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Agents Partner with Social Influencers to Market Homes

Some agents start a blog and hope readers will find it, but others go to pre-built audiences – notably younger ones – by using popular social media “influencers.”

NEW YORK – Some real estate professionals looking to attract eyes for their listings are partnering with social media influencers – especially agents hoping to attract younger first-time buyers, Bloomberg reports.

Agents are turning to social media “influencers” to help sell the idea of a lifestyle. Instagram posts or YouTube videos from inside a listing may help buyers relate and picture themselves in the spaces.

Home buyers “trust these influencers – that’s what it comes down to,” says Christine Blackburn, a sales director with Compass. Blackburn recently partnered with three Instagram influencers to decorate condo units in Brooklyn, N.Y. One influencer, who is known for her houseplant tips, outfitted the $499,000 unit with plants. Influencers often share photos with hundreds of thousands of followers and show themselves enjoying a building’s common areas and taking in balcony views.

Millennials are more likely to seek advice from a close friend or relative about home buying, according to data from the National Association of Realtors®, and influencers often fit into that “trusted source” category. Millennials are also more likely to respond to word-of-mouth marketing, which can include the social media influencers they follow.

“We’re seeing that social media has played quite a big role in home shopping,” StreetEasy Economist Nancy Wu told Bloomberg. StreetEasy recently launched a TikTok account that features home tours.

Real estate pros who’ve used social media influencers declined to disclose how much they paid. But they did say it resulted in significant increases in visits to their listings.

Leveraging content creators likely will grow more common over the years, Thomas Fialo, vice president at Douglas Elliman Development Marketing, says.

“People can identify with them,” Fialo says. “It’s about thinking outside the box and bringing a home to life.”

Source: “N.Y. Developers Hire Influencers to Sell Homes During Pandemic,” Bloomberg (Dec. 3, 2020)

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