Facebooking Your Way To Home
If you think that Facebook exists only so you can check it every three seconds to find out what your friends are doing, consider this: it is a presently an underutilized resource for selling your home. A search for “real estate” results in over 500 people, pages and groups. As of April 2008, there are 241 events and 37 applications listed as having to do with real estate.
Facebook exploded onto the scene in 2004 and presently has over 70 million people who actively use it. Of course, the majority will not be targeted buyers, but even a fraction of 70 million is a lot of people you could be advertising your property to.
If you’re a homeowner who wants to sell, Facebook makes things easy for putting a house on your personal profile, with its handy-dandy Advertiser’s link at the bottom of the page. Scroll down past your friends’ complaints of how bored they are at work and your 1543 application posts.
It will be at the very bottom. The VERY bottom. Click on “Advertisers” and away you go. It comes at a price, but you can choose the method they charge you by, either by clicks or by impressions. You can target people who visit your page or who are looking specifically for real estate – the ad will appear in the left-hand ad space on their Facebook page.
Some realtors have created separate profiles for their personal and realty presence on the Web. It’s free, after all, and enables one to keep their social networking with friends and family separate from their business contacts.
Another way is to add the Neighborhoods application. This application is appealing to people who are interested in real estate transactions and the ordinary Facebook user, as it allows them to pick neighborhoods in their city, post messages and pictures and meet other people who live in the same area.
Currently, only homes listed by Point2 NLS are searchable through this database. This doesn’t mean that it is useless to people who are not affiliated with Point2. Someone or a business representative who adds quality content to a site may be of interest to people looking for real estate using this application.
An application garnering some media attention is Cribfinder. According to the home page on Facebook, your properties will show up on your profile when you add the application. Also, whenever you make any changes, comment on photos, etc. it will show up on your newsfeed, one part of Facebook that most of your contacts check to see what everybody on their friends list is doing.
You can keep track of your properties and add as many as you want. Since this application is receiving some interest in the real estate community, it’s worth checking out.
Other ways to subtly promote your property or properties is to join or create a Facebook group for the location you’re selling in or for your target people. Link to it in your email and forum signatures. Post quality information on your chosen group’s wall or Discussion Board. If your group is interesting to people beyond those hunting for real estate, it will grow and so will your contacts.
Events are another method of getting the word out there about the property you’re selling. If you have an open house, create an Event for it. Right now, under “Real Estate”, there are events for every thing from open houses to seminars for realtors.
Events get posted on your contacts’ Event page. Consider having an open house or real estate-related event that appeals to those not necessarily home hunting, so you can have an excuse for inviting your entire Facebook contact list.
Facebook is currently the most popular site for uploading and displaying pictures. Make its easy interface work for you by uploading pictures of the homes you’re selling into properly titled and labeled photo albums. When you add pictures, it will appear in your News Feed, along with the title of your album, so make sure that you make the first few words of the title count. Photo albums on Facebook can be linked to outside of the site and accessed by people who do not have an account.
This is just a few of the features of this huge social networking site. From the usage and the comments, using Facebook to buy and sell real estate is just taking off – and you may just want to be on this flight. At the very least, it’s something to do in between attacking your friends with your Zombie application.