Home builders who have embraced social media strategies for marketing their business, have seen great results. According to the second edition of Social Media for Home Builders 2.0: It’s Easier Than You Think, builders have seen results ranging from a 25-300 percent increase in website traffic, to increased customer referrals through using social media.
Home Builders have always paid a lot of money to the traditional media outlets like Magazines, TV, Radio shows etc. not realizing that with social media they can showcase their expertise without paying exorbitance amount of money by having their OWN BLOG.
Some other benefits of a blog are:
- Improve search engine optimization (SEO)
- Generate Facebook friends and Twitter followers
- Live Customer interactions
- Image gallery to show their work
- Thought leader in the industry
- Testimonials from vendors, contractors and customers
- Track, analyze and improve results using Google Analytics
Note: Studies show that more people subscribe to blogs by email than RSS feed readers.
One great example is Martell Home Builders
Martell started a content creation and blogging strategy to focus on their homebuyers’ needs. With topics such as “14 Must-Have Tools for New Homeowners” and “Home Staging Tips & Techniques,” Martell was able to grab the attention of homebuyers. Today, about 86% of all their leads come directly from consumers.
Some of their strategies include:
1) GPS tracking devices on their contractors’ vehicles, making it easy for their customers to always know where their contractor is when on the job. This eases the customer’s mind and allows Martell to extend even greater customer service.
2) Martell uses photo galleries of the clients’ homes being built to show their customers the progress on a daily basis.
3) Martell’s website has “WHY Martell” and they have used all content types like videos, photos and text to their advantage.
4) Their blog posts talks about topics that home buyers will useful. They don’t promote their services on their blog.
Tip: Talk about what your customers would have question during their purchase process and give them solutions and answers not than we can do it for you.
Green building is currently a major trend, and an increasing number of homebuilders are Energy Star-certified or use an assortment of Energy Star products. Some homebuilders get a LEED certification as well. In order to position yourself as an authority in the green building sector, talk about new green products and get people excited about green building by showing them how much money they can save and how much of a difference they can make by going green.
Mobile Apps and websites are gaining more and more prominence and Home Builders can showcase their high quality work by using HD videos and high resolution Photos using mobile apps.
Tip: I would recommend that go for iPad friendly mobile site or mobile app and bypass smartphones, as you will need more viewing real-state to demonstrate what you bring to the table.
Show them a 3D model of what their home can look like on their iPad and allow them to share that with their friends and family for feedback or just showing them how their home will look like. Allow your customers to be your marketing arm.
Don’t forget the Geo-location aspect of your social media strategy, here are a few to consider:
- Facebook Places – A check-in feature on Facebook’s standard and mobile websites and smartphone applications brings location-based marketing to the social media behemoth.
- Foursquare – Currently the most widely used location-based social media platform, Foursquare boasts more than 10 million users.
Last but not the least, ensure that your social media policy is in place for all employees which complies with the Labor Laws to avoid any issues later one. Internal social media is as critical as external social media.
- Google Places - Google Places integrates Google’s dominant search engine with its popular maps function to bring a more standard website experience for users to share and rate their locations, and for businesses to have an online listing.
- Yelp – Similar to Google Places but with more robust features and user interface, Yelp has a standard website and a popular smartphone application. also, very high visibility on Google for ratings and reviews.
Don’t wait any longer, create a plan and go for it !!