.
The great thing about Twitter website cards is that you can sponsor these and track conversions, getting insights about people who are likely to interact with your brand. Since you’ll be creating your own lead gen forms, probably on your landing page or blog, you can qualify leads as needed.
To set up Twitter cards, you’ll need to place an HTML tag on the backend of your website. To do this, you can simply install the Meta Tag manager plugin or use an all-inclusive SEO plugin like Yoast SEO.
Just visit the Twitter cards page and select the HTML format of the card you’re interested in. There are usually four types of cards you can use. These would also be available to anyone who shares your post or page on Twitter.
- Summary cards: For displaying a link to a post or page on your website, showing an image snapshot, description, title, and the URL.
- Summary with a large image: This does exactly what it says. It expands the image on your post or page, showing the same details as the summary card. This would be great if you wanted to attract people’s attention to your image.
- Player card: If you uploaded a video or podcast on your website, player cards let you display a clip of your video or podcast on Twitter. However, ensure to follow the Twitter player card policy listed here.
- App card: With this, you can pull up details about your latest app on Google play and share them with followers.
How to use Twitter cards for lead generation
- Use attractive media.
Since 500 tweets are sent every day, tweets that appear different get more traction. Images and video that stand out help you garner more engagement. Tweets with attractive images get up to 55% increase in leads and a 41% increase in retweets. Tweets with video attract 10x more engagement.
- Don’t sell every time.
Uploading pages of your listings every time sends a wrong signal to potential clients. You want to give people a reason to visit your website or listings page. This means you need to show value.
- Pin your latest Twitter card to the top of your timeline.
You want to consistently update your Twitter profile with valuable tweets. If you’re not sponsoring your posts, and even if you are, consider pinning a valuable tweet snippet from your blog to your Twitter profile. Ensure your Twitter card image is attractive to make a good impression.
Twitter hashtags are a powerful way to search and connect with people in particular niches or communities. You can potentially talk about trending topics, letting these drive your post’s visibility; reach out to people in your target market and talk about things relevant to them. Hashtags extend your post’s popularity beyond just your own followers. First, you’ll need to find the right hashtags for your post.
Here are three great sources for checking out trending or popular hashtags for Twitter real estate marketing.
Check out the trends to see what folks in your community are tweeting about.
The fact that many people are tweeting about these means that your post will get a lot of views. Since it’s coming from the native app, Twitter trends present a very accurate representation of what’s trending in the country or your community. A downside is that the scope is too wide. It’s hard to target leads who might be interested in buying or listing a home just by leveraging these trends.
A handy trick for finding more trending topic suggestions is to log in to your Twitter feed through mobile rather than desktop. Go into the Twitter mobile search tab and it’ll display 20 trending topics, personalized to your profile and location.
RiteTag and Sproutocial
Ritetag is a tool that picks up relevant hashtag suggestions for you to include in your tweet. Ritetag also helps you determine which hashtags are trending and which ones would get you increased exposure over time.
Yet, a downside is that many of the hashtags are generic and not brand oriented. For brand based hashtag suggestions, you can try Sproutsocial’s trend report tool. This tool analyzes your incoming messages to determine popular phrases that are associated with your brand. Its a great tool for real estate brands that want to create influencer marketing campaigns through Twitter. Read more about Influencer marketing for real estate.
Hashtagify.me displays the connection between hashtags, helping you discover relevant hashtags to boost your post’s visibility. You can also discover more information about your selected hashtags.
Here are some tips for using hashtags for increased post visibility on Twitter:
- Hashtags shouldn’t be too long. Twitter experts recommend keeping your hashtags under two words. Vanessa Doctor of hashtags.org says “The best hashtags are those composed of a single word or a few letters”.
- Understand the meaning of your hashtags before using them. You should probably search on Twitter for the hashtag first to see possible uses. Using a trending hashtag in an unrelated post can make you seem out of touch.
- Experiment with branded hashtags. Campaign specific branded hashtags present a way to promote your brand or special offer. You can hire influencers to create more awareness through these branded hashtags. You should track the performance of your branded hashtags through a tool like SproutSocial’s hashtag tracking. These analytics will help you determine which hashtags can help your brand gain more awareness over time.
- Keep the number of hashtags in a post to less than three. Unlike Instagram, where 5-10 hashtags could get you more visibility, more than three hashtags on a Twitter post could result in lower engagement.
- Use a lot of location-specific hashtags for your Twitter posts. Since you’re looking to target people in select locations, you should research hashtags by either state or locality. Use this tool to research hashtags by location. Zoom the map to view popular hashtags in specific cities and towns.
Twitter has an intuitive analytics feature which many people do not use. This tool will give you helpful insights into what kind of tweets get you the most engagement. When you visit Twitter’s analytics page, you’ll see something like this.
This shows the performance of my tweets over a 28 day period (I’ve not been performing well – need to tweet more). You can also view the stats for each post. Want to boost your post? You can do that also on the analytics page.
While Twitter might not be very effective for outrightly promoting your ads, there is a great opportunity to build up your brand’s reputation; drive organic traffic to your blog and attract high quality leads through a landing page. Yet, since you’re dealing with people, you need to connect with them. Make sure you’re sharing other people’s tweets; replying to interesting tweets while sharing your expertise through value-packed tweets.