Exclusively operating within the property industry for over 20 years, at Property Webmasters we have seen our fair share of innovation within the way Estate Agents attract new business.
One thing that we did not expect to be talking about, or making our clients aware of, is TikTok.
So for those who are somehow not aware, TikTok is a video-based platform that allows users to create and upload short videos, adding filters and sounds before uploading them via the mobile app.
I’ll admit, at first a lot of adults were against downloading the app, which is absolutely fine, it certainly has a large number of people polarised. Some people cannot get over the name ‘TikTok’, with the typical connotations relating to make-up tutorials, fun-filled dances and anything else entertaining.
But, if I told you that the premise of a new, mystery platform was to release short-form videos that can be directed to your target audience based upon hashtags and a very strong algorithm, with a user base of over 1 billion that allows you to make an impact without spending a penny, then I think you would be interested in finding out more.
Do not allow your judgement to be clouded!
Throughout this article, we will show the value of what TikTok has to offer for estate agents. We will discuss what avenues would be best to take when creating organic video content as well as highlighting the “TikTok for Business” platform (TikTok Ads Manager).
While this blog is focusing on TikTok as a platform, it is important to discuss exactly why video content is the best way to get your customers to engage.
The number one reason why video content is supreme is that it captures attention quickly. With the average Facebook user spending only around 2 seconds per post, you do not have long to capture the attention of someone who is scrolling through their timeline and with TikTok, the time is even less.
Eye-catching video content can really display real emotions and help users put a face to the name of your estate agency. With us being constantly fed images and written content with graphics, it is starting to lose its appeal with the majority of users preferring to sit back and watch a video. When done correctly, the excitement of an estate agent touring a new property certainly is more appealing than a few dingey photos and a 500-word description.
Video content also allows your agency to push forward its personality and what the brand stands for. With promotional elements alongside some entertainment, people can build an affinity with your agency, keeping your brand at the forefront of their minds.
Now we have discussed video content, why is it important to take TikTok seriously as a platform? Producing content across Instagram and Facebook is great and at Property Webmasters, we seriously suggest doing this regularly. The interesting thing that gives TikTok an edge, is of course it is only video content which is currently supreme to other forms of content, but also it is focused much less on people you already know.
While you can follow creators, the user experience and holy grail of TikTok depends upon its extremely aggressive and intelligent algorithm that displays videos you may find interesting via its ‘For You Page’ feature. The app compiles videos you’re likely to enjoy based on your past activity. Because of this structure, you’re more likely to reach brand new viewers and build your audience.
Getting new eyes in front of your brand and property listings is exactly what a lot of estate agents are looking for and therefore, TikTok shines as a channel that can create a genuine buzz around a property that is displayed.
Some real estate agents and businesses are already using the platform. I have to admit, the demographics for the typical TikTok user tend to be on the younger side, which is to be expected. This, however, does not mean that the app is in any way redundant for the real estate industry.
With 50% of users being aged between 18 and 34, it gives your estate agent an opportunity to market directly to millennials who have very different customer behaviour in comparison to previous generations.
Granted, this may not be for everyone, certain estate agents may feel like this is not correct for their brand, which is fine. In my opinion; from what we have seen on TikTok so far, the platform is perfect for real estate agents who operate as the face of their brand as well as independent agencies who operate in a competitive area.
One example of a realtor who is making a huge impact on TikTok is Daniel Heider.
Daniel is serious on social media, with over 3.4 million followers across Instagram and TikTok, their video content is of an extremely high standard, showcasing new listings alongside lifestyle-related cutscenes.
The key to performing well on TikTok is finding your audience and creating short-form, entertaining, and relevant content. With Daniel showcasing some of the largest and most expensive homes within areas of the US, audiences cannot help but take a look inside.
Although affiliated with Sotheby’s, Daniel Heider’s personal brand is very much a draw for interested parties. Otherwise, we can see an example of a Sotheby’s branch focusing on pushing video content on TikTok.
Sotheby’s UK started to post towards the end of 2021 and has been consistent, focusing on showcasing expensive homes, home inspiration and new luxury listings.
The content posted by Sotheby’s UK is typically receiving a lot of interaction, some videos do better than others, and comments range from enquiries about aspects of the property on display to admirers wondering what it would be like to own a luxury £6.9 million pound property.
You may be thinking about how the examples we have displayed above include links to or partners of international real estate giants, Sotheby’s. And while that is true, truly anyone can get started on TikTok. There are thousands of independent estate agents in the UK alone that are promoting listings and building their brand using TikTok.
Realistically, if you have a mobile device, there is no reason why you cannot finish reading this article before going ahead and posting your very first TikTok at the next listing you acquire, with the correct permission if necessary of course.
Does this sound like something your agency could take into consideration to improve your marketing efforts?
It is important to keep in mind that many TikTok creators hope that their videos will go viral, but this is very rarely the case. For estate agents, you normally have to be showcasing a superbly unique or expensive property to get millions of views and even then it is not guaranteed. But the great thing about this platform is that you do not need millions of views for success. By focusing on your target market, a few thousand views extra on a new listing could lead to significant interest and a much faster sale. Stay consistent with your video content and do not take it too seriously, I have no doubt that your agency will see success from sticking to it.
Set up a profile with a relevant user handle. Quoting the examples we displayed above, make sure to create an account with a handle that displays your business name or real name if you are looking to be the face of your brand.
Next, upload a headshot or brand logo to the account and make sure to include information about your location and website within the account’s bio.
When uploading content, grab the attention of the user as quickly as possible. One way of going about this could be to ask a rhetorical question when first starting the video. This could grab the attention of a user immediately, “What could £300,000 get you within Surrey?” you can then showcase some listings, or “How much do you think this one-bedroom luxury apartment in central London costs to rent?” Before showcasing the interior and property details and revealing the price at the end of the video.
Remember, you only have around 2 seconds to capture the imagination.
Incorporate text and captions where possible, this makes your videos easily accessible for more users and also certain users prefer to read along while watching and listening to the information you are providing.
Do not forget to get a wide range of hashtags in there too!
Lastly, take note of trends by using sounds that are currently going viral, you will find your videos receiving more views due to the trending sound.
To round off the article we will briefly discuss the idea of paid advertising on TikTok. When setting up ads for Google or Facebook, research is critical to the success of the campaign and that is no different to TikTok ads.
Setting SMART targets for your business to work towards is the best way to stay on track. Work out why you are planning to advertise on TikTok, is it to gain new leads, increase the number of newsletter subscribers, gain brand awareness or increase user engagement with your video content.
To get started, you must set up a business profile here.
Once done, you are met with a pretty straightforward campaign builder that allows you to target set audiences, ages, interests, spoken languages and more.
Set up your budget and make sure to take note of the scheduling and bidding goals to make sure they correlate with your target audience and SMART targets.
After assigning a budget, you are pretty much ready to go.
If you manage to build up some momentum organically, then it could be worth trying to expand upon that by trying out paid advertising on the platform.
TikTok can provide a way for your estate agency to showcase products, and services as well as your team’s personality. By optimizing and posting regularly on your TikTok profile, you can get eyes in front of your listings. We would recommend starting out organically, remaining consistent and reviewing results after a sustained period of time.
Digital marketing for Estate Agents is something that has evolved and will continue to change, while some agents have been posting on TikTok for years, others have not even tried it yet, why not give it a go?!