Big part of industry not using social media: poll

Almost one in two industry professionals aren’t using social media, while of those that are, very few are using YouTube despite a strong push by some industry stakeholders towards video listings, a new survey has found.

According to the latest Real Estate Business straw poll, 36.8 per cent of the 223 respondents said they used Facebook as their number one social media tool, with YouTube coming last on 3.6 per cent.

In a surprising result, the survey also found that 43.6 per cent of agents still aren’t utilising social media for their business.

This result comes not long after high performance trainer Josh Phegan said the top agents he was working with were now moving away from social media and towards face-to-face client contact. This comment attracted strong industry response on rebonline.com.au, with numerous industry professionals lauding the ability of social media to build and create business for agents.

Real estate social media trainer Greg Vincent said he was surprised by the large number of agents who weren’t using YouTube.

“The engagement you can get [from YouTube], the way you can connect to people, it’s the second largest search engine in the world, it’s just such an incredible channel,” he told Real Estate Business.

“You’ll get more leverage out of that than anything.

“To use YouTube to get your message out across, it’s just such a powerful medium for real estate agents.”

In April, Domain reported strong interest in video listings from vendors. “Real estate agents are quickly realising that video has the ability to draw crowds," said Tony Blamey, general manager real estate, Fairfax Marketplaces, owner of domain.com.au.

"Stronger auction numbers and higher sales prices are directly linked to the inclusion of video in property listings. Statistics from Domain highlight that property listings featuring a video received a 400 per cent increase in enquiries than listings without video.”

Mr Vincent has just launched his own online program, which features him guiding real estate agents on using social media and various other traditional sales methods.

“There are two segments to my ‘Electric Avenue’ show. The ‘electric’ component which is where I teach agents how to use and implement applications, mobile web, real estate software, websites.

“Basically anything that’s happening around the online space and the social media space.

“And the avenue component is the reporting I do and we look at agents and what they're doing that is working for their business.”

Ant Manton, from Ray White Hobart, is an avid user of YouTube although he sees it performing a broader role than just as a listing tool.

“I don’t just have property videos,” he told Real Estate Business. “If I see a funny video I’ll share it with my audience. You need to engage people so they will come back for more.

“I try to make each listing unique, so you will see me doing something a bit quirky at each home to give it that individuality it deserves.

“I understand that not everyone is going to appreciate the videos. Some conservative types might avoid me, and I admit I probably have lost a few clients from it.

“But I believe appealing to 90 per cent of an audience and really engaging with them is worth losing the people at either end of the scale, who think I’m crazy or unprofessional.”

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