What Every Real Estate Agent Needs to Know About Pinterest
Pinterest. Perhaps you’ve heard of it, perhaps you haven’t. Either way, it can no longer be ignored. As a Real Estate agent, Pinterest can easily be one of the most valuable tools in your social media work belt. With Pinterest, it is all about visualization, which is what sells homes. Are you getting the picture yet? Pinterest can be a very powerful social media tool in a Realtors marketing arsenal if used properly! The key to making any social media network is to establish relationships and engage with others. Pinterest is certainly no different.
What is Pinterest?
If you are still unfamiliar with Pinterest, here’s a brief rundown to get you up to speed. Basically, it is a virtual bulletin board. You can “pin” images or videos from all over the net to different boards under your profile. The number of pins and boards that you can have are unlimited. Each pin has a description and links directly to the website you got the image or video from.
Once you share a pin, your followers can like it and re-pin it to one of their boards, which goes to all of their friends and family on the site. That can mean a lot of visibility in a small amount of time. If you use it correctly. Additionally one of the things that makes Pinterest great is the shelf life of a pinned article or photo. There are very few sites where your content can get shared consistently for a long period of time.
How Do I Use Pinterest Correctly?
Yes, of course you want to use Pinterest to grow your business. But just like with all aspects of social media, Pinterest is more about engaging your followers and building trust. Simply put, you want your followers to look at you as the expert for all things real estate. You cannot do this by just drilling your listings in their face. This is a common theme among many Realtors who don't understand why they never get anywhere with social media.
Yes, you can have a boards that are dedicated to your Real Estate business, but you should also have Pinterest boards that are full of eye-catching images that are related to home living. Remember, the point is to find things that will prompt your followers to re-pin the image. If the image doesn’t inspire you, you can forget about it inspiring anyone else. And this goes for every single picture or video you pin. Like other social media channels it is perfectly fine to share other content that interests you. Above all else be human! You don't want to be just a Real Estate robot.
What Should I Pin?
Now that you understand how Pinterest works and what its purpose is, it’s time to get down to the nitty gritty: what you should be pinning. Here are some ideas for boards that you can implement into your Pinterest profile. Each one serves a different purpose and can attract different users.
- Home Listings – Of course you have to have a board for all of the homes you have for sale. This is your chance to show them off. Take pictures that will really grab your followers’ attention, like a scenic view, dream master bathroom, or unique architecture. The way you organize the home listings is up to you, but to be the most effective you will probably need more than one board. You can have one board per listing, or sort your listings by their key features (e.g. Homes with Pools, Modern Living, Family Friendly).
- Neighborhood Information – Another fun idea is to have a board reserved for each of the main neighbors you sell homes in. Make the boards about events, restaurants, and shopping in that area. If you have specific communities you cover this is a great way to show them off. One of the types of information a Realtor should have on their website is a local community page for each of the towns they cover. These pages should be filled with photography that is perfect for pinning on Pinterest. Here is an example of a page dedicated to the Holliston Real Estate community where you can clearly see the expertise on the local Holliston Real Estate market and town data points. You should make sure you have social sharing tools on the page including Pinterest, which makes it easy for those who visit his site to re-pin content.
- Team Photos – Since Pinterest is about building trust with your followers you want to make the experience personal. Include one board that introduces you and your team so that your followers feel connected to you.
- Interior Design Inspiration – Now that you got all of the must-haves out of the way, it is time to get creative. Build several boards about design inspiration. For example, create one for modern design and another for traditional design. You can even separate the boards by the color palette used or designers.
- Home Renovation Projects – Something else all homeowners will want to look up is what they can do to improve their home. Find projects that they can do and create separate boards for weekend projects, complete renovations, and other DIY ideas.
What Do I include When Pinning?
You can either find all of the images you want to pin yourself or you can simply re- pin them from reputable interior design or home living companies that you decide to follow. Either way, when you go to pin something you will have to fill in three fields: Description, Link, and Board.
- Description – When writing your description, compose something catchy and creative. It is also important to include keywords and hash tags so that your pin can be easily found by Pinterest’s search feature. This is also where you will want to include the price of the home listings you are pinning. If entered using the dollar sign and the number, Pinterest will add a price banner to the image.
- Link – This is where the image will take the user when it is clicked. Of course, anything from your website should be double-checked to make sure it is linked properly. It is also legally important that you check the link on all re-pins to make sure they are coming from a legitimate website.
- Board – You will be given a drop down menu of all of the boards you have created. Simply choose the one that is the best fit for what you are pinning.
More Advanced Pinterest Tips
Once the set up of your Pinterest boards are far enough along and you are using the site daily, you are bound to get noticed. Inevitably you will start to make a few online connections. The more time that is spent on the site, the more your following will grow. This is a good thing as it confirms people like what you are pinning.
As you really start to see Pinterest working for you and have enough decent content set up on your boards, I would highly recommend you seek out what is known as a "group Pinterest board". A group Pinterest board is one in which multiple people can post to. These boards are by invite only.
As a Real Estate agent what you should do is seek out and find a few group boards in the Real Estate niche that you can ask to become a member. Why you ask? A group Pinterest board has the potential to be seen by a lot more eyes especially as the board grows in popularity. Here is an excellent Real Estate group board that is worth asking permission to join. At the top of the board you will notice what the group is about, as well as instructions on how to join.
Here is a great video on how Pinterest can help a Real Estate agents business:
When used correctly, Pinterest is a valuable tool for any Real Estate agent to use. It may seem daunting at first, but once you get the hang of it, it can actually be one of the most fun things you have to do every day.
By Bill Gassett
Bill Gassett is a nationally recognized Real Estate leader who has been helping people move in and out of the Metrowest Massachusetts area for the past twenty six plus years. While his real estate business covers numerous towns, Franklin Massachusetts and Hopkinton Massachusetts where he grew up, have been a major focus. He has been one of the top RE/MAX Realtors in New England for the past decade. In 2012 he was the #1 RE/MAX agent in all of New England. Connect with him on Google+.