Hamilton Herald Masthead


Front Page - Friday, November 25, 2016

Social media tips for real estate professionals

As social networking sites become a standard advertising and marketing tool, familiarity  with best practices and risk management has become essential for real estate agents, according to the social media risk management session, “I Don’t Give a Twit,” presented this month at the 2016 Realtors Conference & Expo.

The National Association of Realtors 2016 Member Profile shows 70 percent of all Realtors now use social networking sites as part of their regular business practices, an increase from 65 percent in 2015.

As more agents and brokers venture into the social media sphere, it is vital to have a thorough understanding how these sites are regulated, monitored and utilized, both by those in real estate and clients.

Trista Curzydlo, principal member of C4 Consulting, spoke during the session about how to minimize potential risk online and best practices to deal with the fallout from any social media missteps or negative online reviews.

“When we talk about social media and social media risk management, it’s important to think about it in terms of who is viewing your online activity, as well as why and where online they are viewing it,” Curzydlo says.

“With 90 percent of buyers utilizing internet resources at some point during their home buying process, it is essential for agents and brokers to develop a social media policy with rules governing how these online tools are used to protect your online professional brand.”

Curzydlo recommends the following best practices for maintaining control of a professional online presence:

Do not assume making a post viewable to only a certain set of people means that those people are the only ones who will see the post.

Establish a Google alert for your name, listings and business. These alerts can also make you aware of any online comments made about you, positive or negative, that could affect your brand.

When faced with a negative online review or social media post, make sure your response does not bring more negative attention to the issue. Always attempt to counter something negative with a positive.

Curzydlo also says real estate professionals should be educated about their intellectual property rights when it comes to photographs they take of their listings.

“As independent contractors, real estate agents need to be aware of who owns the copyrights to their photographs – do they or their broker own them? This can affect future marketing efforts if agents ever decide to leave their brokerage,” Curzydlo says.

“When you use any social media tools, it’s also necessary to look at the terms of use and know if you’re giving up your rights to your intellectual property by posting it on that site.”

Source: NAR