In the final segment of our social media advice for brokers, you’ll learn the importance of utilizing additional tools to bolster your social efforts and how to convert social leads to real-life business.
You’ve created your social media profile and completely filled out your about me section, job description and background. You’ve also found a few groups to join. It took a lot of effort to build a nice social media profile, but you’ve barely scratched the surface. So, what now?
Now, it’s time to maximize your social media accounts’ efficiency and effectiveness.
To help you accomplish this I sat down with Mike Boggiano, National Sales Manager of Silver Hill, one last time to get more information on important social media practices specific to brokers. If you follow Mike’s advice below, you can expand your client base and improve your ability to generate leads. Read on to find out how to get the most out of your social media networks.
How much time should brokers spend on their social media accounts?
I would say one hour per day is usually all someone needs to spend on social media. You can break that time up, though – maybe 30 minutes in the morning and 30 at the end of the day – just to catch up on happenings throughout the day. But an hour on social media doesn’t mean just scrolling through news feeds. That time should be spent networking, reading industry news and happenings, and posting interesting and useful information on the platforms you use—so, for me that would be on LinkedIn and Twitter.
I agree. Everyone should take a few minutes at the end of the day to review their social accounts, especially if they made new connections, posted, or reached out to potential clients that day. Though, ultimately the percentage of time you spend on social media should align with your business practice.
There’s a plethora of content – relevant and not – on social media. So what tools do you suggest brokers use to quickly and easily stay up-to-date on mortgage industry news?
I like to use Google Alerts. I can get daily emails with information relevant to the mortgage industry that also interest me. The articles I receive can then be quickly shared and posted across all of my accounts. Google Alerts also allows me to review a ton of information in one place. Because I consistently get updates, and share that information, it allows my social media accounts to be a place others look to for interesting and relevant content.
Google Alerts is a great source to use to follow different search phrases, terms, or brand names. They also allow you to watch for changes and trends that you could benefit from recognizing earlier rather than jumping on the bandwagon later.
What advice can you give brokers about managing their social accounts?
They should be actively posting and engaging on their social profiles. However, the content they post on their business profiles should be professional. I’ve adopted the practice of treating each of my posts like a news headline. That way I can be sure that my posts are appropriate, newsworthy, and grammatically sound.
That is a great start. To take those efforts a step further, you could try to incorporate a social media scheduling tool like Hootsuite or Spout Social into your social strategy. These tools allow you to create and schedule content in advance, select the social media outlets you will use to share your work, and track the impact of each post. This will allow you to post more often without spending your whole day on social media channels. Hootsuite offers a free plan that allows you link up to three social profiles. It’s a great option for mortgage professionals with smaller social footprints who want to save money and still manage and track their social accounts.
Research also shows that there are good and bad times to post on social media. The next time you have something to share, reference this graph to make sure your post gets the maximum exposure.
Of the things you post on LinkedIn and Twitter, what receives the best reaction?
Interestingly enough, I get the biggest reaction out of posts that could be considered “out of the box.” You can find basic rate information anywhere, so I try to look for pieces that are more on the edge of the mortgage industry—social media, market-place lenders, financing, and small-balance commercial lenders are just a few topics. People want to read about new and interesting topics, not the same articles over and over again with slightly different wording.
Many people also hope to create ‘viral content’ but there really isn’t a formula that guarantees viral success. Remember the white and gold dress, or was it blue and black? The original picture posted on Tumblr asked followers to state what color they thought it was. In a week, more than 10 million tweets mentioned the dress. I’m sure the baffled young lady did not expect the blue and black dress to gain such popularity when she posted it on social media. The point here is that anything can go viral. Don’t worry about posting the next internet sensation, just post things your followers can engage with.
Speaking of social engagement, what are some best practices mortgage brokers should follow when engaging on LinkedIn and Twitter?
Keep things professional and be active. Whether you’re posting something to your account or private messaging someone, your actions on social media can influence others’ opinions about you and your business. When you are at a trade show, tweet that you are there—you never know, someone who follows you could be there as well. And if they see your tweet, they may come to your booth to do business with you.
To end our interview, can you describe how you plan on using social media today?
Well, I’ll start by posting an interesting industry article to a few of my favorite group pages. Then I’ll do a quick search for anyone who could be related to the mortgage industry—it could be SBA lenders, hard money lenders, residential brokers, bankers, the list goes on and on. I’ll look to see who is active on their accounts and if there is a fit between their businesses and Silver Hill. From there I’ll determine whether I want to just follow or connect with them, or connect and spark a conversation that may lead to potential business. After all, social media may open the door for a conversation, but a personal connection is still needed to strengthen the relationship.