A Decade of Evolution: Real Estate Social Media

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By Luke Fleming
A Decade of Evolution: Real Estate Social Media

Social Media marketing has developed tremendously in the last decade. If you consider that 2000-2010 was the start of the social media revolution, 2010-2019 was the decade where marketers have really taken advantage of its popularity and ran with it. With more social media users increasing everyday, it has become an almost unavoidable part of modern life. 

This decade the purpose of social media has certainly shifted. In the early days, users would use platforms such as Myspace and Facebook to keep in touch with friends and family, now there is a much higher presence and opportunity for businesses to advertise, with real estate being no exception. 

Back in 2010, there were less than 1 billion people using social media, that number has now tripled with over 3 billion social media users across the world. Let’s take a look into how each of the most popular platforms going into 2020 have evolved in the last decade. 

Facebook

In 2010, Facebook had only been around for 6 years and too many, was still a relatively new thing. ‘The Facebook wall’ was very much the main feature to Facebook, however this feature was shortly removed and replaced with the introduction of the ‘timeline’. Although Facebook adverts had already begun, they didn’t really become the advanced and technical piece of software that it is today. Facebook ads launched in 2007, but really excelled between 2010-2019. The launch allowed any company to purchase advertising on Facebook with relative ease. At this time, companies had to purchase a Facebook page, but this obligation was soon removed a year later. In 2009, Facebook page owners were allowed to set up and manage their own facebook ads, which was previously done by Facebook. In 2012, mobile ads were launched for the first time. Considering how big mobile marketing is in 2020, it seems crazy that this was something that didn’t launch until 2012. This demonstrates the huge growth mobile has had in the past decade. In the same year, Facebook gave access to advertisers to use behavioural data, such as their engagement, interests and history. Retargeting adverts also became live, this gave ad managers the feature of targeting those who have previously visited your website via website cookies.

In 2013, Facebook launched video advertisements for the first time. Once again, considering how important video marketing has become in today’s marketing world (especially for estate agents) it’s somewhat surprising that this feature was only launched in 2013. By 2013, mobile ads accounted for more than 40% of Facebook’s total ad revenues. Considering mobile adverts weren’t even a thing in 2012, this is tremendous growth in the space of just a year. 2014 saw the introduction of ‘Carousel Ads’, this gives users the option of adding multiple images into an advert. Dynamic Product Ads were launched the following year, this has become a highly successful tool for real estate digital marketing. Dynamic product ads showcase products that the user has previously looked at on a website, straight to their timeline. From 2015 to present, Facebook has introduced the ‘Facebook Pixel’, ‘Facebook messenger ads’ and split testing.

As you can see, Facebook has accelerated to become the leading social network in terms of it’s marketing capabilities. Advertising on Facebook has become relatively complicated, but extremely effective and it will continue to evolve as the most innovative marketing platform it is known as today.

Instagram

Instagram launched in October 2010 and hasn’t looked back since. The app was originally created to focus on photo sharing but it has evolved to become much more than that. After it’s rising popularity, Facebook purchased Instagram for $1 billion in 2012. The app was still very much in its early stages and the user interface was basic to say the least. 

Instagram provided a platform for users to become ‘influencers’. Influencers have become a serious and effective way for brands to advertise their products to those with big followings, with the real estate being no exception. In 2019, Justin Bieber advertised his home for sale via his Instagram account. Who’d have thought this would be a way of selling property in 2010? Instagram is proving to be a real game changer in the real estate market. Real Estate is an extremely visual business and Instagram is an extremely visual social network. Not only does the app allow you to post multiple images of a property, but there are options to expand your usual reach. Users can tag one another, expanding reach even further. Instagram allows you to be as creative as possible, however due to it’s visual nature, images are key to success.

As mentioned, Instagram is owned by Facebook, so all of the Facebook tools for advertising are transferable onto Instagram.

Considering Instagram launched at the very start of the decade, it’s fair to say it’s had monstrous development, Instagram is currently the fastest growing social network in the world and it doesn’t appear to be slowing down. Estate Agents NEED to be marketing on Facebook & Instagram in today’s world.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn launched back in 2003 and it has continued to grow constantly. Especially with the introduction of their premium service, loads of business owners and business professionals love to post about their success or job openings for new staff. Also LinkedIn is a recruiters paradise, thousands of recruitment companies are poaching staff for other companies. But what about the real estate industry?

Estate agents used to use LinkedIn just because other business professionals did. But now, the platform has grown substantially and estate agents can’t help but post organically and run paid campaigns to help drive users onto their website.

In 2009 the user count hit over 55 million and only two years later in 2011 it had hit 135 million users. Now in 2020 there are over 660 million users.

One of the game changers for real estate agents on Linkedin was the introduction of groups. When groups were introduced it allowed like minded individuals to share information with each other. This allowed for agents to target certain demographics who are obviously more interested in the property industry. Posting to 1000 people who had joined the ‘real estate UK’ group is better than posting on your profile to 1000 connections. There are over 1.7 million groups on LinkedIn but there is no rule of thumb as to how many you should join.

As mentioned earlier, the real estate industry relies on visuals and Linkedin is a great place to post images and videos of property. Hubspot says that LinkedIn is 277% more effective for generating leads compared to Facebook and Twitter. This is probably because they’re not designed to be professional networks like LinkedIn.

Don’t waste any opportunity to gain leads, LinkedIn advertising could help your agency grow!

Is your Estate Agency performing online?

Is your website under performing? Are you struggling to generate traffic and leads? Not sure if your website is reaching its full potential? Here at Property Webmasters we can help, we provide Social Media Marketing campaigns that work!

Is your estate agency interested in Paid Social? Get in contact with us today to book a call and discuss your requirements and what products might best suit you!

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