Social Media for Commercial Realtors
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How Commercial Realtors Should be Using Twitter & LinkedIn

Here's who to follow, what hashtags to use and how to work these social media networks to boost your commercial real estate business.

Social media plays two important functions for you as a commercial Realtor®. They are: media message monitoring and referral building or lead generation. Neither of those functions is hard to manage and capitalize on, especially if you follow these simple techniques.

Information and connections — Twitter

First and foremost, have a Twitter account. It's free, and it's essential if you want to know—in real-time—the latest information and trends in commercial real estate. Major national real estate trade media is on Twitter, putting out stories several times a day. Follow them.

National real estate sources on Twitter are:

  • @REBusiness A leading online source for commercial real estate
  • @CCIM The Twitter feed of CCIM Institute
  • @NAIOP The Commercial Real Estate Development Association
  • @CPExecutive Commercial Property Executive online magazine with data daily
  • @ICSC International Council of Shopping Centers publishes Shopping Center Magazine
  • @REITs_Nareit Nareit is the voice for REITs and publicly-traded real estate companies with an interest in U.S. real estate and capital markets.
  • @GlobeStcom Publishes Real Estate Forum magazine

Also follow regional sources in the Southeast or the state of Florida.

Learn the language of hashtags

You and your information will live and die on Twitter by hashtags. Hashtags need to be relevant and plentiful. The good news is you don’t have to come up with your own. Reading a few leading sites’ stories will show you hashtags that identify the story for searches and you can mimic them.  Some good ones:

  • #NameOfYourCity
  • #industrial
  • #retail
  •  #warehouse
  • #CRE
  • #CityNamerealestate
  • #commercialrealestate

Take about 20 to 30 minutes to look around Twitter stories, do a hashtag search, click on the hashtags, and find other Twitter sites and hashtags to get the hang of it.

Realize acronym hashtags, like CRE, may have other meanings in industries and professions completely different from commercial real estate. That’s okay. The goal is not to be unique. The goal is to be found.

A note: Hashtags are not cap sensitive. So you can capitalize the first letter of every new word—but don’t put spaces between words. Most hashtags are all lowercase letters.

Media monitoring — Twitter

Twitter is the greatest source of breaking news. Every print, broadcast and digital reporter is on Twitter, pushing out stories.

When you are contacted by the media, before you return the call or email, open your Twitter account and do a hashtag search of the topic. (For example: #globalcommercial #commercialtrends #floodinsurance)

Why? The media is calling you to localize the story. Something has broken nationally or regionally. That story will be on Twitter. In less than a second, your Twitter search will show you every story out on that topic. Read the first five to seven (after that, it will most likely be repetitive). Evaluate: How is the media covering it? What is the angle? And, most importantly, what can you contribute to the story that will represent your profession or the position of your chapter?

The answers to those questions become your message points.

Creating Twitter content

You do not have to write original tweets for Twitter to work for you. Two simple actions will go a long way to connect you with media.

First, follow every news anchor, TV reporter, radio station, newspaper columnist, local columnist and business reporter. 

Why? These media people will see you followed them. They will in turn follow you.        

Also follow:

Then, once or twice a week (more often if you want), go to your Twitter account and retweet relevant tweets from the organizations and individuals you are following. (Read the article to make sure it aligns with your message.)

The retweet icon is below the original tweet, between Reply and Favorite. Just click it to retweet.

Why? The media will now see you as an informed, connected source. And you will always be on the top of their minds when a story breaks.

Twitter: Networking

Twitter can also be a great source for you to network with other Twitter-savvy commercial Realtors and organizations.

Commenting on stories you read on any of the national trade media sites listed can lead to other brokers finding you and reaching out to your for business deals.

You can connect with brokers you see on Twitter on LinkedIn.

Lead generation — LinkedIn

Your LinkedIn profile

Add your role with your Association and the commercial real estate division of Florida Realtors, or NAR, to your LinkedIn profile. This will enhance your credibility with potential clients who research your credentials. And reporters often find sources with a title search on LinkedIn.

Property LinkedIn profiles

Additionally, you can create a LinkedIn profile for a specific property to help it show up on searches. How?

  • Go to the WORK section on the far right on the top bar of your LinkedIn profile.
  • Click on + Create a Company Page at the bottom of the list.
  • Follow the instructions on starting this page, and follow the recommendations on sharing the log in credentials with others in your organization. Then, create the content, including a URL, about each property you want to promote.

Connect with groups

To make the most of your LinkedIn presence, both personally and for your properties, you must interact with LinkedIn Groups.

In your profile, enter “Commercial Real Estate Groups” into the search box. Or, you can search for “Commercial Real Estate Groups,” and click on profiles of the LinkedIn members who appear, and look for groups they are in. Many groups require you to request to join.

Also, sending LinkedIn connection requests with as many people connected to commercial real estate and related industries will build your referral network and credibility. Remember to request connections with commercial brokers you see on Twitter.

Facebook: Is it worthwhile for commercial Realtors?

Not really. You can create a personal page, but it probably won’t get you much business. It is good for when clients want to learn as much about you before doing business with you, but that’s not reason enough to have a Facebook page for your commercial business. LinkedIn should be enough.

If your goal on Facebook is to promote your commercial properties, Facebook will force you to have a Facebook Page. And Facebook Pages require lots and lots of interaction or it will never be seen.

You really have to pay Facebook to have any kind of presence on the social media channel. Your efforts are better spent elsewhere.