Posts Tagged as Google Plus

Measuring the Success of Your Social Media Efforts

Before you can accurately and effectively track the success or failure of your social media efforts, you have to start by knowing your objectives. What is it you hope to achieve by putting your real estate brand on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, a blog, YouTube and the like? To measure success, you need a goal. Measuring the success of your social media efforts is crucial. After all, free isn’t free if you’re wasting your valuable time.

Are you looking to increase traffic or something more specific? It’s a good idea to establish what a conversion is – is it a phone call, an email, a referral? Is it a new client? A home sale? Measuring your results takes understanding what it is you’re trying to measure.

Quantifying online connections is the easy part, but it’s only the first step. How that engagement affects your ability to generate leads is what ultimately matters. Internet driven marketing provides real opportunities for understanding, tweaking and perfecting your real estate brand marketing strategy. Social media provides the platform – for marketing and advertising, as well as customer service and retention.

Two of Your Best Friends are Free

When it comes to tracking and measuring the impact social media has on your bottom line, two of the best tools in your belt are free – Google Analytics and Facebook Insights.

Google is constantly tweaking and perfecting its social tracking tools, and you will find increasingly great ways of measuring your social media KPIs through Google Analytics. The Social Traffic Report will expose how traffic coming in from different social media sites are converting along the lines of average time on site, page views, and goal or ecommerce conversions.

Google’s URL Builder can help you identify which social media interactions generate the most traffic. You can also measure the impact of social media on your site’s SEO by correlating social media referral traffic with changes in the volume and quality of organic search traffic. This valuable insight can help you make significant adjustments to you content and strategy.

The internal suite of analytics tools offered by Facebook will help you better understand who “Likes” your brand and how they engage with it. You can access a breakdown of user and geographic demographics to see, at a glance, if you’re reaching your target market.

Returning to Google for a moment, setting up Google Alerts can be a great way to see if anyone else picked up your post or promotion. It can also introduce you to competition you weren’t aware of, which is always useful.

Google Plus Could Outshine Facebook as Real Estate Marketing Tool

Despite uncertainty over who will emerge victorious from the Google-Facebook smackdown, real estate agents have little to lose and much to gain by getting in on the ground floor and setting up a Google business page now. There is a basic difference in the way Google and Facebook business pages process visitor interaction for search engine consumption that makes Google’s method more real estate-friendly.

Google Plus is the new kid on the social media block, but first impressions indicate that real estate agents may find it a better “friend” than Facebook. Google’s Facebook challenger has the potential to be a social marketing game-changer for the real estate industry — if it catches on. And that is just one of several “ifs” that Google Plus will have to overcome to wrest the commercial advertising market from Facebook’s grasp.

Despite uncertainty over who will emerge victorious from the Google-Facebook smackdown, real estate agents have little to lose and much to gain by getting in on the ground floor and setting up a Google business page now. There is a basic difference in the way Google and Facebook business pages process visitor interaction for search engine consumption that makes Google’s method more real estate-friendly.

On Facebook, constant interaction between your business page and Facebook fans is required to attract search engine attention. Unfortunately, real estate clients are notorious for being fair-weather friends. Most people only visit real estate sites when they are actively engaged in buying or selling a home. Months, even years can elapse between client interactions with your Facebook business page. Without fresh interaction, Facebook quickly “drops” unresponsive friends; and you fall off the search engine radar.

Google business pages can influence search results for years with only minimal client interaction IF — and this is key — the visitor becomes a member of your circle. In Google Plus, circles are the equivalent of Facebook friends. Different language; same concept: your circle of friends. With Google you have the advantage of being able to organize friends into different circles, or groups. This can be a handy marketing advantage for real estate agents, allowing them to target specific client groups. But the real plus in Google Plus is searchability. When a site visitor joins your Google circle, every time they initiate a search using “real estate” or similar key words, Google search will find your Google business page at shoot it to the top of the organic search results, keeping you constantly on clients’ radar — a definite plus!

Google + A good Tool for Real Estate Professionals

Recently Google released a beta version of its highly-anticipated social networking platform, Google+. So far the reaction as been good with praise for the app’s design and features. Having read several reviews it seems that Google + has several built in tools that can be highly advantagious to businesses.

Recently Google released a beta version of its highly-anticipated social networking platform, Google+. So far the reaction as been good with praise for the app’s design and features. Having read several reviews it seems that Google + has several built in tools that can be highly advantageous to Real Estate Professionals.

Google+ is similar to Facebook, offering to connect users, add status updates, share photos and links, etc.  But what Google + offers that Facebook does not is a tool they call “Circles”. Circles allows users to define contacts, and group them by type. This cool feature will allow Agents and Brokers to share information with a specific group or “circle”.

A good use of Circles in the Real Estate field is to separate your work colleagues, friends and clients. You can even break your clients into smaller circles. For example, Buyers, Sellers, Past Clients and so on.  The ability to control who you share specific information with is powerful, and very useful for Real Estate professionals.

Google+ also incorporates a built-in multi-user video chat tool called “Hangouts”. With Hangouts, users can chat with up to ten people at the same time. Whoever is Talks the loudest is highlighted in the large central window, with everyone else displayed in  strip of smaller windows underneath.

Hangouts can be useful for agents and broker in several different ways. First off, for the small virtual office, Hangouts is a great way to have a interactive office meeting. For large offices, this tool could be used to connect managers together for their weekly managers meeting. For agents who need to connect with an out of town client, or even to do a virtual listing presentation, Hangouts is perfect to facilitate just that. I am anxious to test this feature to see how well it works.

Another great feature that makes Google+ different from other social networks is “Sparks”. With Sparks, users can add interests and the system will crawl the web looking for articles related to that interest, making it easy for users to find relevant articles to share.

Can you think of any other ways Real Estate professionals can use Google + to help grow their business?