As social media becomes more and more ingrained into our daily lives, it is increasingly becoming integral to doing business. The importance of having a business presence on social media goes beyond just having an active Facebook or Twitter page or keeping your LinkedIn profile updated. Your clients don’t just want to learn about you on social media, they want to interact with you.
When your customers need assistance or have an issue, don’t be surprised if more of them are turning to your Facebook page instead of picking up the phone. Whether it’s a comment or a message, it’s important that your customers’ needs are being addressed. You wouldn’t ignore a client’s phone calls—ignoring a social media post can be just as bad for business.
Customers as Your Advocates
The real estate business is based on word-of-mouth referrals. According to REALTORMag, 92 percent of consumers trust recommendations from friends and family over other forms of marketing. Getting your clients to refer you is key to running a successful business, so it’s important that they have something positive to say. Whether your customer is an advocate or a detractor can be decided in part by your responsiveness (or lack thereof) on social media.
Research shows that answering a complaint on social media can increase a customer’s advocacy by 25 percent, while not answering a complaint can decrease advocacy by a whopping 50 percent. The time you take to answer is important: 63 percent of customers expect a response on social media within one hour.
Managing Your Messages
To have a successful social media presence, you can’t simply, “set it and forget it.” Make time in your day to respond to tweets and messages. If you’re afraid the volume will be overwhelming, there are some steps you can take.
For instance, Facebook recommends that you only turn on messaging when you’re ready. If you can’t devote the time to responding to your messages, you can either turn them off completely, or turn them off during “off hours,” in your page’s settings.
You can also save time by setting up “saved replies.” These are replies to frequently asked questions that can allow you to answer customers quickly. Another tip is to set an “instant reply.” Instant replies send an automated reply to anyone who messages your page. This isn’t to be used in place of a reply, but as more of an introduction. You can greet your client, thank them for messaging you and let them know that you’ll respond to them as quickly as you can.
Your clients can be your biggest cheerleaders. Staying attentive within all methods of communication is a key to customer happiness. Making your social media accounts work for both you and your clients ensures you will build a base of advocates who will help your business well beyond closing.