How would you like to improve your brand?
To be blunt: 2020 has been pretty crap for many of us. The chaos it has thrown at us has devastated industries and individuals directly and has, by proxy, affected families, communities, and the way we live moving forward. For some though, it’s been a unique opportunity to take a breather and think outside the square. A chance to do those things at the bottom of the to-do list or the too-hard basket. A chance to assess what’s working and what’s not and, more specifically what can be changed or updated. This is a great time to do an audit of your online social accounts.
If you’re not online, you’re being left behind
One thing has never been more evident during recent months: if you don’t have an online presence you’ve got no chance against your competitors who have. It’s not news to anyone that, these days, the majority of properties are searched for and found through online social media channels, your websites and the major property listing websites. So what are some quick ways you can configure you social accounts to have them start working to your advantage?
Your personal brand is hinged on your profile photo and background cover image. They are what create first impressions and whether you are reputable of not. The most common issues with many LinkedIn profile images I’ve audited are usually these one or more of these:
- poor photo quality making the image blurry or grainy. Opt for a hi-res image that is 400 x 400 pixels or larger for your headshot and 1536 x 768 pixels for the cover photo. These sizes may change but are correct as at August 2020.
- back lighting meaning the person is essentially a silhouette. Whether you’re taking a selfie or having your photo taken by a friend, always make sure the sunlight or artificial light is in front of you. If you’re under an awning, turn yourself so you’re facing outside towards the light.
- the positioning of the person in the photo:
- If you’re too far away from the camera, we can’t see you and there’s not much point having a photo of yourself.
- When I see someone cropped away from someone’s else’s head, I start to wonder if it was an ex-partner, was it a big night out, what was the occasion. It could distort the reception of the message you’re trying to portray.
- Check that what you’re wearing complements the position your sitting or standing in. I’ll leave that up to your imagination.
- the cover image. Some people update their headshot but not the cover image, leaving it as that LinkedIn default image.
- For your personal brand, photos showcasing your workspace are ideal. If you specialise in rural properties upload an spectacular scenic image of rolling hills or farmland that entices the buyer to want to live there. Likewise, if you’re thing is city chic dwellings, the city skyline is a great option. Alternatively that are clean cut with a basic, plain background are usually best.
- For your business brand, opt for either your logo or an image that speaks mountains: a desired lifestyle, a cause you support, or an example of your work if you’re an architect perhaps.
It’s all about the visual appeal on Instagram and having images that a scroll-stopping. Have a look at your page. Are the colours on brand? Are you posting strategically to create a flow that pleasant to view? If yours is random mish mash of images, it’s not too late to start bringing some structure to it with these steps.
- Think about the 80/20 content curation guideline: 80% of your post should give an insight into your personality, your opinions, quotes or memes and industry knowledge. 20% should be dedicated to selling your products and services.
- Now open up a 9 square grid in Canva or even Word (representing the look of your Instagram page). Your 9 square grid will become your go-to tool to help you stay on track.
- Strategically map out your content: 2-3 squares for sales posts and dedicate the remainder for content that shares a bit about you.
- Create post templates in Canva (maybe 3-4) for each of the squares. You might have one for sales, one for inspirational quotes, one for industry trends, one for sharing something personal. Templates keep the look and feel of your personal brand consistent with the same layout and brand colours for each post.
Google My Business
There’s so much to this platform can offer that is under-utilised by many, but it’s a great platform to be present on that will help people find you. You can add photos, update your open hours, allow people to book an appointment with you, publish blog posts, and configure your service area and your ideal audience as well.
- Keep your online handle consistent: When you’re configuring your account settings, be mindful to keep your online handle (or “Profile short name”) the same for all of your accounts. For example: on Instagram I’m @brandinjection, on Google My Business review form is spelt the same, brandinjection, and on Facebook I’m also @brandinjection. You can find this configuration setting under Info from the left hand column.
- Set up or find your Google Review form link: The most effective quick update you can do is to set up your Google review form link if you haven’t already. Simply follow these steps:
- From the left hand column select “Home”
- On the right go to the box that says “Get more Reviews”
- Select “Share review form”
- This will then give you a popup box with an option to copy the URL link. You can then share this link via email to clients to request a review, add it to an eNewsletter, your social channels or your website. In real estate, a big chunk of your marketing if via word of mouth so get this set up and use it asap.
There’s a lot you can set up that will make such a difference to how your business presents on Google. Take some time to check it out.
Ah Facebook. We either love it or hate it, but nonetheless, I believe it’s a must-have for real estate agencies and agents. Some key steps for quick configuration I would recommend are:
- Populate your About section
- Go to the right hand column and click on that section
- Click on “edit story” on the top right hand side of the image.
- Here you can update your image and your copy. Lead your copy with your customer’s pain points and end with your solution to those pain points. It doesn’t need to be an essay, just 2-3 paragraphs with a sentence each.
- Invite your friends, acquaintances and anyone in your phone directory to “Like” your page.
- Find the blue box that says “Invite Friends” in the right hand column or via the three dots in the top menu.
- Update your call to action button:
- Simply click on the button and select an option for what you’d like the viewer to do. They can send a message, Contact you, learn more about your business or make a booking with you.
- When you click on each of these options you’re then given more options to choose the text for your button to.
- Once you’ve selected the action, click Next
- Opt where you’d like people to be sent to – which email address, phone number etc.
- Set up an automated response: If you’ve opted for people to send you message via Messenger, you can configure an automatic response. This shows you’re professional and it buys you a little time before you can physically answer the message yourself.
- Up the top menu click on Inbox,
- From the left hand column click on Automated responses
- Switch ON Instant reply and opt for your timing
- Click Edit
- Select whether you want this same response when people message you through Instagram or Facebook or both
- Create a response message up to 500 characters. And click Save
So what are you waiting for. Some of these configurations can be done quickly and simply during your coffee break so hop to it. Feel free to contact me if you have any issues.